IGF 2021 – Day 0 – Event #106 Museums in virtual space - education, dissemination and audiences for museums' online offer

The following are the outputs of the captioning taken during an IGF virtual intervention. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.



>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Hello, everyone, my name is Aleksandra Glowacz.  I will be the moderator of this session.  Welcome everyone on this session "Museum In Virtual Space."  We will be talking about education, dissemination, and the recipients of the museum offer in the web.

This session is organized by National Institute for Museum and public collection, and I would like to welcome you on behalf of the organizers, as well as the organizers of the conference.  This session will take place remotely, and all the participants of this ‑‑ the presenters of this session will ‑‑ are not in Katowice, but still if anyone is in Katowice, I would also like to welcome you and to kindly ask to put the question in the comments in chat.

So feel free to participate in the online chat discussion.  If there will be any did technical problems, please, you can send it in chat or contact directly to Anahita and Anahita will help to solve any technical problems that may appear.

This ‑‑ during this session, we will be talking about the virtual space of museums and the situation that appeared in 2020, when the pandemic was announced in Poland and a lot of other countries too.  And we had to redefine the rule of day‑to‑day operations of our museums and change the forms of activities that we offer our audience.  This new situation has changed the way that digital works and that perception of museum educators, workers and also the different needs of museum public that want to still participate in culture but indeed different and new way.

The Internet has become the only platform for the cultural heritage and the communication between our institution and our audience.

So today during this panel, we will have a chance to see two examples of Polish ‑‑ two leading museums, how they deal with this situation, and what kind of solutions were proper in the best and good practice for this time.  Then we will have the student to discuss it with the specialist, the representatives of civil organization and the social and media expert to discuss about the tools and the means of communication between the museum and the public in the pandemic time and what will be the future of this virtual space of the museum.  We will try to evaluate the effectiveness of the tools that we use on our website and make a diagnosis of the needs of our audience now and in the future.

I would like to ask the representatives of the museums in Poland and then we will join the bigger conversation with representatives from social media and also from civic organization.

So in this panel, we will have a chance to talk with Tomasz Bednarz, with the National Maritime Museum in Poland and Karolina Tabak with the National Museum in Warsaw.  And Aleksandra Janus from Centrum Cyfrowe and also from Anna Szalas, representatives of social media.

So now I would like to ask Tomasz Bednarz, a representative of National Maritime Museum in Gdansk to join us and to present the solution and the way that this museum communicates with the audience through virtual space.

Tomasz Bednarz is the underwater archaeologist.  He's the head of digitalization department in this museum.  He also took part in numerous underwater technological projects and he's also the initiator of the project entitled virtual open air museum of shipwreck in the Gulf of Gdansk.  And this project was awarded in 2016 by the Polish Ministry of Culture as the museum of this year.

So please, Tomasz Bednarz, take the floor.

Please, unmute.

>> TOMASZ BEDNARZ: Hello, everybody.  Good morning still.  So maybe it's a best change to show our works with digitalization, in new ways and new times is to show you my presentation of our way of digitalization.  We are strictly trying to show the audience, the people who wants to visit our museum besides, the physical visiting in the museum.  We also would like to show our exhibitions online.  So we prepared 3D models of the museum objects and we could do this in different ways.  So I think this will be ‑‑ it will be quite interesting for the people who wants to know something more about the ways of ‑‑ the new ways which the museums can show the exhibitions and the museum objects.

So it's titled ‑‑ can I start to share my screen?

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: At the bottom, there is a share screen sign, a green one.

>> TOMASZ BEDNARZ: But it says the host has disabled the participant screen sharing.

>> ANAHITA REZAEI: I'm just looking and also because I'm cohost, I cannot make you a cohost because someone else maked me.  I think I can raise this favor and question to IGF, the main host so he or she can make you the cohost and then you will be enabled to share screen.  I will try on the chat.  I'm just also speaking out loud.  So I'm hope that the person who is responsible for making you a cohost can hearing me right now.

So we have the answer that he or she will do that right now.  So we take a few seconds and then you will be able to share your screen.

>> TOMASZ BEDNARZ: I will show you the information about the virtual open air museum of the wrecks of Bay of Gdansk, which is my opinion ‑‑ not only my opinion, it's a very unique project which allowed to how the wrecks on the Baltic Sea looks like, especially the wrecks of the archaeological sites.

>> ANAHITA REZAEI: So it seems like now you can do it.  So just check.

>> TOMASZ BEDNARZ: Okay?  Now you can see?

>> ANAHITA REZAEI: Yes, we can see perfectly.

>> TOMASZ BEDNARZ: So this is the title of my presentation, how we share our digital world, 3D models from National Maritime Museum in Gdansk.  So let's start what ‑‑ let's see what we can see.  The National Maritime Museum Gdansk has been developing lasers, scanners and optical scanners and exhibition in multimedia presentations applications containing augmented and virtual reality, available stationary and online.

