A notable paper about Wikipedia versions and interactions across linguistic boundaries
Wikipedia has become one of the primary encyclopaedic in- formation repositories on the World Wide Web. It started in 2001 with a single edition in the English language and has since expanded to more than 20 million articles in 283 lan- guages. Criss-crossing between the Wikipedias is an inter- language link network, connecting the articles of one edition of Wikipedia to another. We describe characteristics of ar- ticles covered by nearly all Wikipedias and those covered by only a single language edition, we use the network to under- stand how we can judge the similarity between Wikipedias based on concept coverage, and we investigate the ow of translation between a selection of the larger Wikipedias. Our ndings indicate that the relationships between Wiki- pedia editions follow Tobler’s rst law of geography: sim- ilarity decreases with increasing distance. The number of articles in a Wikipedia edition is found to be the strongest predictor of similarity, while language similarity also appears to have an in uence. The English Wikipedia edition is by far the primary source of translations. We discuss the im- pact of these results for Wikipedia as well as user-generated content communities in general.