University of Michigan Ford Presidential Library hires intern to enhance its presence on Wikipedia
Wikipedia entries don't write themselves.
And, believe it or not, academia may be slowly embracing the 'people's encyclopedia.'
In fact, the University of Michigan just hired a Wikipedian in residence for its Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library, one of about 30 such positions worldwide and the first for any presidential library.
Wikipedians in residence are essentially Wikidpedia editors, sometimes compensated and sometimes volunteers, tasked with elevating an organization's profile on Wikipedia. Barera is not being compensated for his work.
Michael Barera, a school of information graduate student, is an intern charged with elevating the library's presence on Wikipedia by enhancing articles with information from the Ford library. His scope includes everything from the late president's family to notable events surrounding his presidency.
“Wikipedia is a completely new outreach venue for us,” Bettina Cousineau, exhibit specialist at the Ford Library and Museum, said in a news release. “Not everyone can visit our museum and library in person, but everyone can visit us online.”
Barera is not new to editing Wikipedian articles.
The self-described "dedicated Wikipedian" has been contributing articles and photos for the website for five years. During his senior year at U-M he was a member of U-M Wikipedians, the first Wikipedia student club in the nation.
This article has been edited to clarify Barera is not getting paid for his internship.