Time to take another look at the progress of African and African language Wikipedia projects.
African Language Wikipedias
Progress has slowed in a number of the projects, and in the leading two languages, Malagasy and Yoruba, the slump has been quite dramatic after the increase seen in the previous period.
Remember as always I’m only looking at the number of articles, which is a flawed metric since it’s quite easy for bots or single users to quickly create large numbers of low quality articles. Still, it does measure some degree of the level of activity and interest in the project.
Afrikaans is distinguishing itself, and has picked up the pace and once again passed Swahili, which passed Afrikaans to become the largest African-language Wikipedia back in July 2009. Afrikaans also grew the quickest, which means that, on current trends, Afrikaans is heading towards once again becoming the largest African language Wikipedia, although it is still far behind Malagasy and Yoruba.
Two new arrivals in the 1000+ club are Shona, spoken primarily in Zimbabwe, and Kabyle, spoken primarily in Algeria, which have both passed Wolof, meaning there are now eleven African language Wikipedias with more than one thousand articles.
Shona has increased particularly quickly, having less than 100 articles two years ago.
South African Language Wikipedias
Of the South African languages, besides Afrikaans, there has been reasonable progress in Northern Sotho, which spent a long time in the incubator before emerging to become the second largest, and Zulu. Sadly the growth in Tswana, boosted by the Google Setswana challenge from October 2011 to January 2012, has again stalled, while the other languages remain moribund.
It’s pleasing to see the signs of progress, and the gradual manifestation of a world in which every human can freely share in the sum of all knowledge.
- April 2012 African language Wikipedia update
- Northern Sotho Wikipedia now an official project, Afrikaans reaches 20 000 articles
- African language Wiktionary update
- African language Wikipedia update
- Wolof Wikipedia reaches 1000 articles
- Swahili Wikipedia now the largest African-language Wikipedia
- The state of Wikimedia projects in South African and Africa – Dec 2008
- The South African Wikimedia communities
- Venda Wikipedia Progress
- First Wikipedia Academy in Africa
- Wikipedia Week
- Wikipedia translation tool
- Afrikaans Wikipedia hits 5000 articles
- Templates on the Afrikaans Wikipedia, and a translating tool