Wikipedians meetup in Bangalore

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Wikipedians in Bangalore had a meetup on Sunday after a long while. The Meetup was hosted by Tinu Cherian at his home (Thanks Tinu). The excitement was palpable and the buzz was all around.

Many of the wikipedians who were present were meeting for the first time with the exception of few of us. Many were excited to match wiki userid to face. There were some wikipedians from various age groups – some in 12 grade, few others working professionals (@LogicWiki for e.g.) and we had a 71 year old wikipedian retired from government service (@Nvvchar). There were wikipedians who had just started contributing content a few days back while there were others who have been wikipedians for close to 5 years (@Gurubrahma, @Arunram).

There were wikipedians with various passions and expertise. Some had a passion for creating DYKs – Did you knows (@Nvvchar). There were wikipedians who were contributors to multiple wikipedia language editions (@Shijualex

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). There were others who were sysops (@Gurubrahma), Bot authors (@Tinucherian). Others were passionate about getting the community more connected and organised (@Arunram).   There were others who did a Houdini (i.e. they didn’t show up for the meet but were surely missed)!

A lot of interesting discussions took place. A few of them highlighted.

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  • Challenges faced by new Wikipedians. How experienced wikipedian could help them better.
  • Indian wikipedians and their participation in the larger governance of wikipedia.
  • Difficulties in getting approvals for Bots that create articles.
  • Attempts by Wikipedians present to create pages for all towns in Kerala and Karnataka.
  • What it takes to get a admin nomination through successfuly. Experience sharing by active admins.
  • The paradox of “Notability” -  Notability being a pre requisite for a wikipedia article candidate and how being listed in wikipedia improves “Notability”.
  • Difficulties in getting pictures for Indian monuments and notable personalities from government sources.
  • Lack of awareness of Wikipedia in regional bureaucrats at the state level as was experienced by a wikipedian.
  • Review process being over stringent at times. At times being a put off for new contributors.
  • Need for Indian wikipedians to share experience, expertise, connect and support each other actively.
  • Need to get better coverage to key personalities and content. One wikipedian observed that at times the demise of a personality is what triggers article creation.
  • Discussion of automated tools AWB and Twinkle.
  • The need for Indian language wikipedians and other Indian Wikipedians to collaborate.
  • The need for greater promotion of Wikipedia in Indian languages. It was observed that many did not know of wikipedia in Indian languages.
  • Expanding the wikipedia editor base, need to connect to other specialised/focused groups (to bring them into the wikipedia).
  • One of the wikipedians emphasised the need to bring Wikimania to India.
  • Wiki Academies were proposed to be conducted across Karnataka cities to bring more wikipedians into the fold. Colleges to be the focus within Bangalore.
  • It was proposed that a Meetup of Bangalore wikipedians be held every month. Sunday afternoons mid month was agreed as the monthly catch up window.

It was one exciting meet up. The next one is coming up in a month.  If you missed this time around stay tuned for the announcements for the next edition here.

Disclosure: This blog author is wikipedian @arunram and referred to in this post.

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