Wikimedia CEE Meeting 2019/Programme/Submissions/Working on gender gap on Wikimedia projects

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Title of the submission

Working on gender gap on Wikimedia projects

Type of submission (lecture, panel, workshop, lightning talk, roundtable, poster)
  • Lecture
Author(s) of the submission
  • Camelia Boban
  • Rosie Stephenson-Goodkinght
  • Community Engagement, Media Outreach, Partnerships, Strategy, Diversity
Abstract (up to 100 words)

This session addresses the gender gap in Wikimedia projects and acknowledges that working in this area is difficult. The session describes the steps to create a project focused on content gender gap, engage users, organize events, maintain metrics, develop partnerships, and promote the results via social media. It will address both participatory gender gap and content gender gap. It draws on the experiences of WikiDonne's project on Italian Wikipedia and Women in Red on English (plus 22 other languages) Wikipedia.

How will this session be beneficial for the communities in the region of Central and Eastern Europe?

This session will "guide" users who want to start projects to address the gender gap in CEE languages.

Special requirements
  • videoprojector
Slides or further information

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. Jetam2 (talk) 19:04, 25 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
  2. Vilena66 (talk) 08:41, 11 October 2019 (UTC)[reply]


  • Rosie: Thank you all for coming to listen me and Camelia talking about gender gap on wikimedia.
  • Camelia: This is what we know, we created Gender Gap Observatory, Gender Diversity Maapping and Gender Equity Report 2018. We also use some metrics WHGI tool: Gender by language, and we can add some metric using the dashboard tool.
  • R: Did you know that only 9 out 100 people are women who edit Wikipedia. I was a contractor with a fondation in 2017 on something called Gender Gap Mapping project, what we did at that time is that we interviewed 65 women across the movement internationally, speakting and asking 26 questions how they partcipate in a movement and their experience of beeing a women. We recieved very reach group of informations, thousand of data points that wweere analised by experts and published in reports in 2018.
  • C: This is example of female biographies on English Wikipedia. On this chart we have 18% of female biographies in the total of all biographies. Since this project has started, the amount of all biographies on English wikipedia increase by 2,5%.
  • R: There are statistics for many languages, we highlighted only for english.If you want to have acess to this, I would gladly send you a link. What are we trying to do is make the unvisible visible. Chart that shows progression in content.
  • C: These are some of our projects on Wikipedia and Wikimedia which are writing about women. We are talking about Women colaborate, Women in red, Wikidonna, Wikiwomen, Wiki loves women...
  • R: We are not just focused on Wikipedia. One of my favourite is Wikidata. We mentioned this because if there are some women you are in contact with, who dont seem inclaimed to be writing on Encyclopedia, maybe they would be interested in something like Wikidata.
  • C: If you know Wikidata, you dont have to have article on Wikipedia. We can create data properties, lists...
  • R. Wikicommons - Largest free source of images in the world. We have example of signatures.
  • C:We know that we here have the problem sometimes of lack of images on articles we want to write. Sometimes we can use signature instead of images. It doesnt apply copyrights.
  • R: I can tell you that for project Women in red we encouraged our users to upload images of women and now there are thousands of images of women, womens work, signatures, as a result of encouraging.
  • C: Another idea is writing about women on Wikisource. There can be uploaded for example books writen by women. For these people, wich are not so notable in Wikipedia, you can create Wikibooks. Wikiquote is also part of Wikipedia article. It is better to have also a quote. When you put a quote in Wiki article you can create another article on Wikiquote about that quote, in order to have a connection between these projects. Another idea is Open Street Map.
  • R: Women cross-wiki. We hope that today we will inspire you to join us in this work that we do. One of the things that is most important is how to communicate about things that we do on cross wiki. In ored to be women + wiki, the key is to be able to communicate with eachother. One way we can communicate is if we know who is doing what events. If we dont communicate, we are limitting amount of people who may work togeter.
  • R: Structure: We have groups like Wikidone, Wikimujeres and Un-affilated groups : women in red, we also have individuals and partners
  • C: Challenges are inclusive language and the events, more welcoming and safe spaces, constrast offencsive behavior, code of conduct, gender diversity criteria for event scholarships, wikipedian in residence fore gender equity and inproved metridc and researches.We need to improve this.
  • Within a last year someone wrote an article about Donna Strickland and it was in draft space because someone reviewed and said that is not relaible enough. Until she won Nobel Prize.
  • Using dashboard is a place where you can keep a trace in events.
  • Our goals are focus on content creation, cover other languages, better colaboration, better communication, improve metrics, track progress, host off wiki events, focus on intesetional knowledge, recruti new partcicipants, cultivate partnership and inspiring change.
  • Q1: One of the first articles I have made was about one female writer, and it was categorised under ,,female writers", not in the all writer category.
    • On some languages they dont allow gender category. We do need to have smaller categories because acamedicians say that it is important to them and that this is an aread of acamedcs studies. It is different for women in sport othervise it is not allowed to be categorised.
  • Q2: How do you handle with all these thing about gender languages? English is usually not percieved as an gender laguage because you dont have grammatical gender, but in many languages there is grammatical gender.
    • In Italian we started doing putting female words into the list of activities that are used on the themplate deal. You have female word for an architecht for example. Different kind of problem is in English, people write sentences in women biography differently than in mens one. Ofen in womens biography there will be a lot more informations about hers family and marriage.
  • Q2: Basicly, the individual effor is the one who is changing things. But is there somehing in communities, like policy on higher lever?
    • We are doing it in the contest in Women in red. They are really well accepted in English Wiki group. In Italia we dont put informations about her family and husband in the first sentence, we put informations for people to know why is this person (women) in ecyclopedia.
  • Q3: I would like ot know if you have informations in which countries is forbidden to have gender categories? For Macedonian wikipedia, it is not forbidden, I had a problem when i wanted to rename one female singer, and it was very difficult job. Why is forbidden somewhere?
    • Some languages wikipedia have said that they dont allow discrimination of any kind in categorisation. German wikipedia has done something very interesting, it is better align with Wikidata.
  • Q4: I guess I am looking for deeper and more provocative discussion about wrticles Katie and Dona. And what we can do to adress that sort of fundemental lack? What is the lack of?
    • It is the lack of 50% editor beeing women. In English Wikipedia, 90% of editors are men. If there was a better gender ballance, I dont think we would have a problem like this. And to say this, we dont really care what gender some editor is, we care about articles. Also, we encourage everyone to be involved in this work.
  • Q5: How do you measure intersexualty and how does it affect on your work?
    • We are not keeping any metrics on intersexuality. We keep great metrics on gender and it is adappted on every two weeks.