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Steven Pruitt

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Steven Pruitt
Pruitt in a jacket and tie
Pruitt in 2018
Born
NationalityAmerican
Alma materCollege of William & Mary
OccupationRecords and Information officer
Years active2006–present
Known forMost edits on English Wikipedia
Home townMount Vernon, Virginia,[1] U.S.
HonoursTime's "The 25 Most Influential People on the Internet", 2017

Steven Pruitt is an American Wikipedia editor who holds the highest number of edits made on English Wikipedia. With over three million edits and more than 35,000 articles created, he was named as one of the 25 most important influencers on the Internet by Time magazine in 2017.[2] Pruitt edits under the user name Ser Amantio di Nicolao.[1] He has helped lessen systemic bias on Wikipedia and promote female inclusion, via the Women in Red project.[3]

Biography[edit]

Pruitt graduated from St. Stephen's & St. Agnes School in Alexandria, Virginia in 2002. He attended the College of William & Mary and graduated in 2006 with a degree in art history.[4] Pruitt's non-Wikipedia-related interests include the Capitol Hill Chorale, in which he sings. He is also an avid fan of opera, which provided inspiration for his username "Ser Amantio di Nicolao" – after a minor character in the Puccini opera Gianni Schicchi.[4] He is a contractor for U.S. Customs and Border Protection, where he works with records and information.[2]

Wikipedia editing[edit]

Pruitt created his current account in 2006 while a senior at the College of William & Mary.[2] His first Wikipedia article was about Peter Francisco, a Portuguese-born Revolutionary War hero known as the "Virginia Giant", who is Pruitt's "great great great great great great grandfather."[4] As of February 2019, Pruitt had made over 3 million edits to Wikipedia, more than any other editor on the English Wikipedia. He surpassed editor Justin Knapp for most edits in 2015. Pruitt believes he made his first edit to Wikipedia in June 2004.[1] His Wikipedia edits have included creating articles on more than 600 women, in order to counter the site's gender gap.[5][4]

Interviews[edit]

Pruitt was featured on CBS This Morning in January 2019. In the interview Pruitt described how the first article he worked on was about a distant ancestor (Peter Francisco).[4] He described his commitment to help boost Wikipedia's coverage of notable women, one area in which Wikipedia critics have noted the site falls short.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Meet The World's Most Prolific Wikipedia Editor". Vocativ. January 15, 2016. Retrieved April 10, 2019.
  2. ^ a b c "The 25 Most Influential People on the Internet". Time. June 26, 2017. Retrieved April 10, 2019.
  3. ^ Malloy, Daniel (February 13, 2018). "This Prolific Nerd Is Shaping the Future of Wikipedia". OZY. Retrieved April 10, 2019.
  4. ^ a b c d e Eshleman, Tina (September 17, 2018). "How the most prolific Wikipedia editor is expanding what we know about the world". W&M Alumni Magazine. No. Fall 2018. College of William & Mary. Retrieved April 10, 2019.
  5. ^ a b "Meet the man behind a third of what's on Wikipedia". CBS News. January 26, 2019. Retrieved April 10, 2019. The last statistic I saw was that 17.6 percent of the biographical articles on Wikipedia are about women, on the English Wikipedia I should say," Pruitt said. "It was under 15 percent a couple of years ago which shows you how much we have been able to move the needle.

External links[edit]