Anyone who reads encyclopedia articles on Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, is likely to have noticed red hyperlinks. These “redlinks” appear whenever a topic is identified as important enough to have its own entry, but the entry does not yet exist. Many redlinks are for articles about women that haven’t been written yet.
On Wikipedia, only about 17% of biographies are about women (Kramer, 2018). This inspired volunteer Wikipedia editors Rosie Stephenson-Goodknight and Roger Bamkin to found Women in Red with the aim of closing the biography gender gap. Women in Red works with libraries, organizations, and volunteer groups to hold both in-person and virtual Wikipedia Edit-a-thon to train new Wikipedia editors to create and update entries about notable women in any field, from science to art, activism, and more.
In Spring 2019, UCI Professor Adriana Briscoe (Ecology & Evolutionary Biology) coordinated a Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon hosted by UCI Libraries and co-sponsored by a wide range of partners including UCI School of Humanities, UCI Humanities Commons, Ridge 2 Reef, Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS), Association for Women in Science (AWIS), and Women in Red.
This collaboration brought Stephenson-Goodknight and Bamkin to the UCI campus, and they were on site in the Libraries to lead a day-long session. Over thirty attendees learned the Wikipedia editorial ropes, and either created or improved encyclopedia entries for 31 notable women, such as Nancy Boyd Franklin and Cynthia Wolberger.
Anyone can become a Wikipedia editor. Those interested in adding biographical information about women can visit Women in Red’s Primer for Creating Women’s Biographies.
Kramer, E. (Oct 2018). Women in Red is changing Wikipedia’s coverage of women, one article at a time. Wikimedia Foundation. Retrieved from https://wikimediafoundation.org/news/2018/10/18/women-in-red-wikiproject/