[Foundation-l] 1.3 billion of humans don't have Wikipedia in their native language

Denny Vrandecic denny.vrandecic at kit.edu
Sun May 22 11:22:45 UTC 2011

Can you also provide at least a rough estimate of the number of humans who don't have Wikipedia in any language they speak reasonably well (understanding very well that this is a hard problem of definition)?


On May 22, 2011, at 14:15, Milos Rancic wrote:

> I am preparing document for Wikimania. Presently, I am in process of
> analyzing data (SIL [1], Ethnologue [2], Wikimedia projects). I am using
> Ethnologue data for population estimates.
> Before I started this task, I thought that the situation is not so bad
> (or good, if it is about possibility for development). I thought that we
> are around the end of languages with more than 1M of speakers. However,
> this is far from being true.
> There are no Wikipedias in 243 languages with more than 1M of speakers.
> Of those, 27 have more than 10M of speakers.
> The biggest language without any Wikimedia project is Jin Chinese, with
> 45 millions of speakers.
> Around 1 billion of people belong to the group of big languages without
> Wikipedia (or any Wikimedia project) in their language.
> Of those, 480 millions have test projects, but 550 millions don't have
> even test project; including:
> * Jin Chinese, 45M, China
> * Haryanvi, 38M, India, incubator
> * Xiang Chinese, 36, China, incubator
> * Maithili, 34M, India, incubator
> * Nigerian Pidgin, 30M, Nigeria, incubator
> * Filipino, 25M, Philippines, incubator
> * Chhattisgarhi, 17.5M, India, incubator
> * Rangpuri, 15M, Bangladesh
> * Seraiki, 13.8M, Pakistan, incubator
> * Madura, 13.6M, Indonesia, incubator
> * Haryanvi, 13M, India
> * Deccan, 12.8M, India
> * Malvi, 10.4M, India
> * Min Bei Chinese, 10.3M, China, incubator
> * Sylheti, 10.3M, Bangladesh
> Around 300 millions of people are using languages with less than 1M of
> speakers which don't have Wikipedia editions.
> Note that for all languages in the world Ethnologue gives the number of
> 6.15 billion, which is pretty accurate, counting that current estimate
> (according to Wikipedia [3]) is 6.92 billion and that counting speakers
> is very different from counting official population statistics.
> Those are preliminary results. We have two chapters (and strategic
> focus) in countries of the list above. Inside of the longer list, which
> should be verified, we have more chapters. I noted that there are even
> two languages of Germany without Wikipedia, but with more than million
> of speakers: Mainfränkisch and Upper Saxon (the later one without test
> Wikipedia).
> The list of countries with languages with more than 1M of speakers and
> without Wikipedia is: Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Bangladesh, Benin,
> Bolivia, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, China, Congo, Côte
> d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, Egypt, Equatorial
> Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Germany, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, India,
> Indonesia (Java and Bali), Indonesia (Kalimantan), Indonesia (Nusa
> Tenggara), Indonesia (Sulawesi), Indonesia (Sumatra), Iran, Iraq,
> Jamaica, Jordan, Kenya, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia
> (Peninsular), Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia,
> Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Saudi Arabia,
> Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Syria,
> Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey (Asia), Uganda, Viet Nam, Yemen,
> Zambia, Zimbabwe.
> [1] http://www.sil.org/
> [2] http://www.ethnologue.com/
> [3] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_population
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