New Yorker David Shankbone is one of my favorite Wikipedia contributors. He has approached Wikipedia and related projects as a way to get practice and exposure as a writer and photographer, and works tirelessly to encourage others to follow in his footsteps.

David’s ambition has taken him in different directions than me; he does extensive “offline” work, setting up photoshoots and interviews with prominent writers, artists, politicians. He makes it look easy, and his point in this blog post is that it really is easy; all it takes is a little effort to make a clear request, and to come up with some interesting questions.

In my more limited experience, this approach works just as well in Oregon as it does in New York City. Poiticians and artists I’ve talked to have been happy to have someone express interest in rounding out their Wikipedia biographies; sometimes, all it takes is asking the question.