Wikimedia blog

News from the Wikimedia Foundation and about the Wikimedia movement

Posts by Sarah Stierch

Survey shows interest in evaluation in Wikimedia movement, with room to grow

The Wikimedia Foundation’s Program Evaluation & Design team recently completed a survey about the evaluation of organized activities within the Wikimedia community. Program evaluation allows the Wikimedia community to see if the programs and projects they are doing, often to inspire and engage people to participate in the Wikimedia movement, work. It’s important to find out whether the programs that we spend hours of work and much energy on, and may invest money in, can be more efficient, more effective, and more impactful. Program Evaluation allows us to do that, and the Program Evaluation & Design team is here to support the community in discovering ways to do just that.

The survey was completed in August, having been sent out to over 100 program leaders around the world. The survey’s goal was to get a high level view of how program leaders within the Wikimedia movement have been evaluating programs such as edit-a-thons, workshops, Wikipedia Education Program, on-wiki contests, Wiki Loves Monuments, WikiExpeditions, other “Wiki Loves”, and GLAM programs. We wanted to know what type of data was being gathered by those planning and executing such programs across the movement. The results show that people who run programs track a variety of different data points, which is good. We know how busy volunteers and chapter/affiliate staff are, so it’s wonderful to see their ability to include evaluation into their often already overwhelming workflows. We’re excited to share some results with you, and to explain our next steps.

Evaluation Capacity Survey

We had a great response rate – 69 of the 114 invited program leaders completed the survey! Respondents represented 32 Wikimedia chapters, three affiliated clubs and organizations and eight individual community members. Thank you to everyone who responded! Some of the highlights from the survey include:

  • Half of the respondents reported having received grants from the Wikimedia Foundation.
  • Edit-a-thons and workshops, photo upload competitions, and the Wikipedia Education Program were the kinds of programs which were most frequently organized in the movement in the past year.

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Improving program performance: first evaluation workshop in Budapest

Participants from 15 countries attended the first Program Evaluation & Design Workshop

In the Wikimedia movement, there are many organized activities seeking to contribute to the Wikimedia vision and strategic goals. But how do you determine which of these programs work and which don’t? And how can you further improve the performance of programs? To tackle these difficult question, 26 international participants came together in June 2013 for the first Program Evaluation & Design Workshop in Budapest, Hungary. The event was held by the Wikimedia Foundation, in partnership with Wikimedia Magyarország, the local chapter.

With record high temperatures in Budapest, participants kept cool in the heart of the city, engaging in an intensive, two-day workshop that presented the basics of Program Evaluation. The workshop focused on creating a shared understanding of what program evaluation is, why it is important, and providing attendees with some basic skills and a logic modeling tool for mapping out their programs in order for them to begin incorporating Program Evaluation into their program work.

The workshop brought together 21 Wikimedians from 15 countries. The participants – all with a track record of doing program work – represented five different program types:

Topics of the workshop

Day one opened with a welcome by Frank Schulenburg, Senior Director of Programs at the Wikimedia Foundation, and a long-time Wikipedian. He gave a brief background on why Wikimedia is investing in Program Evaluation and what it is. Schulenburg stressed three points about the current evaluation initiative:

  • self-evaluation: program leaders evaluate their own programs
  • collaborative: we’re all in this together and we will learn together
  • focused on capacity building: our goal is to equip program leaders in the movement with the necessary skills to use program evaluation and design practices

Dr. Jaime Anstee, Program Evaluation & Design Specialist for the Wikimedia Foundation, then led the group through the basics of Program Evaluation – different types of evaluation and the roles of all involved in it while also expressing that the current evaluation initiative aims to be empowering, and participatory, while maintaining a utilization focus. The morning ended with a visioning exercise to see the positive and negative results of what the movement could experience with Program Evaluation, and lightning talks by the participants about the programs they have executed.

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Call for participants: Program Evaluation and Design workshop in Budapest

Over the next couple of years, the Wikimedia Foundation will be building capacity among program leaders around evaluation and program design. A better understanding of how to increase impact through better planning, execution and evaluation of programs and activities will help us to move a step closer to achieving our mission of offering a free, high quality encyclopedia to our readers around the world.

With this in mind, we are pleased to announce the first Program Evaluation and Design Workshop, on 22-23 June 2013 in Budapest, Hungary.

