Wikipedians in Bengaluru and neighbouring cities with an interest in the natural world conducted an edit-athon in the city to improve articles on the plants, animals, geology and other aspects of nature on Wikipedia. Helping identify and obtain reliable sources, learning to structure an article, paraphrase, cite and polish up articles was also on the agenda. The workshop was aided by wildlife enthusiasts User:Chinmayisk and User:Shyamal. Noted naturalists Dr.Subramanya and Dr.Vijay Barve , Wikimedia Program Director Ravishankar and Wikipedian Dinesh Kumar interacted with the participants.
Excerpts of the Interview from the Hindu Article http://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/society/on-how-wiki-editathon-enhances-articles-related-to-nature/article7507471.ece
Talking about the workshop, Chinmayi said, “The focus was on enhancing wiki articles related to the natural world. We discovered that most articles about flora and fauna are either faulty or have become outdated. In this workshop, we have bought together a host of naturalists and wiki enthusiasts. We hope that the workshop will help them learn more about using edit functions on Wikipedia and get a forum to share nature-related information and media. In this workshop, the participants are building new pages and updating older ones in real time. Most participants are regular users of wikipedia, but are editing articles for the first time.”
Wikimedia project manager Ravishankar contends, “We are also looking at popularising the use of Wikipedia in regional languages. In the realm of wildlife, we find that many Indian animals do not have much information uploaded on wiki pages. This anomaly is caused since English is not the first language of most Indians. If we make Wikipedia in local languages more popular, more information will make it to the public domain. The response to this edit-athon has been very encouraging. We want to conduct such events across the country. Having a broad range of contributors and content is necessary to achieve our goal. These events bring more contributors and help add more content ”
Wildlife enthusiast and one of the organisers of the event, Shyamal says, “Most people who participate in such events are motivated to learn about the natural world. We lack a lot of information on nature, flora and fauna. Wiki needs authentic scholarly information and these workshops aim at putting this information out in the public domain. Most of the information is available only in expensive and rare books or science journals. This is an attempt to ensure that a lot of this information comes in the public domain.”
Subramanian Sankar, an avid birder came from Chennai to attend the event. “It is very informative. I have learnt a lot. I think that these workshops will go a long way in improving the quality of information available on Wikipedia.”
The list of articles that were edited during the workshop
- Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary - Translated in Tamil at காவேரி காட்டுயிர் புகலிடம்
- Dysphania_militaris - False Tiger Moth
- Red-naped ibis (Pseudibis papillosa) tragus (talk) - கருந்தலை அரிவாள் மூக்கன்
- grey-breasted prinia
- Acrocarpus fraxinifolius - அக்ரோகார்பஸ் ஃபெராக்சினிபோலியஸ்
- Indian stone-curlew
- Green shrike-babbler
- Dacalana cotys
- Horaga onyx
- Red-necked falcon - செந்தலை வல்லூறு
- Yellow-throated Bulbul
- Nicobar shrew (Crocidura nicobarica) tragus (talk)
- Soil Conservation - Citation
- Nyctibatrachus - Image contribution
- Polypedates - Image contribution, One eyed tree frog
- Painted Snipe
- Baya weaver - தூக்கணாங்குருவி
- White-rumped munia
- Hair-crested drongo
- Indian Pond Heron - குளத்துக் கொக்கு
- Desmodium oojeinense Created by Aarthi using sandbox and moved to live page now. - நரி வேங்கை Translated in Tamil
AdaCamp is an amazing initiative to increase the participation of women in open technology and culture.
The AdaCamp at Bangalore was held on 22nd and 23rd of November 2014.
The Camp was true to its claim and was designed to encourage women in every possible way . The atmosphere at the Camp was very cordial and of mutual respect. The programs were of unconference nature which made it very inclusive . Special programmes like Imposter syndrome workshops showed the commitment of the makers to address the issues of women in open technologies and culture.
Women from the Wikimedia Community made significant contributions to the camp by volunteering and also by conducting various session including and not limited to Wikimedia Projects. We conducted two sessions with regards to wikipedia
Introduction to Wikipedia, Led by Chinmayi S K and Netha Hussain
Wikipedia workshop, Led by Netha Hussain and Parul Thakur
Introduction to Wikipedia : This session was held on Day 1. It had a mixed group of first time editors to those who had the experience of editing wikipedia and had to face issues.We began the session talking about various parts of a wikipedia page and how are they significant along with their uses. There were long detailed discussions on inserting content into the page what kind of content is allowed , what would make it credible and where to host it , use of references and what kind of reference would strengthen the article. Here we also figured out why some edit or articles were disregarded and there was also a mention of sponsored edits.
The other things we were able to cover during this discussion were : Macros and templates , Namespaces , Wikitionary, Talk pages ,Portals and GLAM initiative.
At the end of the session we also had a very insightful discussion on the diversity of Wikimedia editors and the plunging numbers which are a cause of concern . How diversity affects the quality and type of articles being written and How one could contribute to increasing the number of women editors ( leading initiatives like Women’s History Month and others ) .
Wikipedia Workshop : This workshop was held on Day 2 and was a hands on session. We had three women who joined this session. The session initiated with the basics like creating an account to login and leveraging the sandbox to test and edit. On the AdaCamp internal document, a number of resources to help attendees make their first edits. For the purpose of this session, Netha and Parul shared the project pages of the previous edit-a-thons on Women Parliamentarians and Scientists. Biographies are a good starting point and hence we wanted to show these pages to the attendees. We spoke of adding categories, banners, making minor edits and backing them up with references. Throughout the session, we individually helped attendees modify/create/edit content.
Both sessions had a positive impact and was well appreciated by those who attended it. Here is two pictures of the group after the sessions .
It was encouraging to see the attendees being interested in Wikipedia sessions and as facilitators, we really wish to address the Gender Gap. More and more women participants in such sessions encourage us to take Wikipedia to a level where we could see equality both in terms of women editors and women specific content.
Attendees from the Wikimedia Community at Ada Camp :
Pavithra Hanchagaiah, Netha Hussain , Rohini Lakshané, Parul Thakur, Chinmayi S K , Nappinnai Krishnamoorthi , Juvairia Nv.
* In Love with AdaCamp – A blog post by Parul Thakur.
Write-up by Rahmanuddin Shaikh, a Wikimedian from Hyderabad.
Telugu Wikipedia completed 10 years on December 10, 2013. Several training sessions, also known as Wiki Academies, were planned by the Telugu Wikipedia community to mark the occasion. One such session, the Te-Wiki Shikshana Shibir was organised at Hyderabad on December 8. It was the fifth Wiki Academy ever held in the city.
The Wiki Academy saw a turnout of around 21 people coming from various teaching backgrounds, right from a professor of Telugu from Osmania University to a teacher at a private school. Teachers, professors, student-teachers, and instructors participated in the event. It has carved the way for organising Te-Wiki Dasabdi (Telugu Wikipedia decennial celebrations) with more enthusiasm.
The Telugu teaching community has affirmed that it would make use of the Telugu Wikipedia in and out of the classroom. Many of the participants have already turned into Wikipedia editors. “A few of the difficulties the Telugu teaching fraternity faces have been solved by the Telugu Wikipedia,” said one of the participants hailing from Mysore CIIL. “I’ve been horrified by the mere touch of keyboard and mouse, this Telugu Wikipedia seems promising to deal with my Computerophobia,” said HoD, Telugu Osmania University, Prof S.V. Satyanarayana. The professor also urged the organisers to conduct one such workshop for his students in the coming days.
Event page on Telugu Wikipedia
Photos of the WikiAcademy
Cross-posted at WikipeDNA
Edited by Rohini Lakshané: rohini at wikimedia dot in
The Kannada Wikipedia completed 10 years on November 17, 2013. An account of the anniversary celebrations held in Bangalore written by Wikimedian Pavithra H.
Wikipedia has been a key source of knowledge for everyone from a student writing her assignments to a scientist conducting research. It is the world’s fifth most accessed website. Since its inception 10 years ago, the Kannada Wikipedia has grown to accumulate around 13,000 articles and still has a long way to go in terms of building an encyclopaedia in a 2000-year old language.
Wikipedians from different parts of Karnataka had gathered at the tenth anniversary celebrations. The chief guest was the father of the modern Kannada dictionary, Nadoja Prof. G. Venkatasubbaiah. Other guests included T. R. Anantharamu, a retired scientist with the Geological Survey of India, National Award-winning film director Abhaya Simha, and Dr. U. B. Pavanaja from the CIS-A2K (Centre for Internet and Society – Access To Knowledge) team.
Dr. Pavanaja shared his opinions on the importance of building the Kannada Wikipedia and spoke about his stand on the upcoming areas for its development. He finds that articles are lacking in informational value, and focus should be on adding such value to them. Nadoja Prof. G. Venkatasubbaiah insisted that youth engage more with the Kannada Wikipedia. He feels that the Kannada Wikipedia should grow with continued participation. T. R. Ananthramu said that as a scientist, he understands challenges in research activities such as digging out accurate information on a topic. He said he believes that domain experts need to actively participate in the Kannada Wikipedia to add the right content, which will, in turn, help everyone get correct information.
Abhay Simha whose father Ashoka Vardhana runs a book publication and grandfather, G.T. Narayan Rao was a science writer, underlined the need for timely updating and reprinting of science books. Realising the benefits of the Creative Commons licenses introduced by Omshivaprakash H.L., the Chair (Special Interest Group) of Kannada Wikipedia, Abhay has released science books written by his grandfather under a CC license. He hopes that references from the books are added to Wikipedia and the knowledge contained in them is shared with everyone.
Next was a demonstration on editing Wikipedia by Omshivaprakash followed by a session on the Creative Commons licenses by Kiran Ravi Kumar, who is an engineering student living in Mysore. The event ended with an edit-a-thon by the Wikipedians in which new articles were created. Active editors of the Kannada Wikipedia who have been contributing for years were given mementos to mark the occasion and to acknowledge their contribution. A few Wikipedians shared their experiences about the difficulties that a new Wikipedia editor faces and how to overcome them.
It was a fruitful event to help understand and realise the need for exponential growth of the Kannada Wikipedia and to make a rich and free encyclopedia for the Kannada-speaking community.
Edited by Rohini Lakshané: email@example.com