UW News

February 10, 2015

Valentine’s Day ‘edit-a-thon’ to address Wikipedia gender gap

UW News

There is a widely recognized gender gap in the English language Wikipedia. Two members of the campus community are teaming to offer a four-hour hands-on workshop and discussion to bring feminist dialogues and theory to the information website, the seventh most-viewed in the United States.

The event, titled “I Love To You: Critical Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon,” will be from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14, in the UW Research Commons. It is being organized by Amanda Menking, a doctoral student in the Information School, and Monika Sengul-Jones, a graduate researcher visiting the UW communications department from the University of California, San Diego.

“Essentially, attendees will be learning how to read Wikipedia critically, how to recognize opportunities for contributing content, and the basics of how to edit Wikipedia,” Menking said. “We’d also like for this time to start to build community and conversation.”

The discussion also will include Sarah Fox of the Department of Human Centered Design and Engineering and Akanksha Misra of the Department of Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies. There will be a pre-session on Wikipedia editing from 2 to 4 p.m. Feb. 13 in the Research Commons, Green A. Those attending are encouraged to bring their own laptops and power cords.

The “to” in the title, organizers say, refers to the writings of Luce Irigaray, a French feminist linguist. Advance notes say, “The ‘to’ is the sign of non-immediacy, of mediation between us.”