Sunday, 14 June 2015

Small accumulations

Yesterday at work we ran our second public Wikipedia training and editing day, focused on improving the coverage of Māori and Pacific artists. It's part of the wider Wikipedia project we've been running since last November.

I'm thrilled at what we've achieved with this project. While we're not creating new knowledge, the way galleries aim to with publishing projects, we're doing a lot of dig up and knit together information about artists, to create networks of links between artists, educators and mentors, galleries and residencies and awards.

This is a screenshot of my contribution page from today.  I've been adding links from our podcast at The Dowse to relevant entries, and then links to Circuit podcasts, and then links to interviews from Standing Room Only, and then doing some work on Emily Karaka's page. It's satisfying because my nerdy art history side comes out to play; it's also satisfying because I can see how all the content we produce can have a long tail. And it's satisfying because information is going into the place where it is most likely to be found.

I now treat Wikipedia editing almost like volunteering. I have the occasional sustained burst, like this weekend, but usually it's micro-additions, a sentence or two added to the right pages when a new show opens or magazine gets published or grants get awarded. I might never get around to doing that Ph.D I ponder occasionally, but at least I'm putting my training to some use on a regular basis.

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