Dear Wikibase Community,

My name is Valerie and I’m the new Community Communications Manager for Wikibase. Mohammed has been taking care not only of Wikidata but also Wikibase. In the future I will be taking responsibility for the Wikibase community to give Mohammed more space supporting Wikidata. Thereby I will continue creating an open, participatory, and collaborative environment for open source software development.

How did I get here..?

At Wikimedia Deutschland, I’m finding myself in an organisation that is highly supported through community engagement. This choice has also to do with my own volunteering experiences. For many years, I co-created events and conferences at the intersection of science, technology and arts. 

As I was experiencing societal shifts through digital innovations myself, festivals such as the Sonic Acts Academy, Impakt Festival or transmediale helped me understand the flux of change in digital culture better and thereby orient my thoughts. 

In this time I also co-organized transmediale and CTM’s Vorspiel festival, a program series in the field of digital art and culture, and experimental sound and music where many partner venues across Berlin invited local and international audiences to experience various artistic formats. 

I had great fun exploring how data can be used for artistic projects and creative storytelling. In 2020 I became part of a collaborative research project, co-funded by the Creative Europe Program. On-The-Fly was designed to promote Live Coding, a performative technique focused on writing algorithms in real-time. The project’s objectives were further set up to support knowledge exchanges between communities, engage with critical reflections as well as promote free and open-source tools. 

Simultaneously, I was striving to create knowledge resources that fostered collective reflection and education on evolving technological infrastructures as well as how these influence lives differently. I focused mostly on questioning generational (dis-) advantages, economic inequalities and, in part as a result, resulting digital (knowledge-) gaps.

I started using data literacy as a tool for digital emancipation and educated decision-making. By designing creative learning materials I was able to reach different target audiences with varying digital needs and often disadvantaged backgrounds

That's how I came to see information and education as ultimate necessities for active, societal participation and empowerment.

So now I’m here.. Doing what? 

My role is to nurture all aspects that strengthen and encourage your co-creation to Wikibase. I will support the flow of information between you and the product development team by being present in user groups, social media channels and other forms of online and offline events. 

Also, I’m looking forward to learning more about your projects and expanding the variety of ways to use Wikibase and interconnect open knowledge. That’s why I’m excited to present Wikibase at upcoming events, meeting other enthusiasts and getting to know you, the community, better.

Overall I strive to create environments that enable dialogue in a constructive and non-violent manner. 

How about you come to the next user meeting on the 27th and say Hello? 

I’d be happy to meet you all very soon. 

Also, if you have a wish, idea or you just want to say Hi - feel free to send me an e-mail. 

Valerie Wollinger
Community Communications Manager Wikibase

Wikimedia Deutschland e. V. | Tempelhofer Ufer 23–24 | 10963 Berlin
Tel. +49 (0)30-577 11 62-0

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