HomeBad Ass AsiansCall for Asian Americans to represent on Wikipedia this Saturday

Call for Asian Americans to represent on Wikipedia this Saturday

Wikipedia APA 2014As part of Asian American Pacific Islander American Heritage Month, a group of AAPIs  are setting out to make sure their stories are represented on Wikipedia.

Thus the creation of the first ever Wikipedia APA, an opportunity for Asian Americans to take over the crowd sourcing site for one day to correct the omissions and errors on Wikipedia about the Asian American Pacific Islander experience.

Jenny Ye, a producer at WNYC, is one of the organizers of the event and agreed to answer a few questions from AsAmNews.


What is Wikipedia APA and why are you doing this?

Wikipedia APA  is a multi-city community building event for enriching the presence of cultural, historic, and artistic information on Wikipedia about Asian Pacific American (APA) experiences. Wikipedia is one of the most widely-used resources in the world for general information, and currently lacks quality information on AAPI experiences. Wikipedia APA is part of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center’s lineup for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.

Can you give me an example of misinformation or incomplete information on Wikipedia that you hope to correct?

There is currently no Wikipedia entry for the album A Grain of Sand: Music for the Struggle by Asians in America (1973), the first album of Asian American music and the soundtrack for the Asian American movement. Recorded in New York by the folk trio Chris Kando Iijima, Nobuko JoAnne Miyamoto, and William “Charlie” Chin, the album is deeply rooted in political struggle and was the first to use the term “Asian American” to reference its artists and audience. ‘A Grain of Sand’ is just one example of the incomplete information on Wikipedia right now.

We are also especially excited to edit and create pages related to Asian American women, South Asian and Southeast Asian Americans, and the experiences of refugees and immigrants.

What instigated this event?

Wikipedia is the first site many people go to for information online, but it’s been well documented that Wikipedia editors are overwhelmingly young, white and male. As students of ethnic studies and self-proclaimed nerds (my day job is as Data News Producer at WNYC and my co-organizer Adriel Luis is Curator of Digital and Emerging Media at the Smithsonian APA Center), we are hoping to engage our diverse community to make Wikipedia better reflect AAPI experiences.

What type of people are you looking for people to help?

Whether you’re a seasoned Wikipedian, an APA studies scholar, or completely new to all of this, we’re looking for your help!

What if you don’t feel like an authority on any of this stuff. Are there still ways to help?

Yes! Add to the list of articles you’d like to see edited or created.

At our meetups, there will also be books and resources to use as sources. Shoutout to NYU’s Asian/Pacific/American Institute and the Asian American Writers’ Workshop for their help with this in New York.

Has there been a precedent for an editathon such as this one? If so, describe? If not, where did this idea originate?

We are looking to past edit-a-thons on Art and Feminism  and Women’s History  as examples. #WikiAPA is the first multi-city Wikipedia edit-a-thon dedicated to Asian Pacific American content.

How can someone get involved?

Attend an edit-a-thon on May 10, 2014. RSVP and join us in person or log in from home! Especially if you’ve never tried your hand at editing Wikipedia, our live events will be a great place to get your bearings and meet a community of folks with similar interests.

New York (10 a.m. – 5 p.m.): Coalition for Queens 31-00 47th Avenue, #1105 Long Island City, NY

Washington DC (10 a.m. – 5 p.m.): Smithsonian American Art Museum MacMillan Education Center 8th and F NW

Los Angeles (10 a.m. – 4 p.m.): Junipero Serra Library 4607 South Main Street Los Angeles, CA

Austin (9 a.m. – 3 p.m.): Asian American Resource Center 8401 Cameron Rd


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