User:Vanished user adhmfdfmykrdyr/English Wikinews and the Gender Gap

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Have you heard? English Wikipedia has a gender gap problem. Data found inside the Wikimedia community suggests this problem extends beyond that one project to most other languages and projects.

Want to know where this appears to be less of a problem? English Wikinews. Between January 2012 and May 1, 2013, there have been five successful requests for accredited reporter status. Three of these have been women and two have been men. Coincidentally, the two men who applied largely did so because they were supporting work done by a female reporter.

One of the major initiatives coming out of Wikinews recently has been the The Wikinewsie Group, which seeks to professionalize Wikinews reporting by providing the sort of support journalists on the project need, including securing media credentials, increasing participation, publicizing their work, working with educators, and improving the review process. While it enjoys a lot of support from male Wikinewsies and is built on architecture created by men, this project is being pushed by a woman, with another woman being heavily involved in facilitating some parts of this.

Who are Wikinews most active editors? Amongst the top ten human editors in the past 2 weeks, four are women. In the Women's sports category, 3 editors have had months with 11+ edits a month . Two of these three are women. For Category:Women, eight unique contributors had 11+ edits in at least one month so far in 2013. Of these, three were women. Most of wikinews reviewing is done by one man. Still, 20% of reviewers passing articles so far this year are women. If the most prolific person is taken out of the equation, there were 63 total reviews for successfully published articles. Women reviewed 27 of those articles accounting for 42% of Wikinews articles. (If we put the one profilic reviewer back in, the number drops to 16%.)

Content production side? Between January 1, 2012 and May 1, 2013, eleven articles have been voted as featured articles, five of which were written by female contributors. Three of these articles are explicitly about women, one of which features news about a woman advocating a position and two of which are interviews with women.

Women are doing a large portion of the original reporting on English Wikinews since the start of 2012. Four the major pre-planned original reporting around events events were all organized by a woman. These pre-planned events resulted in over 125 pieces of original reporting on Wikinews. They included the Rollers and Gliders World Challenge, 2012 Paralympic Games, IPC Nor-Am Cup, and IPC Alpine Ski World Championships.

In early may, three of the five articles on the front of English Wikinews were written by women. This number has been as high as five, with every slot occupied by an article written by a female reporter.

Why does this matter? Because news has an impact. A well done interview on English Wikinews can and does get more views than an article about the same subject on English Wikipedia.

Journalism has traditionally been a men's club. In sport and science journalism, this situation is often worse. Wikinews provides a place to challenge that, to provide women with an opportunity to refine their craft, to learn to write neutrally, to promote their areas of interest, and to draw attention to topics of their choosing. For Wikinews, our female contributors are doing this in sports and in science. They are not necessarily covering women's topics, but that does not matter. What can and does matter is this work, this progress, these opportunities for women are not getting the attention they might otherwise because they are not on Wikipedia, but a smaller project... and probably because our women are not reporting on gender issues on a daily issue, but reporting in areas where most people do not discuss gender as a matter of course, precisely because of that invisible nature of what they do inside sport and science.