Tell us about Tamil Wikipedia

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Tamil (தமிழ்)[edit]



  • Wikimedia Statistics can be difficult to interpret. What is your impression, how many steady contributors do you have?
150+ very active contributors in 2013.
  • Are your contributors mostly native speakers?

Yes. 99%. others are interwiki link contributors.

  • Where do your contributors live (regions/country)?

The native speakers are mainly present in four countries namely India, SriLanka, Malaysia and Singapore. We have a well spread disapora from Europe to Americas, Oceania to India, Srilanka, Arab Countries.

  • How common is it that your contributors meet in real life?

Contributors from India happen to meet in Wikimeetups, workshops happening in Chennai, Bangalore, Coimbatore, Salem. Many contributors work in more free knowledge projects too. Wikimeetups are also held in sri lanka. So we have good chance to meet regularly.

Other Wikipedias[edit]

  • Do you have special contacts with other Wikipedias (maybe in related languages)?

We have good contacts with Malayalam, Telugu Wikipedians. Most of the Indian Wikipedians are well introduced to each other through the mailing list.

  • Do you translate a lot from other Wikipedias? Which ones?

Mostly from English. We have people doing translation from Russian (wiktionary). Some also do from french, kannada.

Organization and support[edit]

  • Is there a Wikimedia chapter in your country? How does your language relate to it?

Yes, the chapter will be formally launched soon. Tamil Wikimedia projects have one of the highly active Wiki communities in India. We have also good relationships with other language projects. So, we hope that the chapter will benefit from our inputs. We will also seek its cooperation to establish formal contacts with similar free knowledge organizations, Universities and Governments.

  • Are there work groups in other organizations about Wikipedia?

Not yet. Forming Wiki students clubs in colleges and schools is a possibility.

Your Wikipedia and the linguistic community[edit]

  • Is there a language institution for your language, like an Academy, or a club of people interested in your language? Do you have contact with them?

Tamil is an official language in three countries and we do not have one single authority to regulate the language. But we do have many higher educational and research institutions which focus on the language. Tamil Virtual Academy (TVA) is one such institution which aims to propagate Tamil learning through the internet. We have good contacts with TVA. They donated a technical glossary with thousand of words to Tamil Wiktionary.

  • Who (else) supports you?

The Information technology ministry of the State Government of Tamilnadu. They sponsored a state wide Wiki article contest for college students. They also prompted TVA to donate their word list to Tamil Wiktionary. The ministry is keen to support Tamil Wiki projects in many ways.

  • What does the public outreach for your edition look like? Do you have flyers, give lectures, training etc.?

Yes, we have standard flyers, powerpoint presentations. We have conducted workshops with these material in India, Norway and Canada. We also try to reach the public through informative articles in popular magazines and local radios.

  • Do you get feedback from readers?

Yes. Some occasional talk page messages and suggestions through blog posts.

  • What other encyclopedias exist in your language?

We have many niche encyclopedias in print. A comprehensive encyclopedia project was initiated by the state Government 50 years back. But we do not have regularly updated versions for this. Tamil Wikipedia is the only online and updated encyclopedia.


  • Does your edition concentrate on certain topics, like your region and language, or Latin Wikipedia on Roman history and Christianity?

There is no agenda to focus on few areas. Local and native subject areas get natural preference by contributors. We also strive to have articles from various subjects so we have a good depth. We have active contributors covering areas like Tamil, Tamilnadu, Srilanka, biology, mathematics, architecture, science, current affairs, Tamil cinema, Sports, etc., -- Mahir78

  • Did your edition enjoy text donations, for example from older encyclopedias?

Not yet for Tamil Wikipedia. But we got word lists donated for Tamil Wiktionary.


  • Is there a generally accepted norm about your language (spelling, dictionary, pronunciation)?

Yes. Tamil is a classical language and has standard pronunciation, dictionary and spelling across all countries. Only for some non-Tamil loan words we have some differences in spelling, pronunciation between Tamilnadu and Srilanka.

  • How do you deal with different spellings, dialects etc. (like B.E. lift and A.E. elevator)?

Linguistically, the contributors to Tamil wikipedia can be broadly classified into speakers of two dialects - Tamil Nadu Tamil and Eelam (Sri lankan) Tamil. Tamil is a classical language and has standard pronunciation, dictionary and spelling across all countries. Only for some non-Tamil loan words we have some differences in spelling, pronunciation between Tamilnadu and Srilanka. We deal with this by agreeing not to change the original content editor's version to any single preferred version. The alternate version (word or spelling) is added within parenthesis or created as redirect (in case of titles)

Free Speech[edit]

  • How does Tamil Wikipedia conform to the standards of NPOV and neutrality ?
  • How does your community deal with conflict?
  • What are standards or guidelines for censorship ?

See also[edit]