Category Archives: Uncategorized

Final Project Proposal

For my final project, I’d like to focus on Islamic art. I think adding a video to the Islamic Art page would be a great addition and really different from uploading a standard photo. I want to focus on a series of Islamic art, particularly carvings, calligraphy and ceramics.  At first, I wanted to focus on mostly Persian/ Islamic art but I think creations from all over the Islamic world would serve my project better. I also wanted to incorporate art from the Mughal dynasty but later decided that it was fairly modern (1500s-1600s) compared to the other kinds of artifacts I wanted to focus on. So, I wanted to keep everything within a similar time period. The Islamic Art page is already very nicely detailed and well written. However, it lacks something more interactive, such as a video.

For the two extra graduate requirement videos, I am going to submit a video on the Cherry Blossom Festival for the Wikipedia page and an Mp3 experiment video for the Improv Everywhere page. The Mp3 experiment is an interactive game…basically similar to Simon Says. A few weeks ago, hundreds gathered on the National Mall to participate in the event. I think having a video for that event would be entertaining and will give people a better idea as to what an mp3 experiment is.

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Final Project Proposal

For my final project I will be working on the “Art of ancient Egypt.”   The article includes a list of references but the sources are unclear as to where the information came from as well as insufficient inline citations.  This page is connected with Wkiproject Ancient Egypt, Africa/Egypt and Visual arts. They are all linked in the Start class, although the page is filled with a lot of good pertinent information.  They all list a to-do list highlight what they feel needs to be cleaned up.

The first thing I noticed was that this page is marked as top importance for the Egyptian Wikipedia.  The Freer Sackler Museum has an exhibition, “The Nile and Ancient Egypt” that is on indefinite view.  On view they have a collection of artifacts made of glass, wood and stone.  Other highlights include a rendered pharaonic head for the 3rd millennium BCE.  With the exhibition I plan to make a 30 second video highlighting some of the artifacts on view as well as take photos of some images and add citations to the photos.  Along with general editing of then entire page.

As a graduate student we are tasked with completing an additional special requirement.  I plan to contribute with at least two original “news” videos to the Wiki Makes Video Project.  The first page I will add a video to is International Pillow Fight Day with narration and the second video will be about Raw Milk and the current legislation around it.

Drawn Out Search for Malaysia Airlines F370

By:  Bailey Edelstein, Tina Lee, Bill Oldham, Cameron Meindl

Over the past month, the media world has reacted steadily, and on international scales to the tragic disappearance of Malaysia Flight MH370. Our team focused on illustrating the evolution of activity on Wikipedia (blue) and as a topic trending on Twitter (green) throughout this drawn-out search for the aircraft. We referenced Google Trends tailored to the search term “Flight 370” and time frame of March to April 2014 to track this news story.

We came to conclude that the main events (brown) reported on and covered by media informed the public, but did not particularly influence Wikipedia or Twitter activity (click link to see tweets with  #MH370 ).  Instead they evolved parallel to each other, for the most part. Each outlet exhibited similar responses to the publicized development of events in real-time, as seen by the wavelengths at the beginning of the graph.

Interestingly, as web traffic on the story met a decline on it’s Wikipedia page and in the news, more people than ever were tweeting about it (see first point of influx in green). Nearly 30,000 tweets per minute were sent out on March 15 according to an article on, which marked an all-time high for a “natural incident” (Hurricane Sandy had been the previous record-holder). However, very few of the tweets contained actual breaking news or facts detailing developments in story. Rather, most Twitter content related to the story was either in the form of prayers and well-wishes, or simply re-tweeting and relaying previously reported information.

We also recognized the Twitter-sphere seemed uninterested with the story’s developments later on in the month, as it was no longer breaking news and emotionally drawn-own. Note that our graph does not indicate the coverage as flat-lined. This is because the story is still developing, answers are still to be found about the fate of Flight 370 and the Wikipedia page still has potential to be edited and is in constant reparation. Nonetheless, the steady decline and an inevitable ending to coverage and circulation is foreseen.


2014 State of the Union Address: Graph and Write Up

#SOTU Peaks Day of Address

Group Members: Ariel Barry, Joyce Lu, Monika Thomas

SOTU Graph

For this assignment, our group analyzed the online response to a pre-planned event. State of the Union Addresses are planned ahead of time and occur in January, and the date of the speech is released ahead of time. Additionally, the White House also publishes a press release. When we checked to see exactly when the press release was published, we learned that it was put on the website the day of the actual event and not ahead of time.

