This year Wikimedia UK is partnering with the Open Knowledge Foundation in the organisation of the 2010 Open Knowledge Conference
("OKCon"), an interdisciplinary conference that brings together
individuals from across the open knowledge spectrum for a day of
presentations and workshops.
At this year's conference, Wikimedia UK will be supporting and
organising a track dedicated to the projects and communities central to
We need your help to create an exciting and interesting track that
will inspire and challenge Wikimedians and others alike. Could you give
a presentation or host a discussion on a Wikimedia theme? Any subject
relevant to the Wikimedia communities, free content or Wikimedia UK are
February 25 (Thursday): Submissions will openMarch 28 (Sunday) 23:59 UTC: Closure of submission datesApril 7 (Wednesday): Notification of acceptance of submissionApril 24 (Saturday): Open Knowledge Conference 2010
If you wish to participate but with good reason cannot meet one of the above deadlines please email conferences(a)wikimedia.org.uk before the deadline as it may be possible to accomodate late submissions
Submissions should address one or more of the following themes:
Wikimedia Communities - Interesting projects and
characteristics within the communities; policy creation; conflict
resolution and community dynamics; reputation and identity;
multilingualism, languages and cultures; the development of Wikimedia
Free Content - Open access to information; ways to gather
and distribute free knowledge, usage of the Wikimedia projects in
education, journalism, research; ways to improve content quality and
usability; copyright laws and their interaction with Wikimedia projects.
Culture and Heritage - Ideas for potential partnerships,
building on previous partnerships and the legal, technical and resource
issues that are barriers to such partnerships.
Technical infrastructure - Issues related to MediaWiki
development and extensions; Wikimedia hardware layout; the Toolserver;
the Usability Project; new ideas for development (including Usability
case studies from other wikis or similar projects).
Please email submissions to conferences(a)wikimedia.org.uk.
Please email the following details, all in English:
Title:Theme: Closest category from above for your submission.Abstract: 50-100 words summarising the topicSummary: Detailed description of the topic - 300 words or more. May contain a link to a more details.Contact information: Email/Telephone and whether we may publish these detailsAdditional Information:
1-3 sentence biography of the author(s).any special requirements (e.g. flipchart; OHP. A digital presentation will be assumed as standard)whether you will attend the 2010 Open Knowledge Conference (a)
definitely, (b) probably, (c) only if your submission is accepted.
Do you have a story that started on Hotmail? Tell us now
One of you chaps has a contact in the BBC, I believe.
I've been thinking about the BBC and some of its news/factual content
and whether they might be willing to release some of it under CC-BY-SA
and therefore appropriate to embed in Wikipedia.
Obviously a lot of content needs to remain under restrictive licenses;
a lot of output (most of it, I would guess) is produced by independent
companies and one can't expect the Beeb to start renegotiating with
But it strikes me that they produce a lot of in-house stuff that
simply won't have much resale/repeat value and for which I don't think
(but I am willing to be challenged on this) they would need to worry
about royalties and rights.
There's also the argument that "due to the unique way the BBC is
funded" some of their content *should* be more available to the public
and to release some content (content of little to no future value)
under a more sharing-friendly licence would be the right thing to do.
I intend to look and listen to BBC content more carefully to pick out
which specific programmes are independently produced and which are
in-house, so I'll be vague in what I'm going to say next, not
mentioning specific programme titles:
They produce a lot of output that relates to specific political
issues, they have interviews with public figures, they cover science
topics and produce other content that would be educational.
So I'm wondering if our BBC insider could maybe use his contact to
propose CC-BY-SA licensing for some content and see what their
reaction is. Perhaps before that's done though it would be well to
have a list of, say, five illustrative examples of what we'd be
talking about. I foresee a slight problem in doing this; the BBC puts
content online but it is usually available for a relatively short
period, so if we wanted to *link* to these examples the content might
be gone by the time our contact is approached. I'm not sure what a
good solution to that problem is. It may just be a case of noting very
carefully the date of transmission, programme title, channel and the
'timestamp'(?) of any individual segment we're inspired by.
In summary, I propose:
1. That we, over the next seven days, all take note of programmes that
are not specifically credited as being produced by independent
2. Consider whether what we've watched/listened to would be good for
Wikimedia projects and report likely candidates to this thread.
Having done that:
3. Think about how we can present a case to the BBC for some CC-BY-SA licensing.
I'm just imagining some really great stuff being made available to
Commons and, once it's there, all the amazing things volunteers can do
with it. What do you chaps think?
