[Wikipedia-l] Wikisource

Florence Devouard Anthere9 at yahoo.com
Sun Oct 19 09:03:34 UTC 2008


A couple of weeks ago, I went to an event organized in Paris by the 
French Government about "economics of culture".
During that event, I mentionned that the French chapter has several 
ongoing discussions with various museums to set up content partnerships.

Here are two examples of such potential partnerships:
* a small museum with very old and precious documents. The museum has 
limited room for access and documents are fragile, so only a few 
visitors are allowed to look at them. The museum wants to digitize these 
docs, but has limited technical infrastructure.
Opportunity: we host their documents on wikisource and provide them 
additional visibility through an article on Wikipedia, featuring their 
best manuscripts.
* a large museum already has a digitization procedure for the documents, 
as well as a hosting service. However, the digitized version contains 
mistakes (errors generated in the process) and the museum simply does 
not have the human power to provide the corrections of the numerous 
documents digitized by their services. Our members can take care of this 

Wikisources members know all that very well and much better than I. I 
just summarize that very quickly for reference.

In Europe, at least in some countries, we meet several problems
* many scholars have a rather bad image of Wikipedia (because written by 
amateurs, anonymous members, plagued by vandals etc...)
* the other wikimedia projects have rather poor popularity and would 
benefit from more "light"
* journalists are bored and need new information (otherwise, they focus 
on all the bad stories)
* some projects are more difficult to advertise than others, because 
they are full competitors with other commercial projects of very good 
quality (eg, wiktionary, wikinews...)

Besides, my feeling is that contributors and in particular members from 
chapters need a project on which they can team.

I would like to propose that next year be Wikisource year.

And since the planet is very large, if this is done in large part 
through chapters, that it be an opportunity for some european chapters 
to work together.

I am not necessarily thinking of anything very complicated. Examples of 
efforts we could make together:

* leaflets about wikisource updated and available in a large number of 
* webbuttons to advertise the project on the web;
* each time someone gives a conference about Wikipedia, take the 
opportunity to spend a couple of minutes of Wikisource as well; 
distribute leaflets;
* summarize our best cases on Wikisource;
* develop stories about these best cases. Illustrate. Feature these 
stories on chapter websites;
* develop initiatives on projects for cross project challenges (eg, best 
article with content improved in at least 3 projects);
* chapters may write and distribute a couple of press releases about 
* chapters may propose conferences about wikisource (and speakers 
available to talk about it);
* develop arguments for museums etc...

Measures of success are numerous, from improvements of Wikisource 
(number of docs), number of mentions in the press, partnerships 
established with museums etc...

What do you think ?


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