[Foundation-l] Donation of DVDs to Wikimedia Foundation Projects

Robert Scott Horning robert_horning at netzero.net
Mon Jan 1 08:42:24 UTC 2007

I was going through the Wikibooks study help desk, and a very surprising 
offer showed up recently:


"I would like to donate A video taped lecture series on Calculus which 
have been converted to dvd format. How do I go about doing this? The 
lecturer is willing to send the dvds to an appropriate uploader, but 
does not know much about computer programming himself. The lectures were 
taped at The University of Missouri - Kansas City.

"Please send any information you have to: micheleforan at sbcglobal.net


I find this an incredibly generous offer, and something that supports 
both Wikibooks and Wikiversity in a great many ways, although most media 
content like this generally is sent to Commons.  There are some other 
technical issues here involved as well, simply due to the sheer quantity 
of material here that is going to be offered, which is one reason why 
I'm trying to vet this idea here on Foundation-l.

In addition to trying to figure out just what Wikimedia sister project 
this ought to be sent to for further assistance, I would like to know 
what the status is right now for storage of large numbers of video 
files.  I noticed that the [[Commons:Category:Video]] has several video 
files listed, although almost all of them are generally very short 
clips.  This offer as it currently stands could potentially be several 
gigabytes of data, which would dwarf the entire video category by itself.

There is also the comparatively minor issue of trying to convert the 
files from MPEG format to OGG or other patent-free (or compatable with 
the GFDL) formats, but I think we can find some individuals to help out 
with that on the various Wikimedia projects.  That is not the major 
issue at the moment.

I guess this is also a political issue in the sense of wheither the WMF 
wants to get into the business of hosting DVD-video length content on 
its servers.  The costs of doing so I would guess would be rather 
substantial for bandwidth costs alone, assuming several individuals are 
all trying to download these huge files, which has been an issue raised 
in the past.  Video files havn't been explicitly restricted from 
Wikimedia projects, but then again most of the video that is used is 
comparatively small snippets at the moment.  Any thoughts or ideas on 
this topic are significantly appreciated.

Robert Scott Horning

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