Wiki Loves Africa 2015


Wiki Loves Africa (WLA) is an annual contest where people across Africa can contribute media about their environment on Wikimedia Commons for use on Wikipedia and other project websites of the Wikimedia Foundation. Wiki Loves Africa particularly encourages participants to contribute media (photographs, video and audio) that illustrate a specific theme for that year. Each year the theme changes and could include any such universal, visually rich and culturally specific topics (for example, markets, rites of passage, festivals, public art, cuisine, natural history, urbanity, daily life, notable persons, etc).

The theme for the 2014 photo contest was Wiki Loves Africa Cuisine, and the 2015 theme will be Wiki Loves Africa Cultural Fashion and Adornment

The competition scope will be: Submissions of media that cover cultural dress and fashion; specifically fashion that is defined by local cultural influences, including cloth, styles, ways of wrapping and hanging, etc. This theme would include adornment, such as culturally defined jewellery, make-up, hairstyles, cloths and woven materials.

The project is a two-month competition which will start on the 1st October and end on the 30th November 2015.

The project will be run at the entire continental level. However, some specific actions (training, communication etc.) will be held in some countries with national organisers. The project will feature a contest to select the best media at the continental level, with a ceremony and prizes as deemed appropriate.

Participating individuals edit

Regardless of whether you are African or not, you are welcome to join!

Take a look at the timeline here to have an idea of what happens where.
Consider joining the African Wikimedians mailing list for discussion and announcement (WLAf does not have a specific mailing list).

Here are some examples of the things you may do for a start:

  • Let other people know about the contest. Your local community can include local Wikip/medians and aligned Open Movement members (enthusiasts from Creative Commons, Open Street Map, Open Data, OER, etc.). Relevant links to provide include
  • Fix pages on meta or Commons (improve the text, fix typos, translate...)
  • Help us to translate the Site Notice into those languages (as well as other relevant texts)
  • Volunteer to help on OTRS to answer questions or comments made by participants (get in touch with us if you want to be a volunteer on OTRS)
  • Help select the jury: suggest judges who might be interested in taking part in the international contest (perhaps a locally celebrated photographer, fashion designer, filmmaker or journalist). Volunteer yourself!
  • Participate in writing press releases: Help on crafting a press release template, adapt it, and send it out to your media contacts. Write blogs.
  • Help categorize and clean up uploaded photos on Commons during the contest
  • Help us write a "best practices in photo" book (contact us if interested)
  • other suggestions ?

Proposals from countries that wish to participate in 2015 edit

The call for pictures and the contest will run in all African countries and beyond. If you want to submit an Engagement Plan, please read these suggested guidelines here (submission closed).

  1. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Tanzania (*)
  2. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Ghana
  3. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Ivory Coast (*)
  4. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Tunisia (*)
  5. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Egypt (*)
  6. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Ethiopia
  7. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Algeria (*)
  8. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Cameroon (*)
  9. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Uganda (*)
  10. WLAf 2015/Proposal by Nigeria (*)

(*) countries financially supported by WMF as part of the PEG grant.

Guidelines for Participating Countries edit

All participants edit

Hello, thank you for wishing to take part in this contest. We are so excited to have your country represented and your team working with us. Below are some actions to consider working on with your team. We really look forward to working with you on this project and getting some great results! May the best photo/video/audio win!

Here is some examples of the things you may do for a start:

  • Let your community know about the contest. Your local community can include local Wikip/medians and aligned Open Movement members (enthusiasts from Creative Commons, Open Street Map, Open Data, OER, etc.). Relevant links to provide include WLA on Meta, WLA on Commons,, WLA on Twitter and WLA on Facebook.
  • Think about the events, meet ups and training sessions that you can do with your community during the contest. Make sure everyone knows about it (and they are included in the press release).
  • Look for local partners: groups who might be key partners in spreading the word or hosting events.
  • If you are interested in hosting events around the project then, before the 23rd August, create a proposal and upload the proposal to this page. Suggested guidelines are here. (submissions now closed)
  • Join the African mailing list [1] (WLAf does not have a specific mailing list)
  • Provide press contact: When you know who your press person is, put their name and contacts down on this page.
  • Get together a list of media contacts in your country that you think will be interested in talking about the competition.
  • Participate in press releases: Help craft a press release template, adapt this for your country, and send it out to your media contacts. Other marketing and communication tools will be written and template created, and we will share everything with you for you to adapt and translate.
  • Help select the jury: suggest judges who might be interested in taking part in the international contest (perhaps a locally celebrated photographer, chef, filmmaker or journalist) .
  • Decide on whether you wish to host a national round of judging and prizes - if you do, you will need to organise the judges and the prizes (we can give you guidance on how).
  • Facebook has been set up - - please like this page - we will repost your info.
  • Twitter has been set up - - please follow and link your tweets about the competition to our handle.
  • other suggestions ?

