Japanese Wikipedia

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The Japanese Wikipedia is the Japanese language edition of Wikipedia, a free, open-content encyclopedia. As of January 2006, it is the fifth largest edition after the English, German, French and Polish editions. Started in September 2002, this edition attained the 200,000 article mark in April 2006. As of September 2006 it has over 250,000 articles.


[edit] History

In May 2001, 12 non-English editions of Wikipedia were created, including a Japanese one. The original site address was http://nihongo.wikipedia.com and all pages were written in the Latin alphabet or romaji, as the software did not work with Japanese characters .

The first article was named "Nihongo No Funimekusu" (though incorrect, it was probably intended to mean onso taikei (音素体系, phonemics) and was written entirely in romaji. Until late December in that year, there were only two pages.

[edit] Localization

On September 1, 2002, the software hosting Wikipedia was upgraded to the so-called "Phase III" version, and the articles were moved from the old version to the new. It is currently possible to trace edits made to the articles since that time. As the history of old articles show, some articles were posted by several non-native Japanese speakers. Major topics covered then include Japanese culture, language, geography, and programming.

In the same month, translation of the Wikipedia interface into Japanese began. By the end of the year, pages describing the editing process and the GNU Free Documentation License had been translated.

In mid-December, there were around 10 registered users; the number of articles also stood at around 10.

[edit] Expansion

[edit] Coverage in Wired News Japanese edition

In January 31, 2003, a Japanese online magazine, Wired News Japanese edition covered Wikipedia. This appears to be the first time that Wikipedia was mentioned in the Japanese media.

After that, the number of participants started to increase considerably and many pages about the Wikipedia project were translated or created.

[edit] 1000-page milestone

On February 12, 2003, the Japanese edition of Wikipedia reached the 1000-page milestone, two years after the English edition. Given that accomplishment, Slashdot Japan posted a story about the Japanese Wikipedia. Several days after that, the number of participants doubled, attesting to the power of the Slashdot effect.

Because of this exposure, a variety of articles started to appear, among them physics, biology, Information Technology, literature, music, games, manga, and celebrities.

[edit] Links from Yahoo! Japan

On July 15, 2003 the Japanese Wikipedia reached 10,000 articles, 4 months and 3 days after the 1000-article milestone, beating the time it took the English Wikipedia to achieve the same feat. By early 2004 the Japanese Wikipedia contained 30,000 articles. The increase in both articles and contributors was steady after that, and by late September it had reached 75,000 articles.

The major force behind the expansion does not appear to be the Slashdot effect, but a number of links at Yahoo! Japan News. It is unknown exactly when Yahoo! started to put links to the edition in their articles, but as of August 2004 dozens of news articles posted on Yahoo! Japan contained links to the edition to explain terms in the articles. Lately, the developers of Wikipedia have noticed that certain spikes in server usage correspond to the publishing of Yahoo! Japan news articles containing links to Wikipedia.

Today, the vast majority of the contributors to the edition are native Japanese speakers, and a significant portion of articles are about topics related to Japan, particularly its culture and history.

[edit] Web Creation Award

On September 9, 2004 Guillaume Blanchard, known as Aoineko (see his user pages in the Japanese and French Wikipedias) was awarded the Web Creation Award as the founder of the Japanese Wikipedia by the Japan Advertisers Association.

[edit] Characteristics

The Japanese Wikipedia is different from the English Wikipedia in a number of ways.

  • An edit is kept only if it is legal under both Japanese and United States laws, to account for the fact that the vast majority of users live in Japan. This has two major consequences:
    • The fair use provisions of US law are not considered to apply. Articles and media files which do not have a GFDL-compatible license are prohibited, even if they would be legal under the "fair use" doctrine in the US.
    • Materials considered illegal materials cannot be kept in the archive. If an illegal edit is inserted between valid versions, a SysOp will remove the revision by deleting the article temporarily and restoring valid revisions.
  • Quotation is discouraged. There is controversy over the GFDL compatibility of quotations. Articles that contain quotations will be deleted unless they meet all the following requirements:
    1. The source is clearly referred to.
    2. The quotation is necessary.
    3. The quoting and quoted works can respectively be regarded as the principal and subordinate both in quantity and quality.
    4. The quoting and quoted works are clearly distinguishable.
  • Cut-and-paste moves within Wikipedia, including merging and splitting, are not allowed unless the original article is explicitly referred to in the edit summary, because such moves are considered to be GFDL violations. Articles created in such a manner will be deleted.
  • Edit wars are strongly frowned upon. Articles may be protected as a result of an edit war with as little as three or four edits. Protected pages will not be unprotected unless someone explicitly requests it. Perhaps because of this, as of September 2005 the Japanese wikipedia had the second-highest number of articles protected for over two weeks, after the German wikipedia.[1]
  • Articles will be deleted if they contain the names of private citizens, unless they are public figures. An article on Shosei Koda, a Japanese citizen kidnapped in Iraq, would not be permitted in the Japanese Wikipedia; Junichiro Koizumi is allowed due to his public position.
  • The SysOps do not hesitate to make indefinite blocks and blocks against wide-ranges of IP addresses. Sysops have automatically blocked open proxy IP addresses and mobile phone edits.
  • The Japanese Wikipedia stresses that it is not a news bulletin, and discourages edits on current events.
  • In keeping with the strong aversion to edit wars, the administrators react negatively to cases where many minor edits are made to a single article in a short period of time.
  • It is maintained in a rather fact sheet manner, rather than encyclopedic format.

[edit] See also

[edit] External link

Editions of Wikipedia with over 100,000 articles
English en: - German de: - French fr: - Polish pl: - Japanese ja: - Dutch nl: - Italian it: - Portuguese pt: - Swedish sv: - Spanish es: - Russian ru: - Chinese zh:
cs:Japonská Wikipedie

el:Ιαπωνική Βικιπαίδεια es:Wikipedia en japonés eo:Japanlingva Vikipedio fa:ویکی‌پدیای ژاپنی ko:일본어 위키백과 ja:ウィキペディア日本語版 pl:Japońska Wikipedia ru:Японская Википедия fi:Wikipedia:Japaninkielinen Wikipedia zh-yue:日語維基百科 zh:日語維基百科

Japanese Wikipedia

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