On Tuesday 13th December, Monica Stewart, one of the Pen Room Museum’s volunteers attended a Wikipedia training session designed to equip museum staff and volunteers with the skills and knowlege to create and edit Wikipedia articles. This was organised by Emma Buckler, the Museum Development Officer for Birmingham, The Black Country and Telford & Wrekin, and delivered by Andy Mabbett, a freelance crafter and curator of online communication, content and communities.
As well as the creation and editing of Wikipedia articles, attendants to the course also learnt about Wikimedia Commons, an online repository of free-use images, sound and other media files and about QRpedia, a mobile Web based system which uses QR codes to deliver Wikipedia articles to users, in their preferred language. For more information about the training day you can view the Co-construction of Wikipedia blog post written by one of the attendants, Marcus Belben who is a Community Art Worker.
The skills and knowledge gained from this course will enable the distribution of information about the collections held at the Pen Room Museum. Also, the use of QRpedia will make visits to the Pen Room much more accessible for visitors who cannot read English. They will be able to access information about the collection they are viewing in their main language by scanning its QR code and viewing the Wikipedia article about it.