Tuesday, June 15, 2021

What to do on the Wikimedia board; imho first things first

It is a stated objective of the Wikimedia Foundation to have "knowledge equity". When you care to know the practicalities, just search Wikimedia in one of the 200 languages with the least Wikipedia content and compare it with a search in English. English provides you with vastly more of everything.

Nowadays, "knowledge equity" is accepted and strategic at the Wikimedia Foundation. This acceptance is a recent development; gone are the days when a most senior WMF executive stated that one Wikipedia, at most five, should be enough. 

Given that we now support some 300 languages, it is the translatewiki.net community has always been the cornerstone to the knowledge equity we provide in our projects. Without its high quality internationalisation and localisation efforts the knowledge equity we provide would not have been possible. It follows that any and all knowledge equity for a culture, a language has as its precondition that the tooling, the environment has been properly localised.

It becomes really strategic when the tooling is provided by outside parties. A key role in ensuring that our references remain available is performed by the Internet Archive. For me it has been on my wish list for a long time that the software of its WayBack Machine, Open Library and FatCat are localised at translatewiki.net. Any and all of our language communities that find the resources will benefit our projects and strengthen us in the shared aim of "sharing in the sum of all knowledge". 

When we are to achieve "knowledge equity", the first thing we should provide is a level playing field. With all tools critical for the maintenance of our projects properly internationalised and available for localisation as a movement we achieve the most basic objective; we enable all our communities to be their best.

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