Talk:Gender gap

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Current relevant efforts section?[edit]

I just joined the Gender Gap list and put my somewhat reformulated list of issues here and removed my original rendition that was here and changed subject line.

So do we need a section for listing (and delisting when done) discussions on various wikipedias of issues related to bring more women in and keeping them in? The "plus" is it's a central place related to Gender Gap email list; the minus is it could get unweildy with too many off topic things. Thanks... Carolmooredc 21:24, 9 February 2011 (UTC) [Later update signature Carolmooredc 16:53, 10 February 2011 (UTC) ]

Non English projects[edit]

fr:Projet:Femmes - pl:Wikiprojekt:Gender Studies - sv:Wikipedia:Projekt kvinnor - es:Wikiproyecto:Feminismo. Not sure how to link to right now, but thought I'd put it up for future project or if someone else wants to link to them on main page. Carolmooredc 03:47, 11 February 2011 (UTC)

Yeah, thanks for great reorganization. Carolmooredc 00:09, 12 February 2011 (UTC)

Some links and external researches[edit]

I was reading an interview about the Open World Forum [1] (question 8, in French) and the question of the gender gap in Open Source communities is asked. Some interesting links are given : Encourage Women Linux HOWTO, this page of this wiki related to gender gap in general. Since the problem about the gender gap is not specific to Wikipedia (computer science is generally a male environment, and editing WP is still viewed as a geekish activity (imho)), it would be valuable to search what is done in other communities about this fact/problem ; I know for instance Mozilla has a group of women who want to encourage female participation (WoMoz). ~ Seb35 [^_^] 15:04, 1 November 2011 (UTC)

most Reasons for Gender Gap could apply to both genders ?[edit]

I believe most of the reasons from the link(Nine Reasons Women Don’t Edit Wikipedia (in their own words)) do apply to both genders.

  • Why people leave Wikipedia?

2) some people are too busy.
3) some people loose self-confidence, and editing Wikipedia requires a lot of self-confidence.
4) some people get tired of Wikipedia’s sometimes-fighty culture.
5) the information they bring to Wikipedia is too likely to be reverted or deleted.
6) they find its overall atmosphere offensive to their beliefs. --Ne0Freedom (talk) 13:58, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Irony[edit]

One overlooked reason why there might be a gap (I think no such gap exists to the extent it has been assumed) is statements like:

“Due to the likelihood of women to interact with other women ...”

w:Wikipedia:Wikipedia_Signpost/2012-07-30/Recent_research#Emotions_and_dialogue.

Groan. Sigh. That kind of assumption is the beating heart of sexism. Such statements assume that in an online environment like Wikipedia where anonymity is the norm, females routinely disclose and/or self-identify with their gender companions as a matter of course — because males routinely do — or because when a community is presented with a genderless pseudonym, it assumes maleness as a matter of course until proven otherwise. The fact that it is the very group studying such a perceived gender gap that is making that absurd statement says a whole lot about how far away the end of the rainbow is. When assumptions such as the above are no longer made because its underlying assumptions have gone away, sexism will be a memory. — Sctechlaw (talk) 22:32, 5 August 2012 (UTC)

Is the gender gap in only an English language problem? The translations of this page should be encouraged. 24.114.255.83 12:38, 10 September 2012 (UTC)
Sexism is a community value for many cultures and there is no need for the Wikipedia community to force integration of genders on cultures which do not want it. Even in the United States women's suffrage was not even 100 years ago and many people internationally for many reasons want to maintain a gender divide, or at least not disregard it abruptly. Wikipedia should accommodate women who want to join the project without respect to their gender and accommodate women who feel more comfortable identifying as women working with other women. This is in addition to as many other conceivable types of openness as possible. Blue Rasberry (talk) 16:59, 10 September 2012 (UTC)
Hi there (to the IP, specifically) - the gender gap in Wikipedia spans all language Wikipedias that we're aware of. In English Wikipedia, we have the highest amount of women - 13%. Russian, has the lowest (around 6%), and it could be better or worse in other languages. So yes, the gender gap is a problem in all Wikipedia languages. I am working on a renovation of the gender gap page here on meta, and I'll be requesting translations very soon! SarahStierch (talk) 17:53, 10 September 2012 (UTC)

Why goes the gender gap matter?[edit]

There are gender gaps in a great many professions, e.g. construction, engineering, etc. and it's not clear that we are the worse for it. Is there any evidence that the gender gap at Wikipedia is bad for society? If more women are not editing Wikipedia, perhaps it is because there are other tasks they deem more important. Who is to say that they are wrong?

