Percentage of men and women on different Wikipedias

Few days ago there was an interesting article on NYTimes about the small percentage of women on Wikipedia.
Today on the gendergap mailing list at wikipedia there is a very interesting ongoing discussion. Some preliminary statistics from the discussion are:

Wikipedia in specific language Number of users who specified gender in preferences Percentage of users who specified gender in preferences How many men How many women Percentage of women
English
http://en.wikipedia.org
13959842 2.01% 233312 46973 16.76%
German
http://de.wikipedia.org
1167708 3.47% 35726 4800 11.84%
French
http://fr.wikipedia.org
998668 2.16% 18556 3054 14.13%
Serbian
http://sr.wikipedia.org
78180 2.66% 1666 414 19.90%
Russian
http://ru.wikipedia.org
620393 16.80% 80491 23750 22.78%
Polish
http://pl.wikipedia.org
414511 3.64% 12106 2999 19.85%
Dutch
http://nl.wikipedia.org
368815 2.92% 8977 1781 16.56%
Commons
http://commons.wikimedia.org
1464442 2.26% 27980 5070 15.34%

Interesting to note how on Russian Wikipedia, users tend to express their gender much more (16.80%!). Do you have ideas if (1) this is a cultural issue specific of Russians, (2) it depends on the practices of the specific Wikipedia in Russian or (3) it depends on the user interface, for example it might be that when you register you are redirect to an HTML page in which you can specify also your gender?
Also interesting is the fact that in this Wikipedia the percentage of women is the highest (22.78%). Probably the reason is that in a place in which gender is more represented, it is more normal for women to represent it as well. While where gender it is not represent, it is in general foolish for women to explicitly say “Hey, I’m female!” in order not to attract (additional) unwanted messages. Or put in other terms, OMG Girlz Don’t Exist on teh Intarweb!!!!1.


Img by nojhan, under Creative Commons

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19 Responses to this post.

  1. Amir E. Aharoni's Gravatar

    Posted by Amir E. Aharoni on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Mozilla Firefox 4.0b11 Windows XP

    In the Russian Wikipedia the namespace for user page can be both ???????? in masculine and ????????? in feminine. The implementation is partial, but it’s more than nothing.

  2. Amir E. Aharoni's Gravatar

    Posted by Amir E. Aharoni on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Mozilla Firefox 4.0b11 Windows XP

    No Unicode? :(

  3. paolo's Gravatar

    Posted by paolo on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Google Chrome 8.0.552.237 Linux

    Sorry for the lack of unicode, Amir! ;(

    So if I understand correctly, if a user has set male in preferences, his user page will be at something such as User_male:Example and if she has set female, her user page will be at something such as User_female:Example. Of course “User_male” should be replaced with the string in Russian (which is not visible here for my luck of unicode, sorry!).

    This surely is an incentive for expressing your gender! Interesting!

    Do you know if this happens in other Wikipedias?
    I post the question on the mailing list as well.
    Thanks for your comment?

  4. paolo's Gravatar

    Posted by paolo on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Google Chrome 8.0.552.237 Linux

    Another question:
    In Russian Wikipedia, if gender is not set, how User: is rendered? With the male equivalent or there is a neutral form?

  5. Lvova's Gravatar

    Posted by Lvova on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Mozilla Firefox 3.0.6 Windows XP

    In Russian Wikipedia, if gender is not set, how User: is rendered? With the male equivalent or there is a neutral form?
    With the male equivalent, yes

    In the Russian Wikipedia the namespace for user page…
    It isn’t a real namespace; we have a template http://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D0%A8%D0%B0%D0%B1%D0%BB%D0%BE%D0%BD:%D0%A3%D1%87%D0%B0%D1%81%D1%82%D0%BD%D0%B8%D1%86%D0%B0
    This template has 1 interwiki, as you see

  6. HenkvD's Gravatar

    Posted by HenkvD on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Internet Explorer 7.0 Windows XP

    I suppose the high percentage of Russian users who have declared their gender is partly caused by the large growth in the comunity. New users set their preferences, and gender is part of it. Most older users (especially english) are not even active anymore, or only update the part they want (for editing, watchlists or so.
    Would it be possible to have this table updated for only active users? That might give a much higer percentage of users who declared their gender.

  7. Kaldari's Gravatar

    Posted by Kaldari on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Mozilla Firefox 3.6.13 Mac OS X 10

    I tried changing my gender pref on ru.wikipedia.org from unspecified to male and female and didn’t notice any difference. It seems to render as ????????:Kaldari under any of the 3 options.

  8. paolo's Gravatar

    Posted by paolo on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Google Chrome 8.0.552.237 Linux

    Thanks Lvova, very interesting! I’ll try to experiment with similar templates on the Italian Wikipedia.

    HenkvD, people who have an account on toolserver.org can generate these statistics, at the moment I don’t have one.