And you can see how our museum looks like in Gdansk.  Maybe some of you visited it in the past.  Our museum maybe you remember some heuristic.  If not, we ask you to visit Gdansk.  And visit our museum.

We have a fishing museum in Hel and other museums.  We have a precise measurement of monuments and create 3D drawing and the cross‑Section of monuments in any place.  The most precise 3D scanners used in our museum have accuracy of mapping real objects at the level of 40 micrometers.

This was funded through the museum.  These objects presents maps in our museum since 2013:  This is at the bottom of gulf dancing.  And this is done by in the course of their work.  Expect that visibility under water is most often limits to 2 or 3 meters while the virtual museum provides the full view of the wreck.  Besides the 3D models on the site there is also the animation of the models and some more information about the history of the research and about the monuments taken from the bottom from the wrecks which now are in our exhibitions.

The website now consists of 25 3D models or wrecks with the descriptions, the photo and video documentation.  They come from the 15th to the 20th century.  All wrecks were excavated by the museum and the artifacts from them are now on the museum exhibitions.

The website is available in Polish and English language.

Had the wrecks can be viewed in three-dimensional virtual reality goggles, like Google Cardboard, oculus or other.  It's designed for educational purposes during the museum lessons, for example, and you can see the 3D ‑‑ the kind of virtual ‑‑ the Cardboard or the goggles for 3D, how to ‑‑ you can see how to ‑‑ you can see the 3D objects.

We sides this project, we have a 3D virtual tour.  This is quite new for the people away from Gdansk.  This the object to view the historic structure, especially for this.  This is why the virtual tour was introduced to the offer, and interactive with modern Oculus goggles and this is available on our museum YouTube channel.

We use the same equipment to show the ship which is part of our museum, the virtual tour, due to the people with disabilities to get ‑‑ get to the exhibition on the Museum Ship Soldek.  The virtual tour allows people with physical disabilities to take an interactive walk around the ship's hulls and the permanent exhibition.  With a mobile ‑‑ a mobile monitor on 3D goggles, the users may visit places such as cargo holds, boiler room and engine rooms, seafarers' cabins, galley, mess, and wheelhouse.  Maybe in the future, we can prepare the online version of this new project for us all.

And 3D technology in museology can be successfully used temporary and permanent exhibitions in multimedia presentations, as well as in applications containing augmented reality and virtual reality.  3D digitalization is also successfully used.  3D technologies can be divided into three groups such as photogrammetry, optical scanners and laser scanners.

Photogrammetry can be used underwater archaeological documentation, as well as the documentation and archiving the state of preservation for monuments.  The SfM technique allows to change the photographic 2D flat image to a 3D partial image with the actual color recorded in the photos.

In order to create the 3D model, the photos must be taken correctly.

But if the people ‑‑ for example, underwater archaeologists can do this after some practice, it's quite easy to do this, but finally on the beginning, this is sometimes a problem with the technique of documentation, but as I said, it's quite easy to do when you have some practice.

The greatest advantage of this technique is obtaining visually attractive 3D models at relativity low production costs.  There are models made with the use of 3D scanners dedicated through specific tasks.

And these are examples of both photogrammetric 3D models.  You can see the monuments which are a collection of our museum.

The second group of devices using the 3D digitalization of historic objects are 3D scanners of structured light, also optical scanners.  These scanners can be used for small and podium object from several centimeters to several meters.  This includes stationary scanners usually cooperating with the tables or rotating platforms and handheld scanners.  The measurement precise in scanners of this type range from half millimeters in the case of devices dedicated to the objects to half meters to several meters to even a few micrometers.  In the case of the dedicated to making 3D scans of small objects up to 20 to 30‑centimeters.  This is the disadvantage of these scanners is that they have a work at least in person shooting which eliminates them from outdoor use.

Optical scanners is most often white, or less blue or green in the form of parallel lines.  The lines falling on this measured object change the position of the shape of the object.  The scanner records the distance gap between the lines and on this basis, the scanners generate the 3D models of the real objects using dedicated software.

In the museum, we use two smart scanners Smarttech Micron and Artec Eva.  This scanner is dedicated to scan medium‑sized object from half a meters to several meters.  The device allows to generate high resolution textures and safe modeling and many outputs formats including OBJWRL and STL.  The format allows 3D printing the model.  The scanner works with a dedicated Artec studio software.  This allows you to combine individual scans and sessions in a comprehensive 3D model of the measured object.

And you can see the examples of these 3D models from the museum with the use of the optical scanners.

This is the same equipment and more examples of using this these scanners.  And the last group are laser scanners.  They are used in to scan large‑sized objects.  They are ‑‑ they can be widely used in industry.  Models the innovations and moderation of infrastructure.  They are especially used in the shipbuilding industry.

