Welcome to the newsletter for Structured Data on Wikimedia Commons!
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Structured Data on Wikimedia Commons?
The millions of files on Wikimedia Commons <https://commons.wikimedia.org/>
are described with a lot of information or (meta)data. With the
Data on Wikimedia Commons
<https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Commons:Structured_data>, this data is
structured more, and is made machine-readable. This will make it easier to
view, search (also multilingually), edit, organize and re-use the files on
In early 2017, the Sloan Foundation funded this project (see documentation
Development takes place in 2017–2020. It involves staff from the Wikimedia
Foundation and Wikimedia Deutschland (WMDE) and many volunteers. To achieve
this, Wikibase <https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikibase> support is added
to Wikimedia Commons. Wikibase is the technology that is also used for
Recent developments: groundwork
A new and crucial technical step (federation)
now makes it possible to reference data from one Wikibase website in
another. Because of this, it will be possible to use Wikidata's items and
properties to describe media files on Commons.
Another important piece of groundwork is under development:
This feature allows structured data to be stored alongside wiki text, so
that one wiki page can contain several types of content.
Amanda Bittaker <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Abittaker_(WMF)>
was hired as Program Manager for Structured Data on Wikimedia Commons.
Amanda will take care of the overall management of the project.
Sandra Fauconnier <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:SandraF_(WMF)>
(known as Spinster
<https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Special:CentralAuth/Spinster> in her
volunteer capacity) is the new Community Liaison. She will support the
collaboration between the communities (Commons, Wikidata, GLAM) and the
product development teams at the Wikimedia Foundation and Wikimedia
We have open positions for a UX designer
<https://boards.greenhouse.io/wikimedia/jobs/673916> and a Product
Talking with communities and allies
Long-term feedback from GLAMs. Besides the Wikimedia community, many
external cultural and knowledge institutions (GLAMs - Galleries, Libraries,
Archives and Museums) are interested in Structured Data on Commons and are
willing to provide feedback on the long-term plans for the project. Alex
Stinson <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Astinson_(WMF)>, GLAM
strategist at the Wikimedia Foundation, is currently in contact with
Europeana, DPLA, the Smithsonian and the National Archives of the United
States. Alex is also looking for other GLAM institutions who might be able
to advise on the long term. If you know of an institution or partner that
may be appropriate for consultation, do get in touch with Alex.
Jonathan Morgan <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:JMorgan_(WMF)>,
design researcher, is starting to work on two projects:
Researching batch upload workflows
by interviewing GLAM institutions
Researching the enrichment, organization and improvement tasks on
already uploaded media files by engaging with active Commons
contributors. This research follows up on existing research by
on heavy Commons users.
What comes next?
The Structured Data on Commons team meets in the week after Wikimania to
lay the groundwork for the next steps. This includes new backend
development and design work, for better and more clear integration of
the structured data in pages on Wikimedia Commons.
The project's information pages on Wikimedia Commons will receive a long
overdue update in the upcoming months. The team will also work on more and
better communication channels. Feedback, wishes and tips are welcome at the
project's general talk page
Join us at Wikimania <https://wikimania2017.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania>!
We are present at the hackathon, and there will be a session on Saturday,
August 12: Structured Commons: what changes are coming?
Follow the Structured Data on Commons project on Phabricator:
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Do you want to help out translating messages about Structured Data on
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Stay tuned for requests for input, discussion and participation as soon
as the info portal is refreshed (see above). These will also be announced
via this newsletter.
Community Liaison for Structured Data on Wikimedia Commons