Grants:Project/Smallison/Music in Canada @ 150: A Wikipedia and Wikidata Project/Midpoint
Welcome to this project's midpoint report! This report shares progress and learning from the grantee's first 3 months.
- The main thrust of activity in the past few months has been preparing for the summit and workshop event and building and planning the community network for the main edit-a-thon event in October, 2017.
- Other activities included continued outreach with partner institutions, participating in initiatives like #1lib1ref and art+feminism.
Methods and activities
- The project is based on a stepped approach where we build to our final event allowing organizations and participants to build local knowledge and expertise.
- The steering group have regular meetings over Google Hangouts to discuss planning and planning work is done collaboratively in Google docs.
- Some members participated in the #1lib1ref campaign as a means to start building expertise and participation at their local organizations.
- Allison-Cassin has ongoing phone and online discussion with participants, especially those who were unable to join us for the May workshops.
- We made connections with Wikimedia Canada and other active Wikipedians in order to draw on local expertise.
Summit and Workshop
- The summit and workshop was held on May 25th at Gerstein Library, University of Toronto. It was scheduled as a pre-conference event for the annual meeting of the Canadian Association of Music Libraries, Archives and Documentation Centres. This helped to cut down on travel expenses for participants and helped to ensure participation of people from across Canada.
- An event webpage was created and the program was posted
- Registration was organized through Eventbrite. 34 people, including organizers, participated. This meant we met our target of 30-40 participants.
- Editing activities were organized through a workshop dashboard
- The panel session was recorded and the recording will be made available.
- The workshop on Wikidata was recorded and the video is be made available. Slides and text and have been posted.
What are the results of your project or any experiments you’ve worked on so far?
Please discuss anything you have created or changed (organized, built, grown, etc) as a result of your project to date.
- At the workshop we had 31 editors edit a total of 32 articles and provided training on Wikipedia training for those new to the space.
- Training was provided on working on Wikidata. This session was recorded. This session was followed up by a conference session the following day.
- As this was a "train the trainer" event the workshop provided participants with tools and ideas around running their own edit-a-thons.
- Workshop materials have been posted and are available to be used by others.
- The workshop and summit allowed for lively conversation on the topic of librarian and library participation in Wikimedia projects. Opening space for these discussions was an outcome of the project. Participants found the workshop to be not only an excellent introduction to opportunities and challenges with integrating Wikimedia projects into the work of libraries, but it allowed participants to discuss critical issues related to the state of access to information in Canada.
- Many participants appreciated the opportunity to engage in lively discussion amongst professionals. It was clear that encouraging more opportunities such as this workshop would be appreciated by the librarian community.
- It was also helpful to have participants from a number of different kinds of libraries. In the future it would be interesting to open this kind of workshop up to a greater diversity of people within the cultural heritage space in Canada. Many participants found it useful to hear the perspective from Amy Furness from the Art Gallery of Ontario and an experienced Art + Feminism organizer.
- The workshop full-day workshop focused on GLAM professionals was highly effective. Having the entire day allowed participants to become orientated to the Wikimedia projects and have an effective and fulsome discussion of issues related to integrating activities into professional practice. The organizing team feels this model could be extended.
Please take some time to update the table in your project finances page. Check that you’ve listed all approved and actual expenditures as instructed. If there are differences between the planned and actual use of funds, please use the column provided there to explain them.
Then, answer the following question here: Have you spent your funds according to plan so far? Please briefly describe any major changes to budget or expenditures that you anticipate for the second half of your project.
- We were able to secure funding and support from York University and the Canadian Association of Music Libraries to help cover some of the costs for the workshop therefore our expenses were less than we had projected.
The best thing about trying something new is that you learn from it. We want to follow in your footsteps and learn along with you, and we want to know that you are taking enough risks to learn something really interesting! Please use the below sections to describe what is working and what you plan to change for the second half of your project.
What are the challenges
What challenges or obstacles have you encountered? What will you do differently going forward? Please list these as short bullet points.
- One of the challenges is communicating across a large and distributed geographic area. Coming together in-person was very helpful, but we will not be able to do it again before the end of the project.
- We had originally thought we would have the edit-a-thons on a single day, but finding a common day that would work for all communities proved to be impractical at the same time coordinating activities on a single day will make the greatest impact. This is something we are still looking at.
- We can see that we should create pathways for sustained engagement. This may be tools for participants to use to use the Wikimedia platforms beyond the campaign.
- An additional challenge is connecting work with Wikimedia projects with day-to-day work in libraries and archives
What is working well
What have you found works best so far? To help spread successful strategies so that they can be of use to others in the movement, rather than writing lots of text here, we'd like you to share your finding in the form of a link to a learning pattern.
Next steps and opportunities
What are the next steps and opportunities you’ll be focusing on for the second half of your project? Please list these as short bullet points. If you're considering applying for a 6-month renewal of this grant at the end of your project, please also mention this here.
- In the next phase of our project we will be focusing on preparing for and launching our Canada-wide edit-a-thon.
- We will focus on creating more training resources primarily targeting academic institutions
- Building on some of the findings and discussions from the workshop in May we will create resources on the "why" of involvement in Wikimedia sister projects.
- Potentially updating and extending existing toolkits to engage community with tools and outreach. For example looking at the Women Scientists Workshop materials.
- Recent changes to the event dashboard has meant that we will be able to better track editing in Wikidata.
- Hosting a summit for GLAM professionals on the platforms is an effective way to provide outreach and incentives to this community. The organizing team found this mechanism to be especially effective and more effective than edit-a-thons in opening space at organizations for Wikimedia.
- The project team sees value on hosting further music edit-a-thons on a smaller scale for those organizations who wish to continue to expand and reinforce this practice.
We’d love to hear any thoughts you have on how the experience of being an grantee has been so far. What is one thing that surprised you, or that you particularly enjoyed from the past 3 months?
So far this project has been a great way to connect the librarian community on a wide-range of relevant issues.
The Wikimedia Foundation has been incredibly supportive throughout the whole process, from application through funding. They clearly want to help us succeed. The Wiki Edit-a-thon summit we held for Music in Canada 150 was a huge success. Anecdotal evidence from coffee and lunch break conversation showed a high level of participant engagement. Personally, I was fascinated to learn more about the Wikipedia editorial process. The hands-on learning activity in the afternoon was incredibly valuable; it was a pleasure to learn together. I now feel more confident as a Wikipedia content provider and editor, and better able to teach others at our upcoming Wiki Edit-a-thon.