We have only 20 slots available for this workshop and the application deadline ends on May 17th. This two-day event will be followed by a pre-conference workshop at Wikimania 2013. Ideally, applicants would commit to attending both events.

The first Program Evaluation & Design workshop will be held in the shadows of the Buda Castle, Budapest, Hungary

Our long-term goals for the workshop are:

  • Participants will gain a basic shared understanding of program evaluation
  • Participants will work collaboratively to map and prioritize measurable outcomes, beginning with a focus on the most common programs and activities
  • Participants will gain increased fluency in common language of evaluation (i.e. goals versus objectives, inputs and outputs versus outcomes and impact)
  • Participants will learn and practice how to extract and report data using the UserMetrics API
  • Participants will commit to working as a community of evaluation leaders who will implement evaluation strategies in their programs and activities and report back at the pre-conference workshop at Wikimania 2013
  • …and participants will have a lot of fun and enjoy networking with other program leaders!

We will publish a detailed agenda for the event in Budapest soon on Meta-Wiki.

During the workshop in Budapest, we will only have a limited amount of time. Therefore, we will be focusing on the some of the more common programs and activities:

  • Wikipedia editing workshops where participants learn how to or actively edit (i.e. edit-a-thon, wikiparty, hands-on Wikipedia workshop)
  • Content donations through partnerships with galleries, libraries, archives and museums (GLAMs) and related organizations
  • Wiki Takes/Expeditions where volunteers participate in day-long or weekend events to photograph site specific content
  • Wiki Loves Monuments, which takes place in September
  • Education program and classroom editing where volunteers support educators who have students editing Wikipedia in the classroom
  • Writing competitions, which generally take place online in the form of contests, the WikiCup  and other challenges – often engaging experienced editors to improve content.

Contributors who play an active role in planning and executing programs and activities as described above in the Wikimedia community are highly encouraged to apply. Your experience and knowledge will make this workshop a success!

Hotels, flights and other transportation costs will be the responsibility of your chapter; the Wikimedia Foundation will provide the venue, handouts, breakfasts, light lunches, and a dinner for all participants on Saturday. If you’re not affiliated with a chapter and cannot afford to attend the event, please email me after you apply – we have a small amount of money set aside for those cases.

Remember, applications are open until May 17. You can apply via this Google Form.

Thanks for your interest, and I look forward to a great group of participants!

Sarah Stierch, Program Evaluation and Design Community Coordinator, Wikimedia Foundation

Walters Art Museum: A case study in sharing

The Ideal City, attributed to Fra Carnevale, created between circa 1480 and 1484. This was the first image contributed to Commons by the Walters Art Museum.

The Ideal City, attributed to Fra Carnevale, created between circa 1480 and 1484.This was the first image contributed to Commons by the Walters Art Museum.

This blog post originally appeared via the OpenGLAM Blog.

The Walters Art Museum, located in Baltimore  Maryland, is a model OpenGLAM institution. With a forward thinking staff aimed at opening their collections in unique and innovative ways, and a collection consisting of over 35,000 objects that are public domain, the Walters is prime real estate when it comes to OpenGLAM.

In early 2012, the Walters started partnering with volunteers from the Wikimedia community. The idea for the partnership was hatched out of GLAM Baltimore 2011; a series of events that brought volunteers from the Wikimedia community to the Walters to present about GLAM-Wiki projects. GLAM-Wiki is a project that focuses on fostering relationships between cultural institutions and the Wikimedia community, the community that maintains websites like Wikipedia.

This case study, written by myself and Dylan Kinnett, Manager of Web and Social Media at the Walters, showcases the projects that evolved out of this ongoing partnership. It summarizes key aspects of this partnership:

    • The image donation of over 18,000 images to Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository that supplies websites like Wikipedia with images. These images are used in thousands of Wikipedia articles in over 40 languages. They have been viewed on Wikipedia over 10 million times and additional metrics are included.
    • The changing of licenses on the Walters website to be more open, allowing the public to utilize the Walters website, or Wikimedia Commons, as locations to collect media and curatorial descriptions without copyright restriction.
    • An internship modeled after the Wikipedian in Residence concept. This internship is structured for museum studies students interested in new media and open culture. The first Wikipedia intern wrote numerous articles about artworks in the museum, and learned skills focused around art history research, Wikipedia mark-up and policies, collaborative editing and other skills.
    • The importance of outreach events in bringing together GLAMs and OpenGLAM community members. Without the GLAM Baltimore event, this partnership may have been delayed or not have happened.

