Open Video Coming to Wikipedia

Wikipedia is now open­ing the online ency­clo­pe­dia to video, giv­ing con­trib­u­tors a new way to con­vey infor­ma­tion in a rich­er way. And they’re mak­ing a point of using video in an open for­mat (Ogg The­o­ra).

Among the con­flu­ence of fac­tors com­ing togeth­er in 2010 are: 1) the grow­ing aware­ness that video is the dom­i­nant medi­um of the web and that video can help make Wikipedia arti­cles even rich­er; 2) the devel­op­ment of open source play­ers and codecs (alter­na­tives to Flash, Quick­time, Win­dows Media, and H.264, 3); the intro­duc­tion of pub­lic brows­er tools—Firefox’s Fire­fogg exten­sion, for example—for upload­ing and play­ing non­pro­pri­etary video for­mats; 4) the will­ing­ness of non­prof­its like the Par­tic­i­pa­to­ry Cul­ture Foun­da­tion and the Open Video Alliance and for-prof­its like Kaltura and Intel­li­gent Tele­vi­sion to ded­i­cate them­selves to open video; and the pro­vi­sion of strate­gic fund­ing from the Mozil­la Foun­da­tion and Ford Foun­da­tion, among oth­ers, to sup­port devel­op­ers, pro­gram­mers, and activists.  As Wikipedia board mem­ber S. J. Klein explains in a recent Open Video Alliance video short, the day is fast com­ing where video will be as easy for users to write, edit, anno­tate, and remix as text is today. (You can find more details on the cam­paign here and here.)

What are the rec­om­men­da­tions for video con­tributed to Wikipedia? They should be relat­ed to cur­rent arti­cles, short and under 100 MB, free, and avail­able to share and reuse (offered under a Cre­ative Com­mons BY-SA or equiv­a­lent license). In com­ing weeks new videos are expect­ed to pro­lif­er­ate and new strate­gies will be unfurled for work­ing with edu­ca­tion­al repos­i­to­ries of lega­cy video.

This post was con­tributed by Peter Kauf­man, the CEO and pres­i­dent of Intel­li­gent Tele­vi­sion, who shares our pas­sion for thought­ful media.

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.