Most of you would be aware of some of the discussions that have occurred
around Wikipedia in the Norwegian languages. Since the last round of
discussions on this list, there has been a lot of internal debate, as
well as what seems to be a fairly widely accepted agreement following
This e-mail intends to, after a brief recap on Norwegian language and
wikipedia issues, take those interested through the latest development
and will stake out the road ahead. It is also intended to inform the
international community about the current agreement on no.wikipedia, so
as to prevent misunderstandings in the future.
Finally, we will mention an unfortunate reaction to the vote by a small
number of users at the Norwegian Bokmål/Riksmål (no:) wikipedia who want
to disregard the result of the voting and are planning to create a
_third_ Norwegian wikipedia with the sole mission of mixing the contents
of the two current Norwegian versions.
== A short language history of Norway ==
Spoken Norwegian ("norsk") (ISO 639-2 alpha-2 code "no") is in a fairly
unique situation compared to most other languages of the world in that
it has two widely accepted written standards, Bokmål (ISO 639-2 alpha-2
code "nb") and Nynorsk (ISO 639-2 alpha-2 code "nn"). By national
legislation they are both regarded as official written forms of
Norwegian. In addition, many people still make a distinction between
Bokmål and its precursor which still is in use, Riksmål.
Briefly speaking, Bokmål and Riksmål are descendants of the Danish
written language. Until the 1800s, Danish was the only widely used
written language in Norway as a result of four centuries of union with
Denmark. With increasing independence came a wish to norwegianise the
Danish standard, with Knud Knudsen at the forefront for changing parts
of the vocabulary and orthographics. Thus, Riksmål, and later Bokmål,
resulted. These forms together are today probably used by about 90% of
Norway's population, or somewhere around 3,500,000 people.
Parallel to this development, a new written standard was created by Ivar
Aasen. He travelled extensively throughout Norway, and based his new
language, landsmål, on the grammar and vocabulary of dialect samples
from around the country. This was later renamed Nynorsk. Modern Nynorsk
differs significantly from modern Bokmål, and may be linguistically
looked upon as as different (or as similar if you like) as Swedish is to
Danish. For English or Dutch/German speakers, the differences may be
likened to those between (Lowland) Scots and English or Low German and
Dutch. Today it is estimated that about 500,000-600,000 people have
Nynorsk as their first written language.
More information about the Norwegian language history can be found in
English, German, French, Spanish or Portuguese on the website of the
Norwegian Language Council:
== A short history of Wikipedia in Norwegian ==
The first Norwegian wikipedia started 26 November 2001 on the subdomain
no.wikipedia.org. As most wikipedias, its contributor and article count
started really picking up around the end of 2003. At the time, it
accepted all written standards of Norwegian, although the amount of
Nynorsk was minimal. There were already several debates about the
feasibilty and appropriateness of keeping the two languages united on
one Wikipedia. On 31 July 2004 a Wikipedia for Nynorsk was created.
The creation of nn:, however, split the community at no: wikipedia. Many
felt that given that Nynorsk now had its own wikipedia, no: should
become a Bokmål/Riksmål Wikipedia only. Others disapproved and claimed
that there was no need to change and that it should continue its
language policy of accepting all and keep its interwiki link name of
Nynorsk Wikipedia soon proved a success, as it within the next few
months gathered several people who had felt uncomfortable in the
(mainly) Bokmål environment at no:. The name displayed in interwiki
links became "Norsk (nynorsk)" (languages are not spelt with upper case
in Norwegian). To date it continues to be one of the fastest growing
wikipedias, with a steady article increase, now at over 6000 articles
and >50 editors with more than 10 edits since arrival.
== Votes ==
The issue of no:'s language policy has come up time and again, and a
vote was held in March ([[:no:Wikipedia:Målform]]) as to which policy to
adapt. Independent of the method of the tally (whether or not to include
new contributors etc.) there was a majority for switching to a
Bokmål/Riksmål only language policy (50% for Bokmål/Riksmål, 43.2% for
Bokmål/Riksmål/Nynorsk/Høgnorsk, and 6.8% for the official variants
Following this result, there is now going to be a vote on which
interwiki link name will most appropriately reflect the current language
policy of no:. The result of this vote will most likely be either "Norsk
(bokmål)" or "Norsk (bokmål/riksmål)".