The case study will be expanded to include coverage about the newly developed transcription project, which has the Walters working with Wikimedia community members to transcribe and translate rare Latin documents in the museum collection. These documents will then be shared via Wikisource, a free online library.

We hope that this case study will inspire and engage others to develop open sharing projects and programs. Please forward, share, and brainstorm how your GLAM can share its collections and knowledge holdings to provide further access to the public through OpenGLAM and GLAM-Wiki.

–Sarah Stierch, Wikipedian and US OpenGLAM Coordinator for the Open Knowledge Foundation

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library & Museum announces first Wikipedian in Residence

(This blog post originally appeared on the GLAM-Wiki US blog, under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.) 

Graduate student and Wikipedian Michael Barera became the first Wikipedian in Residence at a U.S. presidential library last week. Barera, who attends the University of Michigan’s School of Information, is serving as resident at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library & Museum, which is located on the university’s Ann Arbor campus.

This fresh partnership is a wonderful example of how outreach and education about Wikimedia projects can be key components for fostering opportunities such as this. Barera, who has been editing Wikipedia articles and uploading photographs to Wikimedia Commons for over five years, joined the Michigan Wikipedians, a student club on campus, and the first of its kind in the United States. Through the club, Berera attended a seminar held by the Wikipedia Education Program in the fall of 2012. The seminar educated attendees about the opportunities for using Wikipedia in the classroom as a learning tool and showcased partnerships being held around the country.

Little did Berera realize that the woman who would spearhead the development of his future residency was also in the audience: Bettina Couisneau, Exhibit Specialist at the Ford Library & Museum.

Berera and Couisneau connected at the seminar and Barera started volunteering at the Ford Library, using his skill set to categorize images that the Ford had uploaded to Wikimedia Commons, which totals over 11,000 images to date. Berera also created WikiProject Gerald Ford, a project that brings together Wikipedians from around the world to edit content about the 38th president of the United States. The opportunity for a more formal partnership was clear; Berera would be the natural choice for a Wikipedian in Residence at the Ford.

“This position is perfect for me,” said Barera, “It combines my academic passion for history, archives, open source advocacy and technology. I see my role as a facilitator, helping to bridge the gap between those who have the content and those who have the technical skills to make that information accessible to the whole world.” Barera will do just that by serving as a liaison between the international e-volunteer community of Wikimedia and the collections and staff at the Ford. By working with both parties, Wikipedians will gain more access to collections to improve Wikipedia and its sister proejcts, and staff will gain further awareness and knowledge about how Wikipedia works and how to better work with it and it’s community.

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library & Museum

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library & Museum

With a collection that comprises almost exclusively openly licensed content – federally created public domain materials – the Ford’s collection and resources are a perfect match for Wikimedia projects, which require freely licensed contributions. “With these core similarities, I believe that this collaboration can be rewarding for both parties, as well as the Ford’s visitors, Wikipedia’s readers and the general public,” said Barera.

By improving coverage about President Ford on Wikipedia and related projects, and by educating staff about open sharing, the Ford will be able to expand it’s mission to provide the public increased access to their collections and resources. “Our goal is to have our content accessible to everyone, everywhere,” said Couisneau. “Wikipedia is a new outreach venue for us. Not everyone can visit our museum and library in person, but everyone can visit us online.” With the skill set of Barera, and the advocacy of Couisneau, the Ford will be able to provide online access to their collection via the world’s 5th most popular website, Wikipedia.

Elaine Didier, Director of the Ford, hopes that Couisneau – who went from Wikipedia reader to Wikipedian over the course of developing the residency project – will inspire others to get involved. “I hope that this partnership also inspires more people like her to join with us, become Wikipedians, and help broaden our perspectives and our horizons to inch us ever closer to our goal of collecting ‘the sum of all human knowledge,’” she said.

Sarah Stierch, Wikipedia administrator

Have a question about Wikipedia? Ask a WikiWoman on January 17!

Wikipedian Dr. Adrianne Wadewitz will participate in the first ever Ask a WikiWoman event on January 17

“What’s it like to be a Wikipedian?”

“How did you get started editing?”

“How do you make an account on Wikipedia?”

“How do you upload a photo on Commons?”

