Leiden orientalists admiring the Wikipedia logo in 1951
The Near East: from Leiden to Wikipedia
Spring 2019 saw a remarkable Dutch GLAM project: the NINO Wiki project of Dutch orientalists. In this project the Netherlands Institute for the Near East (NINO) is trying to give a boost to the information about Dutch and Belgian egyptologists, assyriologists and archaeologists –including photographs in the collections of NINO, many of them long forgotten portraits. This project was also one of the ways to celebrate the foundation of a chair of Assyriology in Leiden 101 years ago, in 1918.
The Netherlands Institute for the Near East is shaping this project in several ways: organizing three writing sessions together with volunteers from the institutes, digitizing parts of the photographic collection and writing and improving articles in several language versions of Wikipedia. Starting point was a working page in Wikidata, in which an inventory was made. By making Wikidata entries for Dutch and Belgian orientalists and institutes, all partners could easily get an overview.
The first writing session was held on 19 March 2019. Several egyptologists and assyriologists were present, and Wikipedian Hanno Lans gave a general introduction to Wikipedia and the Wikidata project on researchers from the Netherlands. The second, more practical session, was held on 17 April. Carolien van Zoest (NINO) coordinated this session. The third NINO-Wiki meeting will be held on 15 May in Leiden.
Results of the NINO project
Some examples of the results so far (after 2 of 3 writing sessions)
- more than 10 new articles in Wikipedia, such as: Pieter Boeser, Böhl-collectie, Jac.J. Janssen, Elisabeth de Ranitz-Labouchere, Rudolph Said-Ruete, Albert Schultens, Bruno Hugo Stricker, Willem Dirk van Wijngaarden, Wout van Bekkum, Anna Roes;
- new references, text and photographs added to articles such as:Willem Pleyte, Jan Herman Insinger, Cornelis van Arendonk
- dozens of new Wikidata items constructed (mainly Egyptologists , assyriologists and archaeologists);
- >40 new images, such as
Photographs by Frank Scholten (1920s)
Guys in a car, Palestine 1920s
Muslim judge, Jaffa 1920s
Melkite priest, Jaffa 1920s
Jewish immigrants, Jaffa 1920s
Wikipedia workshop at Zeeuws Museum
Saturday April 6th, a Wikipedia workshop took place at the Zeeland Museum in Middelburg. In the context of the double writing week about Zeeland, the aim was to improve and expand the content about the province of Zeeland on Wikipedia.
There was a lot of media attention for this activity. Was Zeeland so poorly covered on Wikipedia? Were complaints received from Zeeland residents? Why is it that there is not yet an article on the Zeeland knot? The media wrote about it in the newspaper, talked about it on the radio and it was also broadcasted on local television.
Wiki goes Caribbean
On April 26th, Danielle Jansen, project leader of the Wiki Goes Caribbean project, Denise Jansen (WMNL) and Michelle van Lanschot (Erfgoed Gelderland) travelled to the ABC islands to work with heritage institutions and (new) Wikimedians to improve, expand and update the knowledge about these islands. From April 29 to May 10 there will be various training courses and workshops on Aruba, Curaçao and Bonaire, intended for both more experienced and new Wikimedians. The heritage partners are also looking at ways in which they can continue with Wikimedia in the future, and the WMNL delegation can provide them with advice.
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