Grants:PEG/WM PH/Wiki Loves Monuments 2012/Report

Report accepted
This report for a Project and Event grant approved in FY 2011-12 has been reviewed and accepted by the Wikimedia Foundation.
  • You may still comment on this report on its discussion page, or visit the discussion page to read the discussion about this report.
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Did you comply with the requirements specified by WMF in the grant agreement?

  • The funds were used as specified (item-wise), however due to conservative budgeting most of the allocated budgets items were exceeded.


Jan 1-Feb 6, 2012 — Project conceptualization
Series of meetings and brainstorming were held between interested chapter members to hold Wiki Loves Monuments in the Philippines.
Feb 3, 2012
Official Facebook page created.
Feb 18-Mar 17, 2012
Launch preparations: secured venue, caterer, exhibit equipment, manufacturing of promotional materials.
Mar 8, 2012
Official Twitter account @WLMPhilippines created.
Mar 17, 2012
The official website of Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines went live:
Mar 24, 2012 — Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines launched
QUEZON CITY – Citing the need to time the launch with the onset of summer and travel season in the country, Wikimedia Philippines held the kick off event of Wiki Loves Monuments at the Alumni Hall of the University of the Philippines in Diliman, Quezon City last March 24. Despite an unusual summer downpour which caused heavy traffic around the metropolis, around 60 people came to the first global launch of the competition. Project co-manager Roel Balingit set the tone of the program by introducing the concept behind Wiki Loves Monuments, its beginnings in the Netherlands just two years ago and the feat it achieved when it gathered over 167,000 images of heritage monuments from 18 European countries in 2011.
Juliet Villegas, Executive Director of the National Parks Development Committee (NPDC) an agency under the Department of Tourism greeted the project with excitement and encouraged everyone to travel and capture all these cultural heritage, in line with the department's new branding campaign It's more fun in the Philippines as the project has also been endorsed by the Department of Tourism seeing that it will promote the fascinating narrative of the country through its heritage monuments. Ivan Henares, Vice President of the Heritage Conservation Society, who has traveled in all of the country's 80 provinces and a Wikipedia editor himself, called on everyone to contribute to the project and make Philippine heritage sites known to the world even as a lot of provinces do not have comprehensive listing of heritage sites.
Emman Ramirez, the other project co-manager shared his experience in the movement from his participation at the GLAMcamp Amsterdam last December and how the competition was brought to the country with much prodding from overseas counterparts during the meet. Video greetings from Wiki Loves Monuments organizers from Australia, Germany and Chile were shown to the audience including one from Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director Sue Gardner, who broke the news that the winner of the Philippine competition gets an all expense paid ticket to Wikimania 2013 which may be held in London, Hong Kong, Surakarta, Bristol or Naples. The contest's mechanics and criteria were further discussed with the audience, plus the prizes at stake for the winners. The top ten entries from the Philippines, known by October 20, and other participating countries gets to advance in the international finals of the competition.
Wiki Loves Monuments is set to be participated by no less than 28 countries, with more than a dozen also building up their capabilities to organize their national competitions, Wiki Loves Monuments aims to gather quality free license images of the world's heritage monuments and make it available to anyone in the world through Wikipedia.
Wiki Loves Monuments in the Philippines is in partnership with the National Commission on Culture and the Arts and the Department of Tourism. The organizers of the event have also inked a deal with the NPDC and the Intramuros Administration, both under the Department of Tourism, to allow photographers to shoot around the site they manage without the imposition of non-commercial photography fees. (See photo documentation: [1], [2])
April-July, 2012 — Print ads of Wiki Loves Monuments released in the April, May and June-July editions of Smile Magazine
  • Smile Magazine — Advertised on the April and May issues of Smile Magazine, the inflight magazine of Cebu Pacific Air (the largest airline in the Philippines) after obtaining a 91 percent discount from the Singapore-based publication. April and May are the summer months and peak of the travel season in the country and would have been the best time to remind travelers to take photos of cultural heritage sites across the country. As a bonus, we also appeared free on the June-July issue of the magazine.
Aug 31, 2012 — Final Project Strategic Planning
Project Team met to coordinate final requirements for Wiki Loves Monuments and the plans for the awarding ceremonies.
Sep 1-30 2012 — Competition proper
The uploading period began exactly at the stroke of midnight of September, nine minutes later (Philippine time) the first batch of entries were submitted featuring Paoay Church.
  • Press coverage:
  1. -- Wikipedia launches largest photo contest
  2. GMA Network News -- Wikimedia rallies support for PHL cultural heritage sites
  • Social Media Ads — While the competition progressed the organizers also utilized social media by engaging Philippine tourism/travel, heritage and photography oriented groups and pages like:
  1. Choose Philippines (343K followers): Shared post
  2. Ivan About Town (15K followers): Post
  3. Tourism Paradise Philippines (8K followers): Shared post