…those are just some of the many questions that people often ask those of us who edit Wikipedia and contribute to its sister projects. Do you have questions similar to these that you’ve always wanted to ask a Wikipedian?

Well now your chance. WikiWoman Dr. Adrianne Wadewitz will be answering your questions by participating in the first Ask a WikiWoman online event.

On Thursday, January 17, the WikiWomen’s Collaborative will host Ask a WikiWoman via their Twitter! Participants from around the world will have a chance to ask Adrianne, a Wikipedian since 2004, anything about Wikipedia. The event will take place from 10 AM PST (18:00) until 5:00 PM PST (01:00) via the @WikiWomen Twitter.

How do I ask a question?

To participate, you have to have a Twitter account. Twitter is free to join if you aren’t a member yet. After logging in to your Twitter account, ask your question and include hashtag #askawikiwoman in your question. Adrianne will then answer your question!

Who is Adrianne Wadewitz?

Dr. Adrianne Wadewitz, aka User:Wadewitz, has been a Wikipedian since 2004. She’s a “feminist, scholar, educator, and digital humanist,” and has a deep passion for empowering women to contribute to Wikipedia and for helping to provide women around the world with access to free knowledge. As an educator, she has participated in the Wikipedia Education Program, where she has used Wikipedia in the class room as a learning tool since 2011. With a PhD in English Literature from Indiana University, Adrianne has channeled her passion for literature into her Wikipedia contributions. She was a leading force in bringing articles about Mary Wollstonecraft and the life of Jane Austen to Featured Article status, making them some of the finest articles on English Wikipedia.

“I’m thrilled to be part of the first “Ask a WikiWoman” event,” she said. “Nothing quite demystifies Wikipedia and encourages people to participate as a real person who can answer questions about this strange and wonderful website. I’m a Wikipedian. Ask me anything.”

And we hope you will do just that – ask a WikiWoman anything. We’ll see you on Twitter on Thursday, January 17!

Sarah Stierch, Wikimedia Community Fellow

New look makes it even easier to get engaged in the WikiWomen’s Collaborative

The new and improved WikiWomen’s Collaborative wikipage

The WikiWomen’s Collaborative is a space in the world of Wikimedia that was created by women involved in Wikimedia projects – either as contributors, readers, or advocates.

The Collaborative is a place where WikiWomen and their allies can come together to celebrate their contributions, share their love for the free knowledge movement, and provide support for one another when times get tough on Wikipedia and it’s sister projects. Hundreds of women from around the world come together through Facebook, Twitter, and the Collaborative’s wikipage to connect with each other and provide support.

WikiWoman Heather Walls, who designed the Collaborative logo and projects like the Teahouse, re-designed the Collaborative’s wikipage to be easier to navigate and provide more ways to get involved and find resources. Take a look at the new page and get involved by:

  • Connecting with WikiWomen through our FacebookTwitter, and blog.
  • Volunteering to be a part of the Collaborative by blogging, recruiting blog writers, serving as a Facebook admin, or helping translate blogs, Tweets, and Facebook posts in your language.
  • Find resources on what people around the world are doing to remedy the gender gap in Wikimedia projects.
  • Discover or share events taking place in your area for WikiWomen – from edit-a-thons to meetups – via the easy to use calendar.
  • Meet women involved in the project and add your own introduction.

New or experienced WikiWomen – we hope you’ll join us at the Collaborative. Stop by Facebook and introduce yourself, ask questions via Twitter, or share a story through our blog. See you there!

Sarah Stierch, Wikimedia Community Fellow

WikiProject Women Scientists invites your participation

Starting a WikiProject is a pretty big undertaking, what with sorting out the templates, tagging thousands of articles, and recruiting new members. But I have to say, starting WikiProject Women Scientists with Sarah Stierch has been one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve had in my 5 1/2 years contributing to Wikipedia.

Biologist Anne Bishop studied the ”Aedes aegypti

I had never consciously noticed the gender gap until it was pointed out to me that, as a female Wikipedian, I was a pretty rare commodity. That was a bit of a wake-up call, and I started to think about the systemic bias inherent in Wikipedia, a reference work largely compiled by white males from the Western world.

