Clearly the arguments here are a rehashing of two different versions
of feminist action - and both have been successful in winning rights
and opportunities for women in the Western world. Which you prefer
often comes down to a philosophical difference about "essentialism" -
do you believe that women are essentially different than men? As that
question is unresolvable on this list, I suggest we turn to practical
questions to resolve this issue.
1) Since we cannot know contributors' sex for certain (and thus
predict their reactions based on any kind of essentialist philosophy),
I am unconvinced that forking the list would be effective in the way
that such groups have been for the feminist movement already.
2) Since the number of people in the Wikipedia community who want to
work on this problem is small, we should work together until such time
as multiple groups are even feasible. Too much fracturing diffuses the
impact we can make.
3) Many women react in ways that are just as sexist as men. Some of
the most damaging sexism I have seen on Wikipedia came from female
editors. We should not exclude male voices based on the assumption
that they could be sexist but allow any female voice.
My two cents.
Can someone look into Danese's pages please?
She probably wouldn't mind if someone contacted her directly to find out
- Susan Spencer Conklin
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Danese Cooper <danese(a)gmail.com>
Date: Wed, Apr 13, 2011 at 11:53 AM
Subject: Re: Knitters and Coders: separated at birth?
To: Mackenzie Morgan <macoafi(a)gmail.com>
Cc: debian-women <debian-women(a)lists.debian.org>
danese on Ravelry, as in life ;-). I've written quite a lot about knitting
in public, although for some reason the Wikipedia community won't leave
those references on my page :-(.
On Apr 13, 2011, at 8:04 AM, Mackenzie Morgan <macoafi(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> 2011/4/13 Jordi Gutiérrez Hermoso <jordigh(a)octave.org>:
>> This is a cute blog post:
>> I know some of you knit, so perhaps you'll find this amusing. Btw, any
>> Debianistas on Ravelry? I'm JordiGH there.
> I'm macoafi on Ravelry, and I wrote a blog post about crochet & coding
> & reverse engineering a bit ago:
> (more of an Ubuntu person here, but I do maintain a couple Debian
> Mackenzie Morgan
> To UNSUBSCRIBE, email to debian-women-request(a)lists.debian.org
> with a subject of "unsubscribe". Trouble? Contact
To UNSUBSCRIBE, email to debian-women-request(a)lists.debian.org
with a subject of "unsubscribe". Trouble? Contact
Hi Aaron and everyone,
This is a really painful thing for me to read. As a scholar, my research
work has been based around the representation of Indigenous peoples of
North America in media and culture. I sincerely doubt that any of the
"tribal members" I know would say that this is a valid work that would
showcase their Indigenous cultures as anything but another stereotype.
Just as I'm sure some women of Tahiti today would question the relevance
today of Gauguin's paintings which often showcased nude or partially
nude Tahitian women - art revered by both genders and the Western art
world. However, I'm not seeking to speak on behalf of these individuals
and communities, nor am I hear to discuss the creators goal or context
with this featured image. It's more of the fact that /this/ is
considered a choice for the featured front page and the concern that it
has given me as a female contributor to Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons, etc.
You also stated that you do not want to compromise "our core values just
to try to close a "gap" that some feel is such a big issue, if it even
This gap does exist, in fact an entire mailing list (which I have cc'd
here and I encourage anyone interested in the topic to join) was created
to work towards bridging this gap. This was triggered by an article
titled "Define Gender Gap? Look Up Wikipedia's Contributor List" by Noam
Cohen, published Jan 30 2011 in /The New York Times/:
A great and interesting conversation took place by NYT to reflect on
this situation, which you can read here:
I do hope that perhaps those two articles can show you that there /is /a
problem, and there are many concerned Wikipedians of all genders, skin
tones, and identities aiming to change that. That is when images like
this deter us from our expansive mission to be more inclusive.
And this has nothing to do with me being "sensitive to toplessness" -
you don't know anything about my lifestyle or character to assume that,
regardless of where I live or where I was born.
