How One Group Fights To Guarantee The Stories Of Female Artists Get Told Online

"We want women to see themselves represented, but not only that."

While some women are taking to the streets to fight for feminism, others are making sure women's accomplishments and stories are documented on Wikipedia. 

Since 2014, the organization Art+Feminism has taken on that task with yearly "edit-a-thons," an event in March where volunteers get together in various locations to edit Wikipedia pages of women, art, feminism, and related subjects. The process is simple: participants in the edit-a-thon are given a guide on how to edit these Wikipedia pages with various scholarly resources to validate facts about any of the given subjects.

What originally started as a multi-location event with New York City as its main hub has quickly grown into an event spanning across multiple states and countries. It's also gradually helping to increase the number of female editors on Wikipedia, which, according to The New York Times, only make up 15 percent of the site's editors.

Although the project has been in the works for a few years now, McKensie Mack, one of Art+Feminism's co-organizers, said that there's still a lot more work to be done.

"It feels like this is just the beginning," she said to A Plus in an email. "We want women to see themselves represented, but not only that. We want women to claim space for themselves in digital spaces, and to take the power they have to document and celebrate the history of cis and trans women all over the world."

Edit-a-thons have already started this month in some locations around the world.

Despite the event's expansion, it still has a home in New York City. This year, the organizers are sticking to their word about being more inclusive by featuring panel discussions and general discussions that appeal to every woman, not a single group of them.

Mack hopes that attendees and volunteers "continue to attend and organize," she said. "But to be honest, it's less about what we get out of the event and more about how these events are having an impact on ways in which women view themselves and use their voice."

When asked what advice she'd give budding activists who want to make a difference in their feminist and artistic communities, she said that "freeing others" is a "lifetime commitment" and something you can't perfect overnight.

"That's a journey, not a destination," she said. "Make mistakes. Listen to those who are more marginalized than you are and believe them. Give yourself room to be a student. Celebrate your imperfection. Don't allow haters to kill your vibe and your hope. Put time to take care of yourself on your calendar and hold yourself to seeing that time through. Remember you matter."

For more information about Art+Feminism's edit-a-thons, visit the website

Cover Image: Art+Feminism