Of course, that leads to the question of why someone would deem editing Wikipedia to not be a particularly good use of time. If the problem is that Sanger's Law has tended to create and reinforce a culture that is hostile to women, the solution is probably the same as for the problem of all those other subgroups (e.g. inclusionists) feeling unwelcome at Wikipedia. That is, stop voting on stuff, and put someone in charge of the project who will promote principles and practices that are superior to what are currently practiced, and prevent majorities from running roughshod over minorities. For example, there was no need to vote on the Kate Middleton wedding gown; a more inclusionist policy of keeping all verifiable content would eliminate such disputes. Leucosticte (talk) 03:42, 13 October 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia is governed mostly by contemporary Western culture. Western culture pushes the concept that representation of all possible demographics in any community should be proportionate to representation in the general population, and if the proportions do not match then the community is unhealthy. There is supporting evidence that this is bad for society in professions - see here. That should answer your questions; I have no particular response to your comments. Blue Rasberry (talk) 15:00, 13 October 2012 (UTC)
It could quite possibly be harmful (at least in the short run) to certain professions, and to Wikipedia, to have a gender gap. That does not mean that it's suboptimal for society as a whole (or, given the interdependence of people, even those professions and organizations in the long run) to have that gap exist. The bylaws note, "The mission of the Wikimedia Foundation is to empower and engage people around the world to collect and develop educational content under a free license or in the public domain, and to disseminate it effectively and globally." To the extent that purpose is intended to serve the superordinate goal of benefiting society, it could be helpful to take that bigger picture into account.
The article you cited notes, "Women with a STEM [science, technology, engineering and mathematics] degree are less likely than their male counterparts to work in a STEM occupation; they are more likely to work in education or healthcare." That might be bad in some ways for those STEM occupations, but it could be great for education and healthcare. And, for that matter, it could be good for the women who choose those professions, if it makes them happier.
Besides, the contribution of women to Wikipedia does not have to be direct. Suppose there is a woman who never edits the encyclopedia, but raises a child or teaches a student or provides healthcare to a person who does contribute to it. She could be regarded as having played a helpful role in building the encyclopedia, albeit indirectly. If her comparative advantage is to work in those fields rather than editing the encyclopedia, then that could be in the best interests of the project and of society.
Also, it is necessary that people to engage in non-Wikipedia-related activities in order for us to have those topics to write about at Wikipedia. E.g., in order for us to disseminate knowledge about Kate Middleton's wedding dress, someone (specifically, Sarah Burton) had to design Kate Middleton's wedding dress. So, that designer indirectly furthered Wikipedia's mission, because the article could not have existed without her. Who is to say that it wasn't better for the world, and for Wikipedia, that Ms. Burton devote her efforts to her work at luxury fashion house Alexander McQueen rather than editing our encyclopedia, even though the latter would have helped narrow the gender gap?
In short, I wonder what evidence there is to support the idea that we should try to narrow the gender gap at Wikipedia, given that the diversion of women's labor to this project requires that it be taken away from other endeavors. Leucosticte (talk) 17:52, 13 October 2012 (UTC)
This is a cultural thing and not an evidence-based thing. Consensus of many organizations propagates this idea. There is a custom throughout the Western world for organizations to do such things over the past few decades. It is unconscionable for any major community organization not to strive to have outreach to increase women's participation and comparative advantage or efficiency of economy are not part of the popular discussion.
Many Western universities have a department of women's studies or gender studies and any such institution could direct you to the body of literature on this topic and give you more information about why narrowing the gender gap is a goal not to be questioned regardless of evidence. In contemporary leading thought, questioning women's equality shares the great stigma, for example, of questioning the need for racial or ethnic equality. Note also that narrowing the gender gap is considered to be the route to gaining women's equality. The goal, whether it is reasonable or not in all contexts, is equality in all metrics and contexts. As a general rule that goal seems mostly good and easy to explain despite it having exceptions. Here are two United Nations pages describing this effort; - Millenneum Development Goal and UN Women. Does that answer your question about who says this is better for the world and Wikipedia? See also Argument from authority. Blue Rasberry (talk) 13:46, 14 October 2012 (UTC)
"Equality" is, unfortunately, a heavily overloaded term. It's often considered good for all people to have equality in a political and legal sense (although even that has been called into question; arguably, we should be focused on achieving liberty, not equality). But it can defeat some of the advantages of specialization and division of labor to try to achieve equality among individuals and groups in representation in various fields in the economy (including the nonprofit world). Without the benefits of specialization, society tends to fall apart, because much of the reason why people work together for anything, rather than being at each other's throats in competition over the limited resources available, is that there is more for each person to gain by trading his own output for what other people's unique strengths allow them to bring to the table.
