Press releases/Wildscreen connects

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Wildlife educational charity connects with Wikipedia[edit | edit source]

16 August 2011, UK:

Bristol- based wildlife charity Wildscreen [1] is trialling a partnership with Wikimedia UK [2]. The partnership aims to help Wikipedia [3] editors improve text articles on endangered species by consulting Wildscreen’s ARKive project – an award winning online educational resource profiling the world’s endangered species.

Both Wildscreen and Wikimedia aim to improve knowledge globally. While Wikimedia looks to make the sum of human knowledge available to everyone, Wildscreen uses information to engage and inspire audiences specifically about the wonders of the natural world.

Wikimedia is building connections with cultural and educational institutions to inform its contributors, therefore increasing the quality of its information. As part of its mission to collect, develop and distribute knowledge online, Wikimedia UK has appointed Outreach Ambassador and committed conservationist, Andy Mabbett, to work with Wildscreen on a part-time basis over the summer.

Andy, who has previously made more than 70,000 edits to Wikipedia said: “With Wildscreen’s help, over the next two months we’re aiming to improve 200 Wikipedia articles with text on a range of species from the high-profile to the more unusual that are featured on ARKive. That means improved information will be available to Wikipedia’s hundreds of millions of readers. And we’re going to organise events too. Anyone can edit Wikipedia and we want people who care about wildlife to help us make these improvements. I’m a firm believer in providing access to knowledge online for the greater good.”

Commenting on the partnership Richard Edwards, Wildscreen’s Chief Executive, said: “Expanding our reach within the online community is a key priority for Wildscreen.

“By providing text information on endangered species to global online audiences via Wikipedia, we hope to further play our part in engaging the public in the wonders of the natural world, securing the future of our fragile planet for generations to come.”

Martin Poulter, a Director of Wikimedia UK said “Wikipedia has a community of enthusiastic volunteers writing articles about wildlife, and anyone can join in just by pressing the ‘edit’ button. To be working with a major global organisation in this area is a great boost to the projects, and is helping improve many articles for the public benefit.”


EDITORS' NOTES

About Wildscreen - the charity behind ARKive

[1] Wildscreen (www.wildscreen.org.uk) is a registered charity whose mission is to promote a greater appreciation of the natural world and the need for its conservation.

Wildscreen carries out five key inter-related initiatives to deliver its message:

ARKive: a unique global initiative, gathering together the very best films, photographs and information texts of the world's species into one centralised digital library, to create a stunning audio-visual record of life on Earth – the award-winning website is freely available at (www.arkive.org).

Wildscreen Festival: The most influential and prestigious event of its kind in the world for wildlife and environmental filmmaking. Established over 25 years ago in Bristol, the Festival runs every two years, bringing together the very best in the industry for a week of film screenings, workshops and business opportunities (www.wildscreenfestival.org).

WildPhotos: An annual photography symposium for both professional and amateur photographers, which hosts the world’s finest nature and wildlife photographers for two days of presentations and debate (www.wildphotos.org.uk).

WildFilmHistory: Bringing audiences 100 years of wildlife filmmaking through film clips, photographs and unique interviews with the greatest names in the industry www.wildfilmhistory.org.

Wildscreen Outreach: A touring programme of award-winning film screenings and master classes to reach, engage and inspire new audiences. As well as local, regional and national initiatives, developing countries, where pressure on the environment is most critical, are a key priority (www.wildscreen.org.uk/initiatives-outreach

About Wikimedia UK

[2] Wikimedia UK is an independent, not-for-profit company, limited by a guarantee recognised by the Wikimedia Foundation as a local Wikimedia ‘Chapter’. Wikimedia UK was established with the objective of aiding and encouraging people to collect, develop and disseminate knowledge, and other educational, cultural and historic content in the public domain, under a licence that allows everyone to freely use, distribute and modify the content. Wikimedia UK is a separate institution from the Wikimedia Foundation, and has no control over the contents of Wikipedia or any other Wikimedia Foundation project.

http://www.wikimedia.org.uk

http://blog.wikimedia.org.uk

About Wikipedia

[3] Wikipedia is an online collaborative encyclopedia published under a creative commons Attribution-Share Alike Licence. It is one of nine websites operated by the Wikimedia Foundation In the United States. Available in more than 270 languages, Wikipedia contains over 17million articles contributed by a global volunteer community of more than 100,000 people. According to comScore Media Metrix, Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects receive 398 million unique visitors per month, making them the 5th most popular web property world wide.

Contact

QuaysideMedia- Anna-Marie Young, 07588586147 /amyoung123@hotmail.co.uk ARKive- Ellie Dart, ellie.dart@wildscreen.org.uk