Many cultural heritage institutions work on the digital publication of their collections. For instance, the collection of the Rijksmuseum can be downloaded and used at a very high quality, the Dutch National Archive has made more than 150.000 photos available online and through Europeana more than a million objects can be downloaded for reuse.
Many of these objects are open licensed and find their way to Wikipedia, either through structural collaborations between cultural institutions and volunteers, or through individual uploads by volunteers. Unfortunately, it is still difficult to measure which part of the Wikipedia-visitors is attracted by these collections.
In the past year, Kennisland has approached more than 30 cultural institutions worldwide to inquire in which way they would like to get an overview in the usage of their collections on Wikipedia. Based on the results of this survey, Kennisland composed an advisory report for the Wikipedia Foundation. In the near future, the Analytics Team of the Wikipedia Foundation will analyse and implement our advice so that eventually the cultural sector can access these statistics.
Earlier research of Kennisland has demonstrated that a small set of photos which has been placed on Wikipedia as an experiment has been viewed 17.000 times more often. Research on the video platform OpenBeelden.nl shows that the 0.015% of its collection which the platform shares on Wikipedia attracts as much visitors as the whole collection on the platform’s own website. Kennisland predicts that the publication of these statistics will lead to the increased sharing of cultural collections with Wikipedia.