October 23, 2014 Print

In Greece, where radical collectivism is on the rise, ideas about personal liberty are frequently dismissed or suppressed. The Liberty Forum of Greece is working to change the narrative. Each month twenty volunteers spend their time translating relevant Wikipedia entries into Greek to offer the public an objective presentation of classical liberalism's ideas and great thinkers through an accessible medium. 

Since the summer of 2014, these bilingual activists have translated from English more than twenty lengthy Wikipedia entries, including pages on Milton Friedman, Friedrich Hayek, John Stuart Mill, Adam Smith, Alexis de Tocqueville, Frederic Bastiat, Classical Liberalism, the separation of Church and State and more.

Project leader Kostis Lympouridis notes, "Before we rewrote Milton Friedman’s entry, the average reader would learn that he was an intellectual leader that empowered dictators, hated the middle class, and wanted to destroy the poor through his shock doctrines. The revised Wikipedia entry fairly assesses Friedman's visit to Chile, offers a sober review of Naomi Kleine's critique, and emphasizes the important contributions of Milton Friedman in the liberalization of economies that led to a great degree of prosperity for those countries that followed his advice."

This new kind of activism is already bearing fruit: the new article on Friedrich Hayek has been selected as "featured article" by Wikipedia, a distinction that rewards articles of the highest quality. The previous versions of the article, which were heavily biased towards criticisms of the subjects, have been replaced by well-documented and neutral views towards classical liberal intellectuals and their ideas. The rewritten articles have totaled over 25,000 page views in the past six months, an increase of about 40 percent.