Understandably, there has also been a debate as to whether the subdomain
should change from "no" to "nb", as this is the correct representation
of Bokmål according to ISO 639-2. However, there is some resentment
towards such a move and currently a general acceptance in letting the
Bokmål wikipedia stay at "no". The alternative some have suggested is a
server-side redirect from "no" to "nb", in the same way that "nb" today
is a server-side redirect to the equivalent page on "no".
== Summary of the problem ==
Unfortunately, a small group of users (who all write Bokmål/Riksmål) are
ignoring the results from the vote, and are claiming they want to
re-establish a wikipedia for all written standards of Norwegian. They
claim they have been in touch with people centrally in Wikimedia
(developers? stewards?) and that they have so far received positive
comments. With this email, we would like to state the fact that there
have been no official decisions about creating a third Norwegian
wikipedia containing both Bokmål and Nynorsk, it is merely an unofficial
initiative from a small group of users which started a sign-on list at
[[:no:Bruker:Norsk_Wikipedia]]. A spontaneous list with signatures
against this activity was immediately created at
[[:no:Wikipedia-diskusjon:Fellesnorsk]]. The process of creating a third
Norwegian wikipedia has not gone through a voting process in any of the
two existing Norwegian wikipedias (no: and nn:) and can not be
considered as a decision by the Norwegian Wikipedia community.
We believe the creation of a third wikipedia under the Wikimedia
foundation would have a serious and unfortunate impact on the existing
wikipedias in Norwegian, no: and nn:, and would undermine Wikipedia's
reputation in Norway. This being said, we are all for extensive co-
operation between the four Scandinavian language wikipedias (including
Swedish and Danish), as evident by the recent creation of
[[:meta:Skanwiki]], the Scandinavian meta-pages, and the use of featured
articles from neighbour wikipedias.
== Conclusion ==
Hopefully, this letter will help people better understand the
complicated language situation of the Norwegian Wikipedia community, so
as to give a background on which discussion can take place on this list
in the future, such as the inevitable debate following a possible
request for a re-establishment of the common (and third!) Norwegian
>From the community of no.wikipedia.org and nn.wikipedia.org,
Bjarte Sørensen [[:meta:User:BjarteSorensen]] (Administrator/bureaucrat on nn:)
Lars Alvik [[:no:User:Profoss]] (Administrator/bureaucrat on no:)
Øyvind A. Holm [[:no:User:Sunny256]] (Administrator on no:)
Onar Vikingstad [[:no:User:Vikingstad]] (Administrator on no:)
Jon Harald Søby [[:no:User:Jhs]] (Administrator on no:)
Chris Nyborg [[:no:User:Cnyborg]] (Administrator on no:)
Guttorm Flatabø [[:no:User:Dittaeva]] (Administrator on nn:)
Gunleiv Hadland [[:meta:User:Gunnernett]] (Administrator on nn:)
Jarle Fagerheim [[:nn:User:Jarle]] (Administrator on nn:)
Øyvind Jo Heimdal Eik [[:en:User:Pladask]] (Administrator on nn: and no:)
Kristian André Gallis [[:nn:User:Kristaga]]
Vegard Wærp [[:no:User:Vegardw]]
Nina Aldin Thune [[:no:User:Nina]]
Thor-Rune Hansen [[:no:User:ThorRune]]
Claes Tande [[:no:User:Ctande]]
Arnt-Erik Krokaa [[:no:User:AEK]]
Rune Sattler [[:no:User:Shauni]]
The Võro language has had now its own ISO code vro for about two years but
the Võro Vikipeediä works still under the URL: fiu-vro.wikipedia.org.
Would it be possible soon to change it to the vro.wikipedia.org?
Open Decentralized Society is a project that aims at creating a Wikipedia
that takes trust relations between users into consideration. It wants to
create a wiki that will have different articles for each subject, articles
that would be ranked based on the person who is viewing them and his trust
relations. Each trust link will also have semantic meaning.
