Wikipedia in the Archives: What, Why, and How

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A presentation given at the Midwest Museum Archives Fall Symposium September 28, 2013. Jennifer Noffze and Lori Phillips. NOTES available at this PDF:

Transcript of Wikipedia in the Archives: What, Why, and How

PowerPoint Presentation

Galleries, Libraries, Archives, MuseumsLori Byrd Phillips | Jennifer NoffzeMidwest Archives ConferenceSeptember [email protected] | @TCMIndy#glamwiki

Wikipedia in the MuseumWhat, Why, and How

ArchivesThings to queue up:- Commons:'s_Museum_of_Indianapolis- David Ferriero: min. 10:55 (video) Tyrannosaurus Rex (article) Jennifer, the Childrens Museums Registrar and Archivist, and this is Lori Phillips, who began her time at the museum as our Wikipedian in Residence and is now our Digital Content Coordinator.Well be talking today about Wikipedia at the Childrens Museum, and while our perspective is very museum-heavy, we think youll still find a lot of relevant information for your instiution. Theres no shortage of archives working with Wikipedia, including the National Archives itself, which youll learn about in a bit.

To get started with two basic definitions--Wikipedia is well known as the largest and most popular internet encyclopedia.Its acollaboratively edited,multilingual,freely available, and supported by the non-profitWikimedia Foundation. Its currently ranked the seventh most popular website, with an estimated 365 million readers worldwide. TheGLAM-Wiki initiativehelps Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums share their resources with the world through collaborative projects with Wikipedia editors around the world.1WhatThe Childrens Museum & WikipediaWhat is WikipediaWhat is GLAMWhyMissionAccessExpertiseHowGLAM: US PortalGLAM: US ConsortiumWhat, Why, and HowWikipedia in the MuseumArchivesJennifer will talk through much of the What specifically sharing about the Childrens Museums journey with Wikipedia and what archives can learn from our experience. Lori will share more of the Wikipedia nitty gritty, walking through the anatomy of an article and how the community works.Shell then share resources to help you get started with Wikipedia in your institution, including answering the ever-important Why Wikipedia. This includes a step-by-step guide to connecting with the GLAM-Wiki community. Well have time for specific questions at the end. But please dont hesitate to interrupt if you need something clarified. 2The Childrens Museum & WikipediaWhatSo lets get started with why the two of us are here talking about Wikipedia!3The Childrens Museum of Indianapolis

4th oldest youth museum in the United Statesfounded in 1925Largest collection of any youth museum with over 120,000 objects encompassing the American Experience, Natural Science and Cultural World domainsCollection strengths include: toy trains, childrens textiles, Cretaceous dinosaur fossils and specimens and the Caplan Collection of Folk, Fantasy & PlayMy role as Registrar/Archivistresponsible for collections management duties (processing new collections and loans, overseeing the DX process, conducting inventories, database specialist, etc) and Archivist (responsible for institutional history)4Wikipedian in Residence

Backstage Pass| November 2010cc by-sa 3.0, The Childrens Museum of IndianapolisFirstwhat is a Wikpedian? A Wikipedian is anyone who edits a Wikipedia article. This can be a little or a lot of editing! The Wikipedia community sometimes defines an active Wikipedian as a person who has edited five or more articles.

Our former Director of Websites and Emerging Media, Angie McNew, first heard about the Wikipedian in Residence position in 2010 from Liam Wyatt, who was just about to begin his time at the British Museum as the first-ever Wikipedian in Residence. Liam noted the need for Wikipedia to strengthen partnerships with museums to create the most up-to-date and accurate information. Liam inspired us to have our own Wikipedian in Residence, Lori, the second and longest-running and first to be hired on full time.

Liam visited the museum a few months after Lori started to kick start our cooperation and help us host our first events. Liam also helped Lori and Angie to help convince the museum and especially the Collections Department that a partnership with Wikipedia was a good thing!