The law of camparative advantage is hugely important because it shows that, even if one race, gender, nation or other group were to be proven superior to another at every field of endeavor, it would still benefit both of them to engage in trade, as long as they had different relative efficiencies. In light of that, equality seems less important. Indeed, it can be people's inequalities that cause them to need one another more, which brings about incentives for maintaining peaceful relations.
There is an incentive for those who are superior in ability to avoid tyrannizing over the weak, because in an advanced economy like ours, in which workers are called upon to use their intellects more and more, free people are more productive than slaves. It becomes necessary to incentivize workers to perform beyond the minimum that can be required of slaves. It was a system, viz. capitalism, that is founded on inequalities in wealth allowing talented entrepreneurs and investors to build up the capital needed to launch successful enterprises, that made it possible for women to achieve the elevated status they enjoy today; see for instance The Liberation of Women.
The whole point of specialization is to achieve greater productive efficiency by people's developing some of their inborn faculties at the cost of stunting the development of others. We see that even within Wikipedia itself; for instance, some people become very good at developing bots while others become good at creating featured articles. Should the bot developer community feel that it has not attained equality if its members' per capita rate of featured article writing is below the average?
Hardly; they just chose a different route that they felt was more in line with their passions and talents. It's necessary to forgo equality in some fields in order to excel in others; if we were all mediocre programmers and mediocre writers, for instance, there would be no one with enough proficiency to complete really advanced, difficult software projects or to compose a comprehensive, well-written, well-researched article on a subject. Since Wikipedia (and society in general) are more collaborative than competitive, there's no need for any person or group to feel bad about achieving equality along all measures if some of those inequalities further the greater good.
In some areas, women have attained what could be regarded as superiority over men. Men are by far more likely than women to go to prison, mental hospitals, or the grave at a young age. Men also are falling behind women in higher education. I would also guess that men are probably overwhelmingly more likely to get kicked off Wikipedia for what's deemed to be antisocial behavior.
It really doesn't matter that much that there are these disparities since they tend to compensated by other strengths (e.g. men are ahead in numbers of chess champions, political leaders, CEOs, etc.; Walter Block's theory is that this is because, due to the fact that men are relatively expendable from a sociobiological standpoint of societal reproductive potential, "males are God’s or nature’s crap shoot, and females are nature’s or God’s insurance policy"; if that's true, then the UN's Millennium Development Goals don't sound too realistic). Also, men and women cooperate and share resources within households and within society as a whole, so what helps women helps men and vice versa. It's not a zero-sum game.
Ironically, if more women were to get more involved in non-paying activities like writing Wikipedia articles, rather than focusing on what will bring in money, it might actually increase the gender gap in the realm of finances. The same goes for leisure activities, such as other forms of social interaction, that might have to be forgone in order to work on Wikipedia; there are costs involved in giving those up as well.
"In contemporary leading thought, questioning women's equality shares the great stigma" sounds like a statement that one could use as an appeal to popularity or appeal to force; e.g. "Those who disagree and don't do along with this agenda will suffer the consequences of stigmatization." One can either go along with society's standards or buck the standards in an effort to change them. Sometimes it's worthwhile to do the latter. People don't have to devote resources to that which is pointless, even though society may have that expectation. You can devote your resources to whatever you want, of course; I just question the wisdom of it. Leucosticte (talk) 17:53, 14 October 2012 (UTC)
This is not a project to consume resources, but rather a project to attract a net gain. There is a demographic which prefers to come to Wikipedia through a women's program and seemingly - no analysis has yet been done because few resources have gone into this program anyway - this program is relatively successful in comparison to other outreach strategies using the same resources. Another way to say this is that even though the project is advertised as women's outreach, it is comparable to any project doing editor outreach of any kind.
The logical systems you describe above are all correct on a certain scale but I wonder if you understand just how small this project is. There is hardly a central organizing force and this is more of just encouragement for local volunteers to organize their own events. You are right that this and other activist efforts function on appeals to force and popularity as well as to authority, and this is regardless of whether they also have the option to make logical appeals such as the ones you make. There are a lot of awesome organizations which promote women's events like this one and I am not sure what data backs their efforts. What cool organizations can you name that would question this project as you do? Blue Rasberry (talk) 11:55, 15 October 2012 (UTC)
here's some evidence from Harvard Business Review: Are Women Better Leaders than Men? i do hope we can stop the denial: this is not a matter of social justice; this is a matter of competence. Slowking4 (talk) 17:28, 15 December 2014 (UTC)
This might also be a selection problem: while male leaders are not necessarily all the most competent in their field, the inherent difficulties for women to advance in position means that only the most competent women are able to reach leadership positions. Here's a perspective from a different field on a similar issue: [2]. It sort of shows how there is more scrutiny to a woman's accomplishments compared to a man's. Legumez (talk) 01:13, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