  4. National Commission on Culture and the Arts (7K followers): Post
  5. Pinoy Photography Club (6K members): Forum Post, Tweet and Facebook post.
  6. Couch Surfing Manila Facebook group (1K members)
  7. Philippine History Culture & Tradition Facebook group (2K members)
  8. and other school-based organizations (University of Santo Tomas, San Beda College, DLSU-College of St. Benilde, Ateneo de Manila University) and local photography groups in Baguio, Bicol, Cebu, Davao, Iloilo, Quezon, etc.
  • Philippine Daily Inquirer — In order to boost participation, it was decided to advertise on the Philippine Daily Inquirer on the last weekend of the uploading period which was September 23 (Sunday). The Philippine Daily Inquirer is a nationwide daily which has the largest market share. From an upload rate averaging 36 images per day at the beginning of the campaign, it soared to an average of 185 images per day on the last week. Prior to September 23, the most number of uploaded entries occurred on September 18 with 73 uploads but it bottomed to just 3 the day after. On the day the advertisement was published on the Philippines' leading newspaper the number of uploads soared to 145 and peaked at 445 on the last day of the uploading campaign.
Oct 4, 2012 — Qualifying of entries
Out of 2,300 submitted entries, 1,638 entries were deemed qualified by Project Lead Roel Balingit and Ivan Henares, Vice President of Heritage Conservation Society.
Oct 6, 2012 — Preliminary Judging
All 1,638 entries underwent a series of elimination by the Preliminary Jury composed of professional photographers Ian Alquiros, Alan Lopez and Joezan Servando of Project Visionaries Philippines and Project Team members Hans Bernardo (also a professional photographer) and Jenna delos Reyes, who served as jury chair. From 1,638, the first phase of eliminations brought the number down to 396 then to 63, before the 50 Finalists were chosen. (See photo documentation: Wiki Loves Monuments Ph - Preliminary Judging of Entries)
Oct 8, 2012 — Announcement of 50 Finalists
The 50 Finalists of Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines were announced via the official website, Facebook and successive tweets through the Twitter account: @WLMPhilippines.
50 Finalists of the 2012 Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines
Oct 9, 2012 — Communication with Finalists
All 32 uploaders whose entries made up the 50 Finalists were sent e-mail announcements/talkpage messages (if 'E-mail this user' option is not available) of their inclusion in the Top 50 and were invited to the Awarding Ceremonies to be held on October 20, 2012.
Sept 20 to Oct 18, 2012 — Event preparations
secured venue, caterer, printed photos of 50 finalists, arrangements for performances of students from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines.
Oct 20, 2012 — Awarding ceremonies of Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines at the Filipinas Heritage Library, Ayala Triangle, Makati City.
MAKATI CITY — In ceremonies appropriately held at a cultural heritage monument — the Nielson Tower, home to the Filipinas Heritage Library at the Ayala Triangle, Makati City, the winners of Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines 2012 were announced in a culminating event that celebrated the beauty and splendor of Filipino Cultural Heritage. Over 2,300 entries from 319 participants were submitted in the month long uploading period that began at the stroke of midnight of September 1st and ended at the close of the last minute of September 30.
Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines 2012 finalists were treated by event organizers Wikimedia Philippines to dinner and were serenaded by the Molave Theatre Guild of the Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Manila. Host and project manager Roel Balingit proceeded to present some interesting facts about the local competition and the attainment of the 2011 edition of Wiki Loves Monuments of the Guinness World Record for the largest photography competition.
Three additional categories were introduced by the organizers:
  1. People’s Choice Award — The project team utilized social media in order to promote Wiki Loves Monuments. The project team thought of the award as a recognition of the appreciation of those who followed, liked, re-tweeted our posts, that they too are part of the contest through this category. This was based on the number of Facebook ‘Likes’ and Twitter ‘re-tweets’ as of 7PM of October 20 (awarding night).
  2. Best Android App Entry — With the introduction of the Wiki Loves Monuments android app, which can be used to upload photos after they have been taken on a mobile device, the project team realized that these photos may not be able to compete with the quality of photos using digital cameras, hence this special category was introduced in recognition of those who utilized the app.
  3. Best Unique Monument — This category was introduced by the project team in order to recognize the contribution of participants who uploaded photos of monuments which are not commonly photographed, as these photos supply the much needed images that are missing in Wikipedia. This category is only for monuments which do not have any duplicates based on the given statistics on this page: [3]
After explaining the Olympic-style scoring system, where a highest and a lowest scores are dropped (to prevent biases) per criteria the Top 10 were announced in descending order.
The first to tenth place winners would now represent the Philippines in the International Round of Wiki Loves Monuments where it would compete against the best entries of 35 countries. The Final Jury was composed of photographers: Estan Cabigas, Miguel Cortez, Fung Yu; Ivan Henares of the Heritage Conservation Society and Wikimedia Philippines President Eugene Villar.
2012 Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines winners