The accuracy of measuring individual scan points in devices is this is averages 1 to 2 meters.  This is created with this group of scanners are generated monochrome or multicolored point clouds with the possibility of generating also meshes and textures.  Some models of 3D laser scanners are also used to scan medium and small sizes from competing with optical scanners.

Precisely, they are an excellent measuring tool.  And they calculate the surface and the value of the scanned object.  This should be distinguished not only according to the method of generation but also into the two basis, qualitative categories.  The presentation models and the documentation models.  The category of presentation model refers to all Internet including VR, IR and VR which museums create as a part of a public machine.  The documented 3D models, it includes triangular accuracy, protruding the scan surface and the high provision of the scans.  These models are used mainly in conservation works, archiving the state before and half conservation and reconstruction.

And in the documentation of artifacts and scientific research conducted in museum.  Precise measurements and calculated 3D drawing in the measurement section.

3D models can be successfully used on popular platforms on the web portals such as sketchfab and from their posted according to the needs and the ideas in social media websites, catalogs, collections and database used for scientific purposes.  3D models from the museum are available online at virtual open air museum of wrecks on the gulf of Gdansk at www.wsw.nmm.pl.  The 3D models of monument collections are also included in the online catalog at kolekcje.nmm.pl and on the sketchfab.com/nmm.

The 3D models include NMM online catalog.

We can say normally, photography, we also can use the animation of the 3D models.  And in any opinion, it's very useful and it's a way of new version of the catalogs online in the museums.

3D models of artifacts and wrecks presented in the virtual online open museum of wrecks in the gulf of Gdansk.  This is the screen of the sites and, of course, everyone I invite to visit this ‑‑ these sites.  It's new for the person, visit for the site in the future.

So this is all of my presentation.  I think the information can be useful, especially for the people who work in other museums.  Maybe some you want to establish new way of digitalization.  Our experience, I think, is quite ‑‑ could be useful for the rest of the museums and, of course, we are waiting for the new information from other museums.  Maybe we can ‑‑ the same options, the same new ways using our museum.  So thank you for your attention.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Thank you very much, to Tomasz Bednarz for your presentation.  Thank you for the broad introduction of digital activities of National Maritime Museum.  We have unique chance to ‑‑ to see this experience, how the workshop underwater archaeologist looks like and how we can combine the new techniques and the development of documentation techniques and how each affects the exhibition program of the museum and how these new tools could be used during educational activities by the institution.

So thank you again, and now I would like to Karolina Tabak from National Museum In Warsaw, and I would like to present also Karolina Tabak.  She's the head of the digitalization and visual augmentation at the National Museum In Warsaw.  She supervises the digitalization process in this museum.  She was also responsible for numerous digitalization projects in this presume.  For example, the access to the national museum collection, project that was co-financed by European funds and also currently she supervised the project with access to national museum collection.  So we hope that we can now see other good practice, other good examples of way that the museum can communicate and can use digital documentation to develop the communication with its public.

So I pass the floor to Karolina Tabak.

>> KAROLINA TABAK: Thank you very much.  I will just make the share screen if it works.  You see it, yes?

Hello, and during this short presentation, I would like to share the different tools that are used in our museum in terms of popularizing the collections, education, and promotion.  As it was said, during the pandemic, the only platform for contact with art and with our audience, was ‑‑ as the Internet.  The joint activities of the employees of our museum began to quickly bear fruit in the form of growing numbers of users and participating both online events and in the number of visitors of our website.

I would like to show various forms of reaching the viewer, both those calculated for participations and those that leave our viewers for further research.

A few years before the pandemic, we thought how to keep up with the new forms of activities of our audience and began sort of our digital strategy.  And first our fundamental task was seeking our audience, the digital audience.

In 2013, we had interest, it was quite high, we saw it just kind of stopped.

And then we were seeking another direction and then the online places that were used by most of our audience but not only the museum, but just the Internet audience.

So then we started a cooperation with Docupedia.  And so it could be used in, many articles in Docupedia all over the world.  It was imported with the URL links that linked to our website.

And we also have conducted two projects that involved Wikipedia in residence, and it was about to our exhibitions and so the Wikipedia team, they created a number of articles about the history of museum collections, and we have put the high quality images.  And so it was ‑‑ the number of viewers were really, really high.  The articles were seen in each month about two or three million times.  All over the world.  And highlights of our collections were also made available during the Google arts project platform and also in Europeana.

In 2020, as a result of the project's open National Museum in Warsaw that was cofinancing from the operational program digital Poland, we have launched a new version of our online catalog.  And our aim in this project was in one hand increasing the quality of the images but also to attract more audience.  And also people who are not specialists and not familiar with the art movement or artist names, we want to encourage a sort of diving into the collection and just explore the selection of the National Museum In Warsaw, because we have objects, like, from ancient art till really modern art, many types of objects.

