Grants:Programs/Wikimedia Alliances Fund/ReCreate South Africa /Midpoint Report

Midterm Learning Report

Report Status: Accepted

Due date: 2023-07-15T00:00:00Z

Funding program: Wikimedia Alliances Fund

Report type: Midterm


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General information edit

This form is for organizations receiving Wikimedia Community Funds (General Support) or Wikimedia Alliances Funds to report on their mid-term learning and results. See the Wikimedia Alliances Fund application if you want to review the initial proposal.

  • Name of Organization: Black Stripe Foundation NPC
  • Title of Proposal: ReCreate South Africa
  • Amount awarded: 50000 USD, 771010 ZAR
  • Amount spent: 75865 ZAR

Part 1 Understanding your work edit

1. Briefly describe how your strategies and activities proposed were implemented and if any changes to what was proposed are worth highlighting?

1. Objective
2. Comment
3. Success Rating
1.1 Ensure that the Copyright Amendment Bill is gazetted into law
1.2 We have been the main civil society voice seeking to keep the copyright reforms on track. Together with our affiliates we made over 90 submissions to national & provincial legislative bodies. The reforms are currently progressing through the legislative system in a timely manner
1.3 =5
2.1 Organise in 9 provinces & 10 constituencies to build a social movement for free access to knowledge
2.2 With the support of the WF grant, ReCreate has been on the ground in all 9 provinces throughout the year
2.3 =4.5
3.1 Promote public awareness of how copyright exceptions benefit the public good
3.2 ReCreate has facilitated over 20 articles & 10 broadcasts in the mainstream media promoting public awareness about the benefits of access to knowledge & the importance of copyright reform in SA
3.3 =4
4.1 Promote the broader objectives of the Wikimedia Movement including broadening participation in knowledge creation and access.
4.2 During 2023, we co-convened 3 major public discussions with Wikimedia leaders on topics including (i) Freedom of Panorama, (ii) the need for government information to be provided & licensed in a format which enables it to be used by Wikimedia editors and (iii) the principle that Public Resources Create Public Information. These public sessions formed part of a conference that was attended by more than 300 people online & in person & which featured leaders from Wikimedia South Africa & Germany.
4.3 =4.5
5.1 Produce a best practice guide for Wikimedia chapters engaged in copyright reform efforts.
5.2 During the first half of the year we focused primarily on information gathering including conducting more than 30 interviews. We also produced a series of videos in partnership with PIJIP. In the remaining period of the grant we plan on compiling our best practices guide, the centrepiece of which will be a film of and for activists.
5.3 =3

2. Were there any strategies or approaches that you feel are being effective in achieving your goals?

Below are the strategies & activities from our proposal, with some initial thoughts on what has been effective:

Our educational workshops nationally & provincially have deepened the understanding of copyright, copyright reforms, free & fair access to knowledge principles and the limitations of the current system of copyright which favours commercial rights holders. We held 17 workshops so far in 2023.

The Wikipedia example: linking theory to practice. There has been much to learn from Wikimedia as a national and global network, with a robust system of practices and theories.

A campaign in the media & on social media has helped to raise public awareness of the value of free access to knowledge, fair use & freedom of panorama. ReCreate has been using social media to address misinformation and keep the public updated about the progress of the Bills. Our mainstream media coverage focused on a few key moments, including a protest with Blind SA & a press release to address misinformation about Fair Use and the Bills

Briefings with lawmakers have ensured that they are supported with knowledge on the benefits of the current reforms and the extent of support for these reforms in communities across the country. This has included formal submissions and presentations as well as informal briefings with legislators.

Focusing very closely on the immediate needs of our constituencies: Organising in partnership with groups who have very immediate targets and goals has helped with the overall effectiveness of our organising and strategies.

Helping to organise underrepresented voices: In some cases we have identified new constituencies which are not well organised. We have then identified international partners to help us organise constituencies here in South Africa.

Joining users & creators: A unique feature of our organising model is that we have brought together creators and audiences of copyrighted material to support both free access to knowledge and fair royalties.

