We Need Kenyans on Wikipedia

Let’s all join Wikipedia.

Why?

If you want to know about Kenyan history, you have a surprising lack of options. The only good one I can think of (correct me if I’m wrong) is paying for membership in Kenya Archives. The annual fee is pretty cheap and they have an amazing collection of books and old newspapers. It’s always surreal reading a paper from 1969.

Beyond that, you don’t really have much recourse.

Now, I’m not sure we can do much about what’s already passed but what we do have is the opportunity to improve the ease of access from here on out. Future generations should be able to at least get an overview of what happened during our time. We should be able to look up fairly recent events with some degree of accuracy. That’s where Wikipedia comes in.

Wikipedia, while being a powerful tool for pooling information, has a terrible weak spot. It needs participation from a lot people. It needs discussion, fact checking, updating, curating etc. If it doesn’t get that then what you end up with is a biased incomprehensible mess. It’s why your lecturer doesn’t/didn’t trust it as a valid source.

I’m going to quote a few Kenyan Wikipedia pages and you’ll see what I mean.

ALFRED MUTUA:

“Najivunia Kuwa Mkenya was a patriotism enhancing campaign that was aimed at making Kenyans appreciate their country and be more patriotic. This was and still remains the most successful public campaign ever run in the country. Today, Kenyans can give thanks to Dr. Mutua for the patriotic spirit around the country.”

“Dr. Mutua is a man of action, one on the move and one working hard to improve the lives of his constituents.”

CHARLES NJONJO:

“In December of 2013, Njonjo ensured the laying to rest of his sister, Margaret Waithera Njonjo, a Queen of quiet/inconspicuous dignity ( mother of Elizabeth, Alice, and Eunice Kariuki, grandmother of Cira, Josef, James, Jason, and Lule Kariuki) occurred in a manner that her beautiful soul deserved.”

CHARITY NGILU:

“… in 1992, Charity Ngilu pulled off a big surprise by capturing the Kitui central constituency seat on the Democratic Party ticket.”

“Ngilu was seen as a new school member in the government, as opposed to old school members like John Michuki and President Kibaki.”

KALONZO MUSYOKA:

Controversies: This section is empty

These quotes are accurate as of 7/7/2014

From an inconsistent tone to clear bias and the utter lack of citation, it’s safe to say a lot of Kenyan pages need work. Some of them serve as advertisements and others are sorely lacking important information. There’s rarely any discussion in the talk page even for disputed content. Surely, we can do better.

Join Wikipedia. Learn how it works. Get a good grasp of the rules and contribute.

We need Kenyans on Wikipedia. KOWs If you will (yes, pronounced cow).

Join Wikipedia because it helps and because it’s funny to say that your country needs you to become a KOW.

Milk that joke for all it’s worth while you’re at it. Ain’t no beef. What, are you dairying me?

Join Wikipedia if for no better reason than to make sure the guy who made that quick succession of lame jokes is not one of the main contributors.

Rigathi

Writer, artist, blogger, developer.
Will This Be A Problem co-founder.