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Thu Jan 29, 2015, 01:19 PM

Fighting the Wikipedia boys’ club

Looking into the Wiki matter further, I found this interesting article.

Artist Doris Porter Caesar chose sculpture for her medium because “it’s big and fights against you all the time.” She could have been talking about the patriarchal presence on allegedly unbiased knowledge source, Wikipedia. The mid-century sculptor’s own presence on the world’s most-visited encyclopaedia only came into being a year ago; before 1 February, 2014, her female nudes were mere blips waving at art history from under university archives and phonebook entries. That day, around 100 female artists got new Wikipedia entries. The intruders behind the takeover were feminist group Art+Feminism, whose global Edit-a-thon saw sessions across six countries involving more than 600 participants.

One year later, and Wikipedia’s highest court has ruled this week on the actions of feminist editors during the GamerGate controversy: the result is that five editors have been banned from editing articles on gender or sexuality altogether. The ruling has dealt a fresh blow in the battle to gender neutralise the wiki world, with Wiki editor Mark Bernstein dubbing the result as “a blunder that threatens to disgrace the internet.” In a year that has seen a series of all-woman Edit-a-thons put finger to keypad, whether we are any closer to infiltrating the Wikipedia boys’ club still hangs in the balance. Instagram photo edits notwithstanding, should editing history be high on the feminist agenda in 2015?

Wikipedia’s troubled record on gender bias is an open secret. A 2011 survey from the Wikimedia Foundation demonstrated that less than 10 per cent of the site’s contributors identify as female. More troubling still, another paper in the same year found evidence of an editing culture actively resistant to female participation, with women more likely to experience adversity in the peer review process. This is contrary to participation in other social media sites, where the gender balance is pretty much equal, or even skewed feminine.

Art+Feminism is the go-at-‘em girl gang that hopes to change all that. The group, headed up by Sian Evans, Jacqueline Mabey, Dorothy Howard, and Michael Mandiberg, believe that there’s been some improvement since their own Edit-a-thon and the activities of other gender gap projects since. But, equally, it’s not enough. Wikipedia is the Lodestar of the digital commons, not only for its authority on knowledge, but, as the group points out, because it is also where the APIs of many other popular sites pull their content: “Absences there are ones that really matter


http://www.dazeddigital.com/artsandculture/article/23426/1/fighting-the-wikipedia-boys-club

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Arrow 4 replies Author Time Post
Reply Fighting the Wikipedia boys’ club (Original post)
ismnotwasm Jan 2015 OP
el_bryanto Jan 2015 #1
NuclearDem Jan 2015 #2
nomorenomore08 Jan 2015 #4
nomorenomore08 Jan 2015 #3

Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Thu Jan 29, 2015, 01:39 PM

1. That's an interesting article - thanks for sharing.

A lot of men believe that the way they look at things is the correct way to look at things; when they are presented with additional facts or accounts that challenge their worldview they brush them aside. While I am sensitive to the suggestion that Wikipedia should be just about laying out facts, not presenting arguments, in some cases what you choose as your facts reveals a personal bias.

Bryant

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Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Thu Jan 29, 2015, 03:51 PM

2. I said this in the GD discussion as well:

 

Fuck GamerGate.

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Response to NuclearDem (Reply #2)

Fri Jan 30, 2015, 10:14 PM

4. FUCK GAMERGATE!

There, got that out of my system...

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Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Fri Jan 30, 2015, 10:13 PM

3. “a blunder that threatens to disgrace the internet.”

Indeed.

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