The Bucknellian

Librarians work to make Wikipedia more inclusive with ‘Wiki Loves Pride’ event

Madison Weaver, Staff Writer

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Wikipedia edit-a-thons are communal events where people gather to collaboratively edit and improve Wikipedia entries while sharing research from quality sources. They are generally centered around a theme. On Oct. 14, the University Library and Information Technology (IT) hosted such an event with the theme “Wiki Loves Pride.” Wiki Loves Pride is a campaign that began in 2014 to expand upon LGBTQ related Wikipedia entries, which are often under researched or lacking scholarly sources.

The University’s edit-a-thon was planned by Social Sciences Librarian Carrie Pirmann, Arts & Humanities Librarian Courtney Paddick, and Director of Research Services and Information Literacy Kathleen McQuiston.  

After last year’s successful edit-a-thon, which focused on improving articles on women and the arts, Library and IT services decided to plan the Wiki Loves Pride event. They selected specific articles and topics from the website that participants could improve upon in order to create a focused effort.

“Even small amounts of editing contribute to the community effort to make Wikipedia a more inclusive and diverse resource.,” Pirmann said.

Numerous entries were updated, including ones about LGBTQ authors Leslea Newman, Beth Brant, Marijane Meaker, and Michael Thomas Ford, as well as the “timeline of LGBT history” pages and a new page for author Michael Cart.

“Wiki Loves Pride is an opportunity to contribute to Wikipedia by adding information about diverse and often marginalized people and topics. We really feel like we made important contributions to the articles that we edited,” Pirrmann said.

McQuiston also expanded upon the event’s positive impact.

“The Wiki Loves Pride Edit-a-Thon allows me to combine two of my passions: supporting the LGBTQ community and improving Wikipedia in general. Since people around the world use Wikipedia, improving the coverage of LGBTQ topics has a positive impact well beyond Bucknell,” McQuiston said. 

The librarians hope to host another edit-a-thon in March that is aimed at improving the coverage of women on Wikipedia in general.

 

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Librarians work to make Wikipedia more inclusive with ‘Wiki Loves Pride’ event