Project goal and measures of success


Project goal

  • Gathering quality photographs of heritage sites in the Philippines
Dicasalarin Cove (disqualified entry)
Wiki Loves Monuments proved to be a breakthrough in gathering quality photos of various sites in the Philippines, as entries were not entirely heritage sites. Some were actually scenic photographs (inset photo) of different places in the country (of course they were disqualified), but nevertheless they were a great contribution to Wikimedia Commons. These "disqualified" quality photos would of course add to Philippine content which are hardly available in Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons.
  • Involvement of Wikimedia Philippines in a global Wikimedia chapter-initiated project
Wiki Loves Monuments 2012 is very well poised to break its own Guinness World Record of the most photographs entered in the competition with about 330,000 photographs, besting it's 2011 record. Though the 2,300 (as of end of competition on September 30) Philippine submissions were not even 1 percent of the total worldwide entries in WLM 2012, it was a very impressive number for a photo competition held for the first time according to the first prize winner James Singlador who is a veteran of photography competitions in the Philippines.
  • Encourage contribution of freely-licensed photos and introduce of Wikimedia Commons to the general Filipino public
Despite the popularity of photography in the Philippines, it was found out after several meetings with photography groups and clubs in the Philippines, that the idea of contributing freely-licensed photos is not popular. This was a concern raised in one engagement with Pinoy Photography Club (PiPho) which commands a membership of over 6,000 members. According to PiPho, Filipino photographers would generally prefer to retain the copyright of their photos. This "preference" influences the mechanics of photo competitions in the Philippines where organizers are able to use only the winning entries/finalists for no more than two years.
The interface used in the uploading of entries in Wiki Loves Monuments was a simple way of introducing contributors to Wikimedia Commons. With 319 participants who are mostly-first time users, this was a significant step of getting Filipinos exposed to Wikimedia Commons and the idea of contributing freely-licensed images in a country where it is not that popular.

Measures of success


  Note: Figures were at the close of the competition on September 30, before the deletion and re-categorizing of unqualified entries.

  •   Not done 3,000 entries
A total of 2,300 entries were submitted or just about 77% of the targeted figure.
  •   100 participants
A total of 319 users uploaded entries, more than three times the targeted figure.

Lessons learned


What lessons were learned that may help others succeed in similar projects?

