Critical issues presentations/Global images initiative; adding images to 50.000 articles

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Submission no. 51
Title of the submission

Global images initiative; adding images to 50.000 articles

Author of the submission
  • Mike Nicolaije
Country of origin



Projects, Technical

  • Image
  • Suggestion
  • Cooperation
  • Wikidata
  • Wikipedia

Thousands if not millions of articles could have an image, but they don't. This is a big deal. In May 2014 I started 2 global images projects. We added over 23.000 images to nl.wikipedia and over 55.000 on all 15 Wikipedias involved. The presentation is about method, results and future possibilies. The projects make adding images easy for the average local Wikipedia user. We need more people to solve this problem and get not 15 Wikipedias but hundreds involved. The biggest advantage of these projects is that no bots or tools are needed to help. Any Wikipedia editor can add images in any language.

Wikidata Images project was used to add images to around 35.000 Wikipedia articles in 15 languages and 70.000 images to Wikidata. A template (made by Multichill) is added to infobox templates (which are already on articles). This divides the articles over several categories by two factors: 1) the presence of an image in the infobox template on the article, and 2) the presence of an image on Wikidata. This way it is easy to find articles that miss an image locally, but have an image on Wikidata (or the other way round) and people can manually add the images to the articles [1]. If an image is added the article automatically switches category. On the Dutch Wikipedia over 20 people added images, I did almost nothing except coordinate. On two projects (pl, pt) people joined in to help and I did about 50% of the work. On the other projects I mainly managed this on my own. Since it is very easy to use, a single volunteer can add images to a thousand articles and improve the quality of their project very easily (as I have hopefully demonstrated).

Image Suggestions project was used to add images to more than 20.000 articles on nl.wikipedia and more than 3.000 on it.wikipedia. In cooperation with Lsj and his Lsjbot, pages are checked for images. If the page has no image, other projects are checked for images. These images are proposed on the article talk page ( This message on the talk page explains the project, gives a list of images, and explains that the bot message can be deleted (and if the page is empty, how to delete the page). The message puts all talkpages in a category. This category is used to find the image suggestions and make it easy for people to solve them. With biographies it has on a 30-40% succesrate, and with other topics 20%. Since the start of the project in January 2015, over 150.000 image suggestions were made, 72.000 suggestions have been resolved by volunteers, and images were added to over 25.000 pages. After the project no image suggestions will be left. The only visible result will be the images on the articles.



Interested attendees and comments