Working with the Welsh language Wikipedia

Robin Owain of Wicipedia Cymru
Robin Owain of Wicipedia Cymru

You may think that Wikimedia UK focuses solely on the English Wikipedia. However, we seek to support all language Wikipedias, with a focus on those that originate from, or are used in, the UK. Indeed, one of our activities that Wikimedia UK is particularly well known for in the global Wikimedia community is the multilingual challenges that we run, where we invite volunteers to write Wikipedia articles on a given topic in any language.

As a result of MonmouthpediA, we have recently started a number of projects with Wicipedia Cymru, the Welsh Wikipedia. Our point of contact, Robin Owain, is a bureaucrat in a community of about 200 editors who currently maintain over 36,000 articles in Welsh. This may sound small, but it is the biggest Welsh language website in existence, and it receives over 2.7 million visits per month.

Robin and Wikimedia UK trustee Roger Bamkin recently met with the People’s Collection of Wales, Cadw and the National Library of Wales, who have agreed to experiment with making the content they curate available on Wikipedia by releasing 150 images under a Creative Commons license. If this test works, then they may be willing to release thousands more.

Robin and Roger also met with the Welsh Education Minister, Leighton Andrews, who agreed to investigate a number of challenging objectives for WMUK such as Robin joining an education advisory panel. As a first step in this cooperation, Robin now sits on a board helping the Welsh Education Minister on Digital Technology.

Not content with just those achievements, Robin and Roger also presented a bid to the Geovation project on the 18th July on behalf of a team including Andy Mabbett and John Cummings. Out of well over a hundred ideas, they made it to the final seven, and the project was awarded £17,500 to help fund the training of editors and to create QRpedia codes on the Wales Coastal Path!

You can find out more about how we’re supporting the Welsh language by visiting the Wicipedia Cymraeg stand at this year’s National Eisteddfod at the Vale of Glamorgan on 4-11 August 2012.

If you would like to help us provide support for your language, please get in touch! You can  contact us on-wiki, call our office on 020 7065 0990, or email stevie.benton@wikimedia.org.uk

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