Ever realised that the famous, red hot Naga Mirchi (a special variety of chilli from Nagaland) doesn’t have a Wikipedia page? And that Cannanore Home Furnishings — textile home furnishings from Kannur — is a brand with geographical indication (GI) registration? Wiki, which is an open and free repository of knowledge on the Internet, does not have pages, in English and other recognised Indian languages, on most GI-tagged Indian products.
The Centre for Internet and Society-Access to Knowledge — popular as CIS-A2K— which is a not-for-profit movement to promote the fundamental principles of justice, freedom, and economic development, launched an India Edit-a-thon for seven days from January 25 to generate Wikimedia pages in English and Indian languages on Indian products recognised by the GI Registry of India.
“Kerala alone boasts 23 products, mostly agricultural, with the GI tag. But Malayalam Wiki doesn’t have information on all of them. Besides the Aranmula Kannadi, none of the other GI-tagged products from Kerala have Wiki pages in English. Nationally, there are about 213 GI-tagged products and we know nothing of most of them. There isn’t a single article on many of them even in English. It’s in this context that the Edit-a-thon becomes extremely relevant. It’s being held to celebrate the Republic Day,” says Wiki activist Manoj Karingamadathil.
13 pages already
The campaign, launched on Monday, has evoked enthusiastic response from Wiki activists who have begun to create pages on most of these products. At the time of going to press, 13 GI-tagged Kerala products have got Wiki pages and editors are at work to generate content for these products in English.
Apart from existing Wiki editors, freshers may also be part of the campaign. “All they have to do is to create a Wiki account before sending in researched content,” points out Mr. Manoj. The campaign will be on till January 31.
Seven-day India Edit-a-thon begins; Wiki activists begin creating pages.