UAE launches its answer to Wikipedia

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The UAE has unveiled an online encyclopaedia that allows users to contribute to and modify content.

The UAE has unveiled an online encyclopaedia that allows users to contribute to and modify content.

The UAE has unveiled an online encyclopaedia that allows users to contribute to and modify content in a vein similar to the popular Wikipedia site.

Announced at GITEX Technology Week by the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), follows an ‘open source’ model, allowing the public to create and edit their own entries on the website.

In its first phase, will only be available in Arabic, but the TRA says there are plans to add other languages later. Currently, the web site hosts close to 1,000 articles distributed over 18 main subjects including geography, history, economy, language and literature, as well as hundreds of sub topics related to the UAE.

“The encyclopaedia is an embodiment of the principles of a knowledge-based society,” HE Mohamad Nasser Al Ghanim, TRA director general, was quoted as saying.

The TRA will be hoping to emulate the success of editable online encyclopaedia Wikipedia, which is estimated to have an audience of around 365m readers worldwide.

Earlier this year, Abu Dhabi-based online Arabic content provider firm Taghreedat signed a joint partnership with the Wikimedia Foundation, the group behind Wikpedia, to set up courses to aim to improve the number of Arabic editors working on the web encyclopaedia.

Supported by twofour54, Abu Dhabi’s government-backed media free zone, the partnership aims to set up set up courses to train internet users from the Arab world to create high quality, Arabic language content.

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