    Kaldari, I’m sorry I don’t know what to tell you since I don’t read Russian ;(

  9. Amir E. Aharoni's Gravatar

    Posted by Amir E. Aharoni on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Mozilla Firefox 4.0b11 Windows XP

    The actual title of the page remains the same for males and females. As Lvova says, to actually make it appear feminine, one needs to use a template. You can, however, use this “namespace” in a URL – it is a synonym for the masculine namespace name.

    That’s what i meant when i wrote “partial, but more than nothing”.

  10. paolo's Gravatar

    Posted by paolo on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Google Chrome 9.0.597.94 Linux

    thanks amir, I need to play a bit with the templates to totally grok it, I think. But thanks!

  11. paolo's Gravatar

    Posted by paolo on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Google Chrome 9.0.597.94 Linux

    An email by Daniel ~ Leinad at mailing list

    Re: [Gendergap] Gender identification in Russian Wikipedia

    In my opinion it doesn’t clearly explain higher gender identification on ru.wiki

    Similar topic was a few days on Wikitech-l and I wrote:

    “Polish, Czech, Russian Wikipedias have alias in feminine form (source:
    http://noc.wikimedia.org/conf/highlight.php?file=InitialiseSettings.php)
    - it means that also males can use female alias, for example
    http://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedystka:Leinad (female alias) =>
    http://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedysta:Leinad (regular namespace in
    masculine form).”

    Moreover, users on Polish Wikipedia by visiting [[Special:Watchlist]]
    see a message asking them to set gender in Preferences, because it
    allows to customize the interface (using {{GENDER:}}).

    Make a note that currently gender support for interface is only partial, there are still pending or undeployed bugs (some are resolved just a few days ago, so I hope to see them in near time :-).

    Maybe Russian Wikipedia had special campaign promoting to set gender in Preferences? :D

  12. paolo's Gravatar

    Posted by paolo on 10.02.11 at 2:27 pm

    Mozilla Firefox 3.6.16 Ubuntu Linux

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Emijrp/Gender_gap/Wikimedia_comparison

    Project? Male? Female? Unknown? Total? Female/Male (%)? Defined (%)?
    ca.wikipedia.org 455 95 6689 7239 17.3% 7.6%
    hu.wikipedia.org 1164 233 8603 10000 16.7% 14%
    uk.wikipedia.org 1177 203 4527 5907 14.7% 23.4%
    ro.wikipedia.org 573 98 6454 7125 14.6% 9.4%
    fi.wikipedia.org 658 103 9239 10000 13.5% 7.6%
    vi.wikipedia.org 577 89 4468 5134 13.4% 13%
    cs.wikipedia.org 1158 156 8532 9846 11.9% 13.3%
    sv.wikipedia.org 799 104 9097 10000 11.5% 9%
    no.wikipedia.org 650 83 9267 10000 11.3% 7.3%
    id.wikipedia.org 661 76 4090 4827 10.3% 15.3%
    da.wikipedia.org 574 64 6696 7334 10% 8.7%
    ar.wikipedia.org 1415 137 8232 9784 8.8% 15.9%
    pl.wikipedia.org 2646 245 7109 10000 8.5% 28.9%
    ru.wikipedia.org 3430 316 6254 10000 8.4% 37.5%
    ko.wikipedia.org 972 86 8814 9872 8.1% 10.7%
    pt.wikipedia.org 1668 120 8212 10000 6.7% 17.9%
    fr.wikipedia.org 1855 130 8015 10000 6.5% 19.9%
    tr.wikipedia.org 1328 87 8585 10000 6.1% 14.2%
    nl.wikipedia.org 1026 63 8910 9999 5.8% 10.9%
    en.wikipedia.org 2503 152 7345 10000 5.7% 26.6%
    it.wikipedia.org 1574 95 8331 10000 5.7% 16.7%
    ja.wikipedia.org 972 59 8965 9996 5.7% 10.3%
    zh.wikipedia.org 1654 99 8246 9999 5.6% 17.5%
    de.wikipedia.org 1989 112 7899 10000 5.3% 21%
    es.wikipedia.org 1927 107 7966 10000 5.3% 20.3%

    See also:

    * meta:List of Wikipedias

    [edit] Wikiversity
    Project? Male? Female? Unknown? Total? Female/Male (%)? Defined (%)?
    en.wikiversity.org 167 69 3331 3567 29.2% 6.6%
    fr.wikiversity.org 56 7 553 616 11.1% 10.2%
    ru.wikiversity.org 51 16 205 272 23.9% 24.6%
    de.wikiversity.org 61 26 946 1033 29.9% 8.4%

    See also:

    * meta:List of Wikiversities

    [edit] Wikibooks
    Project? Male? Female? Unknown? Total? Female/Male (%)? Defined (%)?
    en.wikibooks.org 206 30 9061 9297 12.7% 2.5%
    de.wikibooks.org 109 3 1991 2103 2.7% 5.3%

    See also:

    * meta:List of Wikibooks

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