To support your country's participation in the competition, we will supply the following.

  1. Dedicated space on for you to talk about your country's involvement in the competition and provide event notices (pre- and post)
  2. We are setting up a FAQ to answer general enquiries and a competition support email system to answer any requests for info, help, complaining etc.
  3. We are providing a curated page to help organise events
  4. A press release and FAQ for press (that you will need to localise for your country) and a list of talking points for you if the press contact you (end of September - early October).
  5. Digital communication material
    1. The digital version of a leaflet presenting the project for local printing and distribution (you will have to determine how many prints and where you want to distribute it).
    2. The digital version simple A2 Poster for local printing and distribution.
    3. The digital version of stickers, badges and bumper stickers (your team should decide what you need to print and how many).
    4. A simple T-shirt design (this is not essential given the small budget, but again, is up to your team to decide).

Please let us know if there are other means of communication or channels you would like the competition to consider.

Focus countries support edit

As part as our grant request to Wikimedia Foundation, we will be able to fund local events in a handful of countries. There is a small budget allocated for those countries for in-country communication and materials. Your team needs to decide what is appropriate for your country and context. Names of focus countries will be added in a few days;

Some teams have requested a letter of accreditation for the team, that will help when approaching sponsors and partners to be involved. We can supply this. Please let us know if you need a letter like this.

Website and Commons edit

The Wiki Loves Africa website (Internet Archive) has been created to allow for maximum accessibility, both by the range of local communities and by a global audience. The project’s website will be bi-lingual - featured in both English and French.

A portal page has been created on Commons : Wiki Loves Africa on Commons

Timeline edit

This is the second Wiki Loves Africa organised. Very rough timeline below (to be completed very soon)


  • The community chooses the theme for the contest;
  • Finalise the creation of the grant application;
  • Submit grant application to WMF;
  • Present WLAf 2014 and WLAf 2015 at Wikimania


  • Inform and request support from all possible parties, i.e. every local Wikimedia community or chapter, aligned organisation, etc..
  • Begin search for additional international sponsors (contest or prizes).
  • Create task management and process system, ensure actions and requirements are acknowledged and agreed upon.
  • Begin writing a manual for the participating county teams - posted in pdf and on Commons
  • Create marketing materials, event, training and publicity materials.


  • Prepare the website with toolkits, materials, FAQs and other materials; Discuss and design promotional materials and goodies. Have all communication channels defined and running
  • Finalize OTRS management
  • International partners: provide agreement with regards to minimum expectations and set achievable and checked targets.
  • Write first press release. Get it translated and localised. Establish press contacts
  • Establish DB of press contacts.
  • Begin soft social media campaign
  • Clarify all processes with partners, supply all links and materials for printing. Work with country teams to identify networks for distribution of information and materials.
  • Design CentralNotice banners.
  • Local teams to upload and finalise all documentation on local events and posted to Wikimedia Commons, Meta and Facebook
  • Ensure all spokespeople in each country are briefed.
  • Start the work on metrics and statistics
  • Distribution of printed materials to sites - if needed.
  • Send out press releases to the media in each country (both international and local organiser teams) (do not send the press release before the site notice is up!). Answer all press and other related queries;


  • 1st of October: Contest start ! Launch CentralNotice. project launch. monitor all coverage, continent wide. post pics of the first uploads to all social media. write articles, get articles placed. double check all tech and permissions.
  • Request list of potential jurors from participating countries.
  • end of October mid-contest press release (local and continental);


  • Finalise short list of jurors and sign them up to the process.
  • 30th of November: contest close date
  • Begin the work on the participants survey


  • Facilitate the voting system for international jury - use the first week’s batch to test the system, get feedback and fine tune it.
  • Send out a participants survey (?); Send out organisers survey


  • Analysing the outcomes of the surveys; compile the beginning of the project report; post the outcome of the surveys to Meta
  • Deadline for the international jury to select winners. Compile press release announcing winners. Have embargoed translations, blog posts and other media ready for publishing. Inform the winners
  • Announce winners and inform all entrants about the results of the contests.
  • Analyse contribution statistics (ongoing and during the contest) of contributors.


  • Send out the awards to the winners - ensure they are received.
  • Publish Post mortem


  • Call for suggestions for next theme.
  • Sponsors reports
  • Do a 4 month contribution assessment (ongoing) of contributors.


  • Write project proposal for funding for 2016 contest :)


  • Wikimania presentation

Related links edit