Photo by Victor Grigas, CC BY-SA 3.0

Josh Lim started editing Wikipedia because of his interest in national anthems: the Filipino national anthem lacked content on Wikipedia, and Lim decided to solve the problem. Now Lim is an editor with more than 25,000 edits in five different languages. National anthems have turned into topics like metro in Manila.

Filipino-American Lim considers the founding of Wikimedia Philippines, the independent national Wikimedia affiliate, his most important Wikimedia achievement. Lim and several other editors started the chapter in 2010. A smaller highlight includes a 2006 phone call from the Bank of the Philippine Islands.

“I wrote an article on them because they didn’t have any, and they were really thankful that I wrote it for them. They appreciated the fact they now have a Wikipedia page and they are notable,” Lim recalls.

Bringing the voices that are not previously being heard to Wikipedia is important to Lim. Coming from a country like the Philippines, he believes that Wikipedia and the movement needs more voices from emerging communities, more editor diversity, mechanisms and ways to make sure that we don’t drive away new editors, and finding ways to incorporate content from the rest of the world—particularly from regions where sources are extremely difficult to come by.

Lim knows that many editors have different ideas of how the movement should be run and how it should approach certain things. Despite that, he has a clear answer when asked why Wikipedia is still running smoothly after 15 years.

“For me, I think the reason why Wikipedia still works in the way that it does is because we are very driven and committed to the movement’s ideals.”

His personal motivation to continue on Wikipedia stems from reciprocity.

“For me, Wikipedia and the Wikimedia movement is a way to give back to society for what it has done for me. And it’s also a way for me to help build the society so that it’s actually capable of knowing more. We say in the Philippines the education system sucks. So we’re hoping that this really goes a long way towards fixing that”, Lim concludes.

Reetta Kemppi, Communications Volunteer