WMF grant proposal[edit]

I have submitted a proposal for one of WMF's new Individual Engagement Grants. It is a pilot project to determine whether coaching new editors on their writing for the English Wikipedia improves editor retention, focusing on women and Global Southerners. If you would like to endorse this project, you can do so here. I would also appreciate any other feedback, pro or con, which can be posted here. Thanks! Libcub (talk) 04:04, 7 February 2013 (UTC)

Please disavow, delete, or greatly rework Gender gap/Policy revolution[edit]

The source materials I see on the main page speak of "subtle persuasion and outreach", and fortunately do not seem to consider censorship, except for the "Nine reasons", which quotes more people dismissing the idea than otherwise. By contrast, Gender gap/Policy revolution speaks of drastic policy change of just the type the gender gap project has previously dismissed, and change of a very bad sort that will not help the goal. I have criticized it more specifically on its talk page.

The page claims to be a brainstorming session for new ideas, but it doesn't seem set up for critical evaluation of multiple possibilities. If reworked to that form, so that ideas like omitting the unaffected breast of a mastectomy photo can be clearly rejected at the source page, and so that contrary ideas about educating women about the inclusiveness of our project to all interests and point of view can be advanced, then maybe it can be kept, but otherwise you should put that page as far away from your worthy cause as you can. Wnt (talk) 23:11, 18 June 2013 (UTC)

Canvass policy and notifications on mailing lists[edit]

There is a discussion on En.Wikipedia of making sure canvassing rules apply to Foundation sponsored mail lists, including the gender gap mailing list and even if notifications should be allowed at all on such lists. Any thoughts please go to the En.WP canvass discussion. Thanks. Carolmooredc (talk) 16:16, 19 June 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Civility[edit]

I am experiencing frustration today with the nature of the dialogue at en:Wikipedia talk:Civility, and find myself typing things like "oink oink oink" in all capital letters. Genteel research studies alone are not sufficient to create an editing environment that is welcoming to women ... Is there anyone here more familiar with our obscure Wikibureaucracy who has some ideas on how to make our enforcement mechanisms work? Take a look at the talk page on English Wikpedia for "Hosiery." I don't even know where to start. Djembayz (talk) 15:22, 1 December 2013 (UTC)