On Ada Lovelace Day, I decided to create an article about biologist Ann Bishop as my contribution, which was quickly promoted as a Did you know… and became a Good Article a couple of weeks later. Throughout that process I realized just how many female scientist articles were missing, even among the erstwhile ranks of the Fellows of the Royal Society. I also realized that, as motivated as I was, I couldn’t write those articles alone. Thus, a WikiProject was born, and since then, it has gathered 15 members!

I want to take a second to invite you to join the project! We have a fairly active discussion page where plenty of people are happy to answer questions. The silver lining of systemic bias is that there’s a lot of work to do and a lot of ways that people can contribute. A common public opinion is that “if it’s not on Wikipedia it doesn’t exist” – so, to our readers, many important, influential scientists “don’t exist.”

Let’s change that! Go to Wikipedia:WikiProject Women scientists to join us!

Wikipedia User:Keilana

Wikimedia India hosts Wikipedia women’s workshop in Mumbai

(This guest post by Aditi Vashisht and Netha Hussain is part of the series on the WikiWomen’s Collaborative)

Participants at the first Mumbai Wikipedia Workshop for Women

On Sunday, 4 November 2012, Wikimedians from Mumbai, India, conducted a Wikipedia workshop for women at Vidyalankar Institute of Technology,Wadala. The event was aimed at introducing women who are not yet editing Wikipedia to the website and teaching them how to edit.

“Lots of women are interested in editing Wikipedia, but sometimes they need to be specially invited to join in,” said Bishakha Datta, one of the primary organizers of the workshop. “Doing this workshop was a chance to strategically get women to participate by creating an event meant for them, where they could freely ask questions, including basic ones, without feeling silly or stupid.”

Wikipedia editors Krutikaa Jawanjal and Pradeep Mohandas, who facilitated the event, were motivated to conduct a women’s workshop for bridging the gender gap that exists in Wikipedia. A lot of preparations were done ahead of time. Vidyalankar Institute of Technology was found to be the best place to conduct the workshop among all venues investigated by the team of organizers. The volunteers got together to discuss the agenda and the schedule of the event and planned their respective sessions.

Over one hundred participants signed up for to attend on the workshop’s Wikipedia page. A Facebook page was created for the event, where approximately 50 participants registered. Interested participants also emailed Wikipedia’s volunteer customer service group, OTRS. The enthusiasm was so high among the participants that registration had to be closed down a couple of days before the workshop. Some of the interested attendees had experimented with editing Wikipedia, and they had started asking questions to the organizers even before the event was launched! All participants who created an account were sent welcome messages by the organizers.

“The pre-meetup preparations involved more than 50 days of work. Two meetups were conducted for planning the workshop. The whole process involved a lot of hard work, yet it was fun,” said Karthik Nadar, the Secretary of Wikimedia India Chapter.

The workshop was a full day event with a lot of fun activities. More than 70 participants attended. After an introduction by the organizers, the participants were divided into groups and one facilitator was allotted to each group. The facilitator helped their group to create and expand a Wikipedia article by themselves. During the lunch break, the participants were served pav bhaji, an Indian delicacy. The participants moved around and made friends with each other and the organizers during the lunch break.

During the afternoon session, the participants asked to clarify their doubts about editing. Organizers gave a brief introduction about the Wikimedia India Chapter, and they conducted sessions sessions on How to add references to a Wikipedia article and How to upload pictures to Commons. The much awaited results of Wiki Loves Monuments India were declared after the sessions. Organizers also conducted a Wiki-Quiz and the winners were given t-shirts and other Wikimedia goodies!

Conducting the workshop was a memorable experience to the team of organizers. Krutikaa said her best memories included the ones where she had to resolve doubts and answer questions about editing Wikipedia. Wikimedian Rohini Lakshane said that it was thrilling to see the joy on the faces of the participants when their edits went live. She said she is planning to organize more workshops in the future because she thinks that workshops of this kind can make the community grow. For Karthik, the workshop was not about the number of participants, but about the number of people who are excited to edit Wikipedia.

The event was covered by various newspapers and websites. Videos on various aspects of Wikipedia were created during and after the event by a team of journalists. Techgross, an online daily for news-related to technology, reported: “Here is wishing that many more such workshops are held across India, Techgoss is sure there are many takers.”

(The Mumbai community is planning to conduct similar events in various parts of the city in the coming months and we’ll provide further updates soon.)

