This week, the Metropolitan Museum of Art celebrates six months of its Open Access Initiative.
The Met’s open access project made more than 375,000 of the Met’s images of public domain works available under Creative Commons Zero.
To celebrate its six-month anniversary of open access, the Met shared a recap of the project’s success. So far, over 90% of the Met’s images have been uploaded to Wikimedia Commons, and Wikipedia articles featuring Met images have increased by 500%.
The content has been holding its own online. As the Met’s Chief Digital Officer Loic Tallon puts it, “It’s reassuring to see that Van Gogh, Monet, Botticelli, and Picasso all rank as high as “cat” and “dog” as search terms.”
Perhaps the most important mark of success for this project is the conversations the images have inspired—from using them to write informative analyses like this one from FiveThirtyEight to this faceswap Twitter account, people are loving their access to the Met’s images.
Visit the Met’s online collection to see what images are available in the public domain (select the “public domain” filter on the left). To learn more about the project’s first six months, read the blog post from the Met.