On 5/15/2011 10:53 PM, Aaron Adrignola wrote:
> Commons is not censored. It's a beautiful scene and it would be
> expected that the an imaginary tribal member would not have the
> American sensitivities to toplessness. Some images may offend. Some
> articles may offend. We're not going to compromise our core values
> just to try to close a "gap" that some feel is such a big issue, if it
> even exists.
> On Sun, May 15, 2011 at 9:31 PM, CherianTinu Abraham
> <tinucherian(a)gmail.com <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>> wrote:
> Tinu Cherian
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> From: *Sarah Stierch* <sarah(a)sarahstierch.com
> Date: Mon, May 16, 2011 at 7:33 AM
> Subject: [Gendergap] Photo of the Day on Wikimedia Commons
> To: Increasing female participation in Wikimedia projects
> <gendergap(a)lists.wikimedia.org <mailto:email@example.com>>
> Surely I'm not the only one who noticed this lovely gem of a photo
> of the day today. In my work environment - NFWS.
> Direct link to image:
> I mean really? /facepalm
> This is the kind of imagery I have no desire to see on the front
> page of Commons. I'm a very liberal person, but, this makes me not
> want to even allow my MOTHER to use Commons.
> Wikipedia Regional Ambassador, D.C. Region
> Wikipedian-in-Residence, Archives of American Art
> Sarah Stierch Consulting
> Historical, cultural & artistic research, advising & event planning.
> http://www.sarahstierch.com/ <http://www.sarahstierch.com>
> Gendergap mailing list
> Gendergap(a)lists.wikimedia.org <mailto:Gendergap@lists.wikimedia.org>
> Commons-l mailing list
> Commons-l(a)lists.wikimedia.org <mailto:Commonsfirstname.lastname@example.org>
Wikipedia Regional Ambassador, D.C. Region
Wikipedian-in-Residence, Archives of American Art
Sarah Stierch Consulting
Historical, cultural & artistic research, advising & event planning.
A group of us have been working on a project to explore the possibility
of oral citations on Wikipedia, and inadvertently (and happily), it
turns out that there is a really interesting gender dimension that came
up during the course of it.
The central problem we were trying to address was the lack of scholarly
printed material outside the Anglo-European world, and how it affects
knowledge production on Wikipedia.
In the course of our work (and this may just be a coincidence) many of
the foremost experts on oral culture turn out to be women; for e.g.
Isabel Hofmeyr in South Africa and Urvashi Butalia in India. They both
have a host of interesting points to make in the film, and Urvashi has
one in particular worth nothing (described below, at point 38:35). She
talks - from experience as a feminist publisher over the years, and as
an oral historian, primarily of the stories of women from the partition
of India - about how she finds that, often, the women who know don't
think that what they know is noteworthy.
I am aware of the research and debates that sparked off the creation of
this list; I think there are several points in this project's trajectory
(many of which are explained in the film) that have some bearing -
tangential and direct - on the 'gender gap'.
We'd be delighted if you might check out the project page, watch the
film and give us your feedback.
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Oral Citations project: People are Knowledge
Date: Sat, 23 Jul 2011 14:38:20 +0530
From: Achal Prabhala <aprabhala(a)gmail.com>
To: Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List <foundation-l(a)lists.wikimedia.org>
At the beginning of 2011, a group of us began working on a project to
explore alternative methods of citation on Wikipedia. We were motivated
by the lack of published resources in much of the non-Anglo-European
world, and the very real difficulty of citing everyday aspects of lived
reality in India and South Africa.
We are now at a stage where the project is almost complete, and we'd
like to share our work with the broader movement, especially within
India and South Africa.
There are three languages we worked within: Malayalam, Hindi and Sepedi.
The project page documents the process and logistics employed, as well
as the findings and results:
A film made on the project is available here:
There have been discussions on oral citations for some time now within
the language communities we worked with for the duration of the project.
