2013 Annual Review/Wiki version/Wikipedia Takes Coventry

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Wikipedia Takes Coventry

By the numbers
  • Photographers: 51
  • Hours: 5½
  • Photographs uploaded: >2030
  • Cost per photo: ~£0.07
  • Press coverage: On the radio!
Web only: Event organiser Harry Mitchell talks about the event.

Wikipedia Takes Coventry took place on 1 September 2012 as part of an ongoing relationship with Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, Coventry. delivered by our volunteers Rock drum and Harry Mitchell and supported by the office, this was the first time a "Wikipedia Takes..." event, in which participants take photographs of specific locations in a town or city, had been held in the UK.

The main purpose of the event was to get good-quality freely-licensed photographs of important and historic buildings in Coventry (of which there is a surprisingly large number) for use on Wikipedia and elsewhere, but also to teach people about Coventry's long and varied history.

Advertisements for the event went out to Coventry secondary schools and a large number of local photography clubs. The team also worked with Visit Coventry and Warwickshire to promote the event. Despite initial anxieties about too few people coming, the day before the event there were around 60 people signed up, with promise of more

Thank you all for [...] Wikipedia Takes Coventry, we enjoyed it very much and it was great to be back out as a family doing something creative! It's been a while.

—Event participant

A more manageable 50-something turned up on the day, which was about physical and organisational capacity. Thanks to in-kind donations, the final budget for the event stood at a little over £300 (from which there was even an underspend - events like this don't have to be expensive!). The main paid-for items were prizes and refreshments for participants from the café.

On the day of the event, Harry joined Erin Hollis from the Herbert on BBC Coventry and Warwickshire radio, speaking about the ongoing relationship and the event. After this, they headed to the museum to greet participants and give a brief introduction before sending them off at 11am.

During the day, goody bags were prepared for those taking part with materials to do with Wikimedia and The Herbert and also some merchandise. These materials were useful on the day, and also included information on contributing to Wikimedia projects after the event. After the photography came the uploading. Using the Toolserver specially designed for this type of project and a designated IT suite, over 2,000 images were uploaded by those taking part – a remarkable achievement. The number of photos speaks for itself, but a big part of the event was the stories; it’s about the community. It's about the IKEA manager who let 4 participants round the back of the kitchen to take a photo of the Coventry skyline. It's about the families who participated in the event with their children and the people who came from miles away.