Wikimedia chapters/Reports/Wikimedia Deutschland/September 2014

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Because the communities carried out so many funded activities in September, this monthly report gives a brief overview only. A detailed report can be found in this separate blog entry.

Photography projects[edit]

Despite fall approaching and the festival season slowly coming to an end, the Wikipedia Festival Summer project was still out and about! Five festivals were on the photographers’ list for September: The Nocturnal Culture Night in Kummerfeld, the Ackerfestival and Energy in the Park in Munich, the Berlin Festival and the Hamburg Metal Days. An overview of the Festival Summer 2014 photos is now available. And a new treasure trove of photos was uncovered. Digitized copies of historical photos of the Great St Bernard Hospice are now available thanks to a private donor. (photos) The other photography projects that took place in September were:

Community spaces and events[edit]

Wiki Dialog[edit]

The Wiki Dialog to plan next year's Zedler Prize took place from September 4 to 18, allowing Wikipedia and the community to jointly formulate the community’s expectations and wishes for the structure of the prize next year. Proposals were collected and discussed in a discussion phase and then conclusively agreed on in the coordination phase. A total of ten community members actively participated in the discussion and 31 participated in the final coordination. The Dialogue “From Echo to Visual Editor” has been taking place since September 15, as part of a longer package of measures to introduce software innovations in Wikipedia.

Other projects[edit]

Wikipedia contributors met in Berlin on September 6 and 7 to work together on the further development of the WMDE funding guidelines. The funding guidelines were developed in a joint process with the community and can be further discussed, supplemented and adapted as required. As in the previous year, Wikipedia was also represented in the Corso Leopold street festival in Munich thanks to volunteers who participated in the project. Following similar events in Berlin and Hamburg, an evening session on Digital Media Women took place in Cologne on September 16 at which the Women Edit project was presented and details on organizing and carrying out a Women Edit workshop were explained. Women Edit aims to motivate more women to participate and provide them with an opportunity to network.

GLAM meeting in Vienna[edit]

On September 13 and 14, 16 volunteers from Austria, Switzerland and Germany met in Vienna to catch up on current and planned GLAM activities (GLAM=galleries, libraries, archives and museums). This meeting focused on the insight that it will remain difficult to retain new Wikipedia authors while relevance criteria, deletion discussions and many unwritten rules continue to demotivate newcomers. This is also true for the GLAM sector. A possible solution to this problem is the proposal from Austria to motivate GLAM institutions to extensively describe the contents documented by volunteers in Wikimedia Commons in the metadata. An alternative solution proposed by WMDE is to generally focus more intensively on content and making it available under an open license.

  • Good talks on WLM in Austria, Schnitzel culture, GLAM in Switzerland and Germany, collaboration with small GLAM partners and the GLAM activities of the Austrian Open GLAM group.
  • Breathtaking excursion to the Hofburg with an exclusive tour all around and to right under the roof.
  • Inspiring discussions among the 16 participants
  • See also documentation

Other activities[edit]

In preparation of the GLAM on Tour in Brilon in October, we held a press conference on the GLAM on Tour Station in Brilon on September 17.


Wikimedia World Café with the German Association of Spokespersons on September 11.[edit]

Wikipedia is already an established part of everyday life, providing a large group of users with knowledge and information every day. But how can people ensure that their own institution has a well-rounded Wikipedia article? How can science communicators actively participate in Wikipedia and what parameters and pitfalls should they be aware of? The Wikiuniverse World Café provides answers to these kinds of questions. Following an introductory talk centered on open licenses and how institutions can contribute to Wikimedia projects, participants were given the opportunity to get to know Wikidata, Wikimedia Commons and Wikipedia which were presented by volunteers. The event was supported by Marcus Cyron, Andreas Paul and Daniel Mietchen – a big thank you to them!

MS Wissenschaft (MS Science)[edit]

The event “Science and free knowledge – engine of progress and commons of the information society” took place on the MS Wissenschaft on September 15, 2014 in Vienna (Austria). Sixty people attended the event which was jointly organized by Wikimedia Deutschland, Österreich and Schweiz and the Open Knowledge Foundation Deutschland and Österreich. A representative from the European Commission “Digital Agenda” joined the international panel of scientists on the podium. The event was funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF), the Austrian equivalent to the German Research Foundation (DFG). Short talks were held on Open Science, Open Data and Citizen Science, which were then controversially debated by the podium and the public. In brief: nobody got bored, the discussion could have gone on for much longer. It was exciting for the German-language Wikimedia Chapter to see where and how science can and must become more open and what kind of response the call for more openness can have. An extensive report and a short video documentation will follow shortly. The tour of the MS Wissenschaft ended in Forchheim on September 28. On its four-month trip, the exhibition ship travelled a total of just under 3,400 kilometers and visited 38 cities in Germany and Austria. A total of 90,000 visitors came on board, including 480 school groups.

