During the activity of WikiWeekend Tirana 2017, I had the bright opportunity (given by Open Labs Hackerspace in Tirana) to introduce my project regarding LGBTI issues in Albanian Wikipedia.
I initiated the LGBTI project in Albanian Wikipedia a couple of months ago, when I was scamming through Wikipedia and noticed that there was a strong lack of information regarding topics on LGBT community. I feel close to the same concerns of this marginalized community because I work as a human rights journalist about LGBTI community in Albania. (You can access my presentation on Github3)
One day while interviewing a transsexual girl, she confessed me that when she was feeling gender dysphoria* (a term she had encountered on the internet while researching). Due to her insufficient English, she had searched for some information in the Albanian language about definitions on trans people but she could not find any.
Another strong reason for me to contribute for a more comprehensive knowledge on the Internet came evident during a seminar on “Digitized Security” in Sarajevo.
There was this amazing presentation about “Feminist Principles of the Internet” platform and the main message of it was that "Internet it is not neutral. Its content is largely exclusive towards communities like LGBT, Roma people, Black Community and its deprieved accessibility makes it even less ubiasssed" (Internet users today mark 200 million fewer women).
Therefore I initiated the WikiLGBTI Project with the specific goal of increasing the number of articles in the Albanian language related to LGBTI community.
The project conisists of:
• different explanatory articles on the acronym LGBTI (defining each of the letters through an article);
• translating the legislation on LGBTI rights from all the Balkan countries;
• writing “from scratch” articles about Albanian LGBTI activists
• translating biographies on renowned LGBTI activists and LGBTI historic movements etc.
Admittedly, Albania is still labeled as a homophobic country from the conducted national surveys and the LGBTI community still feels reluctant to “come out”. Nevertheless just because a community finds it hard to be visible in everyday life, it does not imply that it should remain so in cyberspace.
*Gender dysphoria (GD), or gender identity disorder (GID), is the distress a person experiences as a result of the sex and gender they were assigned at birth. In this case, the assigned sex and gender do not match the person's gender identity, and the person is transgender (Wikipedia)