The importance of Wikipedia for the documentation and promotion of museum holdings is gaining acceptance, and the number of references to articles is growing. However, the museum world still has much less attention for the Wikipedia project as collaborative community and for its intentions, structures, and special features. Although these observations are based on museums in Germany and focus on the German Wikipedia, they are just as important and applicable to other museums and other editions of Wikipedia. Universities and libraries have already taken advantage of the Wikipedia and have established functional links. In that the mission of museums is closely related to that of universities and libraries, the value of Wikipedia for museum professionals is worthy of consideration.
In order to define the possible advantages of utilization and cooperation, both the museum world and the Wikipedia world can be considered communities dedicated to the expansion of knowledge. This knowledge is targeted at the large and not very specific audience that we commonly call “the general public.” Museums collect objects, provide documentation and produce knowledge about those objects and the representing fields of sciences or other scholarship. Wikipedia collects data and information pieces, provides articles, and at the same time offers insight into the process of how knowledge grows.
Along these similarities, the Wikipedia shall be examined in the following areas:
contributors (scholars and other museum staff, visitors, students)
This consideration will provide information to discuss the following questions in the Professional Forum: Which parts of the DIKW chain (data, information, knowledge, wisdom) provide the most efficient connections between museums and the Wikipedia? Where are the easiest access points for scholars, and how can connections be built? Which museum activities can be seen as related to Wikipedia with mutual benefits for both communities, and how can scholars be part of these activities? museum documentation research public access to information in the museum publications educational material. What are possible tools that would enable the use of Wikipedia, and which tools are missing?
Which museum activities can be seen as related to Wikipedia with mutual benefits for both communities, and how can scholars be part of these activities? In this context, consideration would be given to museum documentation, research, public access to information in the museum, publications, and educational material.
The results of reflections and discussions can outline the map of interconnections between these two communities and thus provide orientation for scholars, museum activities, and projects.
Museum Documentation and Wikipedia.de
Museum Documentation and Wikipedia.dePossibilities, opportunities and advantages for scholars and museums Thomas Tunsch
Museum and Wikipedia It’s a museum, what’s to know? You bang in a nail, you hang up a picture. Any idiot could do that. – Sophia Petrillo Wikipedia generates noise, not knowledge. Previous encyclopedias were well-researched and contained precise information that could be trusted to be correct. Wikipedia, on the other hand, contains a large amount of errors, omissions and superfluous trivia. – Prillinger, 2004April 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 2
Museum and WikipediaDifferent worlds? Scholars Authors General Public Reference sources LibrariesApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 3
Museum and Wikipedia From idea to publication PublicationIdea Research (Scholar) (Book, Catalogue, Website) Single use of resources Articles Conferences Databases and references Books Colleagues Web Resources Start-End process PublicationIdea Research (Scholar) (Book, Catalogue, Website) Wikipedia Multiple use of resources and references Scholar as part of Community (Publication, Structures, Ideas, Developments) Network process April 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 4
Collaborative Communities collecting objects collecting data and providing documentation information pieces creating knowledge about documenting discussions, objects and the representing citations and sources fields of expertise generating articles, presenting objects and assembling categories, information to the public building portals ia um pe d u se i ki M WApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 5
Collaborative Communities Methods Practical Experience Content ContributorsApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 6
Collaborative CommunitiesMethods Discussion page Conventions, manuals, standards – community process Methodic instruments – creating – changing – discussing Keywords – collaborative – colleagues – communication – communityApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 7
Collaborative CommunitiesPractical experience Knowledge and interaction Neutral Point of View (NPOV) Scholars, knowledge and communityApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 8
Collaborative Communities Subjective information subject Information sources field Scholar Colleagues experience ORIENTED LibrariesMULTIPLE specific channels subjects unspecific sectors fields experiences Wikipedia April 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 9
Collaborative CommunitiesNPOV My Point Of View POV sources of Community POVinformation (University, specific field, Wikipedia) POV Neutral POVApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 10
Collaborative CommunitiesScholars, knowledge and community public access to Expert field of expertise – knowledge specialization – expert’s Expert knowledge specific field Generalist accessibility Wikipedia general knowledgeApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 11
Collaborative CommunitiesContributors Contributors and interactivity – scholars – other museum staff – visitors – students Potential visitors Participatory cultureApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 13
Museums • Scholars • Wikipedia Data, information, knowledge, wisdom Access points Museum activities Tools for museumsApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 14
Museums • Scholars • WikipediaDIKW Which parts of the DataInformationKnowledgeWisdom chain provide the most efficient connections between museums and the Wikipedia? – Individual scholar • Articles, Data & Information – Community of scholars • PortalApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 15
Museums • Scholars • WikipediaAccess points Where are the easiest access See also: points for scholars, and how – Commons can connections been built? – Wiktionary – Articles – Wikisource – Documentation – Wikibooks – Search & Find – Wikiquote – Documentation & Public – Wikinews – CIDOC CRM & – Wikiversity Vocabularies – Wikispecies – Technology • database links • templates • tools • projectsApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 16
Museums • Scholars • WikipediaMuseum activities Which museum activities can be museum documentation (e.g. seen as related to Wikipedia objects, controlled vocabulary, with mutual benefits for both exhibitions) communities? research How can scholars be part of public access (exhibitions, these activities? visitor information, …) publications (catalogues, websites, …) educational material Scholars (academic activities) – ontologies and reference techniques – methods to verify information in museum documentation – critical use of sourcesApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 17
Museums • Scholars • WikipediaAdditional benefits Information for Wikipedia – Content for articles – Links…April 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 18
Museums • Scholars • WikipediaTools What are possible tools that Museums Wiki would enable the use of Wikipedia, and which tools are missing?April 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 19
What’s next? Maybe next time we meet in a new portal for museums in Wikipedia? Don’t worry, nobody has to bang in a nail or hang up a picture there ….April 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 20
Content Museum and Wikipedia Museums, Scholars and Wikipedia – Different worlds? – DIKW – From idea to publication* – Access points Collaborative Communities – Museum activities – Collaborative Communities – Additional benefits* – Methods – Tools – Practical experience What’s next? – Subjective information – NPOV – Scholars, knowledge and community – Content – Contributors* * not in introductionApril 13, 2007 Museums and the Web 2007 21
See alsoMuseum Documentation and Wikipedia.de Thomas Tunsch