At this stage, we are really interested in *your* feedback, either on
this list, or on the Discussion section of the project page.
There are still some things to come, namely:
- Updates on events, meetings and discussions held around the project
(as they happen)
- Updates on articles created in Malayalam, Hindi and Sepedi as a result
of the project (as they happen)
- English transcripts of the interviews and a full English subtitle track
for further translation (we could use some help here).
We would be very grateful to hear your feedback, and begin a broader
I joined this list a couple days ago after reading through its archives,
which I embarked on after having come across the June 13th article in *The
Signpost* discussing the tiny percentage of self-identified female Wikipedia
editors. I'd missed the January *New York Times* article and all that flowed
from it (including this list) until I started systematically looking through
the "community" section of Wikipedia for the first time about 10 days ago,
to see what my options might be to address my own recent negative encounters
with other Wikipedia editors, although I hadn't yet stumbled upon the
Wikipedia policies on "canvassing," etc., that apparently preclude any
disclosure on this list of such experiences in a potentially identifiable
Having learned of that policy from reading this list's archives, I'm
accordingly using an email account not associated with my Wikipedia user
account, and I'm not disclosing my Wikipedia user name, so as not to arouse
any concerns that I might be canvassing for support concerning that
situation, which I'm not. In fact, I've even concluded that it's not worth
the aggravation of pursuing Wikipedia's dispute resolution process, which
from reading through **those** archives has impressed me as likely to be
little more than an exercise in futility (if not also masochism!). I'm
certainly neither fragile nor easily intimidated, but I prefer not to waste
my valuable free time on such exercises, so I've now stopped editing
Wikipedia and -- with one foot out the door, the other soon to follow -- am
posting to this list now only because I hadn't seen anything its archives
that expressed anything close to some of my own thoughts about a few of the
topics discussed, which might perhaps be of some value to at least some of
you who plan to continue in this effort.
By way of background, I'm one of those older staying-at-home professional
mothers Sarah Stierch had suggested in February might constitute a
potentially fruitful demographic for female recruitment. I'm certainly no
"geek," although I've picked up just enough basic HTML code along the way so
as not to find Wikipedia's coding basics unduly daunting -- as long as I had
the MoS "Cheat Sheet" handy. Well, aside from formatting references...
I made my first few edits not quite 18 months ago, I believe, to an article
about a park system I'd just been reading about, to which I made a few
gnome-like corrections without blowing the place up accidentally or
attracting notice. With that success in hand, I started drafting an article
about a superb all-female dance company that a niece had recently introduced
me to. After seeing them perform and coming to share her enthusiasm, I tried
to learn a little more about their history, discovered there was no
comprehensive article about them I could find anywhere online (although they
would clearly and objectively satisfy WP's notability criteria), and decided
that drafting one myself could be a useful exercise in teaching myself
Wikipedia's coding and style conventions, while eventually benefiting others
with the fruits of my research. I got about half-way finished with it in my
userspace (utilizing the Article Wizard), then had to abandon the draft (and
Wikipedia) a few days later due to some serious health problems one of my
children developed unexpectedly.
I didn't return again until two months ago, when a discussion elsewhere
pointed me to another Wikipedia article (about whose subject I knew quite a
bit) that was seriously deficient, so I signed in again for the first time
in 16 months or so, added a number of references to that article, expanded
it a bit and began "wikifying" it without generating any controversy or
blowing the place up accidentally. I then encountered an egregious usage
error a few weeks later in another Wikipedia article that had badly muddled
a sentence's meaning, and corrected it, again without generating any
controversy. I then checked for similar misuses of that and another commonly
misused word on Wikipedia, discovered hundreds of examples, and so began
correcting them in gnome-like fashion over the next month or so while
watching films with my daughter after school and/or evenings and tracking
down some uncommon but needed public domain images for a few other articles,
until I unluckily attracted the attention of a chauvinist (in the original
sense of the word) member of the "recent pages patrol" whose truculence and
devotion to Huggle greatly exceeded his grasp of correct [international]
English usage. What ensued persuaded me that my free time from now on would
be *so* much better spent on volunteer projects other than Wikipedia (and *
so* much better for my blood pressure!) that I'm not even going to bother
finishing the draft article about the dance company or upload the public
domain images I'd located. C'est la vie!
