Friday, March 20, 2015

#lingwiki in Canberra and the world

This is an announcement specific to Canberra-based linguists, but as #lingwiki is an online event you too can participate independent of where in this world of ours you live. You can participate online by editing linguistics stubs and articles on wikipedia during the weekend 28-29 of March, use the tag #lingwiki on social media and tell us what you did here. Read more here!

Over 320 million people access Wikipedia every month, there are 69,189 active editors and 287 language versions of the encyclopaedia. It is one of the first places people go to for knowledge. There are over 1,400 linguistics articles needing editing (stubs), many of those articles on non-WEIRD languages. Let's try and make wikipedia better, and spread linguistics to more people.

Interested in improving articles on linguistics on wikipedia and hang out with other linguists? Living in Canberra? Come join in a collaborative editing session.

What: collaborative editing session of linguistics on wikipedia
Why: contribute to spreading knowledge in an easy and effective way (plus fun)
Date: Saturday the 28th of March
Time: 15.00-18.00
Location: CoEDL, Coombs, ANU
Who: linguists in Canberra (from undergrads to silverbacks) and online users from all over the planet
Requirements: interest and a computer
How register: Facebooks, online form or email hedvig.public (at) gmail.com

Join in a collaborative editing session at the Centre of Excellence for Dynamics of Language at ANU on the 28th of March at 15.00-18.00. Don’t know how to edit Wikipedia? Don’t know what to write? No worries, there is help. Just bring your pretty face, interest, a laptop and the rest will be fine! If you can, try and create a user profile before hand - it will make things easier.

Wikipedia is often the first go-to place for an overview of a topic, an as such it is what represents our field to the public, other researchers, other students and also potential future students. Wikipedia is a collaborative enterprise, it is what we make it.

There are many (perhaps surprisingly) good articles on topics on linguistics on wikipedia, but many are also lacking severely. Either they don’t exist or they are labeled as “stubs”. Stubs are non-complete articles and they can be lacking in different ways. In these sessions we're mainly targeting linguistics stubs (underdeveloped articles), under-documented languages and biographies of important linguists (in particular women and people of minority background). But you’re welcome to work on any part of wikipedia that interests you. Go have a browse on the wikiprojectpage for linguistics for more info.

Don’t worry about writing “the one and only comprehensive article on one topic that you are an expert in”, this is not what is expected from you. This is mainly about improving faults and contributing basic knowledge to the public. By adding information from glottolog, omniglot, glottopedia, ethnologue, WALS and other resources available to us we can already improve many articles on languages. And don’t forget the articles on linguists and linguistic terms. Basically, you have skills as a linguist or linguistics student that is very useful, even if you don’t know everything about everything. If you want to share you’re more expert knowledge - that is of course highly encouraged.

Needless to say, you need not write on English speaking Wikipedia. There are 287 language versions, feel free to improve others too.

This is event has been created by Gretchen McCulloch of the blog Allthingslinguistic, Lexicon Valley and McGill University (Canada). You can read Gretchen's report on the last lingwiki here and some info about on the Humans Who Read Grammars-blog here. The local event is being organised by Hedvig Skirgård.

This event is open to linguists, and researchers/students of associated fields, in Canberra of any level. This is also an opportunity to meet your fellow students and researchers on campus, which is always fun and good. Lemme know you’re coming by either emailing hedvig.public (snabel-a) gmail.com, typing your name and details here or attend the Facebook event. Drop ins are also ok, however it is not possible to get into the building over the week-end if you’re not a student/staff of Coombs so you’ll have to email when you’re outside.

In order to connect with others around the world who are participating we’ll be using the #lingwiki hashtag on twitter and elsewhere. If you want to comment about what you’re doing or just spread the news use that tag. 

Regardless of whether you'll be active on the hashtag, check out the how-to slides here and make sure to fill out the survey afterwards at some point over the weekend so that your edits can get added to the summary list. 

Afterwards those who would like could go out for some food and/or drinks. Hedvig votes for “Cantina” because tacos, but is also up for other suggestions.

Alright, welcome!
Hedvig

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