So the catalog is no longer just a repository kind of digital cold storage, but a platform of knowledge with different articles, online presentations with things that are not only interesting for the specialists such as history of fashion, secrets of conservation, food in art and different we have different interviews with our creators, educational materials that can be printed and used, for example in schools.

The images can be downloaded and reused.  Each has information with the copyright.  So if the object is in the public domain, it can be freely downloaded and shared and used wherever you want so you can see also here on the left side, the metadata, the import is from the internal database.  We have longer descriptions and when we have other materials such as different films or interviewed, we just embedded the films from the YouTube, for example.

Little, thanks to our cooperation, we have created a virtual decision.  It was called "Poland.  The Power of Images."

It shows the highlight of Polish paintings from the 18th to the 19th century.  This exhibition, it was held last year at National in Warsaw and two years earlier in France, but due to the pandemic, many people couldn't see it in the museum.  I encourage you to visit this exhibition, and it's also available in English.  You can see the different articles.  These articles report each week or each month, and it's museum history, about the exhibitions and the different events in the museum.  Of course, our website is done to the WCAG standards.  Over 100 objects are also audio descriptions and many films and interviews are translated into sign language.  And here is a quick glimpse of the date.  And these are objects like objects and paints and there are many hundreds of images inside.

And as I said, we have different thematic trails.  They are kinds of presentations that can be also showed in schools.  And almost 160 articles for now.

And this is quite important for us, the website is used really throughout the world.

Of course, most of our users as you can see are from Poland.  So 60%.  But just two years earlier, when we had the older version of the website that weren't in English, the percent of users from Poland were 90%.  So we see each year we can reach the audience from other countries which is very great for us.

Just this year, we have 64,000 new users and the most common operating systems, as you can see, just like in the older version of the website, it was just Windows.  So we can see that because of the design of the website, that the responsible web design has adjusted to the model of the devices.  We can see that the website is like most we viewed by mobile devices.  This is completely new for us, because in the older version, it was only desktop.  It was only Windows.  And right now we can see from this data that people are starting to use digital collection of National Museum, just for fun, just for exploring, not only museum staff, not only staff from the other institute ‑‑ cultural institutions are using ‑‑ using this website.  And so just for this year, we have over 200,000 websites and interests.

But, of course, we can see that we have a very basic fundamental for different digital activities, but the website is for users but the space when we can have more interaction with our audience is the social media.  So we ‑‑ the National Museum is active in many different channels.  Most of our users in social media, uses Facebook.  We have over 90,000 followers and the number that is quite important is the range.  It's ‑‑ you can range almost 2 million of people.  And also in Instagram, the thing that is quite new this year, and it started during the pandemic is the TikTok page.  With our colleague in the communications department, they saw a space in our post we are not ‑‑ we do not have information that is specialist for very young people.  And the place where the young people are is the TikTok.

So as I know, the number of followers is increasing, but the range number is very high.  It's also because of the ‑‑ the posts in TikTok, they are not disappearing after one or two days, but it lasts about three months.  So the frank of each post is increasing.  And we see that because of the age of its users, it requires different type of content.  And the National Museum In Warsaw, I think was first museum in Poland that had this TikTok page.  So we are observing and analyzing how to reach, but we see really the number of users are ‑‑ are increasing.

We have also created many podcasts as you can see in different channels in Spotify, SoundCloud and YouTube.  We have a project that was mainly for the seniors, and after each podcast, they were receiving some kind of quiz that they can check the knowledge they received after this course.

As I was mentioning about the TikTok, of course the different type of content, more fun, more detached from the natural context of the artwork.  And for the more conservative audience, maybe it's not so much interesting, like I'm feeling too old when I saw this platform.  But the fun ‑‑ the great thing is between this fun post, we can smuggle more educational information.

As you can see as we glimpse from the film about restoration of the tapestry.  So you can interest the young audience also with more serious information, not just fun, TikTok posts.

As I mentioned, we have also different films also translated into sign language, different interviews with our creators.  We want to have really different materials and very interesting offer for each digital audience, but because as we can see the range of the audience is changing.  It's not only people between 20 and 35, but it's also the students and youth, and the seniors are using those digital tools.  And we hope that we will evolve each year and our offer will be more attractive.

Here you can see my colleague from the educational department, she was here actually talking about cook recipes and educational department made online courses that were seen in over ‑‑ in 38 different countries.  It's not only European countries but countries all over the world.  And as you can see here, a quick glimpse of one of the sources about Polish design.

So as I said, different, very different various activities, everything to attract the digital audience.

Here you can about our branches the National Museum In Warsaw, and that's it.  Thank you very much.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Thank you.  Thank you very much, Karolina Tabak for this interesting presentation and we start from the documentation, and digitalization of the collection but as we may see, good practice how to seek new audience and how to adapt or combine some tools to create links and to communicate with youth or even with seniors in the virtual space.

