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Submissions/Documenting Activism as a Form of Political Resistance

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This is a Completed submission for Wikimania 2017 ready to be reviewed by a member of the Programme Committee.

Submission no. 2010 Subject - C2
Title of the submission
Documenting Activism as a Form of Political Resistance
Type of submission (lecture, panel, tutorial/workshop, roundtable discussion, lightning talk, poster, birds of a feather discussion)
Author of the submission

Nora Almeida (Napplicable) & Jen Hoyer (Reginald dwight), Interference Archive

type of submission

Roundtable Discussion

Language of presentation


E-mail address

noralisaalmeida@gmail.com; jchoyer@gmail.com 

Napplicable; Reginald dwight
Country of origin
United States; Canada
Affiliation, if any (organisation, company etc.)
Interference Archive, Brooklyn NY
Personal homepage or blog
Abstract (up to 300 words to describe your proposal)

In light of the political climate in America, information is wielded as a partisan tool and a means to argue about socio-political reality. The marginalization of legitimate journalism by government figures results in the conflation of facts with partisan “fake news.” Within this context, reports of activist uprisings are frequently dismissed by prominent political figures and must compete with information released by the government for qualification as “real information”.

In this roundtable, we will present Wikipedia as a space where activism can be documented and can’t as easily be dismissed as partisan. While some criticize Wikipedia as crowdsourced content without editorial oversight, the citations and evidence underlying entries, the neutral point of view policy, and the pervasiveness of Wikipedia content linked via open data to the rest of the web and easily repurposed due to the Wikipedia copyright policy, make it a powerful venue for resisting the erosion of truth.

As roundtable presenters, we will reflect on our experience documenting activism on Wikipedia through edit-a-thons at Interference Archive, a community archive of social movement ephemera in Brooklyn, New York. We will invite a conversation about the subversion of truth as part of historical continuum of repression and misappropriation.

Core Questions for our Roundtable will include the following:

  • How do Wikipedia verifiability / neutral point of view content policies impact the public conception of the platform?
  • How should we view Wikipedia’s neutral point of view policy in relation to activist struggles and movements?
  • Do Wikipedia’s core content policies constitute a political stance in light of current political / information environments?
  • Should Wikipedia be used as an activist tool? Can Wikipedia avoid being an activist tool?
  • What is the role of consensus / crowdsourcing in depoliticizing facts?
  • How can we document activism and socio-political struggles in our communities on Wikipedia?
What will attendees take away from this session?
  • Examine Wikipedia’s core content policies in light of current socio-political and information environments
  • Generate new perspectives on the neutrality of information and explore distinctions between “fake information” and propaganda as well as between neutrality and neutral point of view
  • Consider intersections between current and past global socio-political struggles and Wikipedia
  • Collectively generate ideas about how Wikipedia can be used as a platform to record activism
  • Consider how Wikipedia can be a tool for building consensus or bridging political divisions
Theme of presentation
For workshops and discussions, what level is the intended audience?

All levels

Length of session (if other than 25 minutes, specify how long)
25 minutes
Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?
Slides or further information (optional)
Special requests
Is this Submission a Draft or Final?

This is a Completed submission for Wikimania 2017 ready to be reviewed by a member of the Programme Committee.

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