Type of site
|Internet encyclopedia project|
Cantonese, a major variety of the Chinese language originating in Guangzhou, is the lingua franca in the southern provinces of Guangdong and Guangxi, and is one of the official languages of Hong Kong and Macau. Cantonese has the most well-developed written form of all Chinese varieties apart from the standard-Mandarin variety and Classical Chinese.
With the advent of the computer and standardization of character sets specifically for Cantonese, many printed materials in predominantly Cantonese speaking areas of the world cater to their population using these written Cantonese characters.
The Cantonese name of Wikipedia was decided in April 2006, following a vote. In a similar manner to the existing Chinese Wikipedia, the name of Cantonese Wikipedia (simplified Chinese: 维基百科; traditional Chinese: 維基百科; Jyutping: wai4 gei1 baak3 fo1) means "Wiki Encyclopedia". The Chinese transcription of "Wiki" is composed of two characters: 維/维, whose ancient sense refers to "ropes or webs connecting objects", and alludes to the Internet; and 基, meaning "foundations of a building", or "fundamental aspects of things in general". The name can be interpreted as "the encyclopedia that connects the fundamental knowledge of humanity".
The discussion in 2006 also decided the Cantonese name of the word "Cantonese" in the wiki. The result was "粵語". In a vote from August to September 2013 it was decided that the name be changed to "粵文", which literally means "Cantonese inscription".
At the time of establishment, there was no ISO code for Cantonese. Thus, zh-yue was used as the domain. However, some did not like the idea, as Yue is the Mandarin name of Cantonese. The native name is Yuet. Cantonese preserves entering tone while Mandarin does not. Some suggested using Cantonese instead, but zh-yue was chosen as the final domain name.
The ISO code for Cantonese is yue. Using the ISO code instead of current domain has been submitted as a proposal to Wikimedia, but as of yet, no action has been taken to implement this change.
There are various native names of Cantonese, namely Gwóng jāu wá (廣州話), Gwóng fú wá (廣府話), Gwóng dūng wá (廣東話) and Yuht yúh (粵語). Cantonese Wikipedians thus use the four names interchangeably, namely 廣州話維基百科, 廣府話維基百科, 廣東話維基百科 and 粵語維基百科. There is no consensus on the native name.
Cantonese flourishes in the southern provinces of Guangdong and Guangxi, as well as in Hong Kong and Macau where it is listed as one of their official languages. Some Cantonese speakers are native to Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, Canada, the United States and United Kingdom.
Starting from a small community, Cantonese Wikipedians have formed a consensus to follow, by default, the policies, guidelines, and customs of the English Wikipedia, wherever they are applicable. This consensus has provided stability and allows Wikipedians to concentrate on content.
As of 25 March 2017, the Cantonese Wikipedia has over 1,114,966 edits, over 52,220 articles, and more than 134,263 registered users, 9 of whom are administrators.
Origin of edits
Origin of readers
There are two different scripts of written Cantonese, Traditional Chinese and Simplified Chinese. Cantonese Wikipedia uses Traditional following Hong Kong and Macau in their traditional usage. Some Cantonese-specific characters can only be written in Traditional Chinese. Simplified characters are converted to Traditional ones manually.
For Simplified character users, an online converter to Simplified Chinese is provided for viewing the content.
Other Chinese-language Wikipedias
Cantonese is a member of the group of Chinese varieties. Different Wikipedias have been established for different Chinese varieties (see below). The Cantonese Wikipedia is the third largest in this family.
- Chinese Wikipedia (based on Standard Chinese)
- Classical Chinese Wikipedia
- Min Nan Wikipedia
- Mindong Wikipedia
- Gan Wikipedia
- Wu Wikipedia
- Hakka Wikipedia
- Wikimedia Mail:   (December 2004),  (January 2005),  (February 2005),   (September 2005)
- (Chinese) Cantonese Wikipedia