29 August, 2012

International Wikipedia photographic competition celebrates South Africa’s heritage

Cape Town, 24th August 2012 – A month-long international photographic competition, Wiki Loves Monuments, will kick off in South Africa from the 1st September and will run throughout Heritage Month with special events planned for Heritage Day, the 24th September.

Members of the public are encouraged to celebrate South Africa’s living heritage by taking photographs of heritage sites (including buildings, sites of struggle and memory, graves, monuments, archaeological sites, etc.) and uploading them either via mobile or their computers to the competition website(www.wikilovesmonuments.co.za). A panel of South Africa’s most celebrated photographers will judge the uploaded photographs, and the winners will receive significant prizes. The best photograph from the national competition will be put forward for the international Wiki Loves Monuments prize.

To be eligible for entry, competitors must register on Wikimedia Commons via the Wiki Loves Monuments website , link the photo to its SAHRA number (or nominate a new site), and release the photographs under the CC-BY-SA licence for usage on Wikipedia and its aligned sites.

The international Wiki Loves Monuments project is organised by the Wikimedia volunteer community that created Wikipedia, the free online encyclopaedia, and built the free media archive Wikimedia Commons. The competition runs from 1st to 30th September 2012 and is being held to capture and contribute images and media of the world’s culture and heritage to the Wikimedia projects.

The ambitious goal of the global Wikimedia movement is for every person in the world to freely share the sum of all human knowledge. Since 2001, and through various projects, chapters, and the support of the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation, volunteers around the world have been contributing to the Wikimedia projects to achieve this goal.

The Wiki Loves Monuments competition is one way of doing this. A significant proportion of heritage photographs on the Wikimedia sites were created during the 2010 and 2011 versions of this competition. During the 2011 competition, 165,000 photographs were uploaded from 18 countries across Europe. The 2012 competition has more than 34 countries participating in the project.

Highlights of the South African competition include:
The launch event on the 1st September 2012 at the Slave Church, 40 Long Street, Cape Town at 16h00;
Upload Marathons at selected museums on Heritage Day, the 24th September 2012;
Nominations from the public for new national heritage sites, to be considered by the national heritage agencies;
A National Treasure Hunt in each province for un-categorised sites;
Competition closes on the 30th September;
Winners announced at a prize giving ceremony in Johannesburg in early November; and
Announcement of the international winners, date to be announced.
Wiki Loves Monuments is being launched in South Africa by Wikimedia South Africa, in partnership with WikiAfrica. Current competition collaborators are the South African Heritage Resource Agency, Heritage Western Cape, Art South Africa and the National Heritage Council.

The commencement of the Wiki Loves Monuments South Africa Photographic Competition on the 1st September 2012 coincides with the official launch of the South African Wikimedia Chapter.

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