Applying for loan of a scanner

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Wikimedia UK has been given two Epson Expression 10000XL A3 scanners by the Natural History Museum.

These are available for loan to museums, galleries and other institutions that have interesting material that they wish to digitise.

To apply to borrow one of these machines, Email with information as to what sort of material you intend to scan, how long you want a scanner for and any dates that are suitable or unsuitable for you.

A condition of borrowing these machines is that a copy of the scans created must be released on Wikimedia Commons under one of the Open licences that it accepts such as Public Domain, CC0 or CC-BY-SA.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q:We've never done scanning before? What file formats do we use? How do we track labels and collection data?
A: Training and advice may be available depending on where you are and whether we can put you in touch with a volunteer Wikipedian or nearby museum with the requisite skills.
Q: Can you put us in touch with a Wikipedia volunteer who can advise on categorisation and naming conventions for these files.
A: Yes, depending on where you are and what you have we can probably find a volunteer to guide you through that process.
Q: Can we put something in the metadata for each image we upload saying that it is of an object in our collections?
A: Yes. Normally this is done by creating a template on Wikimedia Commons for your institution. We can also create subtemplates for collections, especially thematic ones.
Q: How do we track the use and reuse of our images released through Wikimedia Commons?
A: A Wikipedian can help tag each image so it's identified as from your collection. It will then be possible to use software that tracks the reuse of your images within Wikimedia sites (including all 286 language versions of Wikipedia). It is currently not possible to automatically track reuse across the whole of the Internet.
Q: Can we just release a medium resolution image so that serious commercial users will come to us for High resolution images?
A: Not if you are borrowing our equipment to do the scanning with.
Q: How do we store our image files?
A: As well as loading a copy on Wikimedia Commons you are welcome to store copies on your own servers and websites. Remember as with any digital preservation policy the more places you deposit copies the better your chances of longterm survival of the files.
Q: OK we have now uploaded some images onto Wikimedia Commons, how do we make sure they are used on appropriate Wikipedia articles?
A: Email us on and we will be happy to discuss the next steps