  Very conservative budget — The project proposal was primarily and conservatively prepared by the project lead without soliciting the inputs of the members of the project committee who were tasked to carry-out certain activities. In the course of the project implementation, it became apparent that the budget allocations were hardly sufficient to meet the magnitude of the planned activities which were to be attended by certain personalities (VIPs). The selection of Hong Kong as host of Wikimania 2013 became a blessing in disguise for the organizers who decided realign the budget allocation from the Wikimania scholarship to augment other items. But based on the allocations presented in the grant proposal the actual expenditures for 11 of the 16 items were greater than their allocations.
The most significant among these expenditures percentage-wise is the allocation for Transportation. The project was travel intensive especially it required several trips to meet people from various government agencies, photography clubs and associations and several meet-ups to plan the execution of the activities. Plus the sourcing of materials to be used required to personally drop by the shops which were manufacturing them, thus travel expenses were almost four-folds of their allocation. Amount-wise, the Snacks and beverages allocation for the Awarding Event which was allocated for ₱15,000 saw its actual expenditure to more than ₱35,600, or ₱20,600 more that its allocation. This was a result of the decision to hold a formal dinner celebration in a venue that is fitting for the occasion, the Nielson Tower, a heritage site, that used to be first airport terminal of Manila, and is now a private library. In order to avert this scenario, the input of persons who have the experience should be solicited to come up with practical and realistic budgets.
  •   Negotiation with government agencies — Negotiating with government agencies was arduous, and would require a lot of follow-ups and repeated meetings just to obtain their endorsements; nevertheless, partnerships were forged between the National Parks Development Committee for the waiver of photography fees in the parks they administer, in exchange for documentation of photographs which they could also use, subject to the CC-BY-SA 3.0 license. The endorsement of the National Commission on Culture and the Arts and the Department of Tourism were easily obtained by consistently following-up on them. What proved to be the most difficult was the negotiation for the waiver of photography fees in the historic old Manila which hosts a lot of colonial buildings built in the Spanish-era, as these photography fees is a major source of the agency's income. Through keen negotiation and acknowledgment of their concerns to prevent such privileges (waiver of photography fees) from being abused, the project team learned how to compromise and fine tune their demands.
  •   Sponsorship — The project team tried to obtain sponsors for the event, which proved to be very difficult, as Wiki Loves Monuments has no background in the Philippines to speak of. Now that Wiki Loves Monuments has local statistics available to present potential sponsors the mileage they could get in becoming a sponsor of the event, it will be in a better position now to entice sponsors.
WLM-Ph 2012 Project Team
  •   Dedicated team — The project initially started with 6 members, but after several planning meetings, only four were actually committed to make the project a success. These were people who would rather work, than engross themselves in proposing ideas that were impractical. With only 4 people in the project team, the team had to delegate the tasks among its members and each one worked independently and took responsibility for their tasks.
  •   Technical skills — It can't be denied that the 4-man team lacked the technical skills to handle technical concerns which integral to the event. Should it decide to hold the project once again, a member with a technical ability is a must. The organizers were however able to solicit help from other chapter members, Romnick Coros and Butch Bustria who had expertise in this aspect (i.e. website design and features).
  •   Monitoring — Most photography competitions in the Philippines would require photographers to have their printed photos submitted, or the photos in their memory card downloaded by the organizers. The manner in which the contest operated by uploading photos was "unusual" to most photographers who participated. This is perhaps the main reason why the project team received hundreds of e-mail inquiring about the procedure as they were not familiar with the interface, despite how simplified it was for an ordinary Wikimedia Commons user. There have been several cases that the photos were not properly uploaded and were not categorized correctly. This required the project team monitor the uploading activity of users to see if their photos were categorized properly, otherwise they would not appear as entries. These were all being done work hours, which is inappropriate. It would be very ideal to have someone to provide round the clock assistance by answering e-mail inquiries as well as monitor the uploading activity of users.
  •   Print advertisements — Print advertisements do not come cheap, especially in a country which still relies heavily on printed information than online. Bearing this in mind, the project team negotiated and haggled as much as they can to have the project's, also the chapter's first ad stint published. And this haggling resulted to a 91 percent discount provided by Smile Magazine, the inflight magazine of Cebu Pacific Air (the largest airline in the Philippines), which also appears in Starbucks Coffee shops which are popular hang-out places. The print ads came out in the April and May issues of Smile Magazine and much to the project team's surprise on the June-July issue as well, which was already for free. Timing was also essential, April and May are the summer months and peak of the travel season in the country and would have been the best time to remind travelers to take photos of cultural heritage sites across the country.
    The team also monitored the progress of the images being submitted for the contest, thinking if the number of targets could be met without additional advertising, the remaining fund for advertisement can be used for other much needed purposes. But after it bottomed to just three photos uploaded on September 19, it became imperative to pull all the stops to ensure it can meet its targeted number of participants and entries. From an average of 35 photos per day on the first three weeks of the uploading campaign, this jumped to 185 images per day on the last week of the uploading period after the ad was published in the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
  •   Utilization of social media — With a very limited budget for advertising, the organizers maximized social media to promote Wiki Loves Monuments. As shown in the list of posts already provided above, it earned several "Likes" and positive "comments" that have considerably helped it be promoted at no cost.
  •   Catering services — The project team was faced with a dilemma after the caterer arrived at the venue extremely late during the WLM launch, forcing the project team to have fast food delivered to serve the audience, thus entailing additional costs. The organizers were actually enticed by the great deal offered by the caterer and didn't bother to enter into a formal contract or agreement which could have made settlement/negotiation for a discount easier. This was a well-learned lesson that by the Awarding ceremony, the project team made it a point to enter into a formal contract to have the terms in black-and-white.
  •   Three-phased judging — The project team implemented a three-phased judging: qualifying, eliminations (choosing the top 50) and final round, each with a different set of judges, which hastened the judging process, shielded the final jury from all the unnecessary burden of sifting through the thousands of entries that were submitted, and allowed Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines to hold the awarding of winners 20 days after the close of the uploading campaign.
  •   Partnership with other organizations — Wiki Loves Monuments opened the gates of partnership with organizations like Project Visionaries, who are present in every chapter events/activities providing the needed photo documentation, that the chapter is not often able to come up with because it doesn't have the equipment. Also, a group of theater students from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines who just wanted to have an exposure outside their campus were very much willing to lend their time and talent during chapter events by perform during our events.