So now there is a place and a chance to discuss not only the presentation that we previously saw, but also to discuss the ways that we would like to implement in our other museums and other institutions and maybe we can discuss with our specialist the ways of organizing the data produced in the process of digitalization to enhance the usage of these materials and to reach a broader audience.

So I would like to open the discussion and invite our ‑‑ the presentation ‑‑ the representatives of other institutions.  So Aleksandra January us is the director of Centrum Cyfrowe, also the curator of exercising modernity program and cocreator and creator of museum collaborative initiative, and she did the participatory strategy and the transportation research, as well as opening audience to heritage resources and we also host here Anna Szalas, although I do not see our colleague.

>> ANNA SZALAS: I'm here.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Okay.  I didn't see your photo, I'm sorry.


>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: So Anna Szalas, she's a social media expert and art historian and creator of ‑‑ cocreator of an art block.  Art and coffee and digital media agency, specializing in engaging cultural content.  She also cooperates with National Museum In Warsaw, and the project ‑‑ and also with the art theater in Warsaw.  And she is a member of the network for audience development and practitioners across the Europe group.

So can I pass the floor to our specialists and open the discussion about the way to seek new audience and to adapt digital tools to reach the broad target groups.  May I ask Aleksandra Janus.

>> ALEKSANDRA JANUS: Sure.  It was really interesting to listen to both presentations.  It shows in my opinion how much effort was made to actually stay relevant in the time of the pandemic and stay in touch with the audiences.  I wanted to start with congratulating my colleagues from both museums for doing such a great job in such difficult situation.

And when it comes to the question you have asked, I think when it comes to the documentation and the data, the quality of data, is obviously a very important issue and I think this is something that is really like for many institutions still a struggle.  This is not an easy process.  I think, that if we want these resources to circulate very broadly, if we want people to find these resources other places in the website, then the quality of the data is of crucial importance.  That would be my first remark.

And then secondly, I think obviously and probably we will want to go deeply into that and this conversation, but obviously, the standards.  And the standardization of data is something that, again, is very relevant, and this is probably more like a geek conversation.  So let's not bore our audiences here, but I think this is relevant to be mentioned.

And then I think ‑‑ and this was mentioned by I think both presenters, there's also the big question or the issue of how to translate these data and the resources into the language of actual humans.  So first of all, the data, the first two remarks was mostly about like how to translate this for machines but we also have to translate it for humans.  Obviously, when people search for resources cultural heritage resources online, they don't usually ‑‑ they often don't remember the name of the painter or the artist, but they don't search for a particular image.  They search for something as Karolina had mentioned, fashion, or something interesting or beautiful or flowers and I think this is very important to also be ready for such nonexpert audiences that might be searching for these collections online without having a very clear idea of the particular work they are looking for.

And I think this is something that is very relevant and this is really like opening up for the audiences that are nonexpert audiences that might want to find something without having a very clear idea of what they are looking for.  So I would say, like, starting the conversation when it comes to data and the documentation, my perspective and from my perspective as the audience researcher, I would start with these few remarks and I hand it over to my colleagues.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Thank you very much for this directions where we should go to reach the broader audience.  Can I ask Anna Szalas to comment on these questions? 

>> ANNA SZALAS: And thank you for inviting me.  The quality of the data is crucial.  Things online, especially, they need to be attractive.  They may not be attractive to everyone, and that's fine.  But in itself, like, a public institution, people expect impeccable quality from the photo, the images, the stories, the text themselves.  They expect very solid, you know, knowledge and also good looking stuff, basically, especially on mine, I'm focused on social media and it's ‑‑ it's purely ‑‑ basically purely visual media, and it heavily relies on good looking images, films.  So this is very important for sure.  So not only the metadata that's being described, like as a social media manager, I would love to be able to easily look for images of flowers or snowy landscapes when it's snowing.

Of course, the realtime marketing, we need information fast, and it would be great to have ‑‑ and it's great to have portals like Europana that is joining.

In a lot of institutions together for easier search.

And I agree with Aleksandra, the storytelling aspect, it's important, because what the museums are showing really, they are the stories because, you know, we kept certain things because of something.  Like the ships ‑‑ you know the gift of the Pomerania, these are stories and this is the human aspect, and it grabs the attention.

So it's very important to be able to really nail it and take it out.  Because, you know, that's what people want to see.  And they are starved for that.

And, yeah, in this way because like we know for a fact that people are more inclined to recommend ‑‑ like, take something from other people, like, especially when a friend is recommending it, then we are more likely to actually engage in some content or whatever, so that it's even more important to prefer to be really interesting, really engaging and really, you know, worthy.  So especially online, on social media, it can spread socially, basically.

(No audio).

I think you are muted.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Thank you very much for your comments, and for telling us more about the quality of data because, it's not so obvious because when we talk about digitalization, we often talk about the very high-definition pictures and data, but it's not so ‑‑ that are crucial for our documentation process, but this is more human or the social approach to the quality of that.  So thank you very much for this.

There were some target group already mentioned that we have in Gdansk, there was the idea to show the public with disabilities the exhibition, that it's not reachable for them.  And Karolina Tabak, mentioned the youth, as the users of TikTok and the possibility to communicate with them.  As a new way to reach and find new audience in the virtual space, and also seniors.

Could you please tell us more about this project for seniors?  Because we also may look for groups that are ‑‑ can we include into this culture activity of our institution?  May I ask Karlina Tabak?

>> KAROLINA TABAK: Yes, I can say a few words about this project for seniors.  It was called I "The Power of Art."  Yes.  During this project, the creative department had over 75 different podcasts.  It was some kind of, like, course about the history of art.  So it what from the pyramids, the ancient art to the modern art, different themes.  So as the group ‑‑ the users of this course, we were receiving.  Links to the podcasts so they can be able to participate in this ‑‑ in the meeting.  And as I said, after each meeting, it was like a presentation with the guide.  And after the presentation, they were receiving tests so as an online course, they can check the information during this course if they were learning something or not.  So I know that this course even received some kind of prizes, maybe I cannot say more specific the date, because it was my department.  I'm responsible for the digitalization process.  But if you have additional questions, I can give you the connection information for the coordinator of this project.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Thank you.  Thank you very much.  So we can include a new audience into a virtual space, but are there any groups that are dill excluded for our ‑‑ from or digital activities and what could westbound done by the museums to help them take part in cultural life in the future?  That's, I don't know, Aleksandra Janus, maybe you can answer this.

>> ALEKSANDRA JANUS: That's a big question.  And I can try.  After taking this digital crash course during the pandemic, think discovered huge audiences.  I think the big challenge is not leave the old audiences behind.  I don't mean the age of the audience, the audiences that were already there and I think obviously the older audiences and the older age groups might be digitally excluded, but this may be an oversimplification.  It is very different when it comes to the competencies and the digital literacy.  And so I think what is important is to actually start new audience research.  And I know from the research that we have done in Centrum Cyfrowe, that they say the main challenge is the lack of data about the new audiences they were starting to reach during the pandemic.

So they have basically don't know yet to whom they are talking and to whom they are exactly reaching out.  And I think this is the gap that we should try to bridge and then see who is represented and who is not represented.

And obviously, there are some groups that might benefit from this, like, new digital programs.  For example, people that are homebound because they are caregivers or like, they are responsible for other family members.  So they are not maybe that eager to come to the actual building, but they can benefit from the offer online.  On the other hand, there are many groups for whom being physically in the museum is very important.  I think we should, like, focus on these ‑‑ on researching these ways in which different audience groups are participating in museums and the way these new groups we started reaching during the pandemic to actually be able to build meaningful strategies.

I know this is a big task that I'm now describing, and it requires resources and it requires effort, but I would say this is the best way to go, if we can ‑‑ if we can do that.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Okay.  Thank you.  Thank you very much.  And I would like to ask Anna Szalas to help us solve this difficult question and describe more from the social media perspective the structure of museum audience during the pandemic.  How it changed?  Do we know something only from existence on the museum website?

>> ANNA SZALAS: It's difficult to generalize, because every museum tackled the issue differently.  I think it will ‑‑ you know, the pandemic itself, was a great chance for museums to breakthrough and start making stuff for other new audiences and which was very important.  I feel like the easy answer is to say oh, elderly people don't use social media, but it's not true.  Because we have people who are young adults would don't use social media and we have elderly people who are on YouTube for a few hours a day.

It is true that elderly people, there's more elderly people on YouTube and there's more young women on Instagram and there are some demographics ‑‑ they are the same everywhere.  It's not just museum.  It's really the demographics for certain platforms.  So that's why TikTok, in the beginning of the pandemic it used to be teens between 13 and 17, but actually now the latest ‑‑ one the latest reports is over 30% and ‑‑ sorry, even more, is actually people between ‑‑ I think it was 18 and 45.  It totally shifted, all the millennials started using it.  It's not just preteens dancing.  It's young adults looking for all sorts of content.

So, yes, it's difficult to generalize.  I feel like because of the sheer amount of content that was created by the institutions, act, it also naturally made it so that more people are possibly interested in this because there's just a large variety of it and the focus was strictly on the digital world.  So also people knew to look for it.

I think one of the barriers is that a lot of people don't even think about looking for stuff online, looking for artwork, and looking for guided tours or anything.  So I think that was, you know, a blessing in disguise, of course, very nastily disguised, but there's some good that came out of it and I feel that Polish museums were really able to take that chance and actually use it nicely.  So ‑‑

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: So thank you.  So we still ‑‑ now we don't know everything, but ‑‑ but we are for sure gaining new audience, and what can we do?  What kind of collaboration may help museums to reach even wider audience, if anyone would like to start this discussion?