The full details about what will be happening during Britain Loves
Wikipedia are now in - so it's time to start spreading the word about
it now. ;-) See the complete info below. Hope to see you at some of
Britain Loves Wikipedia
Join Wikipedia in photographing and celebrating Britain's cultural
heritage in museums, galleries and archives nationwide
29 January 2010, UK: 'Britain Loves Wikipedia' is a month-long
competition and series of events to be held in participating museums
nationwide from 31 January 2010. People from all ages, backgrounds
and communities can take part in the competition, which encourages
the public to photograph the treasures of our nation's museums and
galleries, actively involving them in digitally recording the
collections. All of the photos entered into the 'Britain Loves
Wikipedia' competition will be made available under a free license on
Wikimedia Commons, and can then be used to illustrate Wikipedia
Museums, Libraries and Archives Council Chief Executive Roy Clare
said, "'Britain Loves Wikipedia' provides a stimulating opportunity
for museums and Wikipedia to work more closely together for the
benefit of the public. This new collaboration enables museums to
bring their collections, scholarship and expertise even closer to
audiences in digital environments. Wikipedia provides a vivid forum
for engaging public interest in the stories within collections held
in museums across the country. MLA is very pleased to support this
initiative and welcomes the development of partnerships between
museums and Wikimedia."
Chair of Wikimedia UK, Michael Peel, said, "Museum collections hold a
vast range of objects that have great cultural significance and
enhance our knowledge of our origins but are not as well covered on
Wikipedia as they deserve to be. With 'Britain Loves Wikipedia', we
hope to increase the number of photographs on Wikipedia for the world
to share, enjoy and learn from."
The celebration begins at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London on
Sunday 31st January from 11.00 am to 4.00 pm in the Sackler Centre;
everyone is welcome to come along and take part. Short talks from the
Victoria and Albert Museum, Wikimedia UK and the Collections Trust
will take place at 11.30 am, accompanied by free tea, coffee, and
refreshments, with plenty of time in the afternoon to explore the
museum and photograph its collections!
Gail Durbin, Head of Online Museum at the Victoria and Albert Museum,
said, "Britain Loves Wikipedia is an innovative way for amateur (or
professional) photographers to make things in museums accessible to
more people. We are delighted to be hosting Britain's photography
community at the kickoff event and look forward to seeing creative
new images of our objects."
Britain Loves Wikipedia then continues with:
* On the 6th/7th February, the Museum of Army Flying in
Hampshire will be offering free entry to photographers as well as
free tea or coffee, and will be allowing flash and tripod photography.
* Nottingham Natural History Museum is hosting a "Britain Loves
Wikipedia Day" on 11 February, where they will be bringing out a
selection of biological and geological objects from their stores and
making them available for photography in the museum’s Great Hall
(situated in the main Wollaton Hall building.) Objects will include
examples of taxidermy (reptiles, birds, mammals) skeletal material,
and invertebrates from the biology collections, and various rocks,
minerals and fossils from the geology collections. Booking is essential.
* The Manchester Museum is running "Darwin’s 201st Birthday Bash
Big Saturday" on 13 February (book ahead or on the day); as part of
this they will be making objects from their zoology, palaeontology,
entomology, botany and geology collections available for photography
in the Museum’s Resource Centre on the 3rd floor gallery.
* John Muir's Birthplace and Preston Grange Museum will strike a
romantic note for Valentines Day, hosting "East Lothian Photographers
LOVE Wikipedia!" These host museums are opening up specially for
photographers, and are providing a warm Scottish welcome with free
tea and coffee to all participants, as well as tours and guides
around the museums.
* Mill Green Museum will be running "Mill Green Loves Wikipedia"
on the afternoon of 16 February - come along to explore the range of,
and changes in, the working days of local people.
* Bedford Museum will be giving photographers the opportunity to
see behind the scenes at thir stores on the 18 February, including a
sneak preview their upcoming exhibition ‘Clocking-In’, an exhibition
of the working day. Places are limited; booking is essential.
* On the 20th February, The British Postal Museum & Archive will
open the doors of its Museum Store in Debden, Essex to photographers.
The British Postal Museum Store houses a variety of objects including
letterboxes, telephone kiosks, postal vehicles, sorting machinery and
the desk of Sir Rowland Hill (founder of the penny post).
Refreshments will be available to participants and flash photography
and tripods are welcome.
