Jessica Wade came up with a solution.

There are differences in science. White, upper-middle class men are more likely to work in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Women and people of color are rarely credited for their contributions to the field of science. Wade decided to change that. She added unknown women scientists to the encyclopedia. Since then, she's written thousands. To be precise, it's 1,767.

Wade talked about why she set out to change those red links, her research process, and the fact that Neopets was involved.

Mashable: Why did you start adding all of these scientists to Wikipedia?

Representation and equity in subjects like physics and chemistry is something that I have been thinking about. I have been trying to improve the representation of people from different groups. Women are underrepresented in physics and it's incredibly white. The upper-middle class chooses to study physics. There are barriers to entry because of how well you were raised. How likely are you to have an amazing physics teacher, to be able to go to after school classes, or to take an advanced course with your parents? Young people's perception of themselves are influenced by all of that.

The need to honor and tell the stories of phenomenal scientists and engineers who have been historically excluded was one of the things I was thinking about when I was thinking about that. They are important to document, but they are also powerful.

Books written about men are usually written by men, and if they're honored, they're written by men as well. There are other men from privileged background interacting with other men. We can flip that narrative on who's doing science, who's done science, and why it's critical with the help of the encyclopedia. To honor the work that these pioneers have done but have not been celebrated or credited for.

I'm interested in your choice of the word accuracy. Because it's not that the other Wikipedia pages weren't accurate; they just didn't show the full picture.

We are able to bechoosy. The textbooks are very good at this. The person who wrote that part of the textbook is the one who tells the story of who made a discovery. We cherry-pick who historians want to document as discovering something, but we don't see the bigger picture. It's where the women are, the people of color are, and the people from the LGBTQ+ community are when you look in those spaces. It's not that what's on there is wrong. The whole story isn't told by it.

How many pages have you added?

It was nearly 200 years ago. 1,776.

How long does that take?

It takes a long time but it is exciting. Sometimes when you're in the lab all day, nothing goes right, it's uplifting. I find it incredibly exciting to be able to do something like write a page for a website. I'm always inspired by the people I write about. There is a chaotic scientific environment.

Where do you find the women who need citations?

Sometimes they're people who exist on the internet just as red links, so they haven't written anything. Women's names are usually red on the internet. The "Wiki Project Women in Red" is an attempt to correct that. I was focused on professors in the UK when I first started. I wanted to write a page every day.

I didn't know what was going to happen. I thought I would give up eventually. There are only a small number of women professors of physics in the UK. White is the majority of them. I began to think a lot more about what representation really means. "Oh, great, you have a woman." isn't the only thing. It is more complex than that. The US has had affirmative action programs that have worked for a long time and they have good representation of African American faculty. The representation of black professors of science and engineering in the UK is not as good as it could be. I used to write about American academics.

I look at history. I read through journals. I look at who's speaking at a conference, who's just been inducted into the American Association for the advancement of science, who's got a National Academy of Engineering fellowship, going through all of these different platforms to find these names. I had a complete list to work through. There is no time for me. I keep them in a bookmarks folder and return to them.

What's your research process?

People's contributions to discovery and innovation are documented in a number of tabs. Where did they do their PhD, where did they do their undergrad, and what was their maiden name will be the questions it will start with. It's a challenge for women to find information about their early history when they're writing about them. Americans are really good. Track and field scores from 1974 can be found here. It is crazy. Conventional media often covers them. Did newspapers and broadcasting houses do a good job of profiling them? That makes it easier to create a page on the internet.

Pulling together that story and then clicking publish and seeing this remarkable process where it might get translated to a different language, or it will get linked to a different page or that person will be on the notable alumni section of a University, that's how it works. The pages on the internet are constantly changing. They aren't like the pages of a book. They're alive and well when I publish them. I really like that.

What was the first Wikipedia page you ever wrote or edited?

The first one I ever wrote was about a professor at Brown University who is a climate scientist. I was able to meet her. She was an amazing person who had a huge research program to understand the impact of climate change on humans. She went off on huge ocean missions to collect corals and investigate the chemistry to understand how humans have impacted the life on planet earth. She has a huge campaign to improve diversity and access and participate in climate research. I was surprised that she didn't have a website.

Do you have many more to add?

I don't believe I will finish. The representation of women on the internet was low when I started editing. When I began, I had a long way to go. It is now 19 percent. The scale of the challenge is shown by the fact that other people are writing pages about men and women. All aspects of people who have been historically excluded are not documented. People will be from the global South. People who work in non-Ivy league institutions will be included. Our society has so many ways to celebrate privilege that we need to take them down. My work is not being done.

What makes Wikipedia so important? It's not like the perfect source, but what makes it so valuable?

The source is not the perfect one. It's out of date when you publish a book. As soon as you read an article by a journalist in a newspaper, you've got some bias from that person or the political leanings of the newspaper that's changing the way that you look at a topic. The most complete and comprehensive document of current affairs is the encyclopedia, but it has flaws and we're trying to fix them. This big picture perspective is provided in nonpartisan language. The kind of world we live in now makes the definition of good and bad interesting. We don't understand how many different people use the internet. If you want to find out more about the content of the websites, you can go to Wikipedia. The journalists use a website. When people are about to talk on the radio about a topic, they go to the encyclopedia page to find out more. The policy makers use a website.

Do you still fall into Wikipedia holes like the rest of us, or has your relationship with the site has changed?

It's true, I do. When I'm training on a new piece of equipment or trying to interpret data, I always go to Wikipedia to find out how much work is needed on other areas. If you keep clicking, you will get to philosophy. The beauty of it is that everyone does it. One part of it is improving the content on the site and the other part is improving the links between it.

How are you moving forward?

People are being trained to edit. There are millions and millions of people on planet Earth who will rely on Wikipedia and have huge insights that they can add. Training people on how to edit and translate is important to the project. We need to share things, we need to share information, and we need to think about how we honor people beyond the internet. Whether it's thinking about how we teach a topic, or whether it's nominating people for prizes and awards, what is included in our curriculum? It's not always done by white western men when we introduce something.

What was the first website you were like truly obsessed with?

There is a group of animals called neopets. It was a lot ofNeopets.

Do you remember any of the names of your Neopets?

I don't recall. It might have been Neopets and Dollz mania. That is what it is called. The adverts that came up next to Dollz Mania made me cringe. Children were not allowed to see them. My mom would come into my room with my computer and I'd be sitting there putting a little skirt on a little girl and being like, "I'm a creative genius."