Also by way of background, I'm a late-70s graduate of Harvard Law School,
now retired from a successful legal career, and studying legal history (a
long-deferred goal). The percentage of women in the two classes ahead of
mine at HLS was approximately 8%, but it doubled to 16% in my class, which
quite a lot of the male students and professors (all but one of whom were
male back then) found extremely threatening. I mention this because that
"abrupt increase" in female students at HLS had generated a very nasty
backlash from many of the men, and at each stage of our early careers many
members of my female cohort experienced that backlash repeatedly. I hope
that a similarly "abrupt increase" in the percentage of female Wikipedia
editors doesn't generate a similar backlash toward them, but given my own
experiences, I recommend that those here working to increase female
participation brace themselves (and the new recruits), just in case.
This has probably been far too long already for a number of folks on the
list, so I'll conclude for now and share my thoughts on hosting pornography
on Wikipedia; recruiting Girl Scouts as editors; another potential
consideration not yet raised as to why the WMF should be concerned, I
suspect, about the relative dearth of female editors; bare-breastedness in
depictions of "Liberty"; etc., in another email or two, after I've had a
chance to look over again a few archived emails that it may help to quote or
refer to specifically.
I'm using a middle name to post here given that the list is open-archived on
the internet, that my recent unpleasant experiences on Wikipedia included
what I've concluded was harassment, and that I see no good reason to risk
subjecting my family to any such potential consequences due to my
participation on this list, however brief, so I will sign off for now just
Cross posted this to my blog at
I tend to be a bit obsessive. An issue that keeps cropping up in my personal
sphere is women editing Wikipedia. Various reasons keep being offered as to
why women don’t edit, if their reasons are different from those of men, if
women don’t edit because they don’t have time as they are too busy taking
care of their families, etc. I wanted to know why women and men in my
particular peer group didn’t edit Wikipedia. Thus, I posted surveys to my
Facebook and to my LiveJournal. The raw data, as of 10:13am American Central
Standard time could be found at
, LiveJournal <http://partly-bouncy.livejournal.com/923973.html>. Please
feel free to continue to vote. If I have bigger samples, I can always update
this. I had responses from 22 people, 12 males and 10 females. This isn’t
necessarily a representative sample and if I was looking for that, I’d try
much harder to get a larger response from a bigger group of people. I don’t
think you can necessarily extrapolate out much from this, except to have it
help confirm other smaller samples.As a side note, the Facebook poll allows
people to add their own responses. (The sample size isn’t statistically
significant for one thing and one response can really change the
percentages.) People have and it is possible that people may have chosen
responses had they been available. In any case, on with the findings.
There were several options offered that no one selected. Those answers have
not been included as the totals would have been 0% and given the small
sample size, it didn’t seem as relevant.
