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WikiIndaba conference 2018/Submissions/Across Africa with 56 women

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Submission no. 034
Title of the submission
Across Africa with 56 women
Type of submission (lecture, panel, tutorial/workshop, roundtable discussion, lightning talk, birds of a feather discussion)
Author of the submission
Edward Hands
Language of presentation
E-mail address
Country of origin
Affiliation, if any (organisation, company etc.)
Wikimedia UK
Personal homepage or blog
Abstract (up to 300 words to describe your proposal)

During November 2017's Women in Red contest to create new articles on notable women, I became intrigued by the “extra” prize for “whoever manages to produce an article for every African country “ Realising that creating start-class new articles for some countries would be challenging, I used Wikipedia' article on African countries by population, starting with the smallest. I then discovered that Wiki Loves Women were also providing prizes for creating new articles on African feminists, plus there were prizes for ten occupational categories, one of them being feminists.

People respond to incentives. And creating these articles made me realise just how under-represented Africans are on Wikipedia, especially women. And I fast appreciated that whilst we often had articles for notable singers and actresses, when it came to activists, articles were thin on the ground. As were reliable sources, especially as I wanted to focus on younger, living women – who other young women might see as role models.

And in creating the biographies, I added links for the organisations that they founded and worked with. Most are still redlinks. Plenty more work to be done. But I only had until the end of the month, and prizes to be won!

I thought I knew about the issues, yet focusing on individuals somehow makes it much more real. And the sheer scale of the challenges facing these countries shocked me. Women's rights, corruption, FGM, kidnap/abduction, HIV/AIDS, LGBTQ, sex work.

And not a single article has been nominated for deletion.

And it was a huge contrast to what has been my leading area of new biography creation – billionaires. From the world's most powerful to the most powerless.

What will attendees take away from this session?

Most of the editors creating articles on African women were not from Africa. Hopefully, this talk will inspire more African editors to write about their fellow citizens, especially activists who are trying to bring about change.

Hoping to encourage others to create articles on what they feel passionately about.

How to combine information from varied reliable sources to create a coherent biography.

How relatively small investments in prizes can yield outsize results.

Theme of presentation
For workshops and discussions, what level is the intended audience?
Length of session (if other than 25 minutes, specify how long)
25 minutes
Will you attend WikiIndaba if your submission is not accepted?
not sure
Slides or further information (optional)
Special requests
Is this Submission a Draft or Final? Final

Interested attendees[edit]

If you are interested in attending this session, please sign with your username below. This will help reviewers to decide which sessions are of high interest. Sign with a hash and four tildes. (# ~~~~).

  1. Anthere (talk) 23:28, 15 January 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Committee decision[edit]


Reason: The topic is discussed in 059.