What impact did the project have on WMF mission goals of Increased Reach, Increased Quality, Increased Credibility, Increased and Diversified Participation?

Provinces which had sites photographed for Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines 2012. Sites which made it to Top 50 are in red.
  •   Increased Reach — Wiki Loves Monuments in the Philippines provided good coverage of sites across the country, with sites from 57 out of the 80 provinces photographed and uploaded to Wikimedia Commons. The 319 uploaders were mostly new users of Wikimedia projects as shown in their talk pages in Commons which had recent welcome notes.
WLM 2012 3rd Place - Batad Rice Terraces by Cid Jacobo
  •   Increased Quality — As a testament to achieving this, an entry from the Philippines, that of Cid Jacobo's Batad Rice Terraces (photo to the left) placed third in the international round of Wiki Loves Monuments. Apart from these some photos which were nominated were rated by the Wikimedia Commons community as "Quality Image".
  •   Increased and Diversified Participation — The avalanche of quality photos, enticed some Filipino Wikipedians who were even not involved in the project or the chapter to take on the task of attaching these photos to the list of sites that were prepared for the competition which are as follows:
Women participation — Though it would be difficult to determine the percentage of women who participated in the contest, two out of the Top 10 winners (3rd place and 8th place) are women.

Reporting and documentation of expenditures


Documentation of expenditures has been received by WMF.

Did you send WMF documentation of all expenses paid for with grant funds?

  • Yes, all expenses as of December 15, 2012. Additional documentation sent via Grants e-mail on Sept. 25, 2013.

Details of expenditures:

Item Allocation Actual Remarks
Event Launch
Venue rental ₱7,000 ₱6,480.00
Audio/lighting equipment ₱3,000 ₱2,300.00
Snacks and beverages ₱15,000 ₱28,246.00
Souvenir/Press kits ₱8,000 ₱12,305.00
Promotions/Exhibit/Miscellaneous expenses
Advertising campaigns (prints and radio) ₱60,000 ₱65,294.16
Posters and other printed materials ₱15,000 ₱12,628.00
Tarpaulins ₱6,000 ₱990.00
Exhibit ₱30,000 ₱30,594.11[1]
Transportation ₱3,000 ₱12,346.59[1]
Courier ₱3,000 ₱1,299.20
Project planning and incidentals ₱8,000 ₱14,114.43[1][2]
Acquisition of event domain (2 yrs minimum) ₱3,000 ₱3,010.00
Prizes and Trophies
Prizes ₱37,000 ₱36,000.00 ₱4,000 forfeited unclaimed prizes.
Trophies ₱7,000 ₱8,670.00
1 Wikimania Scholarship for 1st Prize Winner ($2,200) ₱92,400 ₱21,327.26[2]
Judging period and Awarding Event
Venue rental ₱12,000 ₱22,287.00
Audio/lighting equipment ₱3,000 ₱—
Snacks and beverages ₱15,000 ₱35,566.60
₱327,400 ₱313,458.35[1][2]


  1. a b c d Added previously unreported expenses totaling to ₱1,212.50
  2. a b c Updated figures since partial report was accepted on Feb. 4, 2013, totaling to ₱21,412.26
Remaining funds from this grant have been returned to WMF in the amount of 13,941.65 PHP.

Will you be requesting re-allocation of remaining grant funding?

Yes, ₱13,941.65 (remainder of the grant) is hereby requested to be used for project management/volunteer allowance for Wiki Loves Monuments Philippines 2013.

Will you be returning unused funds to the Wikimedia Foundation?


Will you be requesting an extension or were you granted an extension?

The completion of the distribution of prizes was extended to September 15, 2013.

Please link to related grant proposals here: