Art+Feminism Is Hosting Its Second Ever Wikipedia Edit-a-thon To Promote Gender Equality

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Wikipedia is a great resource for all kinds of odd information, but it’s often not particularly welcoming to women who want to participate in its elaborate editing process. In 2011, a survey conducted by the Wikimedia Foundation found that less than 10% of Wikipedia editors identified as female, to say nothing of recent clashes between editors in the Gamergate article that resulted in several women being banned from writing about gender at all. But just talking about the problem isn’t going to create more female editors—training women who are interested will.

Edit-a-thons” are events where editors get together—usually in person, but not always—to improve Wikipedia’s coverage of a particular topic and to teach new editors about the culture of Wikipedia. Sometimes they’re hosted as meet-ups for editors who all go to a particular college or library together (Such as the Princeton University Meet-up) or are built around a particular theme, like the “Wikipedia Goes To The Movies” event in 2012. But increasingly, they tend to be used as a way to both encourage women who are interested in becoming editors and in expanding the coverage of women on Wikipedia itself—like the recent Women in Jewish History meet-up, or the Australian Women of Neuroscience event.

Art+Feminism, a group named one of Foreign Policy Magazine’s 2014 Leading Global Thinkers, launched its first edit-a-thon last year with 600 participants across 31 different locations, which resulted in 100 newly created articles and over 90 improved ones about feminist thinkers and women in the arts. This year they’ve expanded their efforts to include 55 different satellite locations across 11 locations. with the flagship event taking place at the Museum of Modern Art in New York on March 7th—just in time for International Women’s Day on March 8th.

If you’re interested in attending the event for yourself and finding an edit-a-thon satellite near you (or even hosting one yourself), the Art+Feminism website has a list of locations and other resources to check out. With any luck, their efforts will help the site slowly make its way towards gender parity by inspiring and shaping future contributors to Wikipedia.

(via Press Release)

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