Wikipedia does more than just help pad term papers—a lot more. In fact, Google, smart home devices, and even cultural institutions like the Museum of Modern Art all tap Wikipedia for info. But a 2018 Community Insights Report found that fewer than 10 percent of Wikipedia’s contributors identify as women or non-binary, creating a lot of gender bias.
It’s a problem Kira Wisniewski is addressing as executive director of Art+Feminism (artandfeminism.org) a group that hosts virtual “edit-a-thons” where a more diverse pool of contributors can come together to write and correct arts-related Wikipedia articles. “When cis and trans women, non-binary people, Black and Indigenous people, and people of color are not represented in the writing and editing on the tenth-most-visited site in the world,” says Wisniewski, “information about people like us gets skewed and misrepresented.”
Since 2014, Art+Feminism has written or improved over 84,000 articles. “Stories have been mistold,” Wisniewski says. “We lost out on real history. That’s why we’re here—to change it.” –Sylvie Baggett
This article originally appeared in BUST's Fall 2020 print edition. Subscribe today!
Sylvie Baggett is in constant search of the perfect sour candy, as well as a 2019 graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design where she majored in Writing and double-minored in Creative Writing and Fashion Journalism. Lately, she spends her time taking long walks through the woods accompanied by her feline companion, Bruce. Follow her on Instagram at sylvie_baggett.