UNESCO and TENCENT partner to Create an Open Digital Library on Traditional Games

The Chinese IT leader Tencent will work with UNESCO to develop an “Open Digital Library on Traditional Games.” The partnership was announced in Beijing on Monday 30 March 2015, by Dr. Indrajit Banerjee, director of the Knowledge Societies Division of the UNESCO Communication and Information Sector, and by Mr. Edward Cheng, Vice-President of the Tencent Technology Company Limited, during an event attended by more than five hundred media and IT professionals.

The joint project will innovatively use ICTs to collect, digitally preserve, and disseminate information about traditional games around the world. It aims to safeguard such knowledge as a living heritage in the public domain, narrow the digital divide, and promote the rapprochement of cultures.

“Traditional games reflect the wisdom and vitality of nations and people,” said the Vice-president of Tencent, Chinese leader on social media and online games, during the launch in the presence of Mr. Qin Changwei, Deputy Secretary-General of the Chinese National Commission for UNESCO. Mr. Cheng also said he is happy Tencent Interactive Entertainment is initiating this “journey and adventure” with UNESCO.

Dr Banerjee stressed that universal access to knowledge, especially when facilitated by open solutions, fosters the empowerment of citizens and their peaceful and sustainable development. He anticipated that UNESCO will use a participatory and open approach, through ICTs and other media, in the development of this digital repository, and he stressed the importance that such knowledge remains in the public domain.

Under the pilot phase, Tencent is providing financial and in-kind contribution to UNESCO to develop the collection methodology, and to test it in two pilot countries in Asia. All content developed by UNESCO will be licensed under Creative Commons as per UNESCO’s Open Access policy.