Tag Archives: Wikipedia

Pretty fascinating to see how various Wikipedia pages address the #SOPAstrike today

Wikipediaenglish

Pretty fascinating to see how the various Wikipedia pages chose to address the SOPA protest blackout today.

Participating websites are listed on the SOPA Strike site: http://sopastrike.com

Don Buckley posted a link to an article via @abc“Wikipedia Blackout,” SOPA and PIPA explained

Meredith Stewart wrote a clear explanation of today’s events: Why is Wikipedia Going Away for a Day

(I read Meredith’s piece because of something Basil Kolani wrote: dead air space)

Wikipediaitalian1
Wikipediaitalian2
Wikipediaespanol
Wikipediarussian
Wikipediagerman
Wikipediaportuguese
Wikipediafrench
Wikipediajapanese
Wikipediachinese
Wikipediapolish

And the front pages of other sites including Google, BoingBoing, Reddit, Craigslist, etc.

Google
Boingboing
Reddit
Craigslist

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IPUMS is an amazing resource for population data! Their official motto: Use it for good, never for evil.

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My sister forwarded me an amazing article from The New York Times today: “Among the Wealthiest One Percent, Many Variations.” The article looks closely at the spectrum of just exactly who consitutes being included in the 1%. I know I don’t.

But in reality it is a far larger and more varied group, one that includes podiatrists and actuaries, executives and entrepreneurs, the self-made and the silver spoon set. They are clustered not just in New York and Los Angeles, but also in Denver and Dallas. The range of wealth in the 1 percent is vast — from households that bring in $380,000 a year, according to census data, up to billionaires like Warren E. Buffett and Bill Gates.

There is a linked infographic that sort of blew my mind: The Top 1 Percent: What Jobs Do They Have?  I love that on the lower left it includes: School teachers don’t earn enough to make the top 1 percent on their own, but many live in 1-percent households, primarily through marriage.

At the bottom of the infographic, it says information was sourced from IPUMS. I Googled IPUMS and found out it stands for Integrated Public Use Microdata Series. The Wikipedia entry about IPUMS (yes, Wikipedia is usually my first resource) taught me:

Integrated Public Use Microdata Series (IPUMS) is the world’s largest individual-level population database. IPUMS consists of microdata samples from United States (IPUMS-USA) and international (IPUMS-International) census records. The records are converted into a consistent format and made available to researchers through a web-based data dissemination system.

IPUMS is housed at the Minnesota Population Center, an interdisciplinary research center at the University of Minnesota, under the direction of Professor Steven Ruggles.

IPUMS-USA draws on every surviving United States census from 1850 to 2000 (with the exception of 1890 census, which was destroyed in a fire) and from the American Community Survey of 2000-2009. During certain years, IPUMS-USA also makes available over-samples of African-Americans, Alaskans, American Indians, Hawaiians, and Hispanics. The IPUMS provides consistent variable names, coding schemes, and documentation across all the samples, facilitating the analysis of long-term change.

IPUMS-International includes countries from Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America for 1960 forward. The database currently includes 159 samples from 55 countries around the world. IPUMS-International converts census microdata for multiple countries into a consistent format, allowing for comparisons across countries and time periods. Special efforts are made to simplify use of the data while losing no meaningful information. Comprehensive documentation is provided in a coherent form to facilitate comparative analyses of social and economic change.

Additional databases in the IPUMS family include: (1) the North Atlantic Population Project (NAPP), (2) the National Historical Geographic Information System (NHGIS), (3) the Integrated Health Interview Series (IHIS), and (4) the Integrated Public Use Microdata Series-Current Population Survey (IPUMS-CPS).

The Journal of American History described the effort as “One of the great archival projects of the past two decades.” The official motto of IPUMS is “use it for good, never for evil.” All IPUMS data and documentation are available online free of charge.

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Teaching 5th graders to search and cite online images

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Nicole Haleen teaches Spanish to 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades at The School at Columbia University. She might be one of the most organized people I work with. For the 5th grade study of Day of the Dead, 5th graders made drawings, dioramas, paintings, and scultptures of calacas (skeletons) before creating a digital altar to represent a family member. They built their altar in Inspiration, as it allowed them to quickly create tiers in order to populate with images and text.

Nicole asked me to come in and remind the students how to properly search and cite online images. This is what we discussed:

  1. They signed a Respectful Use Policy at the beginning of the year reinforcing that they’d be using technology academically, respectfully, and responsibly.
  2. Try to choose “advanced image search” in Google and Flickr and other sites so that you locate only images labeled for reuse.
  3. Use Wikimedia to search media. Wikimedia is a sister project of Wikipedia. I showed the 5th graders Wikimedia’s Reuse guide where they specifically state, “almost all may be freely reused without individual permission according to the terms of the particular license under which it was contributed to the project, but some licenses may require that the original creator be attributed.”
  4. It is incredibly easy from any browser (Firefox, Chrome, less so in Safari) to copy the image and paste it into Inspiration. Control-click on the image and choose Copy image.
  5. It is just as easy from any browser to copy the URL simply by holding down the Control key while clicking on the image with the mouse. Different browsers say different things: Copy image URL, Copy image address, Copy image location…
  6. We talked about how if you don’t cite/attribute a photo, it means you took it yourself, you forgot to cite it, or you stole it.
  7. I reinforced that 5th grade is a great age to get into the habit of being responsible, respectful, ethical, moral, and purposeful with information. The expectation is they will continue to do this throughout 5th grade and beyond.

