Exploring a cultural gap on Wikimedia: the case of the visual arts
From Ewan McAndrew
- Martin Poulter, User:MartinPoulter
- Waqas Ahmed, the Open University/ the Da Vinci Network
- Daria Cybulska, Wikimedia UK
Demographic and geographical content gaps on the Wikimedia projects are well-explored in existing literature. Our knowledge equity research project, supported financially by Wikimedia UK, looked at the gap between coverage of Western culture versus other cultures in the area of the visual arts. We assembled lists of 100 culturally important artists and 100 masterpieces from cultures around the globe. We found that their coverage on Wikimedia projects was very small compared to the Western artists. Among this expected result, we found surprising differences between different projects. Our research suggests concrete steps that can take in the direction of knowledge equity, towards reflecting a truly global culture.Session Outcomes
- The extent of the bias towards Western culture that exists on Wikipedia and its sister projects.
- How we used qualitative and quantitative research (using the various Wikimedia APIs) to measure a cultural content gap.
- How, by involving the wider cultural sector through cultural partnerships, Wikimedia can progress to a more global perspective and progress towards knowledge equity.