<CPOV> Wikipedia's Editor Survey 2011

Heather Ford hfordsa at gmail.com
Wed Aug 31 19:45:09 CEST 2011

It is, indeed, an interesting survey. 

"but 76% of all editors edit English Wikipedia. This is
quite shocking and points to the fact that our editor community
does not reach far into non-English proficient communities."

I'm surprised by the surprise ;) From my research on the Makmende story in Kenya, it was clear that even though a Swahili version was available, Kenyans (English-as-a-second-language folks) chose to edit in English WP rather than the Swahili version. English WP is where the power is and so it will the WP of choice for many - no matter what their first language is. 

Strangely, I'm doing a little experiment right now because the Language Committee has said that Sesotho Wikipedia is going to be shut down (or at least moved to the incubator) unless some people start editing. I didn't want to get all dramatic about it but then I thought: this would be interesting to at least let as many Sotho speakers as possible know what is happening so that they can make up their own minds about whether they want to keep it alive or not. So the drama here plays a role. I'm interested to find out whether anything happens...

On Aug 31, 2011, at 10:24 AM, Dror Kamir wrote:

> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Editor_Survey_2011
> Hi,
> Unless I didn't read it correctly, the profile of a Wikipedia editor, as documented in this survey, is rather peculiar. The interesting news - most editors are above 30, a bit older than usually assumed, and yet most of them are completely single (neither married nor have a girlfriend, and yes, of course, 91% are men), and most of them don't have children. Even though most of them are well-educated, most don't work full-time and 40% don't work at all. I don't know how to treat the results of this survey, because the profile of the "average Wikipedian" is so defined, that anything else must result from this profile, even before we deal with the environment Wikipedia itself creates.
> Disclosure - I myself am a single man with no children, above 30, with an academic degree and with no permanent job; but, following Groucho Marx's philosophy, I tend to suspect clubs that are willing to accept people like me, and so many of them too...
> Dror K
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Heather Ford 
Ethnographer: Ushahidi / SwiftRiver
http://ushahidi.com | http://swiftly.org 
@hfordsa on Twitter

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