“As soon as I left the session, I knew that this would be a ground-breaking project for us,” said Bettina Cousineau, Exhibits Specialist at the Gerald Ford Library and Museum.
Cousineau was at this summer’s Association of Midwest Museums Conference in Indianapolis, IN, and attended the session “Wikimedia: Commons and GLAM” presented by Lori Phillips, the Wikimedia Foundation’s U.S. Cultural Partnerships Coordinator.
GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums), a small part of the Wikipedia group, plays a huge role in providing public access to copyright free images from cultural institutions all over the world. These images are then incorporated into articles written by Wikipedia editors.
“We already have an extensive website with thousands of digitized images, documents and artifacts for the public to view. But by uploading those same materials to Wikimedia, they can be used in any Wikipedia article written by anyone in the world in almost any language,” Cousineau said. “I imagined an article written by a Wikipedia editor in Finland, using a document from President Ford’s participation in the 1975 Helsinki Conference as his source and illustration. To me that is significant public access of our material.”
To date, Cousineau has uploaded over 200 artifacts and photographs onto the Wikimedia Commons site. She and her team have connected with volunteer Wikipedia administrators who provide technical and coding assistance. The next step includes … [ Read all ]