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Wikipedia wants to increase the incredibly small portion of its pages devoted to women. Men’s Rights Redditors don’t think that women are notable enough

Women spent most of recorded history lying around eating bon bons and reading the papers

Wikipedia faces a deeply rooted man problem, the problem being that they have proportionately way too many of them writing and editing the site. Indeed, a 2018 survey found that 90 percent of Wikipedia editors are men; only 8.8 percent are women.

This incredibly lopsided gender imbalance leads to sometime curious results. Consider: Wikipedia’s article on International Women’s Day, an official holiday in more than two dozen countries, and celebrated (officially or not) by hundreds of millions of people worldwide, has a Wikipedia entry that is a little over 3000 words long. International Men’s Day, an obscure holiday celebrated by virtually no one, has somehow gotten itself a Wikipedia entry of nearly 8000 words, well more than double the number of words in the IWD entry.

Perhaps even more tellingly, less than twenty percent of the biographies featured on Wikipedia are devoted to women despite women making up, you know, literally half the population.

Wikipedia has made many (largely fruitless) attempts over the years to narrow its deeply ingrown gender gap, recently launching a new initiative designed to “celebrate women” by encouraging women and others to pull together new biographies of notable women for the site in honor of International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month.

Over on the Men’s Rights subreddit, the regulars are pretty sure there haven’t been enough notable women over the course of human history to merit such an effort.

“”Wouldn’t people have digged up that stuff already?” writes someone called Parzival_007.

I mean if we have to dig up more, we would have to write about ordinary things presented extraordinary. Unless I am wrong about my first presumption of course.

Other commenters sarcastically suggest that Wikipedia’s volunteers write up biographies of ex-girlfriends and the literal woman next door. “Can i do one about Cassie the girl I dated right after college who developed a oxy addiction and robbed my grandmother’s medicine cabinet,” asks someone called Oxynewbdone.

“The ‘problem’ is that there weren’t enough notable females in history to make up that [gender] gap, because history was made by men,” declares shadowfalcon76.

And I mean that literally, as in all the notable women of history already have articles, and yet men did so much more in the past that their contributions just simply outnumber women by orders of magnitude.

You would have to make stories up wholesale from fiction to make up that gap, because human history was simply dominated by men as a matter of course. That’s not a judgment call or anything, just literal fact. Can’t really justify posting articles to Wikipedia without verifiable sources and making up fake people.

Bahard9 agrees:

The problem is they’re artificially increasing the historical female presence in their articles when women did less notable things than men for the development of mankind. That’s a fact.

It’s just like “affermative actions” – when girls get easier tests to access traditionally male-lead faculties.

Airforce987 adds:

For thousands of years of recorded history, it was almost exclusively men that were talked about. The women that were notable already have in depth articles. We can’t go and find more women to write biographies about if there’s no source to draw from.

Frosty-Gate-8094, meanwhile, thinks he’s figured out just why there are, in his mind, so few notable women in the world. It’s because men were willing to risk their lives and careers to invent new things, while women sat on their butts eating bon bons.

“Women weren’t overlooked, he declares.

They simply preferred to take the safer route to life. Scientific inventions were risky and uncertain. Including risk of death or being ostracized (Gallileo).

See how women behaved when Russia attacked Ukraine. That’s the exact reason why women didn’t make big scientific contributions. When faced with challenges, women flee. Men do not have that choice.

I really hope none of these guys are Wikipedia editors.

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.45
.45
2 months ago

@ Victorious Parasol

That sounds like good news. Glad to hear it. Sleep it off, cuddle with cats, drink hot cocoa, or whatever suspends your aquatic vehicle atop a liquid medium.

Dalillama
Dalillama
2 months ago

GSS ex-noob

Also not a slut — Caesar and Antony are probably the only men she ever had sex with.

Meanwhile, Julius Caesar had sex with more men than anybody bothered to keep track of. Women too. He was described by contemporaries as “every man’s woman and every woman’s man.”

Kat, ambassador, feminist revolution (in exile)
Kat, ambassador, feminist revolution (in exile)
2 months ago

@Victorious Parasol
Take good care. All best wishes.

Kat, ambassador, feminist revolution (in exile)
Kat, ambassador, feminist revolution (in exile)
2 months ago

Janet Sobel: The woman written out of history

In 1938, a Ukrainian-born grandmother created one of art’s biggest shocks – but it was attributed to the US painter Jackson Pollock. For International Women’s Day, Kelly Grovier explores the influence of Janet Sobel.

