20 Dec 2022 14:41

Russian analogue of Wikipedia to be launched in early 2023

MOSCOW. Dec 20 (Interfax) - Wikipedia can still be accessed in Russia, yet there are plans to launch its Russian analogue, the Znaniya (Knowledge) scientific and educational encyclopedic portal, at the beginning of 2023, Russian Minister of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media Maksut Shadayev said.

"For now, this is the situation with Wikipedia: we label it as a resource that breaks [the law] but it still can be accessed," Shadayev said during Government Hour in the State Duma in response to a question from the New People faction on whether he agreed that Wikipedia must not be blocked over claims against several articles.

Yet, "of course, we will be asking that the Russian resource, our portal Znaniya, is prioritized in search results, that it comes before Wikipedia," he said.

"After all, our primary objective is to have our own portal. We are creating it, the Znaniya portal, based on verified, updated materials from the Big Russian Encyclopedia. Over 100,000 articles have been composed, they are being updated by experts, verified authors," Shadayev said.

The portal will be launched shortly, he said.

"We are planning to launch this resource at the beginning of next year. Of course, we will recommend referring to it, because it will contain accurate, substantiated materials, which have passed multiple-stage verification," Shadayev said.

Speaking of the Russian authorities' claims against Wikipedia, he said, "Indeed, there have been several instances of the publishing of incorrect socially significant information on Wikipedia. Roskomnadzor made relevant decisions, and fines were imposed." Additionally, Wikipedia is labeled as a resource in violation of Russian laws when it appears in search results.