Wikipedia and lesser-resourced languages

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Wikipedia and lesser-resourced languages
Authors: Ziko van Dijk [edit item]
Citation: Language problems & language planning 5 (1): 88-92. 2009.
Publication type: Journal article
Peer-reviewed: Yes
Database(s):
DOI: 10.1075/lplp.33.3.03van.
Google Scholar cites: Citations
Link(s): Paper link
Added by Wikilit team: Added on initial load
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Wikipedia and lesser-resourced languages is a publication by Ziko van Dijk.


[edit] Abstract

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, exists in more than 260 different language editions, some larger, some smaller. This article deals with difficulties in comparing them with each other and assessing their strength. Wikimedia Statistics can mislead if not interpreted with a knowledge about the ways Wikipedia editing works. Many language editions embellish the total number of articles by creating pseudo-articles with little or no encyclopedic value. The main question of the study presented by this article is what factors make a language edition grow, such as the existence of a standardized language, language status, Internet access for the average speaker, and the attitude of speakers to their language.

[edit] Research questions

"Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, exists in more than 260 different language editions, some larger, some smaller. This article deals with difficulties in comparing them with each other and assessing their strength. Wikimedia Statistics can mislead if not interpreted with a knowledge about the ways Wikipedia editing works. Many language editions embellish the total number of articles by creating pseudo-articles with little or no encyclopedic value. The main question of the study presented by this article is what factors make a language edition grow, such as the existence of a standardized language, language status, Internet access for the average speaker, and the attitude of speakers to their language."

Research details

Topics: Size of Wikipedia, Cultural and linguistic effects on participation, Societal antecedents of participation [edit item]
Domains: Linguistics, Information systems [edit item]
Theory type: Explanation [edit item]
Wikipedia coverage: Main topic [edit item]
Theories: "Undetermined" [edit item]
Research design: Statistical analysis [edit item]
Data source: Wikipedia pages [edit item]
Collected data time dimension: Cross-sectional [edit item]
Unit of analysis: Website [edit item]
Wikipedia data extraction: Live Wikipedia [edit item]
Wikipedia page type: Article [edit item]
Wikipedia language: Multiple [edit item]

[edit] Conclusion

"It would be difficult to determine which factor had exactly what influence on a specific Wikipedia language edition. Of course, the size of the linguistic community is important. The number of speakers indicates the maximum number of people who could contribute. It is not absolutely unreasonable that some Wikipedians want to link the number of native speakers to the size of the language edition for ranking purposes,26 although sometimes it is difficult to say how many (native? second language?) speakers a language has. From the total size of the linguistic community there are a lot of steps down to the much smaller actual pool of individuals who might contribute, relating to factors such as literacy, Internet availability, freedom of speech, an established tradition of encyclopedias, and so on. For a Wikipedia to flourish, it is vital that speakers desire to have a Wikipedia in their language and that they believe that their language is worthy of such an undertaking. This depends on status and acceptance, especially the latter: the growth of the Latin Wikipedia has nothing to do with the fact that Latin is the second official language of the Vatican state, but everything to do with a Neolatinist movement that finds it normal to invest time in such a project. In contrast, nearly all speakers of an Alemannic dialect prefer High German for an encyclopedia, even the Swiss who speak a dialect every day and use it for private correspondence. Linguistic criteria like abstand and ausbau (Kloss 1978) have a close relationship to the acceptance of the linguistic community, and, if this is lacking, it is unlikely that the necessary language planning can be done by the Wikipedia language edition. The Low German and Bavarian Wikipedias show some ambitions in this field. Limburgish may derive a certain benefit from the existence of a unified spelling established long before the creation of Wikipedia, unlike, for example, the Dutch Low German and Zealandic Wikipedias."