3. What challenges or obstacles have you encountered so far?

a) Funding: There has been a recent divestment by a number of funders in South Africa, and some others have reduced their funding for copyright work, resulting in funding challenges. Wikimedia stepped in at a crucial time to provide funding that held us through the important NCOP phase of legislation.

b) Misinformation by Intermediaries: Several intermediaries put a great deal of investment into their fight against the Bills. In addition to spreading misinformation, this has also meant their participation in the legislative process and campaigns against the Bills has been unrelenting. This includes an “Artists against fair use” march that happened on the 25th of August. ReCreate has had to urgently respond to ensure the media does not continue to spread misinformation, and also speaks on the benefits of Fair Use and the Bills.

c) Vulnerable artists: Intermediaries and their affiliates have also targeted artists who have worked with ReCreate. As a result we have had multiple artists pressured to pull out from speaking publicly on the Bills, and even before it gets to that stage many chose not to participate at all, as there is a risk associated with going against the “industry”.

d. Artificial Intelligence: AI technological innovation has largely served to increase fear of fair use legislation, as many believe and are led to believe that AI will result in their work being used without compensation and possibly lead to replacing them in the job market altogether. Fair use is supposed to catapult South African legislation into the digital age and allow for innovation that is fair and balanced. This is difficult to build awareness around when the perception of AI, the most prominent technological advancement of late, is so contentious and steeped in uncertainty. We will be doing more work to develop a nuanced understanding of the benefits and challenges of AI.

4. Please describe how different communities are participating and being informed about your work.

NCOP: ReCreate organises multiple organisations to participate in the South African copyright legislative process. This participation takes place formally through written submissions and presentations, as well as informally through seminars, workshops & dialogues. ReCreate is constantly in dialogue with organisations for and against the CAB & Fair Use, and building new relationships. Submissions.

Workshops & Consultations: ReCreate regularly provides educational workshops and consultative meetings in partnership with our affiliate organisations, as well as with new groups that are growing increasingly interested in copyright & copyright reform. Workshops.

Conferences: The Right to Research in Africa conference was a great way to expand our reach and the conversation around access to information. The conference took place in Cape Town and Pretoria, in South Africa. Students, experts, activists and community members were encouraged to join. The seminars were also live streamed and are available online, making them widely available. As part of the conference we also flew in researchers, experts and policy makers from around the continent to participate, with the assistance of American University. Seminars:

Newsletter: In collaboration with Scholarly Horizons, ReCreate occasionally sends out newsletters to a database of over 5000 people interested in copyright updates

Website and Social media: ReCreate manages a Website, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube page to disseminate accurate information, and engage in public dialogues about copyright reform.

Campaigns: ReCreate partners with our affiliate organisations to spread important messages through targeted media campaigns. In the case of Blind SA, this campaign involved demonstrations and court action focused on access. These campaigns help reach targeted & representative audiences, and occasionally receive national coverage. Media coverage.

5. Please share reflections on how your efforts are helping to engage participants and/or build content, particularly for underrepresented groups.

Our affiliate organisations mainly comprises NGOs that represent marginalised groups. This includes SADTU, the biggest teacher union in SA. They represent educators in public schools that predominantly serve underprivileged learners. We help keep them informed about copyright reform in the country with workshops & expert analysis, & facilitate their participation in the legislative process.

ReCreate has been very active in supporting Blind SA in their fight for access to reading materials & translation for the visually impaired.

SAGA is a representative body for actors that need increased rights in SA. We have been working closely with SAGA for 5+ years. In 2023 this also entailed supporting their media campaign & the creation of content to spread awareness.

ReCreate works with additional orgs - Right2Know, who are focused on access to information, Artists Unite, a campaign that brings together creatives that support fair royalties & fair use, Research ICT Africa, a digital policy think tank that supports developmental innovation & Wits Gender Equity Unit, org with an intersectional & feminist copyright agenda.

This year new groups have joined ReCreate, incl the COSATU the largest trade union federation in SA, SAFREA, an org that advocates for freelance workers in media & communications & we are currently working with Authors Alliance to form a SA chapter.

ReCreate works with various other representative groups to provide information & expertise on copyright reform in SA

6. In your application, you outlined your learning priorities. What have you learned so far about these areas during this period?

Constructive approaches are most effective: stay focused on collaboration, dialogue & education about fair and balanced copyright

Participation goes a very long way: we often find that inputs made by ReCreate affiliated organisations or individuals make their way to be directly referenced by govt. Without our organisation & participation, the NCOP public inputs would have been steered almost entirely by intermediaries that are not in favour of fair use or the CAB.