"Only recently"[edit]

I think it is a little insulting to the community to suggest that we were unaware of the systemic bias before 2010. Not only do we have CROSSBOW (later Wikipedia:WikiProject Countering systemic bias) dating from 2004, but on Meta we have Systemic_Bias_of_Wikipedia created in April 2002 by Brion Vibber in a cut and paste move from "en:WP:Talk:VANDALISM IN PROGRESS" - " Another serious problem in systemic bias of wikipedia is that women are under-represented - " on 5 April 2002 by a user known as 24. I doubt 24 was the first to realise the issue, or to try to address it. Certainly it was discussed long before I ever came on the scene. Rich Farmbrough 11:15 30 March 2014 (GMT).

Page updated. Rich Farmbrough 11:18 30 March 2014 (GMT).

Wikipedia is pushing the boundaries of scholarly practice but the gender gap must be addressed[edit]

  1. s:Wikipedia is pushing the boundaries of scholarly practice but the gender gap must be addressed
  2. s:Wikisource:Featured_text_candidates#Wikipedia_is_pushing_the_boundaries_of_scholarly_practice_but_the_gender_gap_must_be_addressed

I've nominated the document s:Wikipedia is pushing the boundaries of scholarly practice but the gender gap must be addressed as a Featured Text on Wikisource.

Discussion is at s:Wikisource:Featured_text_candidates#Wikipedia_is_pushing_the_boundaries_of_scholarly_practice_but_the_gender_gap_must_be_addressed.

Notifying, here, as I'd mentioned this meta page, there.

-- Cirt (talk) 19:38, 10 May 2014 (UTC)

Thank you, Mssemantics![edit]

@SMssemantic: thank you for blogging about your research project, which I am anticipating with interest. You mentioned that Gender gap was where you would be collating sources on this topic, so I figured I should mention to you my recent speech on Wikimedia culture, in which I discussed sexism and which some people (example) have found useful in thinking about the Wikimedia gender gap. Best wishes! Sumana Harihareswara 00:28, 15 July 2014 (UTC)

Hi Sumana Harihareswara! Thanks so much. I'm behind in updating this page, but I'll be doing some work this week/weekend, so I'll be sure to add your talk. --Mssemantics (talk) 22:40, 21 July 2014 (UTC)

Redoing page and/or adding resources page[edit]

I just made a draft Resources page for https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Carolmooredc/My_Sandbox_1 the En.Wikipedia Gender Gap task force. I'm waiting to place it on the page once we deal with opponents of the project, one of whom is known to gut things he doesn't like and has already inferred he'll gut it. Happily, this page doesn't have those problems. (Knock wood.)

Mssemantics reminded me to come here. I don't have time to propose options, right now. In general I thought just about adding a resources page and linking to just the top links, as well as other tweaks to the main page to make it even more action oriented. (Plus another question/proposal below.) So check it out and see if others have an idea. I'll be back! User:Carolmooredc 01:45, 31 August 2014 (UTC)

Hi Carolmooredc. I think it would be fantastic to re-do this page to reflect the resources you've aggregated. I realize that means having lists in several places that would need to be updated. I'm afraid I'm not an experienced enough Wikipedian to know if there's a template, script, or other automated process we might use to help keep all the lists of resources up to date. However, I'm willing to learn and to help! --Mssemantics (talk) 15:32, 1 September 2014 (UTC)

Should this project be listed on Outreach.wikimedia??[edit]

Outreach.wikimedia links to GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives & Museums) and Wikimedia Education Portal (re: different countries) (as well as Best Practices and Success stories). Considering women are half the human race, it seems sensible to include this project there. It probably would bring more willing volunteers to outreach in general as well. I don't see any discussion of this on this talk page and only a link to Outreach Village Pump as a "good place to discuss outreach to women."