>> KAROLINA TABAK: I think the thing that is very important that the institutions not operate alone, that it's very important to have lots of different collaborations, and we also think that many of the digital materials that we are producing, they are great materials for school, and really, we often forget about how great audience our schools because they can learn ‑‑ they can see our collection, but also they can learn how to use digital tools.

I think it's important to have an education of how to use digital tools that kids can have different projects in schools, different really simple tasks but when they can know where to find them, they can really start to use them.  Not only seniors but I think the digital tools should be educated in schools.  We have created numbers of thematic collections that were defined along with the educational program.  So the teacher can have a number of already done presentations, for example, enlightenment or, I don't know, history ever Egypt.  They can have projectors and they can be used or printed or so on.  And the cooperation that I was telling you about, Wikipedia, but the goal for big institutions are really great and big.  And we can have different cooperations with the bloggers and people who can really make our collections more attract environment to the range, to the very broad audience.

>> ALEKSANDRA JANUS: If I can add something, I wanted to give a heads up in what Karolina said.  It was really striking that in fact, teachers were very significant recipients of the digital content that was made available by museums and this was like ‑‑ this was a European‑wide study.  So this is something that's already happening and we should strengthen that, and I think Karolina is absolutely right about that.  Are I wanted to mention three more things and this is based on the culture and the pandemic.  So first of all, I think heritage professionals and museum professionals are well aware that the programming should change.  We cannot just program the way we program onsite, and then move it online.  We have to have a different strategy of programming solely for the digital.  These are different audiences and different ways in all ‑‑ in interacting with these resources.  And then the second thing is I think also institutions have to review their resources and the selections that they have.  And the human resources, and the collection as a resource but also the competencies and the know‑how that they have and the institution and see what they can actually make available or what they can main stream, not only to support like other groups like the teachers, for example, but also lake to make sure that this programming is sustainable and preaching some needs and then the third thing and this is related to the comment that Karolina said about Wikipedia.

If we want to go broader, then I think there's a golden rule, go where your audience is.  To start mainstreaming your resources in the platforms or in the tools or in places online where your target audiences are hanging out.  Wikipedia is an amazing resource because almost all of us hang out on Wikipedia from time to time.  But then also the other types of media as well.  I think this all kind of comes down to the strategic planning and the strategic thinking.  This was particularly difficult in the pandemic, we know that.  So it's easier said than done.

>> TOMASZ BEDNARZ: About my some kind of idea.  In my field and in my point of view, I think the 3D documentation, we prepare something some new idea, the offers for the museums, right a museum like us to prepare a special ‑‑ a special find of Internet exhibition, prepared only on the Internet, which could be which would be connected with 3D models and other digitalization equipment and could be posted to the social media in different way, different kinds.  And the topic of these exhibitions should be, of course, prepared by the specialists from the museums, and in this ‑‑ in this time, whereas the pandemic or the post‑pandemic time, I think we can prepare this kind of offer for the people who live in the country.  Sometimes we could make this on Internet and not in the museum in the physical way.

So this is my ‑‑ my suggestions because now we ‑‑ we prepare our collections online, for example, the heuristic elements and the elements, for example, I can say that we have a collection of the vessels from the river.  There, is for example, 15 or 20 different models, and now we create the 3D models of these models.  And finally, we can put this as Internet exhibition, but now in our permanent exhibition, we can only have models in the showcases.  But there are special ways with the multimedia specially prepared for the different ways of publication for the different social media and I think in the next year, we have a plan to show this kind of presentation, now is not the idea, but when we try to complete this 3D documentation, we will try to implement this project to offer.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Thank you.  And this is the question about future and the answer about the future.  Because when we talk about and we think about the pandemic, we have some kind of hope that it will finish somehow, but in the virtual space of museums, I think that we do not really want to come back to the status quo because this way of communication will be the crucial part of the communication in the future and what tools will survive and what ways of communication will stay for us for longer?

Yes, anyone would like to answer?  And the chat is open if any audience members would like to ask questions not presenters or to other members of discussion, it will be really nice to hear from you.

>> KAROLINA TABAK: I can say that the new activity that we're ‑‑ that was launched during the pandemic was the broadcasting of the collections and the courses.  I think this is something that will last.  Because it shows us how many people can attend in such an event.  Normally the lecture is in the cinema and it has 20 to 30 attendants, but if we broadcast such a lecture, for instance on Facebook, we have like over 500.  So I think that each event, it would be broadcast, of course, everything that is related to the digitalization and the catalog.  It was before the pandemic and it's still going to be digital, but I think that during the next years, I think it's going to be some new activities because we are still, you know, exploring and maybe something new will occur.

