From July 1st to July 31st, 2020: Photograph the Earth! Wiki Loves Earth Photography Competition

Here’s a different kind of photo competition that I’m feeling a little bit ambivalent about: Wiki Loves Earth is an international photo competition with the aim of photographing recognizable sites from all countries. The pictures are used to illustrate articles on Wikipedia and other Wikiprojects, though they would also be available free for anyone else to use.

There are 32 participating countries. Unfortunately, the US is not on the list. But fear not. In fact, anyone can participate in the contest for any country, not necessarily the country they live in. It’s just the pictures of recognized sites of these countries that are needed. So, for example, US readers can still send in pictures of recognized Canadian sites to the Canadian part of the contest. Ditto for pictures of other countries, as long as you submit them to the correct country part (list of participating countries).

The contest runs throughout the month of July. You can upload as many pictures as you want and the pictures don’t even have to be taken in July, but must be uploaded that month to be considered for the contest. Starting in August, the contest’s Canadian jury will begin evaluating the photographs to select the 10 best from Canada to be sent to the international jury. I don’t believe there are any prizes except bragging rights and allowing everyone to freely use your photos (since you donate them to Wikimedia Commons under a free licence).

Wiki Loves Earth is an international photographic competition to promote natural sites around the World, through Wikimedia projects (mainly Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons). Everybody can participate.

There are a lot of natural areas in all participating countries. The goal of Wiki Loves Earth is to encourage people to take pictures of those sites and to put them under a free licence to allow others to access them through the Internet. To achieve that, an international contest is taking place. This website presents the Canadian part of this competition running in July 2020.

Here’s where I feel ambivalent about this contest. By participating in the contest, you make your submitted pictures available free to everyone else to use. That’s OK as long as these pictures are used to illustrate articles on Wikipedia and other Wikiprojects, or even on other blogs. That’s a fair use of the photos.

But, I believe that businesses should pay for the use of these photos in commercial projects. For example, if they use a photo on their own site as an illustration, that’s OK. But if they use it for a customer’s job (where they earn $$$), like in an ad, then it’s only fair that they should pay the photographer for it.

Visit Wiki Loves Earth (English | Français | International)