Thursday, October 20, 2011

Why #Almere in the #Somali language

#Wikipedia has become an obvious source for information. #Google rates our articles high and articles about a subject do serve their need. Almere is my home town and there are some 49 articles about it.

Providing information about Almere is important to all the family, friends and relatives of people who were born outside of the Netherlands and live in Almere. The information provided reassures people. The picture to the right does a lot, it shows water, green grass, a flag a coat of arms a map and even coordinates.

The Somali Wikipedia is not rich in articles. Writing an article about Almere however appeals to the Somali people who live there. The initial article they write is different as it is written from a different perspective; their Almere.

Given that so many either live in an asylum seekers centre, or started off from the AZC, it is an important feature in the article. The article is not encyclopaedic in our traditional sense yet however, including the parts of a place that make that place relevant for a community is very much why we write many of our articles in stead of translating them.

Informing people about the place where they live is great. Equally interesting is having articles in the Dutch language about the place people come from. It is a tiny step of getting to know our "Medelanders". (wordplay on together and Dutch).
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