[edit] Comments

""From the total size of the linguistic community there are a lot of steps down to the much smaller actual pool of individuals who might contribute, relating to factors such as literacy, Internet availability, freedom of speech, an established tradition of encyclopedias, and so on." p. 246"


Further notes[edit]

Facts about "Wikipedia and lesser-resourced languages"RDF feed
AbstractWikipedia, the free encyclopedia, exists iWikipedia, the free encyclopedia, exists in more than 260 different language editions, some larger, some smaller. This article deals with difficulties in comparing them with each other and assessing their strength. Wikimedia Statistics can mislead if not interpreted with a knowledge about the ways Wikipedia editing works. Many language editions embellish the total number of articles by creating pseudo-articles with little or no encyclopedic value. The main question of the study presented by this article is what factors make a language edition grow, such as the existence of a standardized language, language status, Internet access for the average speaker, and the attitude of speakers to their language.he attitude of speakers to their language.
Added by wikilit teamAdded on initial load +
Collected data time dimensionCross-sectional +
Comments"From the total size of the linguistic com"From the total size of the linguistic community there are a lot of steps down to the much smaller actual pool of individuals who might contribute, relating to factors such as literacy, Internet availability, freedom of speech, an established tradition of encyclopedias, and so on." p. 246ition of encyclopedias, and so on." p. 246
ConclusionIt would be difficult to determine which fIt would be difficult to determine which factor had exactly what influence on a

specific Wikipedia language edition. Of course, the size of the linguistic community is important. The number of speakers indicates the maximum number of people who could contribute. It is not absolutely unreasonable that some Wikipedians want to link the number of native speakers to the size of the language edition for ranking purposes,26 although sometimes it is difficult to say how many (native? second language?) speakers a language has. From the total size of the linguistic community there are a lot of steps down to the much smaller actual pool of individuals who might contribute, relating to factors such as literacy, Internet availability, freedom of speech, an established tradition of encyclopedias, and so on. For a Wikipedia to flourish, it is vital that speakers desire to have a Wikipedia in their language and that they believe that their language is worthy of such an undertaking. This depends on status and acceptance, especially the latter: the growth of the Latin Wikipedia has nothing to do with the fact that Latin is the second official language of the Vatican state, but everything to do with a Neolatinist movement that finds it normal to invest time in such a project. In contrast, nearly all speakers of an Alemannic dialect prefer High German for an encyclopedia, even the Swiss who speak a dialect every day and use it for private correspondence. Linguistic criteria like abstand and ausbau (Kloss 1978) have a close relationship to the acceptance of the linguistic community, and, if this is lacking, it is unlikely that the necessary language planning can be done by the Wikipedia language edition. The Low German and Bavarian Wikipedias show some ambitions in this field. Limburgish may derive a certain benefit from the existence of a unified spelling established long before the creation of Wikipedia, unlike, for example, the

Dutch Low German and Zealandic Wikipedias.
Dutch Low German and Zealandic Wikipedias.
Data sourceWikipedia pages +
Doi10.1075/lplp.33.3.03van +
Google scholar urlhttp://scholar.google.com/scholar?ie=UTF-8&q=%22Wikipedia%2Band%2Blesser-resourced%2Blanguages%22 +
Has authorZiko van Dijk +
Has domainLinguistics + and Information systems +
Has topicSize of Wikipedia +, Cultural and linguistic effects on participation + and Societal antecedents of participation +
Issue1 +
Pages88-92 +
Peer reviewedYes +
Publication typeJournal article +
Published inLanguage problems & language planning +
Research designStatistical analysis +
Research questionsWikipedia, the free encyclopedia, exists iWikipedia, the free encyclopedia, exists in more than 260 different language editions, some larger, some smaller. This article deals with difficulties in comparing them with each other and assessing their strength. Wikimedia Statistics can mislead if not interpreted with a knowledge about the ways Wikipedia editing works. Many language editions embellish the total number of articles by creating pseudo-articles with little or no encyclopedic value. The main question of the study presented by this article is what factors make a language edition grow, such as the existence of a standardized language, language status, Internet access for the average speaker, and the attitude of speakers to their language.he attitude of speakers to their language.
Revid11,254 +
TheoriesUndetermined
Theory typeExplanation +
TitleWikipedia and lesser-resourced languages
Unit of analysisWebsite +
Urlhttp://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/jbp/lplp/2009/00000033/00000003/art00003 +
Volume5 +
Wikipedia coverageMain topic +
Wikipedia data extractionLive Wikipedia +
Wikipedia languageMultiple +
Wikipedia page typeArticle +
Year2009 +