Wolvopedia: Make Wolverhampton a Wikipedia city
There are already lots of Wikipedia articles about Wolverhampton and its features and history, but there could be many, many more.
I suggest we run workshops to train local people to edit Wikipedia, so that they can add new articles and improve those that are already there.
We could run sessions for people to bring and scan their old photographs of Wolverhampton, and upload them to Wikimedia Commons; and encourage them to take and upload new pictures. these would be used to illustrate the new and improved articles.
We would engage with minority communities and language students, and Wikipedia's international on-line community, to have articles translated into other languages - and to ensure that those communities were written about in English..
Finally, with permission, we would affix QRpedia QR codes ( see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QRpedia ) to or near historic buildings, statues and public art etc. Then, every visitor to Wolverhampton would have a free guidebook to the city, in their mobile phone, in their preferred language.
As well as improving coverage of Wolverhampton, his would also embed digital skills and confidence in the community, moving people from being passive content consumers to content producers, so that they could go on to blog, make Facebook pages or use other tools to engage online.
This project can be as big or small as resources allow - there would be some costs (project coordination, QRpedia plaques for buildings, for instance), and we would need suitable venues with Wi-Fi or computers, and help publicising the initiative.
I'm Andy Mabbett, and I've been a Wikipedia editor for eight years and have run Wikipedia training for a number of institutions, including Wolverhampton Art Gallery. I'm one of the people who run QRpedia, and was involved in Monmouthpedia, a similar project in Wales..
Neil Hodgkiss commented
Great idea. I've been adding pages & adding information to existing Wikipedia local area and people pages for the last two years - but there is so much more that is notable enough to be added. A similar idea is getting Wolverhampton places correctly mapped on, for example, Google maps or Facebook places. Google maps also has the ability to link to a Wikipedia article - good for anyone with a smart phone or similar looking for local places of interest.
Nick Moyes commented
I would have voted for this, but it seems to have closed. Until 19 months ago I worked at Derby Museum & Art Gallery - the first museum in the world to utilise QRpedia QR codes to link our collections to Wikipedia in many languages. It is an idea that is catching on in many parts of the world, and I can vouch for the fact that it is not technically difficult or awkward to do. Find / train keen Wikipedia editors; find places in your city that you would like to promote or interpret with Wikipedia explanations; get the entries updated with useful information if necessary; get permission and support from the owners of those buildings or features.
Andy is certainly the man to help Wolverhampton achieve this.
If you type "Monmouthpedia" into google then you can see what can be achieved
Definitely liking this idea and whilst it's a digital one, it could help with the perception of the city for those living here.
Andy Mabbett commented
@ Steph, @ 1gl: Thank you!
@ Sue: We can do it anywhere where there is an interested community, support from local government and other organisations, and some funding. I'm happy to talk to anyone in Bridgnorth who's interested - it would be a very suitable venue. My contact details are easy enough to find, online.
Could we do this in Bridgnorth?
Steph Jennings commented
Andy having heard you talk about Wikipedia a LOT I know what you are trying to achieve and you get my vote !!
Andy Mabbett commented
@ Donagh: Anyone who can (learn to) work a keyboard/ mouse or equivalent can edit Wikipedia. Anyone with a camera can contribute photographs. Anyone who can work a scanner can help to digitise archive images or documents. The barriers to entry are really low!
All suitable Wikipedia articles would be GeoTagged (and so appear on things like Google Maps and Layar) as part of this project.
I'm happy to discuss social aspects as well.
It's also worth noting that all content generated would have an open licence - so be available for anyone to reuse, for free.
This sounds great. What kinds of skills would we need to get this off the ground? I especially like the fact that it uses existing open-source free resources - like Wikipedia - in order to provide a guidebook service for Wolverhampton. Have you come across wikitravel.org ? Is there a way we could create a discussion around particular places using social media channels - like twitter - and geo-tagging - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geotagging ?
Like it. There's an excellent local history resource at
maybe those guys could be engaged.