One Armenian, One Entry: Armenian Wikipedia campaign gaining momentum

One Armenian, One Entry: Armenian Wikipedia campaign gaining momentum

Armenians have decided to come together and become more prominent in the world’s largest internet-based encyclopedia, Wikipedia, for which all Armenians are urged to contribute to the project.

The campaign known as “One Armenian, One Entry” is in full swing today. It was first launched in March through the joint initiative of Wikimedia Armenia NGO and the Armenia TV’s Human Factor program.

“To be honest, we have not set any figures, because our main goal is not to increase the number of entries, but to disseminate the so-called wiki culture, so that anyone could get familiar with the wiki editing tools and know that Wikipedia can be edited,” Lilit Tarkhanyan, a Wikimedia Armenia NGO founding member, board member and project coordinator, told ArmeniaNow.

Still, due to the campaign it has become possible to increase the number of available entries in Armenian from 90,000 to 134,000, while the number of pages, such as discussion pages, redirects, etc., has been increased from 390,000 to 470,000.
Such results within a short period of time are also due to the televised promotion campaign featuring not only scholars, but also politicians, businessmen, government members, popular actors and singers.

“We have achieved a success as many people became interested in Wikipedia,” said Tarkhanyan. “For example, the video calls on every Armenian to contribute with at least one Wikipedia entry, but we all understand that not everyone has the writing skills and can write encyclopedic articles. But everyone can help in their own way, for example, by correcting something in an entry.”
The leader in the popularization of the Armenian version of the online encyclopedia said that some of those who promise on video to take part in the effort have already written articles for Wikipedia, others help in other ways. “For example, with the assistance of the defense minister workshops have been organized for officers of the Vazgen Sargsyan Military Institute,” she said.

Interestingly, ordinary citizens have begun to engage in the “One Armenian, One Entry” campaign by challenging each other as in this year’s global internet-based Ice Bucket Challenge campaign.

The Armenian version of Wikipedia was first created in 2003, but as information security and media expert, blogger Samvel Martirosyan told ArmeniaNow, for years it was one of the least advanced language sections in the online encyclopedia.
“It was brought back to life thanks to a few dozen enthusiasts and it actually started to grow very quickly.”

“However, there is a need to form a large community, as on the one hand there is a growing number of articles, but on the other hand there are still several major issues: a number of key thematic areas are very weak or almost undeveloped. Besides, many entries are incomplete, they are updated slowly, and so on,” said Martirosyan.

According to the expert, such problems can be solved only by forming a large Armenian-language community contributing to the internet-based encyclopedia, and the latest “One Armenian, One Entry” campaign should try to engage as many people as possible in this process.

“This will also help raise awareness about the possibility of editing [Wikipedia] and people will not limit themselves to one entry only,” Martirosyan concluded.