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Konkani Wikipedia Advances in 4 Days — From 90 Articles to 130 Articles!

Posted by Nitika Tandon at Aug 31, 2013 07:00 PM |
There has been a rise of article contributions to the Konkani Wikipedia in a span of 4 days following a 4 day programme organized by the CIS-A2K team for M.A. students from the Konkani Department, Goa University at the Central State Library, Goa from August 21 to 24, 2013. Nitika Tandon and Subhashish Panigrahi conducted the event.
Konkani Wikipedia Advances in 4 Days — From 90 Articles to 130 Articles!

A girl student seen typing out an article on Konkani Wikipedia. (by Subhashish Panigrahi, CC-BY-SA 3.0)


The original details posted on the meta page can be viewed here.


Introduction

There are 30 lakh Konkani speakers spread across the Konkani belt of Goa, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra. Only a few are aware of the existence of an open source project, Konkani Wikipedia, that can help them preserve their language and culture. The project has been in incubation since its inception in 2006 and had 90 articles till last week — an incomparable number in English Wikipedia, which has 4.3 million articles. However, CIS-A2K teams effort in Goa to strengthen Konkani Wikipedia project and community has finally started to show some tangible results. As a follow up to the early workshops and orientations we organized this latest programme to help the students make themselves familiar in editing and contributing articles to Konkani Wikipedia.

We started the event with a demonstration on the basics of editing the Wikipedia followed by a brief discussion about Konkani Wikipedia and the editing session. Besides these we had fun activities and wiki quiz.

Highlights of the Workshop

  • A total of 38 students from the Konkani Department took part in this workshop. Forty-three new articles were created and added to Konkani Wikipedia in the 4-day event.
  • During the first couple of days, 22 students generated 42 pages of print material and in the last two days, 16 students generated 56 pages of printed material.
  • A total of 987 edits were made and 41 references were added on Konkani Wikipedia.
  • The students added a total of 3,90,040 bytes of data; an average of 10KB data was added by each student.
  • Students wrote articles on varied topics such as Goan folk dances, eminent personalities, festivals, folk music, proverbs, food items, theater, etc.
Konkani Wiki Learning
Pictured above: Participants at the Konkani Wiki editing workshop in Goa University. Picture credit: Subhashish Panigrahi

Articles and Participants

Phase 1 (Day 1 and Day 2)

1 धालो Varsha Kavlekar
2 केळशीची फमाद दर्यादेग Mona Rodrigues
3 देखणी Fernandes Sandra
4 गोयच्यों परबो Komal Dhuri
5 जागर् Cliffa Fernandes
6 गोंयचे पारंपारीक वेवसाय Abigail Dias
7 गोंयचें मुखेल जेवण Effa Dias
8 चवथ Shanta Gaundalkar
9 कुंकळ्ळेची चळवळ Dias Neves
10 राणेचे बंड Fay Fernandes
11 रविंद्र केळेकार Gaurisha Phal Desai
12 गोंयचे पारंपारीक खेळ Safira Ferns
13 शणै गोयबाब Pratima Fal Desai
14 मांडो Anisha Gad
15 संगीत Santoshi Kole
16 म्हणी,ओपारी Pooja Kavlekar
17 मोसिन्योर दाल्गाद- जीण आनी वावर Sukhada Daikar
18 कोंकणी तियात्राचीं कांतारां Konknni mogi 24
19 कोंकणी लोककाणयो, कोंकणी सिनेमा Supriya Kankumbikar
20 गोवा कोंकणी अकादेमी, कोंकणी भाशा मंडळ Vaishali Parab
21 कोंकणी नाटक Darshan Kandolkar
22 विश्व कोंकणी केंद्र John Noronha

Phase 2 (Day 3 and Day 4)

1 गोंयचें लोक नाच Pooja Tople
2 गोंयची जातीय वेवस्था, गोंय मुक्ती उपरान्तचो इतिहास Priyanka Kudaskar
3 दिवाळी,शिरगांवची जात्रा Pritam Barve
4 गोंयची लोकगितां Rusita Paryekar
5 हिंदूच्या सणपरबांचें जिन्नस Gauri Prabhugaonkar
6 लोकवादय़ा Suma Parab Gaonkarr
7 गाराणें Darshana Mandrekar
8 तुळशीलग्न Heefza
9 बारसो Nikita Prabhu
10 कोंकणी कथा Marizma Mascarenhas
11 गोंयचीं क्रिस्तावांचीं काजारां Linette Saldanha
12 बेबींक Frania Pereira
13 तियात्र Rhakee Santos
14 गोंयचे तियात्रिस्त Pereira Goreti
15 कुळबी समाजाच्यो परबो Rubiya Komarpant
16 कोंकणीतलें पयलें बरप Savidha Talekar

