Author: Krishna Chaitanya Velaga
Edited by: Chinmayi S K

Introduction

The Wikidata Game and The Distributed Wikidata Game (the latter is more popularly called just "The Distributed Game" are two games aimed to increase the number of contributions to Wikidata while making the process fun for contributions. There are different sub-games based on the types of tasks/ edits. These games suggest edits to the Wikidata items by comparing the data of the Wikidata item to that present in the respective Wikipedia articles.

Where can Wikidata games be used?

The Wikidata games can be a useful engagement tool for participants while conducting the following activities:

  1. Beginner's introduction to Wikidata
  2. Wikidata focused campaigns
  3. Wikidata workshops for students (with the education community)

How to use Wikidata games?

The Wikidata Game and The Distributed Game contain two different sets of sub-games which can be used depending upon the interest of the user. The Distributed Game is the second version of The Wikidata Game.

For non-English languages enabling the game can be done by adding languages codes in the settings of Wikidata Game. Both of these games help you to improve a statement1 in an item on Wikidata.

If you're planning an event around introducing Wikidata for beginners, then this game can be an excellent choice to make Wikidata editing enjoyable to newcomers. The game can also be an easy and simple way to contribute to Wikidata while on the move, for example, when you're travelling. However, a check is recommended before accepting a suggestion into the Wikidata platform. If you are not sure of the answer/ your choice in the game, , please skip the question or select "I don't know", in case the option is available. Thus, other users who know the topic better will have an opportunity to choose the right answer.

The Wikidata Game comprises eleven sub-games.

  • Merge items: If you are interested in merging duplicate items. This tool suggests the same items based on the titles, aliases and descriptions of two items. It also considers similarities between statements before putting out a recommendation for merge. A thorough check is recommended before merging two items.
  • Person: This game will help you to decide whether to add "human" to the "instance of" an item. If you're not sure, you can check the Wikipedia article of the item. Even if the article is from a non-English Wikipedia, you can use translation to understand. By reading the text, you can decide on whether the subject in question is a human or not.
  • Gender: This game helps you to choose the gender of the subject in question. The items suggested are the ones that have already marked as "human", but there is no statement for gender.
  • Occupation: This game helps you to chose the occupation of the subject. This can be obtained from a Wikipedia article of the subject or a credible source about the person. Sometimes the game may not suggest any right option in which case you can select "Not listed". Sometimes, the game could suggest multiple professions, then you have to select the most relevant ones are to be ticked.
  • Alma mater: This game helps you to choose the alma mater of a person. This can be obtained from a Wikipedia of that subject. The game may suggest institutions as the alma mater, however, it needs to be verified carefully because the game has been error prone in the past.
  • Country of citizenship: This game helps you choose the country of a person. There are the items which might contain birthplace data, but no country of citizenship. This can be easily verified by checking the item or the article of birthplace. In most of the cases, the country of the birthplace will be the country of citizenship. But there do exist case where the person has changed citizenship at later stage in their life. Unless it is obvious and very clear, kindly do not make a judgement.
  • Images: This game helps you to add an image to an item. These could be items that have no images, but their respective Wikipedia articles have images. You can also select the kind of image, for example, coat of arms, logo, seal etc when adding them to the item. These get to Wikidata as qualifiers for statements.
  • The other games include
    • "Disambiguation items" where items represent disambiguation pages and should be marked as such!
    • "Date" items marked as "humans", but their date of birth and/or death are missing.
    • "Commons category" items have no Wikimedia Commons category, but a category exists on Commons with the same name. These can be a potential link.
    • "Books without author" items with the instance of marked as "book" or related, but have no authorship data, which their Wikipedia articles might have. There is a possibility that the game may suggest an editor to the author, so do take verify it carefully.

The Distributed Game comprises seventeen sub-games.

  • Items without descriptions: This game helps you to add the descriptions to items, which are suggested from the respective Wikipedia articles. While doing so, a preview of the Wikipedia article (by default from English) is shown to you. However, you can change it, by selecting other languages from the available options. You'll have the preview from respective language Wikipedia article.
  • Kian game: This game helps you to add statements to Wikidata items. The game suggests both the property and the corresponding value to you, to make a decision. A preview of the respective Wikipedia article is shown to you. This preview is mainly pulled from the article's lead.
  • Administrative unit: This game helps you add a statement for an administrative entity and its value, to the items which already have the coordinates data. The game shows a preview of the place on a map based on the coordinates. This map can be used to decide the administration. The options are also suggested to the user.
  • Kaspar's Persondata games: This game suggests the places, dates, aliases, and descriptions, for items, based on the data from the Persondata from Wikipedia. Though the Persondata is not active on Wikipedia now, the existing data is being used by the game to improve items on Wikidata. Sometimes, the information present in the lead or the infobox may also be considered.
  • Other games include:
    • "African Americans" game was created to support the Black History Month 2017, which helps you to set an ethnicity tag for African American people.
    • "Primary sources" help you to add a third-party site, as a source for the statement. Please make sure the website contains a source for the statement in question
    • "Mix n Match" helps you to verify that an entry in an external catalogue matches a given Wikidata item. Decisions count as mix'n'match actions.
    • "Source MetaData" may be useful to identify a scientist on a publication. In the preview, both the name of the publication and the suggested name of the person, are previewed to the user.

If you have a game that you would like to add and play, that can be done to the Distributed Game, which allows you to add your own game by adding the API URL. The documentation for the same can be seen here.

With the help of technical contributors, a new game, focused for a particular campaign can be built. An example of such case is the "African Americans" game, which was created for Black History Month 2017. Such campaigns, focusing on the improvement of specific set items, or properties, can be great fun using this tool.

Note: These games may be used under your username, via OAuth. Even though the tool makes the edits on Wikidata, on behalf of you, since you are the one accepting these suggestions and giving the approval to publish, you are responsible for these edits. Every game screen has a "Not sure" button; when in doubt, do not be afraid to use it!

License: Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Footnotes

  1. In Wikidata, a concept, topic, or object is represented by an item. Each item is accorded its own page. A statement is how the information we know about an item - the data we have about it - gets recorded in Wikidata.This happens by pairing a property with at least one value; this pair is at the heart of a statement.

next: Miscellaneous quick-use tools