Translating Wikipedia articles is so important


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  • canaday
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  • A biologist working toward sustainability
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Re: Video - How to Start Editing

Hi everyone,

I like the idea of people starting now and the 20th being a deadline to motivate them, at which point big announcements and flag-waving can take place, saying which pages had been written, improved, translated, etc.

One of the funnest activities is to add photos. I also highly recommend translating, if volunteers are bilingual, with some of the key languages being Spanish, French, Portuguese, Chinese, Arabic, and Russian. Among others things, when translating into a new page, you do not have to worry about some territorial Wikipedian coming and reverting all of your carefully made edits.

I highly suggest we make a unified table (not by WG) where people can sign up to do the various tasks to specific pages, so people do not step on each others' toes and we can be more efficient.

I have decided that my time would be better spent working on Wikipedia, rather than downloading and learning a new program to make a screencast, especially since the following videos explain the process of translating very well.

(in Spanish)

My other main suggestion is that the automated draft translation that will come from Wikipedia will likely be very crude and should be ignored (at least in Spanish). It is nonetheless a big help because it tries to keep the citations and links straight. So I recommend copying the whole original page into Word and translate calmly off-line (with all Word's help with spelling and grammar checking) and then cut and paste it into the translation window, bit by bit, without damaging the citations and links.

Best wishes,
Chris Canaday
Conservation Biologist and EcoSan Promoter
Omaere Ethnobotanical Park
Puyo, Pastaza, Ecuador, South America
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  • Carol McCreary
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Translating Wikipedia articles is so important

Dear all,

Translation is so important. And while Wikipedia articles are not academic, they need to reference and cite expert literature in any language.

As for translation, let's think about what we can do in conjunction with the Edit-a-thon. I have a couple of ideas but am unsure of the best way to move them forward.

First, we can ask Forum members, especially those interested in the Edit-a-thon, to identify the most significant gaps in articles in other languages.

Second, we can issue a call to translators and not just those with WASH expertise. World Water Day is a good time for a general call anyone who wants to to support SDG6. I can post call to translators on UN Water's World Water Day site.

Did you know that anyone can post an event on ? Here's the link where you post events along with logos and photos if necessary. It would be great to involve language professionals and translators at the national or local levels.

I've got a friend who heads a university language department. I'll check to see if they've got people who would like to support SDG76 with a couple of hours of translation.

And beyond that we need more audio and video documents where sanitation practitioners can demonstrate their technologies in their own words, speaking to their own communities. Then it's fairly easy and cost effective to add subtitles in several languages.

WG9 Co-lead with big hopes for the March 19-20 Edit-a-thon.
Carol McCreary
Public Hygiene Lets Us Stay Human (PHLUSH)
1240 W. Sims Way #59, Port Townsend, Washington 98368 USA

Toilet availability is a human right and well-designed sanitation systems restore health to our cities, our waters and our soils.
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