To make the Wikimedia movement inclusive and diverse, it is necessary spread awareness about it across various geographical areas as well as social strata. The state of Maharashtra is having distinct language cultures in different regions i.e. Konkan, Marathwada, Western Maharashtra, Northern Maharashtra and Vidarbha. To spread the awareness and train editors from these regions, idea of state-wide workshops was evolved. This campaign is now organised regularly by Rajya Marathi Vikas Sanstha (RMVS), Language department of State Government in collaboration with CIS-A2K and various institutions. These events are planned during Marathi Language fortnight (1-15 Jan) upto Marathi Language day on 27 February. The fourth series of workshops was organised in year 2020.
CIS-A2K facilitated the process to introduce Wikipedia content enrichment into state level language related activities. CIS-A2K successfully conducted workshops at various universities and organisations for the last three years i.e. 2017, 2018 & 2019, during period - language fortnight (1–15 January) upto language day (27 February). This year Maharashtra State government has issued notification which officially recognises CIS-A2K as a resource agency for Wikipedia related activities across the state. CIS-A2K is collaborating with State Language department - Rajya Marathi Vikas Sanstha also in this process. It is a good opportunity for active editors to act as trainers during these events. CIS-A2K also involved community members in these workshops as part of leadership building.
The following objectives are broadly covered in the sessions -
- Awareness about digital knowledge in Marathi, Open knowledge resources and Wikimedia projects
- To explain the History of Wiki Movement, Pillars of Wikipedia
- To train the participants in basic editing skills in Wikipedia
- To explore the ways to find reliable & verifiable references
- To present - Article structure, manual of style, categorisation
- To explain - Copyright, Commons guidelines, Uploading images
- To discuss follow-up plan and integration with academic activities
The total participants in these two events were 55 members. The details are given on the Marathi Wikipedia event pages.
|10 to 10.30am||Inauguration|
|10.30 to 11.15am||Open knowledge resources, Introduction to Wikimedia projects|
|11.15 to 11.30am||Tea break|
|11.30 to 1.30pm||Account creation, basic editing in sandbox, small edits in existing articles|
|1.30 to 2pm||Lunch|
|2 to 4pm||Article structure, links & references, Creating new article, categorisation|
|4 to 4.15pm||Tea break|
|4.15 to 5.30pm||Copyright issues, Commons upload, adding images to Wikipedia articles, Follow-up plan, Feedback|
CIS-A2K started collaborating with State language dept. from year 2017. In the first series of workshops, we conducted three workshops. In the second series in 2018, we conducted six workshops out of total 17 workshops conducted across the state. In the year 2019, the awareness spread to more educational institutions located in different regions of the state. In this third series, CIS-A2K conducted five workshops out of total 21 workshops conducted. We facilitated the process and supported some workshops remotely.
In 2020, the fourth series of workshops were conducted by CIS-A2K. The first workshop was organised in collaboration with Metropolitan Education Society in Pune. The trust is running various educational institutions in Azam Campus, Pune. The Spoken Marathi Academy at the campus is regularly organising events during the Marathi language fortnight. This year, the Wikipedia workshop was conducted for the first time.
- Event page in Marathi Wikipedia - Wikipedia Workshop at Spoken Marathi Academy, Azam Campus, Pune
The second workshop was organised by Shivaji University, Kolhapur at their affiliate college in Kagal city.
- Event page in Marathi Wikipedia - Wikipedia Workshop organised by Shivaji University, Kolhapur
In these workshops, the sessions were conducted as per the schedule given above. The faculty also actively participated in the workshop. After opening the accounts using the smartphones, the users logged in Wikipedia on computers. They learnt basics of editing on their userpages and sandbox. The articles about the historical places, notable persons and organisations in the district were first created in the sandboxes. The evaluation of the articles according to manual of style and Wiki principles was done collectively by projecting the articles. The participants also uploaded images on Commons.
The meeting with faculty will be conducted for integration of Wikimedia activities with the academic assignments.