Media Coverage

Learnings

  • Pre-course work : Participants were asked to do pre-course work before the actual event. This included creating Wikipedia usernames, selecting articles they wanted to edit, writing their articles in Konkani on a piece of paper and get their references too. Students were also given few pages of Wikipedia literature to read beforehand. Students did all their pre-course work with a lot of dedication and efficiency confirming their passion and interest to contribute to Wikipedia. The pre-course also helped students to come prepared and focused for the workshop.
  • Limiting number of participants: We limited the number of participants to a total of 40 and further divided in two different groups with about 20 students in each. The first batch came for 2 consecutive days and the second batch came for the last two consecutive days of the event. By limiting the number of participants we were able to give individual attention to each student and closely monitor their on wiki performance.
  • Longer duration workshop: Fourteen hours of training was given to each batch. It was spread over 2 days. We had sufficient time to break down the entire workshop into different sections (theoretical and practical) that could be easily followed by the participants. Those 14 hours gave us enough time to cover most of the important topics (such as teaching typing, adding reference, adding headers, wiki markup, talk page protocol, etc.) at as comfortable pace.
  • Bite size chunks: The workshop was divided into different sections to give them bite size information only. Each theoretical section was followed by a practical section. For example, the first section involved teaching typing in Devanagari and then participants were given enough time to type their articles in Devanagari. In the second section we taught them how to add headers and then the participants were given sometime to add only headers to their articles. This was followed by a third section where we taught them how to add references and then giving them time to add their references. We made sure that we didn't overwhelm the students with a lot of information in one go and broke it down into simpler pieces.
  • Energizers : Seven continuous hours of editing Wikipedia would have really tired the students and made them disinterested as well. To keep their energy and motivation level high, after fixed intervals we played some energizer games with them.
  • Student co-ordinators: A total of 4 students were selected (2 from each batch) to act as student co-ordinators. These co-ordinators acted as a communication bridge between A2K members and the participants. For example, these co-ordinators would help students take a unanimous decision about what are the next dates for a follow up session, what timings would work for everyone, etc.
  • Varied sources of information: We used different sources and means to educate students about Wikipedia and Wikipedia editing. We definitely didn't want it to be a 14-hour long discourse and hence used different tools such as (Netha's, Poongothai's, Sriket and Noopur's, and Ganesh's videos talking about their personal experiences in the Wikipedia world), along with handouts, presentations, cheat sheets for typing, etc. We also invited Harriet for a video conference to speak with students in Konkani and share with them some inspirational stories.

Challenges

  • Most students didn't know typing in Devanagari and had to be taught during the workshops. It took them a little while to practice and get comfortable with the typing tool.
  • We wanted to make sure that along with quantity, students are also producing good quality articles. Non-existance of active Konkani Wikipedia editors makes it a little tough to keep control on the quality. Hence, we reached out to Madhavi Sardesai and Priyadarshani Tadkodkar professors from the Konkani Department at Goa University to assess the quality and ask students to make required changes.
  • Since Konkani Wikipedia is in incubation students had to do some additional work such as:
    • Browse through incubator.wikimedia.org to find about Konkani Wikipedia. Many wanted to know why Konkani Wikipedia doesn't have an independent link just as en.wikipedia.org.
    • Add Category:Wp/gom to every new article that was created. Many found this as extra work.
    • Searching for existing articles on incubation was difficult for participants.
  • During the workshop all students added huge amount of information but only a handful of them continued editing once they left the computer lab. This brings us to our all time biggest challenge: How do we keep their motivation and interest levels high for them to continue writing on Wikipedia beyond these workshops?
Konkani Wiki Editing

Seen above: Konkani Wikipedia editing session in progress. Picture credit: Subhashish Panigrahi

Acknowledgements

This event and future events at Goa University would not have been possible without the committed support CIS-A2K has got from the Goa University and Wikipedians. CIS-A2K is very thankful to Dr. Satish Shetye (Vice-Chancellor, Goa University) — for seeing the significance of growing open knowledge movement in Goa and Konkani and encouraging Konkani Wikipedia activities at GU. Thanks are due to the GU faculty, specifically Prof. Alito Sequeira; Prof. Madhavi Sardesai; Prof. Priyadarshini Tadkodkar; and Dr. Gopa Kumar. Wikipedians Harriet Vidyasagar and Frederick Nooronha. Last but not the least the enthusiastic students of Goa University who are integral to this event.

What's Next?

A2K team is organizing a follow-up session with the same set of students on Sept 6 and 7, 2013. This session will aim to clear any confusions/doubts that participants may have about Wikipedia editing and also to give them a brief about Wikimedia Commons. In this session, students will also decide how they would want to continue with this project with an aim to bring Konkani Wikipedia as a live project.


Additional Info:

  1. Konkani Department, Goa University: http://bit.ly/14S87Ci
  2. Central State Library, Goa: http://bit.ly/1dzHmao
  3. Konkani Wikipedia: http://bit.ly/1dGOFOL

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