Wikimedia Foundation elections/2022/Affiliate Organization Participation/Candidate Questions/Question11
Farah Jack Mustaklem (Fjmustak)
Free knowledge should ideally be available in all languages, big or small. The Wikimedia movement is an ideal incubator for knowledge equity in all languages. Where enough contributors with genuine language knowledge exist, they should be supported technically so that their language community can thrive. Where insufficient content exists in a language, better integration of machine translated content should be made available in supported languages.
Mike Peel (Mike Peel)
On-wiki, Wikidata is really powerful here (more in my next answer). Off-wiki, translation is really important, and events like Wikimania have shown big improvements in live translation during the pandemic - which I hope becomes the new normal for multilingual Wikimedia events. Open source machine translation has a long way to go, and improving this - perhaps linking in with information on Wikidata so it can be community-improved, plus embedding translation tools into MediaWiki - may provide strategic improvements here. Affiliates working with underrepresented language communities are also fundamental for overcoming barriers given local circumstances.
Gilbert Ndihokubwayo (Gilbert Ndihokubwayo)
In order to deal with the language barrier of small or underrepresented languages, we have to influence and implicate them in the Wikimedia projects in order to represent, show and develop their culture. We should also implicate actors of the small or underrepresented languages in different roles so they could raise their views and help aware theirs communities.
Tobechukwu Precious Friday (Tochiprecious)
Language diversity is one of the most fascinating aspects of the Wikimedia Movement. As a linguist, language and linguistic ability may act as a barrier to communication. However, even when communicating in the same language, the terminology used in a message may be a barrier if it’s not clear for the receiver. Here are my recommendations on how to deal with it:
- Use plain language.
Whether you’re working with someone who knows your primary language as a secondary, or you’re trying to communicate a deeply technical problem to your non-technical member; everyone should get in the habit of using plain language.
- Find a reliable translation service.
If you’re working across communities, enlist the help of a qualified translator or find a translation service that meets your needs. Every document deemed important to the entire movement should have a translation into the primary language of the other communities.
- Use visual methods of communication.
Words often fail us, and when they do, showing can be a lot more effective than telling. Use pictures or diagrams to explain complicated concepts.
- Use repetition.
People need to hear something a couple of times to understand and remember it.
- Be respectful.
Lionel Scheepmans (Lionel Scheepmans)
This question should be treated case by case. But in general, if we decentralize the movement, we will reduce problem concerning linguistic barrier. Concerning the specific situation of Wikimedia project, some language that are not use at school seams not very adapted for editing a web site only in writing. We could think about something more adapted with, for instance, video editing system.
Abderamane Abakar Brahim (Abakar B)
The different languages are a wealth but strengthen the ability to learn English
Joris Darlington Quarshie (Joris Darlington Quarshie)
As a lover of localisation and internationalisation of Wikimedia Projects. We can reduce language barriers in small and underrepresented languages through continuously investing in technological products and services that focus on small and underrepresented languages. Also identifying the needs and wants of these small and underrepresented languages and providing solutions to address the issues of these languages will go a long way to reduce language barriers in small and underrepresented languages.
Egbe Eugene Agbor (Eugene233)
No response yet.
Kunal Mehta (Legoktm)
- Make it easier to bootstrap new wikis so contributors just need to focus on writing content rather templates (we need global templates, modules and gadgets) and setting up local processes
- Tools that faciliate quick machine or human translation to enable multi-lingual discussions
- Some form of regular spot checks (e.g. Small wiki audit) on smaller language wikis to prevent fiascos like the Scots Wikipedia.
Shani Evenstein Sigalov (Esh77)
I think about this often, both as Trustee and as academic and researcher invested in Wikidata and technological innovation. The solution is continued and consistent efforts, combined with technological advancements, addressing different aspects of working with small/underrepresented languages:
- In movement discussions, continue investing in translations and outreach to smaller communities, making sure they actively participate
- Direct more resources toward these communities, supporting their community growth, capacity building, and investment in human capital, so more individuals participate in relevant projects
- Promote outreach, collaborating with cultural, educational, governmental institutions to bring in language experts
- Keep investing in technological solutions (like Abstract Wikipedia)
Gina Bennett (Redwidgeon)
Given our vision to work towards “… a world in which every single human being can freely share in the sum of all knowledge” it’s important to reduce barriers of language which may prevent some groups from accessing knowledge. To engage speakers of small or underrepresented languages, we need to identify and cultivate champions who are not only bilingual (fluent in both an underrepresented language and a lingua franca) but passionate about engaging with Wiki- projects to a) ensure that translation of knowledge is undertaken and b) that minority speakers can be included in the decision-making processes of the Movement.
Michał Buczyński (Aegis Maelstrom)
- Automated translations, automated tools using AI/ML
- Language facilitation
- Extensive research of particular linguistic groups and their needs.
- Communication and outreach
- Capacity building: finding and training local leaders
- Resource allocation