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Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Updating Wikipedia pages of cities could boost tourism, a study finds

Researchers randomly selected some cities across Spain for altering their Wikipedia pages by adding a few paragraphs about the local attractions

By: Lifestyle Desk | New Delhi | September 20, 2020 2:15:45 pm
tourism, international tourism, Wikipedia pages of cities, updating Wikipedia pages to promote travelling, indian express newsAn additional paragraph or two, along with the photo of a city’s entry, elevated the number of nights spent in the city by nine per cent on average during peak season. (Source: Pixabay)

Globally, the tourism sector has taken a hit because of the pandemic. With international borders mostly shut, people have had to postpone their travel plans. And even with some countries slowly opening its doors to tourists, there is a general fear of contracting the infection. As such, a majority of people are decidedly staying put this year.

But, in order to boost tourism, a study has found that making little adjustments to the Wikipedia pages of cities could unlock tourism revenue worth billions of pounds. According to The Independent, an experiment was conducted which found that updating an entry for a small city on the website can lead to tourists spending an extra £100,000 (Rs 95,07,855.02) a year.

It was conducted by the economists at the Collegio Carlo Alberto in Turin, Italy. They randomly selected some cities across Spain for altering their Wikipedia pages. It consisted of adding a few paragraphs about the local attractions and the cities’ history, and a few high-quality pictures of the place. The outlet mentions that in most cases, the researchers simply translated the Spanish version of the page to French, German, Italian or Dutch.

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As a result, they noticed a surge in interest from tourists. An extra paragraph or two, along with the addition of one photo to a city’s entry, elevated the number of nights spent there by nine per cent on average during peak season, the outlet reports.

This exercise worked well even for cities which had little original information on its Wikipedia pages. Some minor additions had a profound impact, resulting in more visits to the place.

“If we extend this to the entire tourism industry, the impact is large. Its impact could be in billions of euros,” the study’s authors, Marit Hinnosaar, Toomas Hinnosaar and Michael Kumme, were quoted as saying.

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