Pollock’s was an instinctive, shoot-from-the-hip technique that didn’t painstakingly plot its next move – rather, one that grabs a bottle, takes a swig, wipes its lips on its cracked knuckles, and couldn’t care less who’s watching. This is painting free from form and formalities, the kind of painting that only an American, a real American, could invent.

Only it wasn’t.

https://www.bbc.com/culture/article/20220307-janet-sobel-the-woman-written-out-of-history

Queen of the Harpies
Queen of the Harpies
2 months ago

@Battering Lamb

Let’s not forget that when women are considered notable, it is often because of their sway over men with their sexy sexiness

Pretty much.

@Mrs Morley

When I was a kid I loved the book “Men of mathematics.” In the intro, the author straight up says there were no women, hence the title.

Sounds like a book that outta be torn to shreds, and the paper recycled to write a better one.

@Alan

As someone put it “The only thing Watson and Crick discovered was where Rosalind Franklin kept the key to her filing cabinet.”

Hah!

Also:

http://www.harkavagrant.com/history/rosalindsm.png

@Vicky P

Wishing you a speedy recovery!

opposablethumbs
opposablethumbs
2 months ago

Wishing you a rapid and comfortable-as-possible recovery, VP!

Victorious Parasol
Victorious Parasol
2 months ago

Thanks, everybody. One important thing I learned yesterday: Being intubated for general anesthesia is no fun, but it’s better than being awake during the procedure. I’ve got a sore throat still, and I wish we’d thought to get some pudding, but I had some lovely pasta for dinner last night.

Lumipuna
Lumipuna
2 months ago

Regarding refugees,

As many of us probably know, in 2015-16 there was a major influx of refugees from the Syrian civil war entering Europe. IIRC some were from Iraq and Afghanistan, generally war-torn Middle Eastern countries.

Much has been written recently about the racist double standard in the reception of Syrian vs. Ukrainian refugees, and it’s been noted how the former had (and still have) a much more practically difficult journey into the EU. The racists (who originally resisted the acceptance and settlement of the Syrian refugees, especially in the Eastern EU countries that are now working hard to accommodate Ukrainians) try to defend the double standard by asserting that a) Middle Eastern culture is just much more foreign and uncivilized compared to Ukraine, and therefore the integration of Syrian refugees in European society was going to cause some unspecified problems b) the Syrian refugees were disproportionately young or youngish men who, according to the racists should’ve stayed in Syria, to defend their country or their homes or whatever. It was sort of implied that cowards don’t deserve asylum, or that the humanitarian situation in Syria can’t be that dire if women and children and the elderly are left there.

These arguments were already out six years ago, and the latter point in particular was repeatedly refuted. Syrian families were in fact rationally sending their physically strongest and most socially privileged members on the very difficult journey to Europe, hoping to establish a foothold for the whole family to eventually immigrate (I think this is what the racists were really against – a wedge for several million more Syrian refugees). In the opinion of progressive people, men are not particularly required to pick up arms and join a war that affects their country, especially if it’s a multi-party civil war where pretty much all parties are undemocratic and oppressive. The men couldn’t defend their homes individually or locally – more likely they could be expected to be drafted into some random militia and sent to blow up some other Syrian family’s home. Also, lots of Syrian men did in fact stay and fight – hence the devastating civil war.

In Ukraine, reserve age men are legally required to stay, and perhaps only few would be inclined to flee anyway. If there was a huge mass exodus of young men, the border guards couldn’t stop it. Meanwhile, the transport access to Poland etc. is easy enough that women escorting children to safety can make it. Thus far, about 5 % of Ukraine’s population have fled, meaning that most women and children are also still in the country, though many have been internally displaced. All able-bodied adults are primarily socially expected to either perform their regular work duties OR assist the military and crisis management operations outside actual combat. Relatively few young people – mostly but not exclusively men – are needed for the actual fighting.

navarro
navarro
2 months ago

I really hope none of these guys are Wikipedia editors.”

you know at least a few of them are. i did a deep dive into the culture of wikipedia regarding women and minorities. the results have made me treat wikipedia the same as i do amazon, i go to great lengths to avoid it and only if i have no other choice available will i use their services.

mal
mal
2 months ago

<a href=”https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women_in_Red”>Women In Red</a> is a project to increase the number of pages about women on Wikipedia. If any of you are of a wikipedia-article-writing bent, they can always use more help.

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