Nicole lists the following sites for locating images:

http://commons.wikimedia.org
http://compfight.com
http://www.photos8.com
http://pics4learning.com
http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/images/?CTT=97

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Using Mona Lisa and Shepard Fairey to discuss copyright, fair use, and public domain

My 6th graders just finished a 3-day unit using Photoshop to rework a Renaissance painting. Today, we had a belated yet robust conversation about copyright, fair use, and the public domain. We specifically focused on two key pieces of art familiar to most everyone: Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa and Shepard Fairey’s Hope.

The class began with an awesome slide show put together by Yoshiko Maruiwa consisting of different images of the Mona Lisa. Kids were asked: Is it art? Who owns it? The answers were fabulous and fascinating. Most students decided that the altered Mona Lisa’s should be jointly owned by Da Vinci and the other artist. Some thought only the new artist owned the piece, as it referenced the Mona Lisa but was not an exact replica. One romantic hopeful thought no one should own the art, as Art is an exression of love and should be shared as a gift to the world. True.

After, I continued and facilitated the conversation from the front at the Eno board, punctuating our discussion with a bunch of quick Google searches to answer the questions that were brought up.

The Mona Lisa has a long and convoluted history. It was painted by Leonardo da Vinci who was commissioned by some patron. Da Vinci had it in his possession while on a trip to France and sold it to King Francois. It became part of the Royal Art Collection, passing from monarch to monarch until the French Revolution. At this point the painting became part of the public art collection housed at The Louvre and overseen by the French Government. It was stolen by an Italian and returned to The Louvre two years later (where it is still housed).
Q: Is there any Copyright protection on da Vinci’s Mona Lisa?
A: No. The copyright laws were not invented at that time.

A basic tenet of copyright law is that once a copyright has expired, it enters the public domain, for all to use. But when someone adds a copyrightable contribution to a public domain work, that contribution is copyrightable.

Title: LHOOQ
Year: 1919
Artist: Marcel Duchamp (1887 – 1968)
License: Protected by French copyright until 2039 (life + 70 years)
We were floored that there are two copyright camps based on whether you are in the US or in France:
1. This image is in the public domain in the United States because it was first published outside the United States prior to January 1, 1923. Other jurisdictions have other rules. Also note that this image may not be in the public domain in the 9th Circuit if it was published after July 1, 1909, unless the author is known to have died in 1940 or earlier (more than 70 years ago).

2. This file will not be in the public domain outside in its home country until January 1, 2039 and should not be transferred to Wikimedia Commons, as Commons requires that images be free in the source country and in the United States.

I shared a brilliant idea of printing T-shirts of Duchamp’s painting and selling them to French tourists as soon as they land in the US.

Then, we talked about Shepard Fairey’s Hope painting which was inspired by an Associated Press photograph. Essentially, the Associated Press commissioned Mannie Garcia to take photos of Obama at an event in 2006. Fairey adapted the photo in 2008, and his painting became immensely popular and was reproduced on button, tshirts, posters, sneakers, etc. The AP sued Fairey because Fairey did not ask permission to use the image, Fairey never cited the AP as the owner of the image, and the AP was not compensated. Fairey filed a countersuit saying he had Fair Use to adapt the original image. In an interview with Iggy Pop for Interview Magazine, Fairey states: I feel like what I did was both aesthetically and conceptually transformative. I think it’s fair use, but the Associated Press thinks it’s copyright infringement, and they’re really going after me.

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Unfortunately, Fairey destroyed evidence. We clicked to the Wikipedia entry about Shepard Fairey and read: …in October 2009 Shepard Fairey admitted to trying to deceive the Court by destroying evidence that he had used the photograph alleged by the AP. His lawyers announced they were no longer representing him…In May 2010, a judge urged Fairey to settle. Another good source is this piece in the Huffington Post.

At the end of class, we revisited the legality of our own Photoshop renditions of Renaissance paintings. All of the paintings we used are in the Public Domain (since they were painted hundreds of years ago before copyright laws were created), and each student produced copyrightable contributions. However, I pointed out two main issues that could prevent us from copyrighting our versions of famous masterpieces:

1. Even though the artwork is in the public domain, the digital file we used was downloaded from Artstor.org.
On their website, Artstor declares it is a “non-profit digital image library for education and scholarship.” Columbia University subscribes to Artstor, and therefore my school has access to the library. Under their Terms and Conditions, Artstor permits use for classroom instruction, related activities, and noncommercial scholarly or educational presentation. I’m currently waiting to hear back from Artstor’s legal department to find out if my students could feasibly copyright their photoshopped version of an Artstor digital image of a public domain painting.

2. All of our work was done on Columbia’s hardware using Columbia’s software during a “work” day at Columbia.
Any discovery that a scientist or professor makes while on the job or using work equipment belongs to the company. Doesn’t that apply here too?

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