Closing the Gender Gap Online: Lend Your Voice to an International Movement to Diversify Wikipedia
During a pandemic, when we’re hyperfocused on a fearsome virus, why come together online to improve Wikipedia?
By Eva Berlin, Digital Content Specialist, High Museum of Art
Wikipedia is the largest and most popular online research tool in the entire world. Unfortunately, it also suffers from a massive gender gap. Without the voices and stories of women, people of color, and other underrepresented groups, we’re left with a staggering lack of representation. Join the High’s Virtual Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon anytime on March 31 to help make a difference!
During a pandemic, when we’re hyper-focused on a fearsome virus’ toll on the world, why come together online to improve Wikipedia?
- Right now, as we attempt to work and learn from home while keeping up with the global situation, we’re seeing firsthand the importance of open access to unbiased, well-sourced information online.
- Right now, we’re in need of hope. Looking to the resiliency and accomplishments of women past and present is a welcome source of inspiration this Women’s History Month.
As Wikipedia is a crowdsourced encyclopedia, the responsibility lies with each of us to ensure that the information is high quality. When we learn from biased or poorly sourced information, the ramifications are very real. It may mean that whole topics or categories of information are underdeveloped or completely absent. That type of vacuum feeds upon itself.
Any small actions we take to bolster overlooked topics on Wikipedia will multiply and grow over time. The stories of phenomenal women can inspire a young girl to reach for her dreams, spur a graduate student’s research topic, or open the mind of an unsuspecting casual browser.
How to Join the High’s Virtual Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon
- Create a Wikipedia account and log in to the High’s virtual event dashboard to participate remotely. The dashboard displays the number of edits being made — watch as the numbers grow!
- Watch handy tutorial videos to learn how Wikipedia works and how to get started—it’s easier than you think!
- Edit, update, and create Wikipedia articles related to intersectional feminism, women or underrepresented groups in the arts—or whatever topic you know best!
If you’re new to editing, don’t worry! Editing can be as simple as correcting grammar and punctuation or adding citations to existing articles.
The Art+Feminism movement began in 2014, and now feminist Edit-a-Thons are held all over the world at museums, universities, libraries, and other cultural institutions.
Note: Wikipedia statistics were gathered from a survey conducted in multiple languages by the Wikimedia Foundation and United Nations University and their tech research program UNU-MERIT.