Two-day Wiki Workshop in Goa University: An Introduction

Posted by Nitika Tandon at Jan 14, 2013 11:00 PM |
Last month, on December 12 and 13, 2012, the Access to Knowledge team from the Centre for Internet & Society along with Wikipedia community members organized a two-day workshop for M.A. and Ph.D. students at the Goa University. Nitika Tandon participated in the event and shares with us the developments.

All efforts invested in discussions and planning the workshop over multiple mail trails, conference calls, one-on-one calls paid off extremely well. Over 35 participants attended the two-days workshop and thoroughly enjoyed the sessions.

Most of the participants had already created their usernames before the first session, as it was instructed to them earlier, though there were some participants who created their user accounts during the session. Despite creating a ticket for releasing the IP from the "seven accounts creation limit" we ran into an IP block. This was the second time we encountered such a problem. We will look more closely into this matter for smoother operations in future.

It was pre-decided by the organisers that the first session will be theoretical while the second session will be a complete hands-on-traning session. Hence, the first session started with a general introduction about Wikipedia, the five pillars, how Wikipedia works, a brief introduction about the Wikipedia community, and the state of Wikipedia in India.

The following day participants pre-selected articles that they wanted to edit during the course of the second session. They were taught how to do minor edits, add edit summary, add references, view history and page statistics, and also briefed about the importance of publishing articles, and user talk pages.

The two day long workshop came to an end with a meeting organized by all the participants to decide what should be their next steps. The workshop created a lot of enthusiasm in the participants. They got to know how individual  researchers and professors build pages on Wikipedia, and they too can start by contributing one page at a time. They also showed keen interest to understand how monthly meet-ups are organised in other cities so that they could also organise meet-ups in Goa starting 2013 (the proposed date was January 16, 2013 — when Wikipedia's anniversary can be celebrated).

The feedback received from the participants was extremely positive. In the meanwhile there have been some discussion about forthcoming workshops — we have already received inquires from five more institutes to organize similar events in Goa. It seems like the initial seeds have been sown for a flourishing Wikipedia community in Goa.

A special thanks to Prof. Alito Siqueira from Department of Sociology Goa University, Harriet Vidyasagar from OLPC, Prof. Gopakumar from Goa University, Debanjan and Frederick from Wikipedia community and the CIS team for making this workshop a huge success.