Transcribing Oral Knowledge with Wikisource
Language: English (mozilla)

Wikisource, the world’s largest collaborative library, exists in 70+ languages. Traditionally, the various Wikisource communities have been transcribing texts in various languages, with the help of OCR where it exists. But, aren’t there languages and cultures in which a lot of knowledge exists but not in the form of texts but as folk tales and folk songs retold over the centuries? Can that knowledge be documented, preserved and even transcribed on the Wikimedia platforms? What technology is available to enable this already? What new technology will need to be built?

What language would you like to host your session in?


What happens after MozFest? We're hoping that many efforts and discussions will continue after MozFest. Share any ideas you already have for how to continue the work from your session.

I am already mentoring a few projects in this direction. If more people get excited to work on this project, I can mentor them to successful grant applications to seek funding from the Wikimedia Foundation.

Here is a project related to this that I am already mentoring:

Why did you choose that space? How does your session align with the space description?

This session directly aligns with "Digitizing Cultures & Languages" as that's precisely what Wikisource is for. It helps in digitizing texts and giving them a new life.

This discussion will be mainly centered around audio-visual transcription using Wikisource, as it opens up space for audio-visual to be indexed in search and also allows for easier reuse.

What is the goal and/or outcome of your session?

Participants will leave with a better understanding of Wikisource, a sister project of Wikipedia, which becomes an essential infrastructure, especially for under sourced and underrepresented languages. I also plan to engage with potential tech partners to improve Wikisource infrastructure.

How will you deal with varying numbers of participants in your session? What if 30 participants attend? What if there are 3?

I am planning to invite a few facilitators who are already working to improve the infrastructure and others who are working with the communities of practice. With a smaller group, the conversation can turn into something like a round-table discussion. With a larger group, it can be something like a panel discussion, followed with QAs.