Submissions/Is Wikimedia A Memory Institution?

From Wikimania


This is an Open submission for Wikimania 2017 that has not yet been reviewed by a member of the Programme Committee.

Submission no. 7033 - C7
Title of the submission
Is Wikimedia A Memory Institution?
Type of submission (lecture, panel, tutorial/workshop, roundtable discussion, lightning talk, poster, birds of a feather discussion)
Author of the submission
Tyng-Ruey Chuang
Language of presentation
English (preferred)
E-mail address
Tyng-Ruey Chuang
Country of origin
Affiliation, if any (organisation, company etc.)
Institute of Information, Academia Sinica, Taiwan
Personal homepage or blog
Abstract (up to 300 words to describe your proposal)

We plan to discuss whether and how Wikimedia, as represented by all the projects it hosts, constitutes as a memory institution. While Wikipedia is mainly about universal access to knowledge, it is also a place where people retell stories. People not only look for and reuse media files from the Wikimedia Commons; they use the place to deposit digital artifacts to be remembered. Often the added narratives and media are judged by their impartiality, so as to fit them into the universal knowledge. But, at the same time, the stories and artifacts are people's remembrance of the past and the present. In a way, Wikipedia edits are made so we can remember, Wikidata statements are added so facts will not be forgotten, and pictures are put into the Wikimedia Commons because they are our favorites.

We will explore the implications and issues when thinking about Wikimedia as a memory institution. Is "neutral point of view" an adequate criterion when stories from different perspectives are to be told? Is "citation needed" when it is oral history or folklore? Shall artifacts abandoned on the scenes of natural disasters or human conflicts be photoed and put into the Wikimedia Commons? How do we attribute these artifacts?

The author of this panel proposal will present his views, drawing from his experience in working on the Sunflower Movement Archive. He is looking for others to join the panel. Comments and suggestions are most welcomed. Digital Humanities 2017 will also be held in Montreal at the same week of Wikimania 2017. The author hopes to involve both communities in discussing this topic.

Updated 2017-05-23:


  • Tyng-Ruey Chuang, Academia Sinica, Taiwan (confirmed)
  • Pierre-Carl Langlais, Paris Sorbonne-CELSA (depending on travel)
  • Jon Phillips, & (confirmed)
  • Anasuya Sengupta, (to be confirmed)

What will attendees take away from this session?
To view and use Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects differently, as sites of personal and collective remembrance.
Theme of presentation
WikiCulture & Community, GLAM.
For workshops and discussions, what level is the intended audience?
Length of session (if other than 25 minutes, specify how long)
55 minutes
Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?
Probably yes
Slides or further information (optional)
Special requests
Is this Submission a Draft or Final?

This is a Completed submission for Wikimania 2017 ready to be reviewed by a member of the Programme Committee.

Interested attendees

If you are interested in attending this session, please sign with your username below. This will help reviewers to decide which sessions are of high interest. Sign with a hash and four tildes. (# ~~~~).

  1. Greg (WMF) (talk) 23:06, 13 April 2017 (UTC)[reply]