>> ANNA SZALAS: I agree that the video formats are something that will be sticking around at least from social media perspective, it is known that both Facebook and Instagram are making the shifts towards the video formats such as TikTok because they do see that as a serious competition.  So it all started with YouTube, the social media craze and it seems like it's going back to that point where it's just captivating.  You can make it accessible by captioning and audio description and tuck make it into a podcast which is not ideal, but I feel that this is something that the museums ‑‑ I'm glad that the National Museum will be sticking around.  I have been watching more lectures since the pandemic at the National Museum, and I think the new audiences will not be left alone and forgotten about.  It's a way to keep the relationship going.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: So do we know something more about this audience in the future and the tools that we can use to help ‑‑ to still be in touch with the virtual audience?  Because we want to be in touch with our audience in the future and the real space, and we can have it through video information and videos on YouTube or TikTok or other social media and we can do it by lectures, but what are the other possibilities to find some new ways communicates with people's forums.

>> ALEKSANDRA JANUS: I can speak to that.  A won't be naming any tools or solutions but I think flexibility is probably thing we should be focusing on, because the tech is changing very rapidly and it is changing without ‑‑ like, it's absolutely beyond our control what this or the other platform will do and how the algorithm is going to change.  So I think we have to embrace the fact that we can ‑‑ we can't can actually predict that and we will never have control over that and we are not an equal partner in that.

I think this is something that we have experienced a lot during the pandemic that we learned how to be more flexible and how to respond to these changes.  We are unable to actually shape these solutions.

I also think that this might be a good thing because then I think the institutions should focus less on developing on their own tools and more on basically adjusting to the platforms that are developed by others.  Because the costs of, like, being in this race, are two high and obviously, like, just being ‑‑ of being in this race and trying to keep up.  I think flexibility and this observation and actually being responsive is something that we should actually be focused on.

>> ANNA SZALAS: Just to pile‑on.  I think absolutely what Aleksandra.  The key is to take open about it and make sure to actually kind of think about it creatively and use the tools that come to you, even if they seem silly, there is a high chance they will become mainstream and they will become valuable things and then if you stay ahead of the game, then you can use this creatively and kind of be on a higher level than the others.  So it's important to keep an open mind.  Yeah.  And use the tools that are already there, basically.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Thank you.  So from the beginning of the pandemic when we had to learn very quickly as a museum staff, and we have to make our small revolution in how we communicate with the audience and look for new ideas and as you suggest, we should still have the same openness and flexibility in the future, just to look for solution that will help us to seek new audience or to stabilize our connection with our permanent visitors and to ‑‑ to be open to rearrange our way of presenting exhibitions or programming educational offer and we can still combine it with the digitalization of the museum collection and to be aware of high quality data.

Because at the beginning of the pandemic, each museum created some content ‑‑ I say some content on YouTube or any other ways of communication that such an institution has possible, but some of these solutions are ‑‑ didn't survive long and we have to look for the quality ways of communication with the audience.  So I don't know if we will degree that we should be open, flexible and directed to the high quality content for future audience.  I don't see any questions on our chat, but if someone would like to ask, we still have seven minutes until the end of our session.  Feel free to answer chat or you can also join our discussion with video.

>> ALEKSANDRA JANUS: I will flag one thing.  And I think we agreed that this is the direction, but obviously, there are some needs that have to be fulfilled to make this possible.  I think, like, there's a profound need to support museum professionals and museum staff adapting this working culture.  It's easy to say flexibility and then if you need to plan ahead and if you need to, like, decide ahead, the strategies that you will do next year, flexibility is not that much of an option, and so I think we should support the cultural heritage professionals general and museum professionals in general to actually have the possibilities and to adjust to this new working culture.  I think this is a big challenge, that it's not a challenge that is just related with technology, but is the challenge that is related with the ways we work and the ways it has to change for this vision to be possible.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Thank you for this comment.  So virtual museum is something that we have to learn all the time, ongoing process, life, long learning.  And it's something that we should learn or sometimes we have to learn our audience or some groups in our audience as Karolina Tabak said about school and not only are we referring to resources on our website, but we also are some support for development of digital competences of our audience too sometimes.  So this is ‑‑ this is something that we need to learn and to be up to date all the time.

So would anyone like to ‑‑ okay, I see a hand up.

>> ANAHITA REZAEI: I just wanted to see ‑‑ I wanted to say that I just put the links to all of our speakers so if you have any further questions after this session, you can reach them by clicking those links and, yeah, just giving you information about that if you have any questions after.  Thank you.

>> ALEKSANDRA GLOWACZ: Thank you, Anahita.  Thanks everyone for your participation and participation in discussion, and, okay.  I see many thanks from others.  But also was the organizer of today's session and thanks everyone for today's presence.

>> ALEKSANDRA JANUS: Thank you so much.

>> KAROLINA TABAK: Thank you.

>> ANNA SZALAS: Yeah, it was a pleasure.