Your SlideShare is downloading. ×
Lessons from Transcribe Bentham
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5

Thanks for flagging this SlideShare!

Oops! An error has occurred.

Saving this for later? Get the SlideShare app to save on your phone or tablet. Read anywhere, anytime – even offline.
Text the download link to your phone
Standard text messaging rates apply

Lessons from Transcribe Bentham


Published on

Digital History workshop: Crowdsourcing in the Humanities and cultural heritage sector. Victoria University of Wellington 23 April 2013 …

Digital History workshop: Crowdsourcing in the Humanities and cultural heritage sector. Victoria University of Wellington 23 April 2013
Session: How <del>not</del> to run a crowdsourcing project: lessons from Transcribe Bentham
Presenter: Valerie Wallace

Published in: Education
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total Views
On Slideshare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

Report content
Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

No notes for slide


  • 1. ‘How <del>not</del> to run acrowdsourcing project: lessons fromTranscribe BenthamDr Valerie Wallace, History Programme, VUWDr Valerie Wallace, History Programme, VUW(
  • 2. The Bentham ProjectThe Bentham Project• Established in 1959• Produces The Collected Works of JeremyBentham (1748-1832), the influential jurist,reformer, and philosopher.• First two volumes published in 1968 and todate, 28 of a proposed 70 have beenpublished, including 12 of the proposed 14vols of Correspondence.
  • 3. Challenges facing the Bentham Project:Challenges facing the Bentham Project:How to speed up editorial production andcreate a searchable, accessible digitalresource?Answer: Crowdsource transcriptionIn 2010 40,000 of 72,500manuscripts wereuntranscribed
  • 4. The Transcription DeskThe Transcription Desk andhttp//
  • 5. Process of checking volunteer transcriptsProcess of checking volunteer transcripts
  • 6. LegacytranscriptsPROJECT WEBSITEPROJECT EDITORSDIGITALREPOSITORYImagesMetadataTEItranscriptsRetro-conversionto TEIQualityassuranceManuscriptsTrainingmaterialsRegistrationDiscussionforumTranscription toolIdeasbankBlogWebpagesFoliocatalogueTRANSCRIPTIONWIKITEITranscriptsCOLLECTEDWORKSCourtesy ofMartin Moyle,UCL LibraryServices
  • 7. Volunteer transcript stored in UCL’s Bentham Papers digitalVolunteer transcript stored in UCL’s Bentham Papers digitalrepository ( (
  • 8. Volunteer motivations
  • 9. Some results from Transcribe Bentham• 2410 registered accounts• 362 active transcribers• 15 super transcribers• 5205 transcribed manuscripts (c.2.6 millionwords)(As of 8 March 2013)
  • 10. Manuscripts worked on by volunteers, 8 September2010 to 8 March 2013Number ofmanuscripts workedonNumber of volunteers(percentage)0 2048 (84.9)1 225 (9.3)2 66 (2.7)3 24 (0.9)4 6 (0.2)5 to 20 25 (1)21 to 50 3 (0.1)51 to 100 5 (0.2)101 to 200 3 (0.1)201 to 500 2 (<0.1)501 to 999 1 (<0.1)1000+ 2 (<0.1)Total 2410 (100)
  • 11. Some tips on project management:• Don’t get lost in translation. The team mustcommunicate effectively.• Don’t underestimate the time it takes to managevolunteers.• Simplify the task as much as possible• Funding runs out fast. Think ahead.• Tools are quickly rendered obsolete. Be ready toadapt.• Secure the right publicity!
  • 12. • Code for Transcribe Bentham MediaWiki plugins:,last accessed 15 June 2012.Public Records Office of Victoria
  • 13. For more information see:• Tim Causer, Justin Tonra, and Valerie Wallace, ‘TranscriptionMaximized; Expense Minimized? Crowdsourcing and Editing TheCollected Works of Jeremy Bentham’, Literary and LinguisticComputing, 27/2 (2012)• Tim Causer and Valerie Wallace, ‘Building a Volunteer Community:Results and Findings from Transcribe Bentham’, 6/2 (2012),