The conference about digital strategies in heritage

2 - 3 December 2013
De Doelen, Rotterdam

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Nominee: Transcribe Bentham

​An international jury, consisting of Josh Greenberg, Susan Hazan, Johan Oomen, Vincent Puig and Mia Ridge have selected the five final of a longer list of crowdsourcing projects. As you can read in the jury statements (provided with each of the final five projects) each of these final projects is well worth winning the award!

Statement of the jury by Susan Hazan:

In spite of the remoteness of it all the experience feels surprisingly academic. On the Transcription Desk you are confronted with original and unstudied manuscript papers written by Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832), the great philosopher and reformer. Those who have a direct interest in Bentham, or who are simply curious to take part in the kinds of academic processes that are traditionally carried out within red-leather libraries are encouraged to make their own, significant contribution in unraveling these manuscripts.

This is your chance to exert your own – and until now secret – desire to be a paleographer, and even if you have had no prior academic training in deciphering 18th or 19th century manuscripts you can join in the fun! Students, or school children with Bentham on their curriculum – Bentham’s ideas are studied as part of a range of A-levels and Scottish Highers – will find this experience even more rewarding and satisfying. Online paleographers can interact with others by creating a social profile and by sharing ideas in the discussion forum. For those who need a gentle nudge there is a quick start guide to using the tool as well as detailed guidelines on how to transcribe the manuscripts.

According to the website, since Transcribe Bentham was launched to the public on 8 September 2010, volunteers have transcribed an average of 34 manuscripts per week and since mid-September 2011, the transcription rate has been at 44 manuscripts per week . Transcribe Bentham is a participatory project based at University College London who hold 60,000 papers written by Bentham including thousands of papers, potentially of immense historical and philosophical importance, that have yet to be transcribed and studied. By transcribing this material for the first time, you will be making Bentham’s thought accessible to the world at large, as well as helping UCL’s Bentham Project in its task of producing a new authoritative edition of the Collected Works of Jeremy Bentham.” 

VideoThe Bentham Project

Getting Started with Transcribe Bentham



Institution: University College London


Will be presented by: Melissa Terras, University College London

The other nominees for the Digital Heritage Award are (telkens diegene weglaten waar het artikel over gaat, dus het lijstje voor Digitalkoot zou er zo uitzien:

·  Old Weather (National Maritime Museum of the UK)

.  Digitalkoot (National Library of Finland)

·  Remember Me (United States Holocaust Memorial Museum)

·  Trove (National Library of Australia)

Read the newsitem about the award nomination.

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