Digital Competences[edit]

In September two Digital Competence events took place. The event "Digital Natives - a nice-sounding phrase with little substance?" was held on September 1, 2014 and was attended by 70 people. Following an introductory talk by Prof. Rolf Schulmeister from Hamburg University, the guests discussed the term and its impact on science and in practice with the podium. Up to 15 people participated in the debate via stream and many people joined in on Twitter as well. Anyone who doesn’t have time to watch the whole stream can watch the short video documentation or read the report in the WMDE blog. The event on September 29 was dedicated to the “Digitalization of the working world”. In her keynote, Sabria David from the Slow Media Institute gave an overview of the shift in media culture, what makes Wikipedia a positive example of collaborative work and how digital worker protection can have a preemptive impact. The audience then discussed the psychologically important factors and the potential benefits of legal regulation with Professor Tim Hagemann and Sabria David. A recording of the whole event, a report and a short video documentation will be available shortly.


The HIVE Berlin network had its monthly MeetUp on September 10. Around 15 participants from educational institutes, science and the tech world discussed interactive museum education, the certification of qualifications with Open Badges and the work of Chaos macht Schule.

Other activities[edit]

  • The Data Filling Station was on display at the national congress of trade union Verdi on September 9 in Potsdam.
  • Presentation of Coding Da Vinci at the symposium on digitalization in Berlin on September 12.
  • Evaluation of Coding da Vinci (press review, data, statistics, preparing the documentation)
  • Preparations for the program block “Cultural heritage 3.0 – Digital use” at Shaping Access are almost complete.
  • Preparations for making the first media for the new information and consultation service in 2015 (How to make a GLAM on Tour, Video: The key to success in the Wikiuniverse)
  • Preparations for the ABC of Free Knowledge on October 2


Monsters of Law on September 25 – “Levels of creativity and protection. From what point does copyright law apply?"[edit]

Is that art or can it be thrown away? - This is a serious question in the context of copyright considerations. At what point does a scribble become a protected piece of work? In his talk at Monsters of Law, Lukas Mezger (User:Gnom), lawyer (former trainee in the legal department of the Wikimedia Foundation) and member of the Wikipedia editorial team law introduced the topic of the level of creativity and corresponding copyright law and used a recent example to illustrate the difficulties that can arise in defining a lower threshold for copyright protection.

OER Conference 2014[edit]

People interested in OER from all over Germany met on September 12 and 13 in Urania Berlin to discuss the future of open educational resources at the OER Conference 2014. Speakers from Sweden, Poland, the U.S. and, of course, Germany addressed many topics related to OER in the educational sector, presenting these in a controversial manner. The Barcamp parts of the conference gave participants the opportunity to talk to each other in depth and develop ideas. From the perspective of the organizing team, the conference was a big success all round with 350 attendees. Thanks very much to everyone who participated and helped! Numerous interviews with individual speakers at the OERde14 are now available online via werkstatt.bpb. Conference Day 1 (September 12) / and Conference Day 2 (September 13). More interviews will be published soon on the WMDE conference website. Talks held in the plenum of the OERde14 are available in the recapitulation of the conference. Those of you that missed the conference or were temporarily offline can watch the plenum talks here. The results of the post conference survey (part 1, follow-up survey will be conducted in the beginning of 2015) in German language can be found here.

The Free Education Alliance[edit]

The Free Education Alliance was officially presented at the end of the first day of the OERde14 conference by participants Sebastian Horndasch (WMDE) and John Weitzmann (Creative Commons). The Alliance representatives presented their overall objective of promoting the idea of open educational resources in society and in government. The core task of the Free Education Alliance is to take action at the political level. The Alliance wants to present its own recommendations for action to promote OER among policy-makers at the fall/winter 2014 Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs. The next strategy meeting to compile the recommendations for political action is scheduled for October 6.


Software development in September[edit]

Wikidata concluded several improvements to the user interface. First steps were also taken to enable the more direct integration of Wikidata data into other projects; the use of data from the Wikidata collection is currently being measured for evaluation purposes. Initial talks on integrating structured data with Wikidata technology in Wikimedia Commons were held at Wikimania in London. A one-week meeting of technicians from the WMDE Software Development Team and the Wikimedia Foundation Multimedia Team was planned in September. This meeting will take place in Berlin in October. Fundraising programmed and posted the first donation banners. The Software Development Team also substantially improved the source code of the software for the campaign to raise donations. All parts of the code are currently being checked using automatic tests.


Jan Engelmann has been interim Executive Director of WMDE since September 1. Pavel Richter has been advisor to the Executive Director since September 1. Jan Zerebecki has been working for Software Development since September 1. Solveigh Mertins joined Fundraising as a student trainee on September 15. Rebecca Cotton (project assistant in the Volunteer Support Department) left the team on September 3. Mathias Schindler (project manager Politics & Society) and Nina Schuiki (student trainee in Communication) left the team on September 30.