Prior to this edit-a-thon, I had never been to the National Museum of the American Indian. To be honest, I did not even know this museum existed. I did some research on the museum beforehand to get a feel for what I was going in to. Despite reading about some negative reactions and critical response regarding the museums exhibits, I personally feel such a museum is essential and am glad that I now know about it.
As I first approached from outside, I was stunned by how cool the museum looks. When I think of Smithsonian museums, I never really think about the actual buildings exhibits are housed in, but when it comes to NMAI it is impossible not to. It is just such a beautiful building. Once inside the edit-a-thon, I was really appreciative of how helpful the staff was. They were all really friendly and incredibly informative. That’s honestly one of my favorite parts of these edit-a-thons. Our class gets to pair up with so many interesting GLAM institutions here in D.C., and every time we get to experience these institutions in ways most people don’t. The behind-the-scenes involvement this class offers just adds a whole new element to this class that I personally think is exceptional.
Now to my editing… After a few weeks of edit-a-thons, I’ve finally figured out exactly when I need to leave a museum in order to get back to campus in time for my next class. With that in mind, I knew I would have to the museum by 4:30pm. With the presentations and everything, that didn’t leave much time to do research and edit substantially so instead I decided to audit the Trail of Tears wiki page. I chose to do this because I thought with my limited time, I could focus solely on research rather than combining research and edits. Though I think this was the right move, I don’t think I realized just how involved this process was. When we talked about this idea of museums not necessarily being aware of their institution’s/exhibits’/topic area’s Wikipedia presence, I sort of questioned, “why not?” In my head, it seemed pretty simple to check up on. But in practice, looking at the content, editors, edit history, and metrics for several different Wikipedia pages is really involved. I was thankful I was only doing one page for this particular edit-a-thon.
Here are a few brief notes and basic data gathered through visual and metric analysis:
1. The article is available in 26 languages other than English
2. The Dutch “Trail of Tears” article is a featured article
3. The page has a hatnote in the section title “Legal Background”
4. There are only seven users who have made more than 50 edits
-Two of those seven are bots
-Names of other top contributors: Vsmith, Robfergusonjr, Dbaba, Kevin Myers, Kbh3rd
Page View Stats
1. Viewed 79,215 times in the last 30 days
2. Usually gets between 2,000 and 4,000 views on weekdays (Mon-Fri)
3. Consistent trend of significantly fewer views on Saturdays and Sundays
-Perhaps this correlates with the school week? Students looking up info for school?
I think this trend is the most interesting thing I found out about this page. I wonder if there are other tools to further explore when/where people are checking out this topic. I would be very interested in learning why this page consistently gets less views on the weekends.