Wikipedia Celebrates People at Work across Africa through the Wiki Loves Africa competition

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Wikipedia Celebrates People at Work across Africa through the Wiki Loves Africa competition

Cape Town, South Africa,  29 September 2017 – The Wiki Loves Africa photographic and media competition is back for its fourth year. This year, organisers Wiki In Africa are pleased to announce that Wiki Loves Africa celebrates People at Work as the central theme for the annual visual celebration of Africa’s cultural diversity on Wikipedia. The competition runs from the 1st October to  30th November 2017 and entries are welcome from anywhere on the continent and beyond.

The People at Work theme encourages the visual, audio or video documentation of all manner of occupations that are undertaken across the African continent … the usual and unusual, the banal and the extraordinary. These can be formal and informal, contemporary or ancient, business-oriented or creative. There are special prizes for photo essays[1] that capture Women at Work and Rare and Endangered Work Practices. Photo essays allow photographers, and (through their photographs) the viewer, to explore the full range of activities, ideas, and concepts encapsulated in one subject. The organisers have drawn up a list of UNESCO ‘s Intangible Cultural Heritage to add  inspiration:

Everyone can contribute relevant photos from anywhere on the globe. Additionally people, groups or organisations are encouraged to host a series of events to build Wikipedia savvy communities around the competition. These events take the form of introductory workshops, photographic excursions and upload sessions and are aimed at encouraging an ongoing pride in local heritage and cultural practice, as well as to foster a culture of contribution to the internet to shake up the single story of Africa.

Currently there are 13 countries taking part in this focused way. The hosts of these interventions range from established communities in Algeria, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Ghana, Nigeria, and Tunisia to fledgling volunteer groups and single enthusiasts in Ethiopia, Malawi, Mali, Uganda, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe. Specific detail about these events will become available on the Facebook page and the Wikimedia Commons pages.

Over the last three years, the Wiki Loves Africa contest has encouraged the donation of 21,541 photographs to Wikimedia Commons for potential use on Wikipedia. In the first year, under the theme Cuisine, 873 people contributed 6,116 photographs. Cultural fashion and adornment was the theme for the next year, 2015, which saw 722 people contribute over 7,500 photographs. In 2016, Music and Dance contributed 7917 files from 836 people.

Wiki Loves Africa is activated by the Wikimedia community that created Wikipedia in support of WikiAfrica movement. The competition was conceptualised and is managed by Florence Devouard and Isla Haddow-Flood of Wiki In Africa as a fun and engaging way to rebalance the lack of visual representations and relevant content that exists about Africa on Wikipedia. The competition is supported by It is funded by the Wikimedia Foundation and supported in-kind by a host of local partners in individual countries. The images donated are available for use on the internet and beyond, under the Creative Commons license CC BY SA 4.0.

How do people enter? What else can be won? What events are happening where? These can be found on the website – – or on the Facebook page.



Key Links:

Media release by Wiki In Africa

For international media queries contact:

English: Isla Haddow-Flood

               Cell: +27 76 077 3135

               Email: isla @

French: Florence Devouard

               Cell: +33 645 60 62 77

               Email: fdevouard @


To see what’s going locally and to contact the teams, please click here.


  • 1st prize: US$600
  • 2nd prize: US$400
  • 3rd prize: US$200
  • Organiser’s prize: US$200
  • Winner of Women at Work Photo Essays: US$200
  • Winner of Rare and Endangered Work Practices Photo Essays: US$200

Each winner will also receive a Wiki Loves Africa branded power pack and a Wiki Loves Africa t-shirt.


  1. Take some photos …

This is the fun part! You can enter media (photos, video clips or audio files) that shows people working, making things, and doing their jobs across Africa. Think rare and unusual perspectives of both ordinary and extraordinary jobs.

  1. Select the best!

Your media could go onto Wikipedia to illustrate an article. Choose photos and media where the subject matter is clear and in focus. If entering a photo essay, then please name the images sequentially “Mali Female surveyors 1, Mali Female surveyors 2, etc.”

  1. Register on Commons

You have to be registered on Wikimedia Commons to enter the competition. Make sure your email is enabled so that we can contact you if you win!

  1. Enter your photos!

Use the Upload Wizard to enter your photographs. Scan the QR code below to go directly to the upload page. Remember to describe the photo and add relevant categories to the image.

  1. What now ?

Now you are registered on Wikipedia, the fun doesn’t stop here!! There are many things you can still do:

  1. Take more amazing photos and enter them!
  2. Add your photos to the relevant article on the Wikipedia in your language.
  3. If an article doesn’t exist, then you might want to consider writing an article about that subject.


  • Media can only self-uploaded or uploaded during a registered mass upload session by the person who took that image.
  • Media can only be entered during October and November 2017. The media can have been created at any time; e.g. historic photographs can be entered as long as you own the copyright.
  • All entries will have to have the following licence: Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 4.0 (CC-BY-SA 4.0).
  • All eligible pictures must be categorised under Wiki Loves Africa 2017. This is assigned during the upload process.
  • Any entries with watermarks or signatures embedded on the image or file will be disqualified.
  • Participants must register on Wikimedia Commons and have e-mail enabled to be eligible for prizes.


About Wiki In Africa

Wiki In Africa is a non-profit organisation that is based in South Africa. It is the financial and legal structure that operates global initiatives in support of the WikiAfrica movement. The organisation is currently lead by Iolanda Pensa, Florence Devouard and Isla Haddow-Flood.

During 2017 it is working on WikiPack Africa, WikiFundi and the WikiChallenge African Schools (funded by the Orange Foundation), WikiAfrica Schools (in collaboration with lettera27), Wiki Loves Africa and Wiki Loves Women.  

About WikiAfrica

WikiAfrica is an international movement that takes place on the African continent and beyond. It encourages individuals, interested groups and organisations to create, expand and enhance online content about Africa. This involves motivating for the representation of the continent’s contemporary realities and history, its peoples and its innovations on the world’s most used encyclopaedia, Wikipedia. WikiAfrica is not owned by one organisation and it belongs to all people and organisations contributing to its scope.

In its various guises and hosted at several institutions (including Lettera27, Africa Centre,, Short Story Day Africa, Wikimedia CH and Wiki In Africa), the WikiAfrica movement has consistently instigated and led multi-faceted innovative projects. These projects have activated communities and driven content onto Wikipedia. Examples include Share Your Knowledge, #OpenAfrica training Courses and Toolkits, Kumusha Bus (in Ethiopia and Ghana), WikiEntrepreneur (in Ethiopia and Malawi), Kumusha Takes Wiki (Cote d’Ivoire and Uganda), Wikipedia Primary (funded by SUPSI), Wikipack Africa, WikiAfrica Schools, WikiFundi, WikiChallenge, Wiki Loves Women and Wiki Loves Africa. 

About Foundation was created in 1998 on the invitation of Swiss Confederation to facilitate, identify and promote new learning culture within digital environments. In 2006 it changed its status from association to foundation, as an independent body within civil society. Based in the university campus of Battelle (Geneva, Switzerland), it is serving public interest in multilateral projects and private-public partnership. 60-80 contributors each year, including experts, social entrepreneurs and volunteers, are contributing to mission of promoting responsible behaviours in digital environment. has been successfully audited for its activities (2013 – 2015), at European level, both as coordinator and partner on two separate EU projects.

About the Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. is the nonprofit charitable organisation that is dedicated to encouraging the growth, development and distribution of free, multilingual, educational content, and to providing the full content of these wiki-based projects to the public free of charge. The Wikimedia Foundation operates some of the largest collaboratively edited reference projects in the world, including Wikipedia, a top-ten internet property.  

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