March 27, 2011

GLAM Wiki BCN 2011

Last march 23, I had the pleasure to be one of the conveners of GLAM-WIKI:Barcelona 2011 conference at Museu Picasso, where local wikimedians met with more than 100 people representing different GLAM institutions from all around Catalonia, who actively participated in the conferences that were held throughout the day. It was the first time that a conference like this was held all around Spain, so some people just discovered the power of Wikipedia as a way to spread the work of museums and cultural institutions.
Liam keynoting GLAM-Wiki BCN 2011
Glam wiki Barcelona started with the keynote of Museu Picasso chief director, Pepe Serra, who adviced to the audience that museums must recover the centrality in society that they had some decades ago. After this, Liam explained why museums and Wikipedia should start building a mid-term relationships. Wittylama had been invited to the Picasso Museum last July to participate in a meeting of small format, which was conceived the idea of holding a GLAM WIKI Barcelona.

Later, Conxa Rodà and me explained some best practices and success stories between museums and wikipedia. Joan Gomà, president of Amical Viquipèdia, a catalan association that promotes the use of Wikipedia, explained the differences of a traditional encyclopaedia and Wikipedia, explaining how readers become editors.

General view of the hall

Morning meetings finished with a roundtable discussion focused on breaking stereotypes on issues of copyright and artworks reproduction. Sonia Lopez from MACBA, the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, share some thoughts with Ignasi Labastida, from Creative Commons Spain and Albert Siera, from patrimoni.gencat, a 2.0 heritage project of the Catalan Department of Culture. In the afternoon, we joined at MACBA auditorium, where a group of local Wikipedians volunteered in a workshop to learn how to edit Wikipedia. More than 70 people attended.

As Liam told, some GLAM sector proffessionals realised that we are working to the same people and with the same target, spreading free culture, so it's better if we do it together. I think this first meeting has planted the seed that will build some good relationships. It was our really first date and some cultural institutions have already asked for starting some kind of collaboration with Wikipedia. So we'll try our best.

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