Because of the nature of this event, we did not choose to analyze or graph the data using times of day, but chose rather to go by months. We started our graph on the day the Wikipedia article was created, because this was the first official date we could find, and carried our graph into April. Below, we will break down the information we gathered.

Wikipedia Presence
The Wikipedia page for the 2014 State of the Union Address was created on December 13, 2013, more than a month before the actual event took place. The original page was created as a placeholder, and contained basic information about the event, as the general format remains similar historically. The page saw minimal activity over the next month, as contributors mostly cleaned up grammar, but the day of the event and the rest of that week, contributors edited the page quite a bit.

Along with contributor activity, the page views also mimicked this pattern. Prior to the event, the page had very few page views. However, the day of the event and the day after there was a huge spike in the number of page views. The day after the event, the page had the most views: 15,788. About a week or so before the event, the page views built up and hit around 2,000 until the day before the event when it went up to nearly 7,000. The page views followed similar pattern in the weeks after, as page views declined and remained around 2,000 views a day in early February. Now, the page usually get less than 200 views a day.

Social Media
For social media, we focused on Twitter and the hashtag #SOTU. Like the Wikipedia page, people began tweeting about the event about a month ahead of time. The number of tweets rose gradually building up to the event until the day of the event. That day, there was a huge spike and #SOTU was more popular than the Wikipedia page for the event. We think the huge spike in day of tweets had to do with people live-tweeting the event as they watched. After the spike day of, the number of tweets dropped significantly which also likely corresponded with the pattern of live-tweeting. #SOTU still had a significant online presence afterward though, and from the day after the event began to decline gradually in February. Now the hashtag has very minimal online presence.

News Coverage
News Coverage seemed to have the most gradual build-up, and though news coverage of the event did reach it’s peak the day of and the day after the event, there wasn’t as much of a jump as we saw with Wikipedia and social media. The decline was also more gradual, as the event seemed to appear in news shows for about a week after, slowing it’s decline. From there, the coverage continued to decline, and now is very minimal. The one issue with tracking this data was that some articles would mention the State of the Union when discussing other topics, without really talking about the event. We weren’t sure exactly how to include this information but we think it likely contributes to it’s slower decline in news coverage.

California Earthquake: Graph and Write-Up


California Earthquake Trends Fastest on Twitter

Maggie Klee, Victoria Li, Carmen Mouynes, Colleen Snow

Throughout the earthquakes in California last week, social media was incredibly quick to report the story. As more aftershocks occurred and were felt in different areas of L.A., there was a spike in activity on Twitter, and people as well as community services such as local police and fire departments continued to tweet about the earthquake and its damages to the city well into the night of March 28 and the following day. Twitter was the most efficient way for those impacted by the earthquake to learn about their size and what precautions to take next.

The L.A. Times was the first news organization to publish a short news report on the earthquake at 9:48 pm, minutes after an aftershock. This makes sense given the L.A. Times is the news organization closest to the scene of the earthquake. The report stated the magnitude of the quake, what time it happened and what areas were affected. As more information was gathered, other news sources began to publish reports, the number of reports increased the next day, March 29, when news organizations received more information about how people were affected. They also posted the story on their websites and kept adding to them as they learned new information.

Wikipedia was the least helpful source of information throughout the earthquakes. The site’s contributors did not flock to this news report and create an article for this event. This type of story is not in demand by Wikipedia audiences, given that it affects only a particular area and does not merit enough controversy or suspense to get large audiences interested. There’s also not a lot of information in this news story; a Wikipedia article for this event would be rather short and dull. Plus, earthquakes happen quite often in California so one must ask if each earthquake deserves its own article. The Wikipedia community didn’t think so, and this recent earthquake was added to a general article about California earthquakes. This article simply lists the dates and magnitudes of any earthquake that happens in California. Page views for this article did increase March 29, after all the news reports and tweets had been circulating around the Internet, but our group didn’t understand why people would even visit the Wikipedia article, since not a lot of information or attention was given to this specific earthquake.

Without a full article, Wikipedia was not a great source of information. Twitter was the quickest at alerting people about the earthquake and had the most activity afterward. Since earthquakes are so common in California, this event did not warrant further investigation or news after it happened- for example the Malaysian airplane crash could inspire a documentary.


imageComing out to NAMI  is a great time for me not just for edit-a-thon, but also a new museum experience. I have always interested in Indian culture, I visited a Indian reservation in Idaho and talked to a Indian people during winter break. So it is fun to see and talk to native American again.

