Submissions/How Latin American Indigenous Communities are Sharing Free Knowledge on Wikipedia in their Native Languages

From Wikimania

This is an accepted submission for Wikimania 2017.

Submission no. 2048 Subject - C5
Title of the submission
How Latin American Indigenous Communities are Sharing Free Knowledge on Wikipedia in their Native Languages
Type of submission (lecture, panel, tutorial/workshop, roundtable discussion, lightning talk, poster, birds of a feather discussion)
Presentation + discussion
Author of the submission
Eddie Avila (Barrioflores), Rodrigo Pérez (zapoteco diiste)
type of submission
Language of presentation

English and/or Spanish (we could offer the same presentation twice first in English, and then later in Spanish (for a Latin American audience) or bilingually. Suggestions welcome.

E-mail address

Country of origin
Affiliation, if any (organisation, company etc.)
Global Voices
Personal homepage or blog
Abstract (up to 300 words to describe your proposal)

Our session will present the findings and recommendations from the research project “Wikipedia in Indigenous Languages of Latin America,” supported by a Wikimedia Foundation Project Grant. This five-month project is currently underway, but is scheduled to conclude at the end of May.

It is generally well-understood that Wikipedia projects in indigenous, minority, or endangered languages face unique technical, linguistic, or socio-cultural challenges in building and sustaining participation, especially by native-speaker editors. Despite these obstacles, there are communities and small groups of individuals determined to see free knowledge able to be shared in their native languages.

Who are these individuals and small groups of editors? What are their motivations? We will profile some of the native-speaker editors and share their stories about how they got started, as well as their strategies to overcome the challenges associated with participation in Wikipedia in their language.

How can the broader Wikimedia community better help these communities achieve their goals? We are already seeing different models of mentoring and support that may serve as an example for other Wikipedia projects.

Over the course of this project, we have been speaking and listening to a wide variety of stakeholders involved in this movement, including native-speaker editors, Wikipedians that have been learning as a second language, as well as helpful Wikipedians interested in helping in any way possible. We have also been speaking with Wikimedia affiliates that have organized outreach and activities to train and mentor new editors. In addition, we have been engaging indigenous communities and potential readers to better gauge impact and usage of this new digital content.

We will be sharing recommendations and a “road map” with best practices and suggestions for the different stakeholders that wish to participate in or support the creation of free knowledge through Wikipedia in indigenous languages.

What will attendees take away from this session?

Attendees will learn about the challenges facing indigenous communities to create free knowledge in Wikipedia in their native language Attendees will gain insight about some strategies to overcome these challenges Attendees will learn about different ways affiliates and other groups can support these projects Attendees can share their own experiences from their region related to the support of minority/endangered/indigenous language communities in Wikipedia

Theme of presentation

WikiCulture & Community

For workshops and discussions, what level is the intended audience?

Beginner to intermediate

Length of session (if other than 25 minutes, specify how long)
50 minutes (to have enough time for discussion)
Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?
Not sure at the moment
Slides or further information (optional)

Results from a Research Project supported by the Wikimedia Foundation's Grants Program -

Special requests

Interested attendees

If you are interested in attending this session, please sign with your username below. This will help reviewers to decide which sessions are of high interest. Sign with a hash and four tildes. (# ~~~~).

  1. I greatly support this presentation. I am aware of the project Eddie is conducting and am very interested in discovering the progress and findings in a presentation at Wikimania. Also it will be very good and useful to have lessons learned shared for similar projects that I am involved with in Canada. Wikimania being in Montreal this year, indigenous topics are very important to be considered. Thank you Eddie, Amqui (talk) 15:58, 20 February 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  2. I'm very interrested by all First Nations subjects and I will attend this presentation if it is chosen to be in WM program. Thank you Eddie, Benoit Rochon (talk) 16:04, 20 February 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  3. Great proposition. Given the context of wide public interest for Aboriginal topics in Canada these days, these questions should be granted specific visibility at Wikimania Montreal. I'll be interested to attend and collaborate on a round table, to discuss this ongoing projet. Seeris (talk)
  4. Definitely interested in seeing this presentation come to Wikimania, as the model from this investigation could be applicable for many other communities outside Latam, and perhaps even inspire parallel investigations or presentations. A very useful step in furthering inclusion and the pursuit of *all* knowledge. Pineapples100 (talk) 23:07, 20 February 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  5. Joalpe (talk) 17:12, 22 February 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  6. Solstag (talk) 00:27, 26 February 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  7. This will be a very informative session (and discussion) regarding how Wikipedia can be even more truly universal. I am looking forward to this! VMasrour (WMF) (talk) 19:44, 1 March 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  8. I would definitively attend this talk. Many Chapters and UG are working right now in opening projects in indigenous languages and it matches the Mision and the Vision of the WMF. --Sahaquiel9102 (talk) 02:47, 9 March 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  9. Funcrunch (talk) 21:58, 12 March 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  10. Naval Scene (talk) 11:05, 15 March 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  11. Seeeko (talk) 05:37, 21 March 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  12. AmandaRR123 (talk) 13:54, 24 March 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  13. Daniel Mietchen (talk) 03:04, 9 April 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  14. Amir É. Aharoni (talk) 10:01, 9 April 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  15. --JGerlach (WMF) (talk) 16:51, 11 April 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  16. Psubhashish (talk) 21:49, 18 April 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  17. GastelEtzwane (talk) 17:55, 3 May 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  18. --Cornelius Kibelka (WMDE) (talk) 08:09, 17 July 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  19. --Great11 (talk) 05:56, 24 July 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  20. --Vsuarezp (talk) 13:38, 12 August 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  21. --Iñaki LL (talk) 14:14, 12 August 2017 (UTC)[reply]
  22. Visem (talk) 15:17, 12 August 2017 (UTC)[reply]