Females have played a significant roles in blogging, social networking, and shaping the internet…but apparently not Wikipedia. A recent study conducted by the Wikimedia Foundation found that only 13% of Wikipedia contributors are women.

The results were presented last week at a conference in Buenos Aires. (The study itself was taken last Novemeber.)  A total of 53,888 respondents indicated that they were Wikipedia contributors, but only 6,814 of them were women. According to the Wall Street Jorunal,  “among the reasons for not contributing, many respondents cited time constraints, satisfaction with just reading entries or simply not knowing how to edit the pages. One quarter, however, said they’re afraid of making a mistake “and getting ‘in trouble’ for it.”

It wasn’t just fear that stopped them…According to Jennifer Van Grove of, it may have been their educational background as well. “The research also showed that women are less likely to read articles as well, with 31% of women and 69% of men reading entries, but not writing or editing them.” Here are even further statistics to support that claim:

  • 69% of respondents were motivated to contribute to Wikipedia to fix an error
  • Nearly 73% contribute because they “like the idea of sharing knowledge”
  • 19% of Wikipedia contributors hold Masters degrees

My Opinion? Women have better things to do…

Honestly, I hate to say it…but why can’t the answer simply be “B/c women have better things to do”? It makes sense. They’re busy writing blog posts about wikipedia stats, or doing other forms of work. I mean yea…they could be busy on MySpace or Facebook, but I highly doubt that’s the reason. For now, we can all agree this study is far from over. Anybody out there have their own opinion? I’d like to hear it.

Posted under Blogs, Online Marketing, Social Networks