So perhaps we could reorganize the page with that end in mind? Thoughts?? User:Carolmooredc 01:57, 31 August 2014 (UTC)

More work, but another wonderful idea! --Mssemantics (talk) 15:35, 1 September 2014 (UTC)

Group on English Wikipedia[edit]

There is a group on English Wikipedia, WikiProject Countering systemic bias/Gender gap task force, that is not listed on your project page. I am unsure of your list criteria, so I don't want to add it myself.

Also, you may be interested in this discussion on moving the project to en:WikiProject Gender Gap.

Regards, —Neotarf (talk) 21:18, 23 September 2014 (UTC)

Forgot to sign in, but did do it. Carolmooredc (talk) 13:24, 24 September 2014 (UTC)

Difficulty editing[edit]

@Lightbreather: I'm trying to add one sentence to the Read section about the media list on the GGTF page. But when I press preview, it's garbled, I assume because of the invisible <!--T:4-->, etc. Do you know how to handle that? Sarah (SV) talk 02:12, 8 February 2015 (UTC)

Sarah I have a similar/related question. This page- w:Help:Cheatsheet seems to help explain the function of the <!--> bit (yields hidden text, only visible upon "Edit"), but for the life of me with Googling and Wikipedia searching I can't figure out what the "tvar" is supposed to mean that comes after several of those carrots/arrows, nor can I find out what the seemingly random numbers are that come after the <!--T:38-->, <!--T:42-->, <!--T:39-->, <!--T:5--> bits.
Can anyone else provide some guidance? I realize it's not exactly on-point with Gender Gap issues, however the courage to ask questions and say "I don't know" is touched on in Sumana's talk that's suggested in the Watch section, so hopefully this is acceptable. (Also I tried consulting several other resources first but couldn't find good answers). PolymathGirl (talk) 04:03, 8 December 2016 (UTC)

Project goals[edit]

I feel that the project goals could be more wide-reaching :).Theduinoelegy (talk) 20:16, 18 February 2015 (UTC)

New page: Address the gender gap[edit]

Hi all, my name is María, I am community liaison for Learning and Evaluation team at WMF. I reach out to you to let you know that, as part of the efforts to launch Inspire Grants campaign, we have created the new page Address the gender gap. Our hope is to link to some more succinct and engaging info about Wikimedia's gender gap. To do that, the new page takes some content from this page (Gender Gap), but has more description and general context for the casual reader. Perhaps if the community finds these pages to be more useful than the existing gender gap page, eventually these can even replace it.
We would love to hear your feedback on the new page, add your views and it would also be a great help if you help us expand Address the gender gap/Initiatives, with any information (past or current) that could be added there.
Happy editing! MCruz (WMF) (talk) 17:55, 3 March 2015 (UTC)

Recent Data on the Gender Gap[edit]

Hi, can anyone tell me where I can find data on the gender gap that is more recent than 2011? Thanks for any help! -wʃʃʍ- 03:15, 20 November 2015 (UTC)

Hi Wllm, there is information on the Foundation blog here (the post is dated 2015, but discusses a 2012 survey), and there is this 2013 paper, which most people rely on. There are more research and news stories at WP:GGTF/Media and research. Hope this helps. SarahSV talk 03:34, 20 November 2015 (UTC)

help update w:Gender bias on Wikipedia?[edit]

This article is outdated. I added dozens of 2015 resources, mainly from WP:GGTF/Media and research (thanks Sarah). Help us update the Article? Optional: to let GGTF know that you're working on it, please update our Coordination table here: Wikipedia:WikiProject:Countering systemic bias?Gender gap task force/3D2Do - kindest, and Mabuhay! - LeoRomero (talk) 19:30, 23 December 2015 (UTC)

Oh well[edit]

That's there problem then Leggomygreggo8 (talk) 20:13, 14 January 2016 (UTC)

Essay on this topic in Basque Wikipedia[edit]

I have created a little essay on this topic in Basque Wikipedia: eu:Wikipedia:Genero_oreka. -Theklan (talk) 21:39, 12 February 2017 (UTC)