Wikipedia launched a call for users to create a digital collection of artifacts lost in the fire at the National Museum of Rio de Janeiro. The proposal is to collect photos to "preserve the memory" of about 20 million items that may have been destroyed in last Sunday's fire (2). It is estimated that 90% of the Museum's 200-year collection has been decimated.
People who have photos of the archaeological findings and other objects that make up the collection can upload the images to the Wikimedia Commons, an open platform that brings together images for free reproduction and use.
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National Museum of Rio de Janeiro before the fire
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Founded by Dom Joao VI in 1818, the National Museum brought together the largest and most important scientific collection in Latin America. The items held by the institution included the human fossil known as Luzia, the oldest fossil found in America, about 13, 000 years old. Another known artifact was the nearly two-ton meteorite found in Luziânia in the 1920s. Resistant to high temperatures, the object was one of the few preserved after six hours of fire.
The flames began at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday (2), after the time of visitation ended. It is not yet known where the fire began or the cause. The structure of the building was made of wood and the collection contained a lot of flammable material, which helped in the rapid spread of the fire.
Wikipedia does not detail which photos are accepted in the collection. It is worth remembering that in addition to objects and research material, many documents were lost in the accident. On Twitter, users suggest that the organization also accept sending photos of lost documents that may not have been scanned. In principle, any photo of own authorship will be accepted.
How to send photos to Wikipedia
Step 1. Access the Wikimedia Commons page and click on "Create account" to register on the site.
Create an account on Wikimedia Commons
Step 2. After creating an account, locate the "Upload file" option in the left menu.
Access the Wikimedia Commons upload tool
Step 3. Click "Next" in the footer to skip the initial instructions.
Go to the upload tool
Step 4. Click on "Select media to share" and select the photos of your own stored on the computer.
Select photos from the collection of the National Museum to send to Wikimedia Commons
Step 5. Click "Add more files" to continue sending more photos. When finished, select "Continue".
Upload as many pictures as you like
Step 6. Enter your full name to complete the material permission form for the Creative Commons license. Then click "Next".
Fill in the photo property claim and advance
Step 7. Give a name and description for the image. Remember to mark the correct language of the description. Use the "Add description in another language" button to add content in more languages.
Describe the image sent to Wikimedia Commons
Step 8. Below, select the National Museum category, Rio de Janeiro and click on "Publish" to finish.
Wikimedia Commons has a category specific to the collection of the National Museum
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