Aditi Vashisht and Netha Hussain

Bring on the Chicks with Glasses!: Why Wiki Loves Libraries & GLAM-Wiki can help address the Wikipedia gender gap

Participants at the recent Wikipedia edit-a-thon at the Smithsonian

(This is a guest post from Sara Snyder, the webmaster at the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.)

Librarians and archivists in the United States have been, and will continue to be, mostly female. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 81 percent of current students pursuing a Masters in Library and Information Science (MLS) degree are women. As of 2011, women accounted for 83 percent of all librarians in the U.S. Archivists—a closely related profession, which also frequently requires an MLS degree—are also female. As of 2004, 64 percent of archivists were women.

Wikipedia editors have been, and will continue to be, mostly male. The Wikimedia Foundation’s 2011 editor survey reported that 92 percent of Wikipedia editors are male. Though important work is being done to try and close the gender gap, the disparity will likely continue to be pretty significant in the immediate future.

Yet—other than gender—librarians and archivists and Wikipedia contributors share much in common. Both groups are motivated by a deep desire to share knowledge with the world, to the point that they have committed their free time to working on the encyclopedia, or have chosen to focus professionally on helping researchers. Both groups have a strong understanding of how to conduct research and how to evaluate and cite authoritative sources. Both frequently have technical expertise with markup languages, metadata standards and information design. But most of all, both groups tend to hold strong beliefs that all people have a right to accurate, unbiased, high quality information, free from barriers and paywalls.

Phoebe Ayers, one of Wikipedia’s best-known and most eloquent advocates, is an academic librarian by profession. In her essay “Why Work on Wikipedia?” she describes the connection between her profession and her contributions to Wikipedia:

For me, the answer is a matter of scale. As a librarian, I am in the business of helping make sure that people get the information that they are looking for in order to do their jobs, educate themselves, satisfy their curiosity and live a fulfilling life…. [Wikipedia] is also working towards these goals, but on a global, multilingual and hitherto unprecedented scale…. It’s a simple matter of efficiency—I work on Wikipedia, and try to make it better, in order to reach as many people as possible.

This desire to maximize the impact of her work as an information professional is one that many of Ayers’ professional colleagues probably identify with. However, many librarians and archivists may not yet realize that the Wikipedia community welcomes and values their contributions.

A backstage pass tour was also a part of the edit-a-thon event

Given the demographics and goals of workers in these professions, recruiting a greater numbers of librarians and archivists to contribute to Wikipedia is a smart strategy to help close the gender gap on Wikipedia. I have some additional, anecdotal evidence for the wisdom of this strategy: me. I am an archivist by training, and if it weren’t for outreach on the part of Wikipedians allied with the GLAM-Wiki project, I would not be writing this blog entry. Even though I created my first Wikipedia article over six years ago, I only began to contribute to Wikipedia on a regular basis after two very talented Wikimedians–Katie Filbert and Sarah Stierch–reached out to me and my Smithsonian colleagues in the spring of 2011. They worked to demystify the platform and the community, and explained how institutions like the Smithsonian could partner with Wikipedia in a relationship of mutual benefit. Their efforts led to the ongoing Smithsonian GLAM-Wiki Partnership, which at this point has yielded two Wikipedian-in-Residencies, hundreds of edits and Commons contributions, five Smithsonian-hosted edit-a-thon outreach events and myriad new and recommitted Wikipedia editors.

Two years later, Smithsonian librarians and archivists are the ones demystifying Wikipedia and promoting its ideals of openness and the free sharing of knowledge to our colleagues and to the public. On October 12, 2012 the Smithsonian Libraries and Wikimedia DC jointly sponsored “Wikipedia Loves Libraries: Backstage at the Smithsonian Libraries,” which took place in the main library in the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. It was our largest edit-a-thon at the Smithsonian to date. The results of the day included a Wikipedia training session for over 40 staff members and volunteers and at least seven new user accounts registered. But the best part of the event for me was looking around the room and not seeing “92 percent this” or “84 percent that.” The room was filled with people of diverse genders, ages, and backgrounds, united in their enthusiasm for learning new skills and for sharing what they know with new audiences around the globe.

That is the Wikipedia community that I am proud to be a part of.

Sara Snyder (User:Sarasays)

(You can read more about the recent Smithsonian edit-a-thon: [http://blog.library.si.edu/2012/10/editing-wikipedia-better-with-friends-and-best-with-librarians/ Editing Wikipedia: Better with friends, and best with librarians!” also by Sara Snyder)