Backstage Pass | November 2010Backstage Pass Eventcc by-sa 3.0, The Childrens Museum of IndianapolisIn November 2010, we hosted our first Backstage Pass Event where Wikipedians toured the collection and met with the curators. In this photo, Curator Tris Perkins is talking about artifacts that she pulled from the Ethnographic Collection. One major bonus from this event was meeting a Wikipedian who returned later to take wonderful photos of objects in our collection which we uploaded to Wikipedia.6Image donation #1

cc by-sa 3.0 The Childrens Museum of Indianapolis's_Museum_of_Indianapolis

In January 2011, the Museums Executive Team approved going forward with sharing artifact images on Wikipedia. The EC was convinced that it was the right thing to do because images were already out there and why not be a leader and provide great quality images? Also, we followed the lead of other institutions like SI and the Brooklyn Museum.

We started with a small batch of existing high-res images (25 artifacts/32 images) from a previous collaborative digitization project, InfoZone. My role in this was to assist our 6 curators with assembling the metadata and providing the images to Lori. In March 2011, we uploaded this first batch.7Image donation #2

cc by-sa 3.0 The Childrens Museum of Indianapolis

In May 2011, we uploaded our second batch of images33 artifacts/36 images. These were also selected from our high-res images that we had available. With a collection of 120,000 objects, we only had 1,500 high-res, print quality images. Lori and Angie provided money for a photo shoot in order to get more imageswe had an all day photo shoot with 90 objects from all three areas. These images were ready for upload in October 2011.8Image donation #3

cc by-sa 3.0 The Childrens Museum of Indianapolis

This Alaskan King Crab is one of the objects from the photo shoot that was part of image donation 3.9Caplan Edit-A-Thon

In August 2011, we held our second Back Stage Pass event dubbed a Caplan Edit-A-Thon. Frank and Theresa Caplan were the founders of Creative Playthings, an educational toy company. In 1985, they donated their 50,000+ collection of toys and folk art from around the world to TCM. Their Wikipedia articles were basically stubs, and we wanted to add information to those articles. In preparation for the event, I scanned 15 documents from our archives (annual reports, newsletters and articles) and uploaded them to our website so the Wikipedians would have access to these resources for their articles. While our Wikipedians were busily working on the article, we also had a Wikipedians in Mexico translating the information (Translate-a-thon). Having the sources online helped to encourage both on-site and online editing.

10Caplan Edit-A-Thon

During the Edit-A-Thon, Lori and I have gave a tour of the collection, with a particular emphasis on the Caplan objects. After the tour, Lori worked with the Wikipedians on the article and I worked with a volunteer photographer who had attended our first Back Stage Pass event. He took these two wonderful pictures of Creative Playthings toys (in addition to about 30 others). The Four-Way Blocks images is used in the Creative Playthings article.11100 Toys Digital Project

During the summer of 2012, TCM had our first digital engagement project that used collections objects and social media. It was titled 100 Toys (and their Stories) that Define Childhood. This exhibit was a huge success! Our Curator selected 100 toys from our collection made roughly during the past 100 years that help define childhood. Visitors were able to not only vote on their favorites but also share their stories and pictures. The top 20 made it into a case. Then the public was invited to choose the top 3 toys. After this project, we chose toys from our wonderful new selection of photos to add to Wikipedia. We were careful to not choose anything that would infringe on copyright.12One of the many benefits

Because many people dont associate childrens museums with collections, I love seeing our objects placed in articles. This Underwood typewriter is one example. When someone reads about this typewriter and then looks over to see the image and that its in our collection.well, it just doesnt get better than that!

Wikipedia allows us to not only provide a better experience for our visitors online, but we are also able to reach new audiences! More people knowing about what you have and what resources you can provide is never a bad thing.

13The Future

One of our Curators is keen on working with a Wikipedian on creating a better Schoenhut article. We have many wonderful Schoenhut pieces in our collection (piano and circus set above) in addition to print resources. We also have the high-res images ready and waiting! Also, we recently received a donation of the Walker Edmiston Beany & Cecil Archive. In addition to 75 objects, we also received a large archival collection including letters, print materials and original scripts. It would be exciting to help make these materials become more widely available.14How Wikipedia has changed us

Wikipedia has now become part of our normal work flow. It isnt added/additional workit complements all of our current digital initiatives. This pangolin is an example. About a month ago, we had a photo shoot simply to get more images for our digital repository. Our Natural Science Curator wrote a