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Crowdsourcing and Cultural Heritage workshop

Invited workshop for the Humanities Research Center at Rice University, 7 March 2016.
This workshop will provide an overview of crowdsourcing in cultural heritage and consider the ethics and motivations for participation. International case studies will be discussed to provide real life illustrations of design tips and to inspire creative thinking.

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Crowdsourcing and Cultural Heritage workshop

  1. 1. Crowdsourcing and Cultural Heritage Mia Ridge, @mia_out Digital Curator, British Library Fondren Library, Rice University, 7 March 2016
  2. 2. Overview • What • Why • Who • Emerging best practice • Exercises - try and discuss
  3. 3.
  4. 4. Hands up! • Do you work with: – Text – Images – Audio/video – Objects – Stories / memories / knowledge? • Does your mission include education, outreach or engagement? • Does you work with volunteers? Students?
  5. 5. What is crowdsourcing?
  6. 6. Crowdsourcing in cultural heritage Asking the public to help with tasks that contribute to a shared, significant goal or research interest related to cultural heritage collections or knowledge. The activities and/or goals should be inherently rewarding.
  7. 7. Basically... Transforming input content into output content ...via a powerful purpose and / or enjoyable tasks that people want to help you with
  8. 8. Crowdsourcing and related terms • User-generated content • Human computation • Citizen science, citizen history, citizen humanities • Academic (e.g. humanities) crowdsourcing • Community-sourcing, nichesourcing • Cognitive surplus • 'the wisdom of crowds'
  9. 9. • 19th Century natural history collecting • 1849 Smithsonian weather observation project • 1857, 1879 Oxford English Dictionary appeals • WWII Soldiers given a Field Collector's Manual in Natural History by the US Museum of Natural History James Murray, editor, OED, with contributor slips Crowdsourcing before the web
  10. 10. What is crowdsourcing?
  11. 11. reCAPTCHA
  12. 12. Heritage crowdsourcing examples
  13. 13. National Library of Australia: Trove
  14. 14. 178 million lines of text corrected...
  15. 15. ...rewards reinforce motivation
  16. 16. FamilySearch
  17. 17. Transcribe Bentham
  18. 18. Art UK Tagger
  19. 19. PCF Image Recognition
  20. 20.
  21. 21. Exercise: compare front pages Go to: Compare pairs of sites: how good is the front page at making you want to participate in a project?
  22. 22. More examples
  23. 23. British Library Georeferencer
  24. 24. British Library LibCrowds
  25. 25. British Library LibCrowds
  26. 26. Reading Experience Database
  27. 27. 10 Most Wanted
  28. 28. Translation - Duolingo
  29. 29. Micropasts photo-masking
  30. 30. Example outputs • Links between content (relationships) • Ratings/Votes • Tags • Corrections • Transcriptions • Descriptions • Geo-coordinates • Images, multimedia • Game levels • Research • Object identification • Family records • Objects, documents • Personal experiences, memories
  31. 31. Questions?
  32. 32. Why crowdsourcing?
  33. 33. Why crowdsourcing in GLAMs?* • Digitisation backlog: collections are big, resources are small GLAMs = Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums
  34. 34. Why crowdsourcing in GLAMs? • Fix the 'semantic gap', enhance discoverability
  35. 35. Why crowdsourcing in GLAMs? • Access external specialist expertise
  36. 36. Why crowdsourcing in GLAMs? • Support needs of scholarly researchers e.g. participant transcription, DIY digitisation
  37. 37. Why crowdsourcing in GLAMs? • Create engaging experiences for the public, meaningful forms of participation
  38. 38. Why crowdsourcing in GLAMs? • Create environments for learning skills - palaeography, classification, contextualisation, humanistic or scientific analysis
  39. 39. Who contributes and why?
  40. 40. Who participates in crowdsourcing? • People who are passionate about your subject / people who like doing the task you're offering • Super-volunteers and lots of other people • Amateurs, professionals, 'pro-ams' • People who can't volunteer in regular hours or at your venues
  41. 41. Super-contributors and passers-by
  42. 42. Motivations for participation • Altruistic – helping to provide an accurate record of local history • Intrinsic – reading 18thC handwriting is an enjoyable puzzle or they're interested in the subject • Extrinsic – an academic collecting a quote from a primary source
  43. 43. Extrinsic motivations
  44. 44. Intrinsic motivations for participation • fun • the pleasure in doing hobbies • the enjoyment in learning • mastering new skills, practicing existing skills • recognition • community • passion for the subject State Library of Queensland, Australia
  45. 45. Motivations and Galaxy Zoo I am interested in astronomy 46% I enjoy looking at the beautiful galaxy images 16 I can meet other people with similar interests 6 I am excited to contribute to original scientific research 22 I can look at galaxies that few people have seen before 8 I had a lot of fun categorising the galaxies 11 I am happy to help 7 I find the site and forums helpful in learning about astronomy 10 I am interested in science 4 I find Galaxy Zoo to be a useful resource for teaching other people 2 I am amazed by the vast scale of the universe 24 I am interested in the Galaxy Zoo project 8 Crowdsourcing Cultural Heritage with Mia Ridge and Ben Brumfield at HILT
