"...Wikimedia Deutschland will entertain an
expert round on the subject on
31 March 2011 at the Deutsches Technikmuseum Berlin. The event will be a
public kick-off. "
March or May?
On Thu, May 26, 2011 at 8:20 PM, Catrin Schoneville
here comes the english translation of our press release - we will send it
out as soon as we get the video message ready (hopefully tomorrow). Feel
free to use it or improve it as you like.....
Berlin, 26 May 2011
**Wikipedia for World Heritage! *
*Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales calls for signatures to be collected and
presented to the UNESCO.*
On Monday, 23 May 2011, Wikimedia Deutschland started a worldwide
collection of signatures for the Wikipedia for World
iative. People are invited to
join the list now by signing an online
form <http://wikipedia.de/wke/Main_Page?setlang=en>. The list will
ultimately be presented to the World Heritage
the beginning of 2012. To date more
than 7000 people from over 100
countries have already signed the petition. Each signature supports the
initiative’s claim that Wikipedia as the largest collection of human
knowledge should be recognized as the first ever global and digital World
Heritage site. Altogether there are ten UNESCO criteria for recognition as a
World Heritage site. The first of those criteria demands that World Heritage
sites “represent a masterpiece of human creative genius”. The online
petition is quoting these exact words. By signing it participants confirm
that Wikipedia has universal value and that the claim is true in its case.
This petition is the starting point for a global discussion of Wikipedia’s
cultural meaning. Currently the free encyclopedia provides free access to
more than 18 million articles in over 280 languages. Since the beginning of
the new millennium Wikipedia has evolved into the collective memory of the
world. Having Wikipedia recognized as a Unesco World Heritage site is a huge
step towards preserving its cumulative knowledge for future generations.
“Millions of people take Wikipedia for granted. They use it each and
every day. Still, free access to the sum of human knowledge is not a matter
of course in many places. It is a global challenge to recognize, support and
preserve the work that hundreds of thousands of volunteers invest in this
community project. The key to free exchange of knowledge is public
recognition”, says Pavel Richter, CEO of Wikimedia Deutschland.
The initiative was introduced in March 2011 at the international
Wikimedia Chapters Conference in Berlin. Chapters from all over the world
will accompany the initiative's activities regarding Wikipedia’s recognition
as a World Heritage site. Wikimedia Deutschland will entertain an expert
round on the subject on 31 March 2011 at the Deutsches Technikmuseum Berlin.
The event will be a public kick-off. Further activities with the
international community will follow. Additionally, public discussion
provides a chance to explain how to deal with free knowledge and to stress
its meaning for society. The advertising agency Leo Burnett supports
Wikimedia Deutschland in the initiative’s realization.
Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales was the first to sign the petition. In a video
statement <http://ten.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Page> he calls for support
of the initiative. In his appeal Jimmy Wales puts emphasis on how important
international awareness is to the free encyclopedia: “A lot of people think
of Wikipedia as a technical phenomenon, a technical achievement. But in fact
it isn't. What Wikipedia is, is a cultural change, a cultural achievement.
We are going to try to get as many people as possible to sign the petition.
Just like Wikipedia itself, the more people we get involved, the greater the
chance that we'll achieve our goal. Please sign the petition!”
International website and video statement by Jimmy Wales:
*About the UNESCO World Heritage:*
UNESCO is the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization. Its list of World Heritage sites currently recognizes 911
properties as parts of the cultural and natural heritage of the world and
worthy of protection. The basis for this list is the World Heritage
Convention, established in 1975. The convention has been signed by 187
countries so far. By doing so they have committed to protect World Heritage
sites in their respective territories and to support each other’s efforts.
Further information: http://whc.unesco.org/
*About Wikimedia Deutschland:*
Wikimedia Deutschland is a non-profit organization that supports the
advancement of free knowledge. Since its foundation in 2004 the organization
has been supporting the Wikimedia projects, the most well-known of which is
Wikipedia. Wikimedia Deutschland promotes free of charge access to free
knowledge, thereby endorsing the fundamental human right to education.
Wikipedia, like its sister projects, is ad-free and independent. This is
only possible through volunteer dedication and donations.
Further information about Wikimedia Deutschland:
Wikimedia Deutschland e.V.
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