List of Wikipedias/logarithmic chart
In 2012, May Wikipedia has 285 languages. Proportional chart shows a very large contrast between projects with more than hundred thousand articles and those with less than hundred. Such a chart is fast not readable. Logarithmic scale had evidenced in 2010 that all projects order in a thread with fast regular steps: each project contains about 94% of the article number of the next bigger. As in 2010 exceptions were :
- between 1st and 2nd (German WP article number is 33% of English)
- between 3th and 4th (Polish WP article number is 74% of French)
- between 10th and 11th (Swedish WP article number is 65% of Russian)
- Steps become bigger by projects with less than 50 articles.
Now in 2012, other irregular steps have appeared (between Portuguese and Chinese)
Chart showing all Wikipedias article number by language, last updated on 5/07/2013. On mouse over you will know language and relative article number.
One can distinguish
- the English WP which article number is the biggest with about three times more than the second (German)
- the 3 following (German, French and Dutch) with more than one million articles
- the leading group (pl, it, ja, es, pt ru) with more than half a million articles
- 250 other projects are coming after with average regular steps about 94% from 360 000 to 50
- last come dozen of projects with less than 50 articles (some of them are closed).
One can explain the rank of English WP so:
- Wikipedia started in English
- native English speakers are numerous in the world
- English speaking countries are found between the richest in the world: there very numerous people can acces the Internet
- Very numerous non native English speakers are using English and contributing to English Wikipedia
- English is seen by numerous people in the world as THE international language, to be used to communicate with people not speaking own language, and where one can find the most valorous cultural and scientific documentation
In few words English Wikipedia is not only a Wikipedia in any ethnic language natively spoken by less than 4% of the world's population, but it de facto roles as THE international on line Encyclopedia.
German and French
German and French speakers also are numerous and mostly are living in rather rich countries. These languages also have an international recognition.
The leading group
These are languages with numerous speakers, mostly in rich countries (it, ja, es, nl), if not economically, culturally and scientifically (pl, ru). Several of them have an international spread (es, pt, nl, ru).
The 250 followings
Here are found most different languages of each world part (Asia, Europe, Americas, Africa, Pacific) with most different speaker number (from fast nobody to hundred of millions), state, official, not official, regional, constructed, extincted languages,... Wikipedia exists in a language if there are voluntaries (eventually with any financial sustain ) to work about. Level of projects is very variant: some projects are very carefully built other suffer great lacks.
Until the 30th (more than hundred thousand articles) there are mostly languages spoken by numerous people, in rich or rather rich countries, official in at least one country except Catalan, Esperanto and Volapuk. One can explain these exceptions so:
- Catalan is spoken by a numerous population in a rich region (as big as some independent states) being the official language (an also in the little Andorra).
- Esperanto is the remarkable phenomenon with its strong multinational very active community
- Volapuk WP, as known, has artificially grown by bot mass edit of stubs about cities all other the world. Closure of Volapuk WP was discussed. Volapuk is spoken by very few people (some dozens). Volapuk WP community is very inactive. It is big only in appearance.
The last ones
They are starting projects with few active contributors. Some didn't grow after starting. Closure of some of them is discussed because they are easy victims for spammers. In Incubator are prepared projects which will appear in Wikipedia when mature enough.