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The Wikipedia Library/Newsletter/January-February 2022

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The Wikipedia Library
Books & Bytes
Issue 49, January–February 2022

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In this issue we highlight new partnerships, the latest developments on the Library Card platform and, as always, a roundup of news and community items related to libraries and digital knowledge.

New partners[edit]

The Wikipedia Library is announcing free, full-access, accounts for several new partners:

  • Wiley – broad collections of online journals, books, and research resources, covering life, health, social, and physical sciences
  • OECD iLibrary, OECD Data, and OECD Multimedia Gallery – a repository of materials published by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

A number of existing partners have also moved to allow immediate access to all eligible editors, without requiring an application; these include Alexander Street, American Psychiatric Association, and American Psychological Association. To see which partners are available to you, visit your My Collections page.

#The Wikipedia Library: Accessing free reliable sources is now easier than ever[edit]

An excerpt from a post on Diff by Sam Walton

Nine years ago, Wikipedia editor Jake Orlowitz asked Highbeam – an aggregator of news articles, academic journals, and other reliable sources – if they might be able to provide him with a free account to their website so that he could do research for a Wikipedia article. They offered him 1,000 accounts, and encouraged him to distribute them amongst Wikipedia's editing community so that everyone who wanted to use their resources on Wikipedia could do so. Since then, a further 75 organisations have partnered to provide thousands of Wikipedia editors with free access to paywalled sources. You can suggest new collections be added to the library – we're always growing our available content through new partnerships and prioritise based on these suggestions.

When we centralized Wikipedia Library signups on the Library Card tool in 2017, our main goal was to allow users to browse and access all of the library's collections from one place. Editors can now use EBSCO Discovery Service to browse content from a wide range of databases with a single search. The search bar is available in the library's header once you've logged in, and searching a topic will pull results from a wide variety of collections. By default, search results will display content from publishers participating in the Library Bundle – the default content available to all eligible users – so that you can browse with confidence knowing that all results can be accessed.

Alongside the integration of a search tool, we've also redesigned the user experience for some of the library's most important workflows: the homepage and ‘My Library' (now My Collections). Our new homepage provides a simpler onboarding experience, with brief information about what the library is, and functionality for at-a-glance browsing of the available collections. We've combined the list of collections you do and don't have access to into the same interface, with tag and filtering functionality which allows you to find the content you're most interested in. We've also simplified the library's eligibility criteria, which has allowed us to make further refinements to the user interface. You can provide feedback on the overall UX of the library at the design project page.

We've also rolled out an on-wiki notification to eligible editors. When an editor crosses the library's eligibility threshold, they will receive an Echo notification informing them that they now qualify for the library. This will also be sent retroactively to all users who already qualify, and users should only receive this notification once.

We hope that all of these changes make the library more welcoming, useful, and enable it to be used by a broader range of Wikimedia community members.

Bytes in brief[edit]

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