In recent years, several members of the community, especially women and LGBTQ volunteers have complained about the increase in “toxic behaviour” from the editor community. To ensure the safety of members, Wikimedia has announced new measures to combat this behaviour on Wikipedia.
Wikimedia, the company behind Wikipedia, has announced new measures to combat “toxic behaviour” by volunteers on its platform. The organization’s board of trustees voted on new measures that are expected to be finalized by the end of 2020.
We must work together to create a safe, inclusive culture, where everyone feels welcome, that their contributions are valued, and that their perspective matters.
– Katherine Maher, CEO, Wikipedia
Wikipedia has been a trusted source for users around the world but it has been a target of harassment. According to a study from the University of Washington on the gender gap in Wikipedia many female and LGBTQ editors feared for their safety. Several female editors told researchers their work had contested by male editors or that they received negative feedback from a male editor.
Another study published by the New York Times highlighted the concerns some transgender editors have about volunteering for the site. One editor told the paper they received death threats.
Wikimedia plans to make changes in two stages– one being the ratification of current rules and regulations surrounding how editors interact with each other and the second being enforcement when the rules are broken.