Dear Wikimedians ,

Thank you all for the overwhelming response to the 2010 Sept 18th Pune 
Wikimedia meetup. 17 people had attended this meet. Special thanks to HOD & 
staff of Women’s Studies Centre, University of Pune and visiting media and open 
source movement fraternity for their active participation and guidance.

Mr Vijay Sirdeshpande (Mahitgar from Marathi wikipedia) and Ms Bishakha Datta 
(trustee, Wikimedia Foundation) jointly chaired the meet . Ms. Datta introduced 
herself . She talked about Wikimedia Foundation and Wikimedia Foundation’s 
plans in India, the Wikimedia India Chapter, and difficulties faced in 
completion of its registration process. She also talked about Bangalore wiki 
meet-ups. She stressed the need to conduct wikipedia academies and informed 
about the upcoming visits of Jimmy Wales to Mumbai at the end of October. Other 
Wikimedia Foundation staff visit India in December, includes Sue Gardner 
(executive director), Erik Moeller (deputy director) and Danese Cooper (chief 
technical officer).

Then wikipedians introduced themselves. Mr. Amit Yadav raised the topics of 
need for and lack of adequate references on Marathi wikipedia, quality of 
content, and outreach. He was for most of the discussions to take place online 
rather than offline. He stressed the need for initiative and self-learning 
process for making contributions on part of wiki-admiring people.On quality of 
content front, the success of Malayalam wikipedia was discussed. Mr. Vijay 
explained the difference in the initial focus, and said that now the focus is 
on making Marathi wikipedia reader-oriented. Everyone agreed that for bringing 
better quality we need more active users. Mr.Vijay also informed that Marathi 
wikipedians can request for various features and get various features adopted 
in the user interface, including page rating etc. for improvement in quality.

Mr.Amit Yadav suggested that Marathi Wikipedians wherever necessary can refer 
to English language wikipedia  but need  to do more original writing than 
merely translating from English wikipedia and Good number of attendees 
supported this idea. One atendee asked whether it is right to give references 
of Marathi language sources apart from the English language references. 

Mr. Amit was of the opinion that those people who use old technologies for 
writing can share their documentation online and rest of the people can support 
them in uni-coding the texts for wikiprojects, whereas opinion of Mr Ajay Garg 
was that we can support these people technologically and we need to do so. 
Mr.Sudhanwa Joglekar was of the opinion that it is important to involve senior 
citizens. Mr.Vijay informed that we do have already good support and 
contribution from working professional and senior citizens categories; but 
academic and student categories,women and economically weaker and rural 
sections are under-represented in contributing and interaction with wiki 

On media support, Mr. Samrat Phadnis ( and  Mr. Nilesh Bane 
( assured support from their respective media houses. At the 
same time, Mr. Nilesh said that wikipedia in itself is the biggest medium. On 
this, Mr.Vijay stressed the need of diverting en wiki traffic using 
geo-location and asking for mother tongue while logging in and diverting users 
to their respective mother tongue wikipedias.Secondly Mr. Vijay also requested 
for a call center facility if  possible from the foundation side (to help 
contributors all over India instantly).Meeting also discussed importance of 
inter-wikilinks in spreading awareness among English language Wikipedia’s 
Indian visitors aware of Marathi language Wikipedia.

Mr.Sudhanwa and Vijay highlighted that Pune would be a good location for the 
Foundation’s proposed India office, since it is a major educational hub.

Mr.Nilesh Bane took up the subject of Marathi language used on Marathi 
wikipedia - he felt it should avoid usage of new difficult Marathi words, and 
highlighted the importance of usability and simplicity in the user interface. 
Mr.Sachin Venga seconded Mr.Nilesh on his points.While agreeing with his points 
Mr.Samrat Phadnis (from suggested giving preference to the language 
used by people from rural and small cities, since readers across Maharashtra 
constitute the major share of Marathi wikipedia’s target audience. Mr.Sudhanwa 
Joglekar briefed on the process of language terminology standardisation through 
FUEL (Frequently Used Entities in Localisation) sessions. In this context, the 
views of Mr.Mahesh Kulkarni of CDAC and Rachna Pradhan of Bhasha Sanchalanalay 
were brought to notice and the need for previous(Swa.Savarkar time) debates 
related to Bhasha Shuddhikaran Movement and  Balbharti's Dictionary becoming 
available online were also

Mr.Nilesh Bane expressed his dismay over delay in (Govt.) Marathi Wishvakosh 
becoming available online.

Mr.Ajay Garg promised to support wikipedians on technical and software special 
font conversion issues while Prof.Subhash Pawar was enthusiastic in supporting 
usage of Marathi on computers. It was agreed that there is a need to separate 
co-ordination by interested wikipedians team with promoting volunteers and 
technical support on font usage.

Mr.Kaustubh Samudra informed the meeting that media wiki software is translated 
to Marathi and where people deem it fit to change the usage and correction of 
Marathi, the correction process is very simple and interested people can help 
themselves. Besides wikipedia, this software as content management system can 
be used by the Marathi web developer fraternity since localisation of the  
Media Wiki software is almost  complete.

Prof. Shriniwas Hemade  shared his experience and the need for public awareness 
for utility of encyclopedias. He was enthusiastic in sharing his own write-ups 
with wiki projects and requested for technical support on font conversion 
front. He said the best benefit of the meeting is to bring together people in 
need of technical support like Prof Shriniwas and software experts like Mr. 
Ajay Garg.

On the subject of increasing contributors and contributions, Mr. Amit was of 
the opinion that involving post-graduate (PG) level students will ensure better 
quality and reliability of content. Mr. Vijay was of the opinion that wiki 
volunteers need to reach 10th standard onward students, journalism, law, 
Marathi language, Engineering, Computer hardware and software, and 
botany-related students on priority by way of wikimedia academies and 
PowerPoint presentations. Mr.Amit promised to take active part in updating PPTs 
while Mr.Ajay Garg promised to share his expertise in making presentations 
easily available. Mr.Sudhanwa Joglekar brought to notice the difficulty in 
approach the student community, asking what would motivate students? Mr. Amit 
said that a percentage of students would get awareness and factual benefits to 
themselves by using the same. Mr.Samrat Phadnis assured support with eSakal. 
Prof Shriniwas also assured support in writing article for
 Marathi media .

Ms. Bishakha Datta requested support to the Women’s Studies department, 
University of Pune - they are very interested in contributing to Marathi 
wikipedia, but need handholding and technical help. Mr. Amit assured his 
support on this account.

Mr.Omkar Khair, Mr.Gawande, and Mr.Paresh Mhetre expressed their support to 
Marathi wikipedia.
On the subject of outreach to the people volunteering for presentations at 
colleges, Prof.Shriniwas Hemade was of the opinion that future meetings should 
preferably have a pre-decided agenda. Mr. Amit Yadav was of the opinion that 
future meetings, if any, should have three distinct teams: one for usage on 
Marathi plus basic training on wiki usage.Mr.Vijay suggested Marathi Usage on 
comp  promotion and new user wiki-edit help, Content and outreach group, 
Techsavy and higher experience level user guidance group, And language wise 
group of people for non Marathi if more than 5  
Thanks to Ms.Bishakha Datta for supporting in updating this writeup. Looking 
forward to feed back and openions about points raised during this meeting. 
Thanks and Regards 
-Mahitgar from Marathi Wikipedia

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