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Russia Plans Its Own Version of Wikipedia by 2023

The project aims to attract three times as much traffic as Wikipedia.org.

Lane Hartwell / Wikipedia

Russia is aiming to roll out an online encyclopedia in three years with a readership five times the size of Wikipedia’s, the RBC news website reported Wednesday, citing procurement documents.

Russia has been planning to create its own version of Wikipedia to ensure Russians have access to more "detailed and reliable" information about their country since as far back as 2014. Russia previously attempted to block Wikipedia over an article containing instructions on how to prepare a type of cannabis drug.

The 2 billion ruble ($30 million) project is expected to launch at the tail end of 2022, RBC reported. The online encyclopedia will reportedly contain more than 80,000 articles from the 35-volume Great Russian Encyclopedia.

Procurement documents analyzed by RBC state that Russian Wikipedia will need to have the capacity to handle 15 million unique visitors every day. For comparison, under 3 million Russian users visited Wikipedia.org every day in July 2019.

Registered users will reportedly be able to propose new entries, but an expert community will have final say on whether to expand and update the encyclopedia.

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