Support from the Government
From Wikimedia India Chapter
Government of Kerala
In the case of Malayalam, there are initiatives from Kerala Government or the subsidiary departments of Kerala Government that ultimately helped Malayalam wiki community. They are the following:
- Sarvavijanankosam - This is an encyclopedic project started by Kerala Government way back in 1961. The aim was to create a compendium of world knowledge in Malayalam language. It is planned for 21 volumes out of which 15 volumes have been released till now. It will have 32,000 encyclopedic articles, all written in Malayalam language.
- In 2008 December Government of Kerala announced that they were changing the license of Sarvavijanakosam to the GNU Free Documentation License (GNU FDL) so that the Malayalam wiki community can reuse its content to develop Malayalam Wikipedia. Even though we are not sure, Maalayalam wikipedians assume that this initiative by Kerala Government is the first of its kind by any Government in the world for the sake of Wikipedia.
- School wiki: School wiki is an initiative from the Education department of Kerala to promote the culture of knowledge sharing and collaborative authoring among the school students of Kerala. Basically school wiki is a database of all the schools of Kerala. Many school teachers and students of Kerala are introduced to wiki editing and wiki culture due to this project.
- In the initial phase, Malayalam Wikipedians have helped school wiki officials to set up the school wiki. We were also able to provide them some technical training in this regard.
- IT@school, the subsidiary department of the Education Department of the Government of Kerala sponsored the production cost of Malayalam Wikipedia CD and Malayalam wiki FAQ book that we released as part of third Malayalam wiki meet up that happened on 2010 April 17 at Ernakulam district in Kerala.
- Later IT@school included the content of Malayalam wikipedia CD in the education resource DVD that they distributed to 60,000 school teachers in Kerala.
- In 2010 October, November with the help of IT@school, Malayalam wikipedians have conducted wiki workshops in 6 districts of Kerala. The infrastructure, advertisement, and other related cost for each of these 6 wiki workshop was sponsored by the IT@school Project.
Government of Tamil Nadu
- An article writing contest supported by the Government of Tamil Nadu organized as part of the World Classical Tamil Conference. The government arranged for information posters to be sent to every single educational institution (at degree level), numbering around 3,500. They also gave away prizes worth more than 100,000 Indian Rupees. Wikipedians formed a jury comprising international experts on subjects ranging from ecology to semiconductor engineering to economics to theology. Wikipedia volunteers also did the screening and other co-ordination for this event.
- The government-funded Tamil Virtual Academy also released a technical glossary comprising of more than 100,000 terms into public domain to be uploaded to Tamil Wiktionary. Tamil Wiktionarians used a bot to upload the terms, bringing it to the ninth place among all Wiktionaries.