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 Saturday, May 28, 2011
The Spanish version of the popular online encyclopedia, which celebrates ten years, is trying to convince teachers to encourage their use in schools.

"Imagine a world in which every human being can freely share the sum of all knowledge", is the motto of the Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit organization behind Wikipedia, the largest online collaborative project. Tomorrow will be ten years since an anonymous net-surfer opened the Wikipedia in Spanish with a small table called "countries of the world", an article that has been revised today more than 600 times and is part of the over 759,000 in the encyclopedia in this language.

Four months after the birth of her Anglo counterpart, soul and brain of Wikipedia, Jimmy Wales, gave his approval to developers to put up versions in other languages. The Spanish company now occupies the sixth place in number of articles and fight not stops growing while improving existing content.
To encourage growth, the Wikimedia Foundation refers to the number of Spanish speakers who can contribute. This represents a double-edged sword. There are over 450 million Spanish speakers and English speakers only 50 million more. However, the English Wikipedia has nearly five times more articles (3.6 million) than the Spanish version.

"Increasing participation is one of the five priorities of our strategic plan" can be read recently at the blog of the Wikimedia Foundation. To encourage Castilian edition, they reached an agreement in July last year with “Educared” from Telefonica Foundation. The agreement seeks to extend between the idea that teachers have to teach their students to enter articles in the Wikipedia. Thus, the encyclopedia could continue to grow while quality becomes a standard reference source.

The limited growth of Wikipedia, in the number of items, is not found only in the version in Castilian. The thesis, "Wikipedia: a quantitative analysis” by the researcher Felipe Ortega from the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, shows that the number of users who created or expanded articles suffered a slowdown, which is interpreted as stability by their defenders. "The initial impetus for Wikipedia needed a global push, but now the encyclopedia includes almost everything. We must begin a stage of maturity, to improve existing items", says the director of education and knowledge network of the Foundation Telefonica, José de la Peña.

(Source: Publico News Paper)
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