The outside of NAMI is not so unique for me, but the interior design is definitely different from any museum I have seen before.  The museum itself is big but not many too see, it has lots of empty space and a few exhibitions. I was a little bit disappointed because I was really amazed by the handcrafts of Native Americans and expected to see more.  One exhibition I like the most is the Native American’s perspective towards the universe. They have some quotes on the wall showing their understanding of the universe while showing their traditional festival, household and clothes.


The article that I helped with was the artist George Morrison, he has an Indian name Wah Teh Go Nay Ga Bo (Standing In the Northern Lights). He is article is almost in good shape when I came in and edit. There were several books about him at the museum so I borrowed the books and add a more chronological bio of him.

As an artist, it would be not right if there is no art work in his wiki page, so I went to the Smithsonian archives which linked me back to NAMI’s collection, and found one of his sculpture work. It is helpful that I learned how to use the licensing on wiki commons from last edit-a-thon because we will be using this a lot when adding artists’ work.

Title:Untitled [sepia version]
Title:Untitled [sepia version]


NMAI Edit-a-Thon

For this week’s edit-a-thon I worked along with Joyce in creating Larry McNeil‘s wikipedia page. At first we ran into some problems since there was already a Larry McNeill on Wikipedia and when we tried to create Larry McNeil the page already existed with a disambiguation to the basketball player.  We then decided to make a page that would just say “Larry McNeil (photographer)” and that worked well for us and we were able to create the page. We later saw that someone added a new link into Larry McNeill’s page that would lead them to the one we had created which is good since it is his page that shows up in google search first.  The page for the other Larry McNeill now looks like this:

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We had some information to begin the creation of the page but not so much so that we could make a long and complete which is what he deserves. So, while we filled out the minor details about his life that we could find as well as his achievements  we could not further the article with more information or even a photo. Since he is a photographer all of his pictures don’t have the proper permits to be published in Wikipedia so we had to leave the page blank.

Something interesting that happened while we were editing was that 2 minutes into the page being live, before we could finish the final details to make it complete,  another wikipedia editor suggested that the page be deleted for insufficient sources.  After another minute or two passed and we added the sources I had to message the user to let him know that we needed more than 5 minutes to finish the page properly; I think my message worked since the page wasn’t deleted. I

It is with situations like this that make me think I think how people can still think Wikipedia is unreliable when it is really hard to get away with posting incorrect information. I can say that before all this I was one of those people who agreed that maybe Wikipedia was not a scholarly source per se but I am now a believer and if everyone understood all the regulations that exist they would be to.

NMAI Edit-a-thon

NMAI left me strong impression first because of its outside style. This museum is not the same as other museums just by looking at the building from outside. It is more modern looking compare to other museums. In interior of NMAI is also quite different from other museums. It looks more casual overall.

I edited Norval Morrisseau’s Wikipedia page. Morrisseau was a Canadian artist. His art pieces are known for their thick black outlines and bright colors. He focused on spiritual and mysterious things, and he reflected his thought in his art works. He also founded Woodlands School Canadian art. I added more materials to his “Indian Group of Seven” section because I think it is important for people to know about his unique relationship to NMAI. One thing that deeply concerned Morrisseau during his late years was the fact that there were many fake versions of Morrisseau’s painting. Morrisseau worked very hard to take those fake art pieces down from the market.

NMAI has a lot of resources of living cultures. In my own opinion, recording what’s still living and existing is equally important as recording what’s long gone. NMAI does a good job collecting living cultures, and there are many printed books and portfolios of the living artists available when we were at the edit-a-thon. Many museums focus on history backgrounds and people who passed away. However, NMAI has so much information about living people and things as well. I think that is one of the important things that NMAI does better than other institutions.

Also, on NMAI’s official website, it says that the museum has collections from all over the world. It not only has modern collections, but it also has collections that are from 12,000 years ago. The fact that NMAI is the “living memorial” of Native American culture is very impressive. It is good to have museums like NMAI that preserves important information about Native Americans. NMAI publishes its own magazine American Indian in order to better promote Native American cultures.

NMAI’s relationship with Wikipedia has a lot of similarities with other institutions, but it has more at the same time. When we were at the edit-a-thon, the staffs in the museum were very helpful and knowledgeable about their collections. They seem to be more interested in Wikipedia’s relationship with the museum more than other institutions. The staffs were more passionate about helping the students with their Wikipedia editing as well. The printed materials are preserved very neatly, and they are so helpful to the editing process.