ResponseAllMaleFemaleAll %Male %Female %The atmosphere on Wikipedia is not
conducive to random user editing.104645.5%33.3%60.0%I have better things to
do.83636.4%16.7%60.0%Not enough time to contribute.52322.7%16.7%30.0%I don’t
want to research citations to support my edits. I can fix grammar/typos.421
18.2%25.0%10.0%I know people who were treated poorly. Why subject myself to
that?32113.6%16.7%10.0%There is no community.2209.1%16.7%0.0%They keep
deleting my edits.2009.1%16.7%0.0%The editing window is confusing and I
don’t understand the markup.1114.5%0.0%10.0%I used to edit but people
treated me poorly so I quit.1204.5%8.3%0.0%After being overwritten
incorrectly, with no dialogue as to why, & just knowing1104.5%8.3%0.0%
There are some differences in responses between men and women, which appears
to support the general conclusion that men and women have different reasons
for (not) contributing to Wikipedia and that gender specific type engagement
may be needed. One of the arguments that I’ve heard is that women would like
to contribute to Wikipedia but they just do not have the time because they
need to take care of their families. This small sample appears to suggest
this isn’t the case: Women, much more than men in this sample, just have
better things to do. I’ve talked to a few women in this sample about this to
try to understand what better things they have to do, because I’ve heard the
argument that women do use this type of technology and some people don’t
understand why, if women do blogging and other online content creation, why
they don’t contribute to Wikipedia. In this particular sample, the women I
talked to explained it to me as they have a set of things they prioritise in
what they do. In the case of one non-contributor, they do contribute to
another wiki that immediately ties into her interests. Beyond that, she has
learned that her contributions have value and that value can be realised by
getting paid for them by writing for sites like associated content and
squidoo. There isn’t the inherent value that can be realised when
contributing to Wikipedia, so why should she spend the time contributing?
This appears to be supported because of the six who said they have better
things to do, only one female also said she didn’t have enough time to
A lot of the answers appear to have to do with community and negative
interactions. Six women answered yes to “The atmosphere on Wikipedia is not
conducive to random user editing.” as a reason why they don’t edit. This
compares to only four of the twelve men. This was a common theme when I
talked some of the women in this sample: The community is not supportive,
things get undone, there aren’t people helping guide new contributors and
serving as mentors. There isn’t much positive feedback. If you run into
problems, you have to go ask for it yourself and then you get in trouble for
canvassing. More experiences editors are involved in areas and they don’t do
anything when it looks like there are obvious problems to the random female
editor. The situation reminds me a bit of wikiHow. I haven’t edited there in
a while, but I’ve generally highly respected what Jack Herrick and other
admins have done with their wiki culture as a whole. They make welcoming a
big thing. They provide lots of positive feedback. They appear to work on
community. They offer ways to get recognition for your contributions. People
involved in running it have always seemed highly accessible, even if they
aren’t. wikiHow also appears to place a priority on civility that English
Wikipedia only gives lip service to. Evidence? Become a wikiHow
a criteria of being an admin: *Empathy and kindness – Admins exist to serve
the broader community of editors and readers. A demonstrated history of
treating others with kindness and mutual respect is a necessity.*
Beyond those two of The atmosphere on Wikipedia is not conducive to random
user editing. and I have better things to do with my time., no answer had
more than 50% of the female response… and worth noting, women had that. The
male respondents didn’t have a voting block similar to that. The largest
male response was The atmosphere on Wikipedia is not conducive to random
user editing., with 33% answering that as a reason. The next largest male
block I don’t want to research citations to support my edits. I can fix
grammar/typos. , with 25% citing that as a reason. That response is not
necessarily a community response, suggesting community problems so much as
content policy and I don’t know how to address that.
I’d love to do a bigger survey with more results, see if responses change
with more respondents. I do think it supports the idea that lack of time is
not the major reason that women don’t contribute and that technology and the
format discourage women from contributing. Only one female cited that as an
issue. A refocus and reprioritisation may be needed if the goal is to
increase female contributions to English Wikipedia.
*I post and then two more people vote, one male and one female. If I get
another ten total responses, I’ll update with new totals.*
About reduced figures on female contributors:
I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again: females are
busy being mothers and caregivers. Demographic
factors may vary, but in-the-trenches scholarly research needs to be undertaken if an explanation to low contribution figures is seriously sought.
Women (and people of color) are likely
to have fewer financial resources than men (i.e. innovative time on their hands at the keyboard). For single parents, it is worse yet (females who do not have a partner
provisioning them); they just don’t have the time. Moreover,
who wants to fight online intellectual/deletion battles and noob learning curves when
there is: laundry to do, cooking and dishes, kids to take somewhere, diapers,
homework, animals, gardens, transportation, and paying basic bills? Daycare support in the U.S. has
evaporated and single-parent households have increased.