Many artists & creators are financially and socially vulnerable and need support to participate in copyright reform

The importance of ground work & community involvement: relative to the previous point, this is needed to bridge the huge gap between copyright legislation and the people it directly impacts

A human-rights approach & a focus on inequality is fundamental to this work: As one of the most unequal nations in the world, SA should be supporting laws that enable access to information for marginalised groups. In the long run this will improve society as a whole and boost the economy.

It is important to develop a continental & global right to research network: Through our facilitation of the Right to Research in Africa conference, ReCreate is helping to establish multiple networks to have these important conversations

Passing of the Bills into law is only the first step: Education and Implementation are key

7. What are the next steps and opportunities you’ll be focusing on for the second half of your work?

Consolidating our Lessons and Producing our Best Practices Guide

Upload our video material to Wikimedia commons

Ensure our work is well-documented on meta Wiki

Continue to Monitor the passage of the CAB into law

Moving from building support for the legislation reform to looking at implementation, with a focus on education, participating in the drafting of regulations and putting together a few test cases.

Designing our work programme for 2024 - 2027

Continuing our international conversation with global forces in copyright

Part 2: Metrics edit

8a. Open and additional metrics data.

Open Metrics
Open Metrics Description Target Results Comments Methodology
N/A N/A N/A 90 Number of submissions to parliament:

Target: 20+ Results: 90+

Link to Submissions:

Analysis: This was our major focus throughout the grant period so far. We have been the main civil society voice seeking to keep the copyright reforms on track. Together with our affiliates we made over 90 submissions to national and provincial legislative bodies. This is excluding online and in-person presentations that were made by a number of ReCreate affiliates in all 9 Provinces at the NCOP Public Hearings. As of October 2023 the reforms are progressing through the legislative system in a timely manner. We are regularly in touch with the legislators, providing technical assistance, briefings and so on

Organising written submissions to the NCOP, and online and in person presentations at the NCOP public hearings, by ReCreate and all our affiliates, and more.
N/A N/A N/A 55500 Number of people reached through the media / social media:

Target: 25 000 Result: 55 500

Link to media coverage:

Analysis: ReCreate has facilitated over 20 articles and 10 broadcasts in the mainstream media, promoting public awareness about the benefits of access to knowledge and the importance of copyright reform in South Africa. Our media coverage has mainly centered on two actions, including Blind SA’s call to the government to ratify the Marrakesh treaty, and make braille books accessible for the visually impaired in South Africa. This included a public demonstration on 27 June 2023 which received extensive national media coverage.

Media coverage included public presentations on a national and provincial level, news and media coverage, and published articles.
N/A N/A N/A 53 Number of civil society organisation reached:

Target: 20 Result: 53

Link to list of civil society organisations:

Analysis: ReCreate works directly with a number civil society organisations, including affiliates that we organise around copyright reform, and organisations interested in copyright reform. In 2023 we vastly extended our reach through the Right to Research in Africa conference.

We have regular meetings and implement strategies with a number of civil society organisations affiliated directly with ReCreate. ReCreate also lends its expertise and organising efforts to civil society orgs beyond our affilates, especially for educational purposes. The Right to Research in Africa conference further extended our reach, even beyond the country, to a number of individuals and orgs we had not yet worked with directly.
N/A N/A N/A 0 Best practices report

Target: 1 Result: pending

This will be a major focus of our work in the coming months. We want this report to be highly informative and benefit the Wiki community and those interested in copyright and copyright reform on the continent.

This will be a major focus of our work in the coming months. We want this report to be highly informative and benefit the Wiki community and those interested in copyright and copyright reform on the continent.
N/A N/A N/A 0 Videos uploaded to Wiki commons:

Target: 4 Result: pending

Analysis: We have 63 videos on YouTube, and would like to upload a number of these videos to Wiki Commons. Particularly the ones covering topics of access to information.

List of videos:

These videos were collected through interviews that strategically took place at major events, such as WIPO conferences, allowing us access to key policy makers and experts on copyright and copyright reform locally and globally.
Additional Metrics
Additional Metrics Description Target Results Comments Methodology
Number of editors that continue to participate/retained after activities N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Number of organizers that continue to participate/retained after activities N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Number of strategic partnerships that contribute to longer term growth, diversity and sustainability N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Feedback from participants on effective strategies for attracting and retaining contributors N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Diversity of participants brought in by grantees N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Number of people reached through social media publications N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Number of activities developed N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Number of volunteer hours N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A

8b. Additional core metrics data.

