St. Lawrence University one of 125 places celebrating International Women's Day Friday
Thursday, March 3, 2016 - 9:16 am

CANTON -- In conjunction with what St. Lawrence University calls “International Women’s Day,” the school will be one of 125 locations around the globe to host a “2016 Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon.”

The event will take place from 1 to 5 p.m. on Friday, March 4, in Noble Center room 108.

Last year, more than 1,500 participants at more than 75 events created nearly 400 new pages and made significant improvements to 500 articles on Wikipedia, said Catherine Tedford, director of St. Lawrence’s Richard F. Brush Art Gallery and co-organizer of the event.

“Wikipedia is a peer-editing endeavor, and so any time anyone changes or adds content, others in the community can accept it or reject it or modify it,” Tedford said. “It’s really like a living document.”

Participants in the edit-a-thon will learn how to edit existing wiki articles, create new pages and gain an understanding of core Wikipedia fundamentals.

The Wikimedia Foundation found that less than 10 percent of its contributors identify as female. One of the primary goals of Art+Feminism edit-a-thon is to improve coverage of women in the arts on Wikipedia and to encourage female editors. Since the group’s founding in 2014, Tedford said edit-a-thon focus areas have included female artists, works of art by women, social reformers, activists and feminists.

The St. Lawrence edit-a-thon also encourages contributions about women across the arts in music, theater performance and elsewhere. “I think that’s definitely specific to St. Lawrence,” she said. “I wanted to think of the arts as broadly as possible, not just visual arts, and I hope we get students and participants from various disciplines and backgrounds.”

The event is being sponsored by the Brush Art Gallery, the Crossing Boundaries Mellon Humanities Grant, Newell Center for Arts Technology, and Libraries and Information Technology. Leila Walker, assistant director of the Mellon Humanities Grant at St. Lawrence, is co-organizing the event, while Renee McGarry, senior instructional designer for Sotheby’s Institute of Art, will provide additional assistance.

The event is free and open to the public, however registration is encouraged due to limited seating. Previous experience is not required, and knowledgeable editors will provide support. Light refreshments will also be provided.

“Everything in Wikipedia has to be cited from a reliably published resource,” Tedford said. “We’re encouraging people to register, so we can contact them beforehand and say ‘think about the content you want to create, and think about the subject matter you’re interested in.’”

To register, contact either Tedford at 229-5174 or [email protected], or Walker at 229-5486 or [email protected].