Sara Thomas, Scotland Programme Coordinator of Wikimedia UK, talks about the Wiki Loves Monuments campaign and how it can inspire communities.
What is Wiki Loves Monuments all about?
Wiki Loves Monuments is an international photo competition, organised by the Wikimedia Foundation, run by volunteers, and supported by chapters across the world, including Wikimedia UK. Pictures can be of listed buildings & scheduled monuments, with a particular focus in 2019 on images of buildings in use as well as building interiors. There are prizes for the best pictures from Scotland, Wales, England, NI, the UK, and internationally.
Best of all, these images are uploaded under an open licence, meaning that anyone, anywhere in the world, can use them for study, inspiration, or just for fun – and all free of charge. The photos are made available through Wikimedia Commons – the picture equivalent of Wikipedia – and can be used to illustrate Wikipedia articles, or for any other purpose, including education, as long as they’re properly credited back to the photographer.
How to Take Part
Click here for more information.
Using our interactive map, you can search for places near you, and see the buildings and monuments in your area. A blue pin means that there’s already a picture of that place, a red one means that there isn’t.
You can – of course – upload a picture of a site that already has a picture, but there’s a certain satisfaction to be had in turning all those red pins blue… and in my country of Scotland there are quite a lot that haven’t been covered yet! In 2017, Scotland uploaded 2104 images. In 2018, it was 4417. I’m hoping that we can break 5000 this year….
So what do we mean by putting your community on the map? Last year, one of our Wikimedians in Residence, Delphine Dallison, encouraged librarians all over Scotland to submit pictures of their listed building libraries, or other nearby sites, to the international photo competition. So that’s one way.
But as well as taking part in the competition yourself, you could also engage others – particularly those interested in photography and local history – to take part in an event, maybe a heritage walk of your local area.
Join us this year, and help illustrate Wikipedia!