Wikimedia Conference Japan Logo

The first ever Wikimedians’ conference is taking place in Tokyo this weekend. A group of Wikimedians, who were inspired by Wikimania 2008 in Alexandria, Egypt, gathered in Akihabara, Tokyo, Japan in the late summer of 2008. Those who traveled to Alexandria shared their excitement and inspiration gathered from Wikimania, and others listened. The excitement in the room turned into collective will power, determined to form a Wikimedians’ conference in Japan within a year from the meeting.

Wikimedia Conference Japan (WCJ) is happening this Sunday, November 22nd, at the University Tokyo’s Hongo Campus. The Center for Knowledge Structuring of the University Tokyo offered the space for this conference. Japanese National Institute of Informatics also supports this conference and invited Jay Walsh, Head of Communications, to give the keynote speech. WCJ will cover a number of topics including academic research, wiki workshops, introduction of Wikimedia projects, language support and education.

The goal was to draw 150 participants, however due to overwhelming interest, 180 have already registered with more expected on the day of the conference. As a volunteer organizer, I am sending my cheers to WCJ organizers from San Francisco. I hope this conference will create synergy among Japanese Wikimedians and who knows, Wikimania 2011 could take place in Tokyo.

Naoko Komura