On Thu, Mar 10, 2011 at 10:07 PM, Ravishankar <ravidre...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Nikhil,
> I register my strong objection for this. There are various concerns even if
> the content is children friendly:
> 1. The content should be free of typos, factual errors. If a school teacher
> browses through random content and finds that the content is full of errors,
> not much useful then he may not circulate the CD to students. Once people
> get a bad opinion of Wiki, it will take lot of effort to get rid of that. If
> the teachers do not take note of these and circulate it is still worse as
> students get wrong info. Since there is a tendency for uninformed readers to
> believe whatever they see in print, we have a responsibility here. I
> understand you are not distributing  / preparing DVDs for sake of school
> children. Nevertheless, why can't we make sure to distribute high quality
> verified content to whoever it is?

My approach is different.  we are teaching the teachers how to type in
their language, and telling them how they can create wikipages.  We
have told them that the wikipedia is not a completed project and needs
their help.  The teachers and students are not mere consumers of the
knowledge wikimedians and experts create.  They can detect edit, and
correct mistakes on their own.  During the the process they will learn
as well as become fellow wikimedians.  We are teaching them how to
correct as well.

If we are only distributing the content without making them aware of
the background of the content, I agree with you, we need to be

Neither free software nor wikipedia succeeded without frequent
releases.  Both the children and teachers can understand their roles
and help themselves.  We can convince the administrators about this
process as well.

However, if we know that the current school zim files contain some
pages with vandalism then we can remove them.    But, we can also let
the teachers and students detect the vandalism as well since our job
will never end.

> 2. Articles need to be vandalism free. Any random zim backup you distribute
> may have vandal edits in at least few instances. Imagine what will be the
> reaction of media, academia and Government departments if a state leader's
> page is distributed with vandal edits.

When the teachers detect the mistake, they could edit the main
wikipedia themselves.  It is time we tell them that education is not
mere consumption of correct or perfect knowledge, but to participate
in eternal perfection.  Correction opportunity gives a fantastic
opportunity for the teachers as well as students to understand how
society works.

When they are connected they access the pages from full dumps.  When
we give them offline version we need to tell them that the information
is not guaranteed to be accurate.


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