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Wikipedia Seeks More Women Contributors

Wikipedia has set a target to have women making up 25 per cent of it contributors by 2015.

Sue Gardener, the Wikimedia foundation's executive director, set the target amid concerns over a recent study, which revealed that only 13 per cent of the sites contributors were women.

The foundation is also concerned over the length of female targeted articles, compared to more male dominated subjects.

“The difference between Wikipedia and other editorially created products is that Wikipedians are not professionals, they are only asked to bring what they know,” Gardner told the New York Times.

Gardner also warned that she didn’t want the initiative to instigate gender rivalry on the site and that she wouldn’t be introducing quotas to raise the number of female contributors on the site.

“Gender is a huge hot-button issue for lots of people who feel strongly about it,” she said. “I am not interested in triggering those strong feelings.”

Rather than specifically hiring women to close the gender gap, Gardner plans to make the site more accessible and interesting for women to contribute to.

“Everyone brings their crumb of information to the table,” she said. “If they are not at the table, we don’t benefit from their crumb.”