DPLA Uploads Over 1.25 Million Media Files to Wikimedia Commons During First Year of Sloan Foundation Funded Project
Early last year, DPLA embarked on a new project, supported by Sloan Foundation, to make images from DPLA’s aggregation of more than 40 million cultural heritage artifacts accessible to vast new audiences via Wikimedia. January 2021 marked the one-year anniversary of this project, and we wanted to share with you some of the exciting outcomes thus far:
- Building the Pipeline: The DPLA technology team has created a technical pipeline that allows for the uploading of eligible assets and associated metadata to Wikimedia Commons as part of the regular DPLA ingestion process. Partners need only meet the data requirements to participate, and DPLA will carry out all of the actual uploads. This is an essential first step, as it allows digital assets to be embedded in Wikipedia articles and viewed by the public.
- Making an Impact: In our first year, we uploaded over 1.25 million media files to Wikimedia Commons, constituting more than 650,000 distinct items from over 200 individual institutions—making it the single largest bulk upload to Wikimedia Commons ever. Across a single 8-day span in November 2020, DPLA uploaded almost 500,000 files, a single surge of uploads that would itself have been one of the top-5 bulk uploads in Wikimedia history. You can see and track DPLA uploads here.
- Boosting Discovery: The inclusion of DPLA artifacts in Wikimedia Commons makes them available for use in Wikipedia articles, and we have already seen significant results from the inclusion of our images in Wikipedia. DPLA artifacts have been included on nearly 1,000 Wikipedia article pages, resulting in more than 16 million views in total. You can find out how Toledo Lucas County Public Library is using Wikipedia to boost discovery and use in this video and read about Boston Public Library’s recent contributions to Wikimedia in this article from the Boston Globe. You can also track the total page views our uploads have generated here.
- Measuring Progress: In order to assist participating institutions and those interested in doing so, DPLA hubs can now use the Analytics Dashboard to determine the eligibility of their items for upload to Wikimedia Commons. In the coming months, the Wikimedia tab in the Dashboard will be extended to include additional impact metrics, such as upload count, usage, and page views.
- Building Awareness: We’ve provided several resources for understanding how institutions can participate in the Wikimedia project to boost discovery and use. Live information sessions with DPLA data fellow and longtime Wikipedian Dominic Byrd-McDevitt will be provided to any interested partner. Institutions can also check out our webinar, Introduction to Wikimedia: Increased Discoverability and Use. In addition, for a deep dive, we recommend the “What the Wiki” series of webinars created by Jen Johnson of the Ohio Digital Network. (This Standardized Rights Statements 101 webinar presented by the DPLA Rights Statements Working Group also may be useful for organizations looking to apply rights statements that would make collections eligible for inclusion in Wikimedia.)
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About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.