  46. 46. Motivations and Your Paintings Tagger I am interested in paintings 85.5% I like working with people with similar interests 12.3 I am excited to be contributing to research into paintings 60.8 I can look at paintings that few people have seen before 50.5 I have fun categorising the paintings 55 I am happy to help with a national project like Your Paintings 76.3 I find Tagger helpful in learning about paintings 45.6 I find Tagger to be a useful resource for teaching other people 15.7 I am impressed by the wide range of the national collection of paintings 51.5 Crowdsourcing Cultural Heritage with Mia Ridge and Ben Brumfield at HILT
  47. 47. Motivations as design guide People crave: • satisfying work to do • the experience of being good at something • time spent with people we like • the chance to be a part of something bigger (Jane McGonigal, 2009)
  48. 48. Questions?
  49. 49. Designing crowdsourcing projects
  50. 50. Exercise: try projects Go to: How clear was the purpose of the project? • Were the steps to complete the task clear? • How enjoyable was the task? • Did the reward (if any) feel appropriate? • Did you notice any friction or barriers? • Did the site anticipate your questions about the tasks?
  51. 51. Concepts for reviewing projects • The 'call to action' – Is the first step toward participating obvious? – Is the type of task, source material and output obvious? • Probable audience – Can you tell who the project wants to reach? – Does text trigger their motivations for starting, continuing? – How are they rewarded? – Are there any barriers to their participation? • Data input and data produced – What kinds of tasks create that data? – How are contributions validated? • How productive, successful overall?
  52. 52. Designing crowdsourcing projects • Interface and interaction design • Project design
  53. 53. Interface design for crowdsourcing • Demonstrate a close match between the crowdsourcing project and the mission of the organisation running it • Show, don't tell - let people see the impact of their contributions • 'Validate procrastination' - give people an altruistic excuse to spend time on your tasks
  54. 54. Interface design for crowdsourcing • Design for 'super taggers' and for people who do just one or two tasks • Design different tasks for different contexts
  55. 55. Smithsonian 'mini projects'
  56. 56. Designing for motivation • Match 'microcopy' messages to motivations • Match tasks and rewards to motivations • Anticipate which motivations might change over course of a project
  57. 57. Simple tasks as stepping stones
  58. 58. Designing for on-going participation • Support increasing mastery • Promote participants to new skills, new roles within project • Support emergence of a community
  59. 59. NYPL 'What's on the Menu?'
  60. 60. Design for participation • Make it easy for people to do the right thing • Scaffold the experience: tightly defined tasks, reduce uncertainty about quality of contribution, provide feedback on progress
  61. 61. Design for 'flow' • Clear sense of goals • Feedback on progress towards goals • Skills matched to challenge • Attention focused on task • 'in the moment' • Not worried about external factors
  62. 62. Exercise: lessons from game design Go to Spend 2 minutes trying it out
  63. 63. Did you understand what to do? Did you want to keep playing? Moral: start with the simplest task possible Exercise: lessons from game design
  64. 64. Inspiration from casual games • Easy-to-learn game-play • Simple controls • 'Forgiving' game-play with low risk of failure • Carefully managed complexity levels with a shallow learning curve, guidance through early levels, and inclusive, accessible themes • Sense of rapid progress and achievement
  65. 65. Inspiration from casual games • Build any tests for skill or experience requirements into the interface • Build tutorials for new skills into application at the point where its needed; provide good feedback on actions
  66. 66. Questions?
  67. 67. Project design • Plan to store and process results from crowdsourcing • Allow time for community interaction and marketing • Design projects that contribute to your engagement strategy and digitisation goals • Release early and often (if you can) • Reality check your plans
  68. 68. Marketing and outreach • Call to action and tagline should explain what's unique about your project • Start with what people already love and share about your collections • Updates as outreach – Achievements, progress towards goals – Highlight participant discoveries, questions
  69. 69. #party host Crowdsourcing as hosting a party
  70. 70. Task ecosystems
  71. 71. The growth of platforms
  72. 72. Exercise: planning crowdsourcing • Who already loves and/or uses your collections? • What motivates them? What rewards can you design to match their motivations? • Which material needs what kind of work? • Do any existing platforms meet most of your needs? • What potential barriers could you turn into tasks? • How will you resource community interaction? • How would a project support your mission, engagement strategy and digitisation goals?
  73. 73. Thank you! Mia Ridge @mia_out Digital Curator, British Library Knowledge Exchange Event & MGS Digital Transformation Network meeting, 2 December 2, 2015 The Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum