ARKive is an initiative of the charity Wildscreen, based in Bristol, which aims to promote the protection of threatened species using the emotive power of wildlife films and photographs, which it obtains from its impressive list of donors and makes available through its website. ARKive’s patron is Sir David Attenborough. Its backers include BirdLife International, Conservation International, The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), The United Nations Environment Programme’s World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) , The World Wide Fund for Nature, the Natural History Museum, Royal Botanic (Kew) Gardens, and the Smithsonian Institution. You can also view an ARKive layer in Google Earth, built in collaboration with Google.
Wikimedia UK is a not-for-profit organisation (registration as a charity pending) which exists:
…to help collect, develop and distribute freely licensed knowledge (and other educational, cultural and historic material). We do this by bringing the Wikimedia community in the UK together, and by building links with UK-based cultural institutions, universities, charities and other bodies.
In other words, to support and promote Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons and related projects.
As Wikipedia Outreach Ambassador, it will be my role to assist ARKive in working more closely with Wikipedia editors, improve Wikipedia articles about a number of endangered species, and work with the editors of the the many non-English versions of Wikipedia to have articles translated. You can read more about the role, and follow my progress, at the Wikimedia UK project page.
I’m very much looking forward to working with my new colleagues at ARKive, and honoured to be involved with such a prestigious organisation. The role nicely bridges my professional web work, my Wikipedia activities and my love for wildlife, including being a trustee of the West Midland Bird Club (a registered charity) and a voluntary warden for the RSPB.
I’ll mostly be working from home, but plan at least six visits to Bristol, some overnight, where I shall also be running a couple of outreach events. I hope to meet some of Bristol’s local Wikipedia, geek and social media community while I’m there — please ask any contacts you might have, in such groups, to get in touch.
As the role is part-time, I’m still available if anyone else needs my help with web, social media or Wikipedia-related work.