Basque Wikimedians create Ikusgela, a platform for free education videos

Pedagogic videos, in Basque language

Ikusgela is a project specialized in pedagogical videos. Its aim is to increase the presence of the Basque language on the web and to complete the scope of Basque Wikipedia. With a fresh tone that appeals to both students and those interested in the topics being worked on, it will use a language and resources adapted to the new narratives. All the videos, moreover, have been completed with free content, mostly from Wikimedia Commons, and the material created will also be free, as a sign of a way of acting in the network.

It has a website, but the essence of the project is not the container, but the content itself. Therefore, more important than the web is the Wikipedia and the Youtube channel, as well as finding innovative ways to disseminate and promote this content on social networks (via Twitter, Mastodon, Telegram, Instagram…). Ikusgela also wants to act as a bridge: it wants to bring those who only use Basque in the formal sphere to see Basque content in the informal sphere as well.

The project is coordinated by the Basque Wikimedians User Group, financially sponsored by the Basque Government and Hiru Damatxo puts the audiovisual branch. The project started in 2019, with a project presented to the UEU-EWKE Digital Humanities research grant, sponsored by the Basque Wikimedians User Group and the Basque Summer University. After the research, the project got the possibility to realize a prototype inside a multimedia research institution. After that, the Department of Culture and Language Policy of the Basque Government supported the initiative and Ikusgela was born.

Hannah Arendt and Simone de Beauvoir

The philosophers Hannah Arendt and Simone de Beauvoir could be, for the first time, an exam topic at the University Access Evaluation, and with two videos about these two authors Ikusgela has begun its journey with the aim of alleviating a lack that was sensed when working on school content. The two videos are already at Commons, in the relevants articles in Wikipedia, in the social networks of Ikusgela and in the portal http://www.ikusgela.eus.

Members of the Agora Philosophy Teachers Association and the Joxe Azurmendi Chair of the Basque Country University have worked as academic advisors for the creation of these first two videos; in addition, a student and a professor have worked on the article about Hannah Arendt inside the Basque Wikimedia Education Program. In the audiovisual field, the production company Hiru Damatxo has been dedicated to the creation of videos. The voice of this videos is provided by the actor Klara Badiola.

All-in in September

After the summer Ikusgela will start its full activity, in mid-September the first series will be presented. Sometimes animation techniques will be used, sometimes a presenter will guide the content. The idea is to make explanatory educational videos on different fields of knowledge, free and in Basque.