CEE/Newsletter/November 2018/Contents/Russia report
Tatar Wikimedians created Russia's 4th Wikimedia User Group
|“||We are very glad to have another group of fellow volunteer friends and colleagues in our movement. Your team of Tatar Wikimedians is quite professional, very much noted not only inside Russia, but also internationally, extending an helping hand to other communities developing projects in the languages of Russia. Thank you very much for this experience. And certainly our best wishes in successful sailing the world of promoting free knowledge in Tatar language.||”|
- By Frhdkazan
Translated from the Russian Wikinews article Татарские викимедийцы создали четвёртую в России юзер-группу Викимедиа
Wikimedia Foundation's Affiliations Committee recognized «Wikimedia Community of Tatar language User Group» (UG TAT) — an entity tasked with developing Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects in Tatar. User groups are a form of an organized collaboration within Wikimedia movement that allows groups representing various communities of Wikimedia projects to promote and run collective activities without establishing a legal entity.
Wikimedia movement interests are traditionally represented by independent regional organizations (legal entities), also known as chapters. In the Russian Federation such a chapter is «Wikimedia RU» non-profit partnership, founded in 2008. The purpose of its activities is promoting distribution of free knowledge in the territory of Russia, also through supporting implementation within Russia of various projects that match its objectives (for example, lobbying for free licenses and the freedom of panorama in the Russian parliament).
In the process of Wiki-projects' development, it was discovered that User Groups that are groupings of physical individuals are much simpler form of organizational entity to be created and supported, whilst they are an optimal tool for dealing with majority of tasks at hand. Thus, they are a better way for coordination and cooperation of the like-minded Wikimedians.
User Groups ended up being useful format for smaller communities of Wikimedia projects — in particular to Wikipedias and other Wikimedia projects in the languages of Russia.
Russia's first User Group «Wikimedians of Bashkortostan» (UG BAK), whose primary objective is to develop Wikipedia ad other Wikimedia projects in Bashkir, was formed in 2015. Second similar affiliate in Russia was «Wikimedians of Erzya language User Group» (UG EZY), recognized in February 2017. Thanks to participants of these groups, Russian Wikinews launched an innovative experiment in multilingualism with sections in Bashkir and in Erzya being first. UG BAK and UG EZY cooperate with «Wikimedia Russia», other regional organizations and affiliates of the Wikimedia movement. Bashkir Wikimedians managed to engage in their efforts significant number of senior citizens, lovingly calling them «Wiki-grandmas». Russia's third was Don Wikimedians User Group (UG RU-Don), approved in February 2018 — territorial thematic grouping of Wikimedia movement participants, interested in Rostov Oblast, historic and geographic region around the river Don in the Southern Russia, as well as the culture of Don Cossacks.
The idea of establishing Tatar language User Group came about in 2016 in Selet WikiSchool and started developing under the guidance of Farkhad Fatkullin. A year later the leadership in the project was passed to its ex-student Timerkhan Shaykhutdinov, who participated in 2017 Wikimedia Conference Russia and 2017 Volga Regional Wiki-seminar with presentations about the initiative. In parallel, Tatar-language Wikinews section was established in the framework of Russian Wikinews' project on indigenous «Multilingualism».
Community's evolution into new quality happened due to the 15th anniversary of Tatar Wikipedia (founded in September 2003), as well as Farkhad's being named by Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales at the 2018 Wikimania closing ceremony in Capetown as Wikimedian of the Year.
Application to register Tatar Wikimedians UG was filed in October 2018, when all necessary requirements were met: minimum number of edits, number of active participants, as well as objectives and goals aligned with development of Wikimedia projects in Tatar language: transforming Tatar Wikipedia into most popular content portal of Tatar Internet, raising new generation of Wikimedians writing in Tatar, developing their skills through exchange of experience, promotion of all knowledge in Tatar to be passed under free licenses.
UG's main activities are around continual implementation of "Selet WikiSchool" initiative, cooperation with Tatarstan Government entities & publicly funded institutions in implementing "Smart region" project in the Republic, as well as providing ongoing development of existing and creation of new Wikimedia projects in Tatar language.
Regional and thematic Wikimedia organizations help Wikimedians to interact, exchange experiences, engage and train new participants — Wikipedia helps preserving and widening linguistic culture, which is particularly important for speakers of various languages of Russia.
Selet WikiSchool continues to teach young Tatar language Wikipedians
- By Тимерхан
10th November became the first day of educational programme for participants of autumn session of Selet WikiSchool. They are 10 young students from 5 districts of the Republic of Tatarstan. As last year pupils living not in Kazan participate online. They watch broadcasting in Facebook. Also recordings of lessons are available here.
During November 3 lessons were organized. One of them – practical lesson. It’s a new format for project’s activity. During practical lesson participants write their articles with advanced Wikipedians.
4 lessons will be organized else in December. The final event will be the conference.