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Every Feather and Song: Crowdsourcing and Co-curation from a Natural History Perspective

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Presentation by Sander Pieterse (Naturalis Biodiversity Center & Xeno-canto Foundation for Nature Sounds) on October 31st 2016 at the workshop Two Birds, One Stone: Bridging cultural heritage collections with crowds and niches.

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Every Feather and Song: Crowdsourcing and Co-curation from a Natural History Perspective

  1. 1. Every Feather and Song Sander Pieterse Naturalis Biodiversity Center // Xeno-canto Foundation for Nature Sounds @zzherc Digibird symposium “Two birds, one stone” October 31, 2016 Netherlands Institute for Sound & Vision Hilversum, The Netherlands Crowdsourcing and co-curation from a natural history perspective
  2. 2. Naturalis Biodiversity Center = (collection × research) + museum 40 million specimens
  3. 3. Also, T. rex.
  4. 4. ● ‘Cognitive surplus’: to build a big collection together ● Networking: finding and binding amateurs and professionals ● Enrichment: gather object types not part of own (Naturalis) collection Why do we crowdsource?
  5. 5. National thesaurus of multicellular species observed in The Netherlands since 1758 www.nederlandsesoorten.nl Dutch Species Catalog
  6. 6. Dutch species: illustrate ‘em all photographers validators photo editor (admin) publication
  7. 7. Transcription of specimen labels
  8. 8. Whale & dolphin strandings
  9. 9. Xeno-canto Found for Nature Sounds ● Popularise bird sounds & recording ● Improve access to bird sounds ● Increase the knowledge of bird sounds ● Build the ultimate, complete sound guide ● Through www.xeno-canto.org
  10. 10. Xeno-canto collection in numbers ● 328,632 recordings ● 9,662 species (> 90% of all species) ● 3,309 recordists ● 4728+ hours of recordings
  11. 11. What to do when crowdsourcing?
  12. 12. Provide a shared goal e.g. illustrating inter- and intraspecific diversity
  13. 13. Create a sense of connectedness Make the shared goal social e.g. by ● acknowledging users ● stand amongst your users ● meetings between users ● co-curating content ● solving puzzles together
  14. 14. Connectedness: helping research(ers)
  15. 15. ● Customization ● Create feedback loops ● Provide (new) insights ● Personal progression Allow for autonomy and mastery
  16. 16. Always ● provide shared goal (a purpose) ● create a sense of connectedness ● allow for autonomy and mastery Also, be aware that ● content issues will arise ● expertise can be a bottleneck, too What to do when crowdsourcing?
  17. 17. Connecting species to specimens
  18. 18. Connecting sounds to species
  19. 19. Every Feather and Song Sander Pieterse Naturalis Biodiversity Center // Xeno-canto Foundation for Nature Sounds @zzherc Digibird symposium “Two birds, one stone” October 31, 2016 Netherlands Institute for Sound & Vision Hilversum, The Netherlands Crowdsourcing and co-curation from a natural history perspective

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