Czech Wikipedia celebrates success after cautious start

The Czech version of Wikipedia, a global interactive encyclopaedia written entirely by volunteers, this week celebrates its 15th anniversary. Established on May 3, 2002, Czech Wikipedia currently offers more than 370,000 entries and some 70 new ones are added each day. I spoke to Petr Kadlec, one of the administrators of Czech Wikipedia, about how much it changed over the fifteen years of its existence:

Petr Kadlec,  photo: Marián Vojtek
“At the beginning, it took more than a year to get to one thousand articles, nowadays it is like 70 or 100 newly created articles a day. So it is obviously much bigger both in the number of articles and in the number of people surrounding it. In the beginning, everyone knew everyone, people just by, read an articles, fix it, without even registering or using an account.”

So how many entries are there in the Czech Wikipedia today?

“In the Czech Wikipedia, we have almost 400,000 articles at the moment, and as I said, around 100 articles are created daily.”

And how is the Czech Wikipedia doing in comparison to other language versions?

“There are more than 290 language versions and Czech Wikipedia is currently occupies 25th spot.”

How large is Czech Wikipedia at the moment? How many contributors do you have these days?

“Each month, more than 100 people edit more than 100 times, so that is the core of the community: people who edit really multiple times a day. But more than 2,000 people are active in a given month in some way, perhaps just one edit or some small edit.”

What was the most visited page on Czech Wikipedia over the past year?

“I don’t have the data for the whole of last year, but last month, the most visited article was about the Tourette syndrome, because it featured on some Czech reality show. Topics such as the Czech Republic or sex are among the most frequently searched topics, such as. The hot topics depend on what happens in the world. Wo for instance the World Championships in Biathlon was one of the most frequently searched topics last year.”

Finally, where do you see the future of Czech Wikipedia?

“I think Wikipedia, and Czech Wikipedia as well, became quite a standard source of knowledge. Nowadays, it is a source you go to without even thinking about it. However, people sometimes don’t realize where the knowledge or information is coming from. But I think it will blend in the general knowledge of the internet and I hope and believe that it will continue to grow in size.”