Setting up your Wikidata account
Uploading data via OpenRefine is just one way of contributing data to the Wikidata project. There are a variety of ways of doing that – some involving more or less manual work. First, you need to start by creating an account.
Creating an account with Wikidata is free, quick and easy, just following this link: https://www.wikidata.org/w/index.php?title=Special:CreateAccount&returnto=Wikidata%3AMain+Page
If you have already created accounts with other Wikimedia projects (e.g. Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons, etc), you can use those to log into Wikidata, too. All of these projects are interconnected.
The most basic way to get started with Wikidata is to try some manual data entry and editing. Simple edits such as changing a single piece of data or adding a reference, after you have completed an automated workflow with a tool such as OpenRefine, are still best done manually.
You can get started with manual edits in Wikidata, by following these user-friendly onboarding tutorials provided by Wikidata here: https://www.wikidata.org/wiki/Wikidata:Tours.
Automating your uploads
There are several ways to automate your uploads to Wikidata.
The process used in the JJKB project follows the OpenRefine workflow described in the previous section on this page. This workflow is best suited to medium amounts of data that tend to be heterogeneous.
Another popular method for bulk edits is using the tool QuickStatements, part of the Wikidata ecosystem of open tools. QuickStatements allows users to make data edits via a simple set of text commands which can be typed in a spreadsheets, a text editor, or directly into the import window of QuickStatements. This tool is best suited to homogeneous data, which requires simple, repetitive edits. As the tool lacks a graphical user interface, such as the Wikidata Extension within OpenRefine, typing up commands for complex edit schemas is less user-friendly. However, it is possible to use OpenRefine and QuickStatements in tandem. More information about the tool, and its various workflow scenarios, is available here: https://www.wikidata.org/wiki/Help:QuickStatements.
For very large amounts of data, the best strategy would be to use custom bots to perform the necessary data operations. As bots are a vital part of the Wikimedia ecosystem, there are extensive libraries that can help with writing custom scripts. A major hub is the Pywikibot manual: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Manual:Pywikibot.
If your organization does not have the appropriate technical expertise in-house, it is possible to request a bot service from the Wikidata team: https://www.wikidata.org/wiki/Wikidata:Bot_requests
Wikidata also provides a comprehensive pipeline for the various options for data import here: https://www.wikidata.org/wiki/Wikidata:Data_Import_Guide.
- Verborgh, Ruben, and Max De Wilde. Using OpenRefine: The Essential OpenRefine Guide That Takes You from Data Analysis and Error Fixing to Linking Your Dataset to the Web. Community Experience Distilled. Birmingham Mumbai: Packt Publishing, 2013.
Go back to section overview:
Workflow: Working with Cultural Heritage Datasets