Technology: Write history for the Library of Congress’ crowdsourcing project - PressFrom - US
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TechnologyWrite history for the Library of Congress’ crowdsourcing project

18:30  14 august  2019
18:30  14 august  2019 Source:   theverge.com

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The Library of Congress (LC) last month launched crowd .loc.gov, a new crowdsourcing platform that will improve discovery and access to the Library ’s digital collections with the help of volunteer transcription and tagging. The project kicked off with the “Letters to Lincoln Challenge,” a campaign

The Library of Congress today launched crowd .loc.gov, a crowdsourcing program that will connect the Library with virtual volunteers to transcribe text in digitized images from the This project enables anyone with access to a computer to experience first-hand accounts in history while contributing to

If you’ve got a fascination for history, then the Library of Congress has a job for you — well, it’s a non-paying job, but it’s worth a few minutes (or hours) of your time.

Write history for the Library of Congress’ crowdsourcing project

The library is asking anyone with a computer and an interest in historical documents to join a crowdsourcing project called By the People, in which volunteers will transcribe several thousand documents from the library’s vaults. According to the site, the purpose of the project is to “improve search, readability, and access to handwritten and typed documents for those who are not fully sighted or cannot read the handwriting of the original documents.”

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Last year the Library of Congress introduced a new online project called Crowd . The project invites teachers, students, and anyone interested in history to contribute to the transcription of primary source documents. The documents are arranged in thematic collections that the LOC calls "campaigns.".

By the People, the Library ’s crowdsourcing transcription project , is calling on volunteers to complete 1,000 pages from the “Suffrage: Women Fight for the Vote” Here, Elizabeth A. Novara, a historian in the Library ’s Manuscript Division, writes about some of the family and personal relationships that

Online-based crowdsourcing is not new; there have been academic projects such as [email protected] (a radio telescope experiment that has been ongoing since 1999), government projects such as the National Archives’ Citizen Archivist, and crowdsourced traffic reporting via apps like Waze.

By the People invites interested volunteers to transcribe digitized images of personal letters, diaries, receipts, speeches, and other documents from famous and not-so-famous people who were involved in a variety of historical movements, mostly from the 19th and early 20th centuries. Launched in the fall of 2018, By the People has organized its documents into various “campaigns” — such as the Civil War, the abolitionist movement, and the suffragist movement — in order to let you choose the subject matter you’re most interested in. You can do a transcription yourself, check someone else’s work, or just read.

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Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden became the first African American and the first woman to lead the Library of Congress on Sept. This project from LC Labs is an experiment in crowdsourcing and community engagement. Our goals are to gather more structured and usable metadata about the

The Library of Congress today launched crowd .loc.gov, a crowdsourcing program that will connect the Library with virtual volunteers to transcribe text in This project enables anyone with access to a computer to experience first-hand accounts in history while contributing to the Library ’s ability to

Write history for the Library of Congress’ crowdsourcing project© Provided by Vox Media, Inc. By the People interface

The interface for the transcription process is well-designed. Documents are presented on the left half where you can magnify it and move it around in its space to provide the best view, which is especially useful for the cramped handwriting that’s often popular among 19th century writers. The blank area on the right is where you type in your transcription.

These documents offer a glimpse into the important issues of the time and the small details of day-to-day life. You could find yourself transcribing a typewritten page from Mary Church Terrell, 20th century African American writer, public speaker, and activist, in which she expertly shreds the arguments of a “Mr. Page” who had apparently written in defense of the lynchings that were so common in the post-Civil War South. You could also try to decipher the handwritten diary of Civil War nurse Clara Barton, in which she describes her feelings about a new home and notes how much she paid for a local post office box.

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The Library of Congress says it will soon be launching a crowdsourcing program as a way to better engage with a host of public constituents. The concept, the library announced this week, is inspired by projects like Beyond Words, where the organization’s digital lab asked the public to find cartoons and

While crowdsourcing has been a catchphrase in libraries for almost a decade--the first instance of Unsurprisingly, it's the big players that have the most prominent projects -- the Library of Congress (LC) The LC started its crowdsourcing project in January 2008 with just a few thousand pictures.

If you want to just look at some of the documents or even try your hand at transcribing, it’s easy to begin. All you have to do is go to the By the People topic page, and click on the “View Projects” button of the campaign you’re interested in. Each campaign page provides a background of the history you are about to encounter, how many contributors have already volunteered for that particular campaign, and how many documents have been completed, are in need of review, are in progress, or haven’t been started yet. There are plenty of documents for all: as of this writing, the campaign called “Suffrage: Women Fight for the Vote” had 48,380 documents in its crowdsourcing archive, and 23,363 hadn’t been claimed.

Below the statistics are rows of icons that represent each set of documents, along with a brief explanation of who wrote them and a bar that indicates how many have been completed. You can click on any set that interests you, choose a page, and dive in.

In short, if you’re at all interested in how political activists of a century ago fought, wrote, and lived, then the By the People project can be a captivating rabbit hole to fall into.

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