How many hours in her productive lifetime does a female
spend changing diapers? Nursing (Some mothers do this for years)? Preparing food? Cleaning up after children- and without
domestic help? Overseeing homework? Then, there’s more than one child, then 2,
then maybe more, maybe many more. In
some nations, women go directly from mothering to grandmothering. Modern teens
don’t leave home; they cannot find jobs, so raising children, and the distractions that come with it, have extended out a
few more years.
About Sue Gardener and challenges to increase female
Sue has earnestly identified a problem, and
is taking pot-shots for being the proverbial messenger. On gender balance, she
is facing a task riddled with problems of a global scope. Organizational issues at Wikimedia, it is
said, inhibit more meaningful change. It
may be a bigger problem than Sue can take on, especially if she’s encouraged to
accomplish increased gender balance, but is not given broad authority to do it.
If this is relatively accurate, Sue’s
mandate is only partial and superstructural “culture” change is unlikely.
Human Resources (HR) at Wikimedia, are a puzzling lot. The weirdest phone interview I’ve had, occurred
with one of Wikimedia’s HR people. The person proceeded to tell me about what “rock stars” other job candidates were, and what exotic lands they hail from. As a social scientist, one senses a poorly
developed ego, plus narcissistic impulses, which of course, cannot be satisfied. Serious scholarship skills, such as those (less faraway-eyed) who would dig in and get to the bottom of the gender question, get dimensionless
play by youthful (?) Wikimedia-identified employees. If investigative scholarship has little
dimension for HR staff, and foci are “cultural fit” and being a “rock star”, not
to mention volunteership (volunteers-hip), something is lost in the group’s mission. Demi-monde-ism from the core, and its adherence, is worrisome.
Even job descriptions at Wikimedia have not historically targeted
the obvious need for academic research scholarship, outreach, and sufficient
demographic research to get at this gendered tip-of-the-iceberg, larger
question; and it’s significance is not just for the U.S., not just for societies, but for
Look, Wikimedia is not alone in this debacle. The medical establishment is trying to figure
out why females of ethnic groups make the (non-medical) decisions they do. I also find, given that I am a registered
reviewer of federal grants, that California
is not in the vanguard of dedicated social understanding on anthropological phenomena, though it
would seem like a likely place for awareness to be cultivated.
Sue is at risk for being out of touch, as a non-parent, and possibly alienated with the stressful social discourse she finds herself in. But, Sue can see to
it that scholars, who fight the good fight, and have the desire, and ability (as
gender specialists, who’ve earned social science research cred) to help her
struggle for infrastructural change, are invited, engaged, and paid to do so. Sue may have opened Pandora’s Box, but so
far, she has faced this dilemma with courage and transparency. This is not dysfunctional; it is social frontier.
About use of terms to describe southerly nations:
One term used among analysts is: “emerging economies.” This tends to enjoy more use today than the
term it replaced- now fallen from vogue- “third world countries.” Because of global impoverishment (by this
term, I mean natural resource exhaustion), we are not referring solely to the
tropics these days, and while the U.S. and other nations once thought of
themselves as the “first world” vanguard, it seems obvious that the “second
world” tier is repopulating, and open for reinterpretation, as well. The term “global south,” while geographically
comprehensible, has geo-political problems, but it may depend on the argument
or perspective you want to present.
About falling literacy among youth:
I concur, as a university lecturer; I have students who use “Texteze”
in academic assignments. I find females are
more likely to submit it. Young males
are so busy in the gaming space, they are bored with focus in the academy; this
includes sciences. Research indicates (high-tech
countries’) boys are socializing better because of hoard/war games and the
strategies necessary for victories there.
Back to teen girls for a moment, they are also likely to draw hearts and
cute figures on academic assignments. I receive
emotive drawings on roughly 30% of girl’s papers, and 0% of boys. This in itself is worthy of study.
