February 26 is soon here again, and it is time for the yearly UCRF Wikipedia edit-a-thon!
After three consecutive years of Wikipedia edit-a-thons, the UCRF will again make concerted efforts to add information and references to Wikipedia. The “sustainable fashion” page has changed drastically since we set out in 2019. Looking back across the years, the UCRF’s diverse membership has made a great impact! But, it still needs attention.
While many references and discussions are in the right place, the page still needs our love and editing. And it is awaiting links to your top reports, books, and references! Please take a minute on February 26th and make a minor edit, add to the resources, or take a stab at the pages related to your area of expertise. Wikipedia is the first station for the curious public, and making sure the sources there are as accurate and legitimate as possible can make a significant impact!
More specifically, as “circularity” has become a more current topic across sustainability, there is a need to add more sources, references, and links on this sub-topic. The fiber section needs more scientific reports and accurate data, and we also need more discussions on circularity, supply chains, and regenerative agriculture.
So, on February 26th, even on the weekend, we hope volunteers from across the Union can collectively activate an ‘activist knowledge ecology’ by editing the sustainable fashion page on Wikipedia.
Being a recurring yearly event, we hope to help Wikipedia lead curious people towards excellent and accurate sources. As mentioned before, our diversity across the Union is our unique resource. Use your expertise and make minor edits to improve the subtopic you think requires better articulation.
We also hope our globally dispersed members could update the page on the topic of sustainable fashion beyond the English version. So if you are uncertain, start by fixing the page in your native language.
Editing on Wikipedia is not tricky at all. You can just jump in and get started by clicking the “edit” tab on the page you want to edit. Work in small steps, a sentence or reference at the time.
For a more extensive dive, here’s a guide to getting started editing more seriously on Wikipedia:
1. Familiarise yourself with how to edit a Wiki page. I recommend the resources here: http://www.artandfeminism.org/editing-kit/ (these pages focus on gender, but the underlying editing issues are all relevant). There are some Wiki principles to familiarise yourself with and some basic editing tools that will help you.
2. Open https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Sustainable_fashion and click edit.
3. Create a Wikipedia account if you want to. It is your choice, but it often helps when getting your edits through the process of the wikipedia editors. There is some guidance available to help you make various decisions by following the links.
4. Choose a section to edit on the Sustainable Fashion Wikipedia page. To prevent ‘conflicts’ because different people are working on the same section, consider to work with about one sentence at the time. It isn’t the end of the world if more than one person edits the same section at the same time, but it will require some manual editing afterwards which won’t be much fun…!
5. Get going editing. Wikipedia is fairly intuitive and there are lots of links to help pages. Start with a small edit and build your confidence, or add one reference or link. There are no specific UCRF guidelines about what to edit other than Principle 1 of the Union of Concerned Researchers manifesto: Create an ‘activist knowledge ecology’, that is, to develop a system of knowledge about fashion sustainability that is concerned with how knowledge is organised and shared as well as the data points themselves and to direct such a system purposefully towards fostering change
- Work to your expertise, cite peer-reviewed sources
- Be prepared for some edits to be deleted by moderators. It is worthwhile to keep a record of edits separately.
- What terms need adding to the page? For example, regenerative culture/agriculture?
6. When you publish you will be asked to describe your changes – mention briefly what your edit is about.
7. You can use the ‘Talk’ tab at the top of the Wiki page to discuss issues with the wider Wikipedia community that is interested in editing the Sustainable Fashion page.
Good luck! And thank you for making the sources on sustainable fashion more accessible across the Internet!