On April 26th, Wikimedia Italia organized its first GLAM training day: the goal was to empower editors and chapter's members in developing projects with libraries, schools, museums and other institutional entities.
The number of applications for the training day was more than double of the available seats, with requests coming from almost every region of Italy. This was another goal of the event: training people from regions were Wikimedia Italia still needs to build a strong presence and to establish new partnerships with GLAMs.
The training day covered a broad set of topics, from case studies about ongoing and past projects, to dealing with copyright and Italian legislation about images, to Wikisource and its well established process for freeing books, up to projects focusing on a specific municipality and exploiting different Wikimedia projects and OpenStreetMap.
Two workshops, with practice exercises and role-play, focused on how to better deliver a speech and how to use metrics to evaluate both the draft and the results of a project.
Preliminary results on an anonymous survey performed among the trainees showed great approval for the event and an increased confidence in their ability to submit and manage partnerhips with GLAMs. Given that, Wikimedia Italia plans to implement more training days, even on specific topics.
The collaboration between Wikimedia Italia and the National Library of Florence continues.
Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th a selected group of wikimedians (Laurentius, Sannita, CristianCantoro, Aubrey, Laramar) met in Florence with several librarians from all of Italy, for an all-day hackathon dedicated to bibliographic metadata, Wikidata and wiki collaboration.
The purpose was twofold:
exchange information, insights and know-how. Librarians need to understand deeply how Wikipedians work, and what principles they follow. At the same time, Wikipedians can learn very much from the traditions and work of the librarians, who have organized information for centuries :-)
prime the work on bibliographical metadata on Wikidata.
The ultimate goal is to put thousands (if not millions) of metadata on Wikidata, regarding books. At the same time, librarians are very interested in using Wikibase, as a software, for cataloging books and harness the potentiality of a true linked-data based, collaborative system.
We shared our working list on the relevant WikiProject (about 340 works by 140 authors), to get feedback on what we planned to do. Having a clear picture of a human-sized batch of work, some editors responded, confirming there is interest in bibliographic information and images, as well as pointing out the potential of our ongoing work on Wikisource and helping us correct one catalog entry.
Thanks to the more systematic approach, the speed at which articles were edited and images selected has improved substantially; we also improved image quality, by making it easier to choose an image which ends up being available in high resolution. Over 100 images were selected for the May upload and insertion in articles, 65 of which are raw TIF files.
Finally, during this month's editing sessions we focused on learning specific editing tips to improve article quality and make BEIC staff more independent in future article creation: for instance incoming and outgoing links, Wikidata connections. About 70 articles were created on the Italian Wikipedia for authors of the above-mentioned collections.