One reason I’ve heard, from local employers, for firing/not
hiring youth, is compulsive texting on the job. Again, new studies indicate that youth with
mobile devices become stressed if out of contact with peers for more than about
45 minutes. Colleges have the
responsibility, along with high schools of graduating job-ready youth, and they
are somehow losing the battle on this. Gender
data on this would also be useful. Maybe
someone on this list is looking at this, or knows scholars looking at gender in texting?
KS Rolph- Anthropologist
Thank you kindly for taking enough of an interest in this topic to respond; it is enlightening.
My intention is affable, so please keep that in mind.
I understand that many persons will choose to never parent, that some parent for the wrong reasons, and that there are any number of perspectives, and no shortage of opinion and ways to problematize the motherhood issue. It may bore some; it's a passion for others, such as those of us who experience the direct consequences of parenting. We are, for better or worse, generating the next population, its biology, genetics, social, political, and cultural values, and productive composition.
I liked the Nielsen link, but I think dads around the world are stressed too, though maybe in different ways. In terms of U.S. society, for doubters on what is involved, you might consider reading "The Motherhood Penalty," an academic essay, it is science rather than anecdote. Mothers are perceived as complainers, as less productive than non-parent females, and non-moms earn far more than mothers. Non-mothers get their pay disparity comeuppance however, when dads come along, and enjoy "the fatherhood bonus." Dads are perceived as devoted, and highly productive providers. Mothers are irresponsible coworkers for needing to tend children, but fathers are virtuous for tending children.
In terms of gender disparity and Wikipedia, I mean to empirically focus on 'productivity.' By this, I mean getting at those meaningful slices of daily, weekly, and lifestyle experience. As a research methodologist, Question One on a survey instrument might be: "Are you a parent, have you given birth to any children?" From there, an instrument would take two differing directions. Non-parents would be sorted and queried for demographic information, and eventually getting to education level and Wikipedia. Education or literacy is no small component, surely, because the learning curve, and important focus and interest mentioned by list members, will guide, if not determine, a woman's ability to contribute to Wikipedia. As for blogging, education is not a prerequisite, though some measure of literacy is, and is representative of the many ways that women communicate values. Gossip is largely a woman's privilege, and it is often, but not always, based on moral and cultural morays. It's extremely useful, but not in resolving the Wikipedia gender problem. Creating a well-worded posting for Wikipedia is time consuming, and as one colleague mentioned, kind of geeky. I'm talking about the productivity that gets measured by economics.
Getting back to the mother-directed survey instrument, one of several age groups would be women of child bearing age, with a possible mean of close to 28 years, and questions would follow that look like: "How old is your infant?" - "Are you nursing?" - "How many minutes does it take to nurse?" - "How often do you nurse?" - along with prep time, clean up time, bottle chill time, and so on. A table would indicate that each nursing takes 10-15' on each side, roughly 25 minutes, and if newborn, x8 feedings per day plus management- another 10" per feeding, we are now into about 4 hours per day, and we haven't looked at mothers who must express milk for later use, diaper changes, meals, or playtime yet. These data at-a-glance may seem (ho-hum and) well beyond the scope of Wikipedia editing and gender biases, but I would argue these data have a role.
To put this another way, non-mothers and non-fathers, might not be the units of focus here (though important in other ways); the parent dimension is likely to be shallow for non-parents (unless taking care of elders, another story for now). I understand we all function in certain non-gendered emphases, but someone needs to dig in and work at this, because policy is overlooking a number of disturbingly obvious issues. My view is that Sue G. has a wildly unique, outlying opportunity to shed light, and bring attention to modern (and ancient) underlying issues, largely because of the social potency of Wikipedia in the literate world; Sue's gendered leadership is as significant as any I can think of.
Again, core social science research is in order; this includes a broad, human subjects based investigation with clear hypotheses, and capable minds of all sorts contributing. Thanks again for taking the trouble to discuss weaknesses in the arguments, and pointing out subjectivity. These help provide tools for defining the problem(s).