Throughout February, you can visit the following museums to take part
in the Britain Loves Wikipedia competition:
* Astley Hall, Chorley
* Caithness Horizons, Thurso, Scotland
* Ceredigion Museum, Wales
* Horniman Museum, London
* Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery, Glasgow, Scotland
* Museum of Army Flying, Stockbridge, Hampshire
* National Football Museum, Preston
* Old Operating Theatre, London
* Royal Air Force Museum, London and Cosford.
* Segedunum Roman Fort, Baths and Museum
* ThinkTank Birmingham
* Victoria and Albert Museum, London
* Working Class Movement Library, Salford
Prizes include a WikiReader - a copy of the entire English Wikipedia
in your pocket. The best photograph from each RAF Museum site will
receive £100 worth of goods from the Museum's shop. The best
photograph taken at The British Postal Museum & Archive’s Museum
Store will receive a trio of DVD box sets celebrating the work of the
acclaimed GPO Film Unit, valued at £75. More prizes will be announced
at the launch event on the 31st January.
Britain Loves Wikipedia is organized by Wikimedia UK in collaboration
with the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council, Collections Trust,
Culture 24 and Museums Galleries Scotland. Full information is
available at http://www.britainloveswikipedia.org/. An initial event
in February 2009 at the Victoria and Albert created over 300
photographs now available on Wikipedia. In June 2009, Wiki Loves Art
in The Netherlands created over 10,000 photographs taken at 46 Dutch
We are considering cutting the membership fee to £5 flat. (It is currently £12 waged, £6 unwaged.)
We would like to expand membership before the AGM and we feel cutting the membership fee will help with this. It will also simplify our administration. We are planning to email everyone who donated during the fundraiser asking if they would like to become a member at this reduced rate, as well as emailing all current members asking if they would like to renew their membership at the new rate.
Does anyone object to this? We appreciate that some of you will have recently paid membership fees at the full rate, but if we are to make such a cut it is inevitable that some people will have paid the full rate in the months before the cut, and in the long-run everyone will benefit from it. If it is any consolation, all three of us board members who have been on the board from the start have already paid our dues for the year at the higher rate.
All comments are appreciated,
Thanks in advance,
Treasurer, Wikimedia UK
Next meeting will be on Wednesday 3rd March at NYK Shipping offices at
Meet will start formally at 7pm. Doors open 6:15pm.
NYK Line, 17th Floor, CityPoint, 1 Ropemaker Street, London EC2Y 9NY .
Nearest Tube is Moorgate.
P.S. Afterwards, we might head for The Globe (a large pub at 83
Moorgate, London, EC2M 6SA)
Steve Virgin, one of the Wikimedia UK board members, recently gave a talk at a Bristol Social Media forum about various things happening with Wikimedia projects in Britain. The talk was positively covered in a blog from a participant:
"How can fictional stories incorporate technology? What does the future hold for Wikipedia’s sister projects ? And is it fair to say that social media sucks?...
Next up was Steve Virgin , a member of the United Kingdom chapter of the Wikimedia Foundation, the group behind Wikipedia. After sharing some arresting statistics about the site’s impact (347 million people — 35% of the online population –use Wikipedia, while 40,000 English speakers make at least five edits each per month) he talked about the work that is going on with the organization’s nine other projects which cover, among other topics, news , books , quotations and the classification of species .
The biggest growth is in Wikimedia Commons , a project to collect copyright-free media resources such as photographs and videos. The big push this year is to encourage museums to follow the example of the Dresden University Library which donated 250,000 images. One tactic is to promote the potential benefits of such donations, such as releasing part of an archive as a promotional tool to boost sales of other images. There is also work in progress to reduce the technical hassles involved in donating images, which may include a tie-in with Flickr ."
We are currently organising the AGM for Wikimedia UK, which will be held on the weekend of 24th - 25th April in London. The AGM will elect a new board of directors and will also vote on various procedural motions, such as setting membership fees and approving the annual report and accounts.
Broadly speaking we would like to run the election in a similar way to last year.  That is, we would like to appoint two independent people who will act as tellers who organise the voting by email beforehand and in person at the AGM.
The only criteria for the tellers is that they cannot be candidates for the board themselves and they have to be able to attend the AGM itself.
No previous experience is necessary but if you have run a similar election before that would be useful. All reasonable expenses will be paid.
Could you help out the chapter in this way? If so, please could you email me, with details any relevant prior experience.
Many thanks in advance,
Wikimedia UK is the operating name of Wiki UK Limited.
Wiki UK Ltd is a Company Limited by Guarantee registered in England and Wales, Registered No. 6741827.
The Registered Office is at 23 Cartwright Way, Nottingham, NG9 1RL, United Kingdom.