WMF meets GSMA

Wikimedia fundraising, financial issues (and improprieties), expenditures, contracting, and corporate relations.
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Renée Bagslint
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Joined: Sat Nov 25, 2017 1:43 pm

WMF meets GSMA

Post by Renée Bagslint » Fri Jun 22, 2018 3:32 pm

The Foundation blogs that it "is partnering with the GSMA to place Wikipedia as one of five apps included in the Mobile Internet Skills Training Toolkit (MISTT) which teaches the basics of using the internet and common applications." GSMA is a company that "represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide, uniting nearly 800 operators with more than 300 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset and device makers, software companies, equipment providers and internet companies, as well as organisations in adjacent industry sectors." So this seems to be Wikipedia Zero Point One.

I commented
I'm sure this is all very nice, but you really do need to bring your promotional rhetoric down to earth. When you say "About half of the world does not use the internet. That’s 3.9 billion people who are unable to share in the sum of all knowledge." this is really nonsense. The sum of human knowledge is as much available to people who do not have internet access as it always was -- through books, libraries, schools, universities, radio, television, teachers, librarians and all the other people and things that created and curated human knowledge before the internet (ah, I remember it well ...). And if by "the sum of human knowledge" you mean Wikipedia, well take a long hard look. In most languages it is very very far from being that, and even the biggest, such as English or German, are only part way there. Of course internet access is a huge advantage in accessing human knowledge but it isn't the only way.

I'm also a little sceptical of the claim that you will be able to "empower communities through digital skills training and participation in knowledge creation". Knowledge sharing is hard, knowledge curation is hard and knowledge creation harder still.
I wonder what their response will be.

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