Core Metrics Summary
Core metrics Description Target Results Comments Methodology
Number of participants We expect to reach a large group of people in person with our community organising and outreach. In addition we expect our campaigns to reach many thousands through social media and the mainstream media. Direct participants will be 400 - 500. People reached through our campaigns will be 25,000 +

Note that we will need custom metrics given that our objective is movement building and advocacy

400 466 Number of workshop attendees

Target: 500 Result: 466

Link to Workshop details:

Analysis: The bulk of attendance took place through the Right to Research in Africa conference, which featured a range of topics, including access to information for health, climate and natural language processing research, as well as a number of Wikimedia ZA hosted sessions.

The remaining workshops all focused on targeted interventions with specialised groups, such as policy makers, creatives, media free lancers etc. and they took place online on Zoom

The workshops took place online, and in-person at the Right to Research in Africa conferences, including Pretoria and Cape Town conferences. This was measured through a registry and online participation.

The remaining workshops all took place online, the numbers reflect actual attendance and do not include any shared recordings.

Number of editors N/A 0 This is something we can look into in the future, in collaboration with WikiMedia ZA N/A
Number of organizers We will have movement organisers for our advocacy work. These will be working in all 9 provinces and across many constituencies. 20 25 This number reflects an estimation of the number of representatives we had mobilising, making written submissions and doing presentations, in all 9 South African Provinces. We worked with 9 organisations and multiple representatives.

This does not include conference organisers.

The number is a fairly accurate estimation, based on the NCOP proceedings that took place in all 9 provinces.
Number of new content contributions per Wikimedia project
Wikimedia Project Description Target Results Comments Methodology

9. Are you having any difficulties collecting data to measure your results?

Currently, no. Media coverage and social media impact can be challenging to gauge, but there are mechanisms to evaluate this.

10. Are you collaborating and sharing learning with Wikimedia affiliates or community members?


10a. Please describe how you have already shared them and if you would like to do more sharing, and if so how?

ReCreate is in the process of consolidating our lessons and producing our Best Practices Guide: This report will be based on our interviews, our video material, our submissions and so on. As part of this we plan to produce a documentary-type video for activists, that we believe will be highly informative and greatly benefit the global Wiki community.

We will also complete our mapping exercise of copyright reform processes in Africa, that we are planning to share with Wikimedia.

We also intend to create a library of content, most of which can be made public on Wikimedia, including All our submissions on the CAB and those of our affiliates All our video productions All our legal opinions All our media appearances

Some of this work will be completed in 2023. However some may take us into 2024.

Additionally we plan to Upload our video material to Wikimedia commons. Ensure our work is well-documented on meta Wiki Continue to encourage our constituencies to become Wikipedia editors

11. Documentation of your work process, story, and impact.

  • Below there is a section to upload files, videos, sound files, images (photos and infographics, e.g. communications materials, blog posts, compelling quotes, social media posts, etc.). This can be anything that would be useful to understand and show your learning and results to date (e.g., training material, dashboards, presentations, communications material, training material, etc).
  • Below is an additional field to type in link URLs.
Right to Research in Africa Conference, Jan 2023, South Africa

The Right to Research in International Copyright Law

For full list of references, see

Part 3: Financial reporting and compliance edit

12. Please state the total amount spent in your local currency.


13. Local currency type


14. Please report the funds received and spending in the currency of your fund.

  • Upload Documents, Templates, and Files.
  • Provide links to your financial reporting documents.

15. Based on your implementation and learning to date, do you have any plans to make changes to the budget spending?


15a. Please provide an explanation on how you hope to adjust this.


16. We’d love to hear any thoughts you have on how the experience of being a grantee has been so far.

The WF fund came at a crucial time when ReCreate was running out of funds at the height of public participation in local copyright reform. Without this funding we would not have been able to organise our constiuencies the way we did, and support their participation, and others, in the legislative process. The funding has helped raise the voices of many civil society organisations, and strengthen the call around access to information. The Copyright Amendment Bill is on track to hopefully being passed by 2024, and we can say with confidence that ReCreate has played a key role in this, so we are very grateful to Wikimedia for the support, and we feel very much aligned with the mission of Wikimedia as a whole. We definitely see this as a long term collaborative journey focused on information access, especially in Africa.