“Wiki Loves Women’’ encourages Nigerian women’s presence on Wikipedia

Mr Olushola Olaniyan, the Project Lead of “Wiki Loves Women’ has called on Nigerian women to contribute to the information flow on Wikipedia.

Olaniyan made the call in Lagos, during Wiki Loves Women Edit-a-thon Event/Workshop, organised in collaboration with Women’s Technology Empowerment Centre (W.TEC) and Goethe Institute on Thursday.

Wikipedia is a multilingual free encyclopaedia, written collaboratively by the people who use it.

It is a special kind of website designed to make collaboration easy, called a wiki, an editable platform which started in 2001 by Jimmy Wales.

He said that the contributions on information by women on Wikipedia would ensure that the digital gap between the male and female was closed.

According to him, women’s participation toward contributing to knowledge on Wikipedia will help to raise the profile of the Nigerian female gender and uplift their businesses.

He said that Wikipedia had over 500 million visitors daily, hence, a good platform for women to be heard.

“Gender inequality is rife across Africa though progress has been made to address these inequalities in the business and within society.

“With all the efforts, there remains a systemic bias against profiling women and the issues they face, especially with regards to news coverage and knowledge sources, both online and offline,’’ Olaniyan said.

He said that the aim of the Wiki Loves Women project was to encourage the contribution of quality information on Nigerian and African women to be published and made widely available via Wikipedia.

According to him, the project sought to fill two major subject gaps of “Women’’ and “Africa’’ on the free encyclopaedia, Wikipedia.

The project lead said that the gaps exist both in content and the themes and also in terms of participation in the editorial level.

“Our objective is to fight against the existing inequalities between men and women on the African continent.

“Wiki Loves Women encourages the celebration of Africa’s extraordinary women, who have shaped the past, drive vital cultural, humanitarian and socio-political issues and steer formal and informal economies,’’ he said.

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