The representatives of Wikimedia Serbia organized a conference on February 24, 2012 named Open Wiki GLAM of Serbia, as a part of a project of the same name, intended for GLAM institutions. With the goal of promoting Wikimedia projects and developing cooperation between Wikimedia chapters, the event, held in Belgrade, gathered about 70 representatives of libraries, archives, museums, galleries, foundations, state institutions and organizations. Beside the presentation by the hosts, the conference program included lectures by special guests from India, Italy, France and Czech Republic, who shared their knowledge and experiences with the audience.
The audience had the pleasure to see presentations by the director of Ebart media archive, Velimir Ćurgus, and the director of the digital library Rastko, Zoran Stefanović.
Conference program was divided into six parts, which are further explained.
Wikimedia projects as a means of communication, information and education
Wikimedia Foundation is, according to the latest top list by The Global Journal, among 100 best organizations in the world. Although Wikipedia is one of the most visited sites on the web, many people don't know how Wikimedia projects work and how they can be used correctly. That is why Wikimedia Serbia thought that the conference should start with the success story of Wikimedia projects, with a special glance on Wikipedia, as the most successful project of Wikimedia Foundation.
All projects have been presented, with their purposes explained. Participants were able to see the projects' development and success statistics, and get acquainted with their uses in schools, education and communication.
Ways of protecting intellectual property on the Internet and Creative Commons licenses
In her bilingual Serbian-English presentation "Digital rights, Creative Commons licenses and Knowledge Society", Nevenka Antic, lawyer from Belgrade, Wikimedian, Wikipedian and Creative Commons Serbia Legal Project Lead, briefly explained the legal context of the Open Wiki GLAM project with examples of best practices as well as the legal nature of the Creative Commons licenses and their role in Knowledge Society building and improving. This presentation started with an introduction to crucial terms of copyright. Than, it raised the issue explaining copyright function, protection and limitations, and how it deals with human rights and public interest through legislation and everyday practice. To raise it completed, it explained the legal position of Cultural Heritage Institutions and their role in realization of public interest. At the end, it explained the nature of the Creative Commons licenses comparing at the same time their advantages with traditional methods of transfer of copyright ownership and illustrated some examples of successful Open GLAM practices.
Importance of having cultural heritage on the Internet and ways of their presentation
One of the special guests of the conference was Zoran Stefanovic, director of the Rastko digital library. The presentation began with the story of the Electronic library of Serbian culture, a project that has emerged in the mid 90s of last century. A pioneer in this field, as one of the few digital base in this part of Europe, it quickly became synonymous for an archive of digitized works of Yugoslav and Serbian literature. The social circumstances that have occurred in this region greatly influenced the development of cultural digitization. Zoran mentioned temporary stagnation of the project in the first years of the new millennium, and its rapid recovery efforts to continue with its mission. Also mentioned is the link between Wikimedia projects and project Rastko, and the possibilities for mutual cooperation with Wikimedia.
Wikisource: Digital treasury
Wikisource has been presented. It highlighted Wikisource content should be free and accessible. In particular, it compared Wikisource's textual relation with photos of other digital content resources. The interface of Wikisource for the use or re-use has been elaborated. Finally, it presented links between Wikisource and other Wikimedia's projects.
The auditors have been especially interested in Wikisource's metadata issues.
Digitization technology of QR codes and their application in GLAM institutions
Following preceding sessions, this-one addressed the direct implementation of wiki projects in GLAM institutions' practice using of QR codes. The history of evaluation of these codes with a related video of their function in everyday life has been presented. It also presented QR-pedia website as well as its functions.
Than it mentioned best practices such as museums and galleries located in Derby and Indianapolis. These examples made the session completed.
See successful QR codes practices in Derby and Indianapolis.
Stories of successful cooperation
Success story from France: Adrienne Alix
Adrienne Alix speak about the history of GLAM projects in France and made a focus on threee parnterships : the French National Library, that gave more than 1500 digitized books to the French Wikisource (about 50,000 pages). The idea of this partnership was to observe the methods of collaborative work on Wikisource. This was our first major partnership with a cultural institution and served also to test our own methods, with successes and difficulties.
The second project was the partnership with the City of Toulouse, a global partnership signed by the mayor, which allow us to contact all the cultural institutions to make projects as they - and we want. A very rich experience, that has started two years ago and continue to grow every day.
The third project is the "Wikimedian in Residence" in the Palace of Versailles, our first experience of residence, during 6 months, in the most important palace in France. An occasion to explain the Wikimedia projects for all the staff of the Palace and facilitate photography and contribution in collaboration with the staff by the contributors.
Then she explained the principles of GLAM partnerships in France: openness, consideration of issues of museums, experimentation
Success story from Wikimedia Czech Republic: Aktron
Wikimedia Czech Republic is a small Wikimedia Chapter. Therefore it can't show success of the very same league like the WM FR or WM DE can. Aktron spoke about Czech GLAM and cooperation with small and large institutions. Members of the GLAM group successfully started to cooperate with several institutions, mostly smaller ones, but negotiations with those on national level are also proceeding. Aktron spoke about some basic ways how GLAM insitution can help us and what can they get by return. He especially pointed out the Probošt's mechanical Christmas crib in Třebechovice pod Orebem, an object currently in a museum which is deeply interested in cooperation with Wikimedia Czech Republic.
Aktron spoke about ways how GLAM institutions can and do cooperate with Wikimedia. They can provide us with free media (and museums have lots of them), or they can help us to improve Wikipedia articles, or help us to improve our project by giving us a piece of code or offer us partnership in their own project (Polytématický strukturovaný heslář). Some insitutions can offer us their own publications that can be used by devoted wikipedians when writing articles about important topics. And when it comes to photographies - already mentioned - Wikimedia Czech Republic and Czech GLAM succeeded to gain a certain number of unique illustrations: ranging from Probošt's mechanical Christmas crib in Třebechovice pod Orebem to Malostranský archiv Jaroslava Fragnera (Czech architect) or an archive of Czech composer, Bohuslav Martinů.
The internal meeting
The second day of the GLAM conference, Wikimedia Serbia organized an internal meeting. The event took place at EUnet bringing together members of Wikimedia Serbia and their guests from India, Macedonia, Italy, France, Hungary and Czech Republic to discuss the GLAM issues.
Wikimedia Serbia prepared questionnaires to be filled in by guests in order to elaborate the conference in details and evaluate its results. The results were positive, mostly and participants continued exchanging opinions and experiences regarding the relationship with the Institutions.
The current practice has been presented and the future cooperation has been discussed. All the participants pointed out the interest of the Institutions is crucial for achieving desired effects. The method of the first successful GLAM action has been especially discussed.
The meeting ended with the conclusions of representatives from Hungary and Macedonia, whom this was one of the first steps in introducing with GLAM Wiki programs.