Each person will try to certificate which person is a doctor, which person
is a software engineer, and for each semantic meaning there will be a
It is important to note that there will not be a global ranking. You could
think of it as if everyone is a seed of trust for himself.
This project is in its infancy. My intention is to create a community that
will implement those features on mediawiki.
If you are a freedom proponent. If you believe that the flow of information
should be free, join me in creating the next Wikipedia. The project needs
funding, peer-reviewing, programmers, security experts, lawyers.
Dont hesitate to contact me: xekoukou#gmail.comhttp://opensociety.referata.com
This message and any attachments (the "message") are confidential,
intended solely for the addressee(s), and may contain legally
Any unauthorised use or dissemination is prohibited. E-mails are
susceptible to alteration.
I shall not be liable for the message if altered, changed or
When you are uploading pictures the UploadWizard will provide the new
default interface. It has a much more intuitive interface and, you can
upload 10 pictures at a time.
Enjoy !! It is in my opinion a big step forward.
INC Reader #7
Critical Point of View: A Wikipedia Reader
Geert Lovink and Nathaniel Tkacz (eds)
For millions of internet users around the globe, the search for new
knowledge begins with Wikipedia. The encyclopedia’s rapid rise, novel
organization, and freely offered content have been marveled at and
denounced by a host of commentators. Critical Point of View moves
beyond unflagging praise, well-worn facts, and questions about its
reliability and accuracy, to unveil the complex, messy, and
controversial realities of a distributed knowledge platform.
The essays, interviews and artworks brought together in this reader
form part of the overarching Critical Point of View research
initiative, which began with a conference in Bangalore (January 2010),
followed by events in Amsterdam (March 2010) and Leipzig (September
2010). With an emphasis on theoretical reflection, cultural difference
and indeed, critique, contributions to this collection ask: What
values are embedded in Wikipedia’s software? On what basis are
Wikipedia’s claims to neutrality made? How can Wikipedia give voice to
those outside the Western tradition of Enlightenment, or even its own
administrative hierarchies? Critical Point of View collects original
insights on the next generation of wiki-related research, from radical
artistic interventions and the significant role of bots to hidden
trajectories of encyclopedic knowledge and the politics of agency and
Contributors: Amila Akdag Salah, Nicholas Carr, Shun-ling Chen,
Florian Cramer, Morgan Currie, Edgar Enyedy, Andrew Famiglietti,
Heather Ford, Mayo Fuster Morell, Cheng Gao, R. Stuart Geiger, Mark
Graham, Gautam John, Dror Kamir, Peter B. Kaufman, Scott Kildall,
Lawrence Liang, Patrick Lichty, Geert Lovink, Hans Varghese Mathews,
Johanna Niesyto, Matheiu O’Neil, Dan O’Sullivan, Joseph Reagle, Andrea
Scharnhorst, Alan Shapiro, Christian Stegbauer, Nathaniel Stern,
Krzystztof Suchecki, Nathaniel Tkacz, Maja van der Velden.
Colophon: Editors: Geert Lovink and Nathaniel Tkacz. Editorial
Assistance: Ivy Roberts and Morgan Currie. Copy-Editing: Cielo Lutino.
Design: Katja van Stiphout. Cover Image: Ayumi Higuchi. Priner: Ten
Klei, Amsterdam. Publisher: Institute of Network Cultures, Amsterdam.
Supported by: The School for Communication and Design at the Amsterdam
University of Applied Sciences (Hogeschool van Amsterdam DMCI), the
Centre for Internet and Society (CIS) in Bangalore and the Kusuma Trust.
You can download the pdf for free here: http://www.networkcultures.org/_uploads/%237reader_Wikipedia.pdf
To order a hard copy of the reader, send an email to books(a)networkcultures.org
Geert Lovink and Nathaniel Tkacz (eds), Critical Point of View: A
Wikpedia Reader, Amsterdam: Institute of Network Cultures, 2011. ISBN:
978-90-78146-13-1, paperback, 385 pages.