GLAM/Case studies/State Library of Queensland/QWiki Club

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#QWiki Case Study[edit]

Jacinta Sutton, Project Officer, State Library of Queensland @jjsttn


The case study explores the development and implementation of #QWiki, the Wikipedia editing club created by the State Library of Queensland for Queensland (SLQ) GLAM staff and affiliates. #QWiki builds on a strong existing relationship between SLQ and Wikimedia Australia. The club was established in March 2017 and this case study will reflect on the first five sessions and the framework behind them.


State Library of Queensland (SLQ) is the main reference and research library provided to the people of the State of Queensland, Australia, by the Queensland Government. It contains a significant portion of Queensland's documentary culture and heritage, major reference and research collections, and is an advocate of and partner with public libraries across Queensland.

SLQ has a commitment to open access and a strong and established institutional relationship with Wikimedia Australia, with a partnership that has manifested in several projects:

  • The donation of 50,000 SLQ images to Wiki Commons
  • SLQ hosting a Wikipedian in Residence program
  • Wikipedia Editor training
  • Using Wikisource for our digital volunteer projects
  • SLQ participating in #1lib1ref campaign

In January 2017 SLQ participated in the global Wikipedia #1lib1ref campaign and committed our staff to contributing 1000 citations. Based on the success of our involvement, SLQ capitalised on the enthusiasm, new skills and greater confidence of staff working with Wikipedia to develop the #QWiki Wikipedia editing club.The inaugural meeting of #QWiki was held onsite in March 2017.

The club sessions are drop in style, held over 3 hours on the first Monday of every month (ex. public holidays) and are open to any staff member of the Queensland GLAM community.

The focus of #QWiki is:

  • Building information and digital literacy skills in GLAM staff
  • Increasing the visibility of libraries engaging with Wikipedia
  • demonstrating the capacity of libraries to make Wikipedia a more robust research ecosystem.

A catalyst to turn #QWiki Club from an idea into a reality was the support of our CEO and State Librarian, Vicki McDonald. She recognised both a need and opportunity for us to continue to strengthen our relationship with Wikimedia Australia, empower our staff and increase the presence of quality sources on Wikipedia (EN).


Our impact consists of several factors:

  • An increase in quality content and citations in 153 (at time of writing) Wikipedia articles around the Queensland related themes we select each month.
  • Build the confidence of staff who were previously unsure of, or inexperienced at editing Wikipedia, with 50% of participants having never previously edited Wikipedia before #QWiki.
  • A peripheral benefit is the increase of State Library of Queensland content in Wikipedia articles.
  • An opportunity for staff to engage in relationship building with internal staff and those from different institutions.


Anna Raunik A/Director of Content Development and Jacinta Sutton, Project Officer, Discovery Services implemented the club with the assistance of Kerry Raymond from Wikimedia Australia.

The Digital Media Lab at The Edge was chosen to hold the monthly sessions for its status as an effective collaborative working space. The Lab has 15 Mac computers available and members can also choose to bring their own devices.

We created a Wikipedia:GLAM page in March 2017. The #QWiki Club page is designed as a homepage for the club and has information about:

  • What is #QWiki Club
  • Details of upcoming sessions
  • Link to the Google Drive sign up spreadsheet
  • List of participants
  • Hints and tips
  • Monthly entries for each session with tasks and instructions, updated with achievements post session.

We use a email list to keep in touch with external participants and – use internal networks such as Yammer and all staff emails to communicate with SLQ staff. A bi-weekly email goes out to all SLQ and participants with details of the next session. We promote the club across social media using the hashtag #QWiki.

#QWiki is listed under ‘Groups and networks’ on PL Connect, a SLQ coordinated website for Queensland public libraries.


Attendance records are kept in a Google Drive open spreadsheet. We can see that we get a mix of new and returning members - both are desired. Numbers so far have remained steady at about 10 participants per session on average.

Attendance is a measure of success as the club is run during work time and line manager permission is required to attend. Therefore attendance infers there is support from management tiers.

Staff from State Library of Queensland, Queensland Museum, Gold Coast Libraries, Queensland Performing Arts Centre and Queensland University of Technology as well and 3 work placement students have participated.

We encourage members to use the hashtag #qwiki in their edit summaries, and we use the Wiki Fab Labs tool Wikipedia social search to measure the impact the hashtag is having. The tool shows us:

  • Revisions made
  • To how many articles
  • The number of users
  • The number of bytes changed
  • The languages that we have worked in

The data fields listed above and more information about the latest modifications can be exported as .csv file. We also edit the #QWiki Wikipedia page after the session and edit the monthly entries so they reflect the changes we made and create a summary of achievements.

Reflection and lessons learned[edit]


  • Successfully implementing a new initiative across an already busy staff schedule (for both participants and coordinators) and retaining participants with competing priorities.
  • Inconsistencies in measuring the data. The metrics from the Wikipedia social search tool are not accurate as not all users add the hashtag and at the time of writing we are undercounting by 150> hashtags.
  • Initially the #QWiki Project Page was listed under coordinator Jacinta Sutton’s talk page because creating the Project page in SLQ’s Wikipedia:GLAM page was intensive and required a high level of skill using Wiki markup Language. Thanks to a widget that made it possible to edit in Visual Editor, the Project Page was moved to SLQ’s Wikipedia:GLAM Project page in May 2017.

Resources/Links/Additional Context[edit]