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CIS-A2K/Reports/Newsletter/March 2024

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In the Limelight- Wiki Love Vizag[edit]

Wiki Loves Vizag: Fostering Open Knowledge Through Photography[edit]

A day in the life of a Fisherman 05
Always bargain the fish
Aircraft Carrier
Araku Train

iMahesh's passion for architecture and photography intersected with his commitment to Wikimedia Commons in the "Wiki Loves Vizag" photography contest. CIS-A2K collaborated and supported this initiative not only to enrich Wikimedia Commons with content related to Visakhapatnam but also to cultivate community engagement and contribute to the broader open knowledge movement.

The contest, focused on Wikipedia articles about Indian cities, aimed to expand the visual representation of these cities on Wikimedia Commons. The project underscores the significant role of visual contributions, particularly through photography, in introducing individuals to Wikimedia projects and enhancing their accessibility.

Despite the challenges in categorizing entries, organizing jury teams effectively, and engaging volunteers, there is an undeniable need for more contests focused on image contributions within India, stressing the importance of sustaining open knowledge movements through continuous participation and growth.

Looking ahead, there is a need to expand similar initiatives to other Indian cities regularly and to manage multiple projects concurrently to accelerate the growth of the Wikimedia Commons community. Strategies for addressing community engagement challenges, such as creating accurate image categories and coordinating post-contest tasks, require effective planning and collaboration. Wiki Loves Vizag is a prototype that can be adapted and emulated by other communities.

Collaborative projects like Wiki Loves Vizag not only contribute to Wikimedia Commons' content but also serve as a catalyst for ongoing initiatives aimed at fostering open knowledge, community engagement, and the continued growth of Wikimedia projects across India.

Monthly Recap[edit]

She Leads Program (Support)[edit]

CIS-A2K has launched the She Leads program to assist Indian Wikimedians, particularly women, in coordinating activities during March, a bustling period for Wikimedia endeavors. This initiative aims to empower female Wikimedians and nurture women's leadership within the Indian community. It provides ongoing support for designing and executing activities aligned with participants' objectives, fostering inclusivity and diversity within Wikimedia projects. We've received 8 proposals so far and have already executed 4 activities, with approximately 118 participants. The response from female Wikimedians has been overwhelmingly positive, with organizers eager to host more events. We are inviting proposals till 15th May 2024.

WikiHour: Amplifying Women's Voices (Virtual)[edit]

The International Women's Day meeting featured the She Leads initiative, aiming to empower female Wikimedians in Indian communities through planned activities. Participants engaged in a collaborative map exercise, sharing insights about their backgrounds. The meeting highlighted a storytelling campaign to showcase female Wikimedians' stories, encouraging nominations for inspiring individuals. Inclusivity was emphasized, allowing members to nominate themselves or others for recognition. Future activities will focus on empowering leaders within language communities, with plans for monthly calls to share stories and plan initiatives. The participants’ contributions to the community projects were acknowledged, emphasizing collaboration efforts. We had 14 female participants, expressing interest in monthly meetings and future female-focused activities. The meeting concluded with gratitude towards participants for their dedication and collaborative spirit, setting plans for monthly progress calls among language community leaders to foster further collaboration

Wikimedia India Summit 2024 - Delhi[edit]

This strategic pre-summit event brought together affiliate representatives from across India, totaling 15 in-person participants. The discussions provided clarity and outlined strategies for our role in the upcoming Wikimedia Summit 2024. The purpose of this activity was to convene Indic Wikimedians, representing their user groups and communities, to prepare for the Summit and gain a clear understanding of volunteer involvement. Discussions encompassed the Wikimedia Summit 2024 program, Movement Strategy, recommendations, governance, and more, shaping the program accordingly.

MoU with Department of Language and Culture, Government of Telangana[edit]

In the last week of March 2024, representatives from the Department of Language and Culture, Government of Telangana, the Centre for Internet and Society, and the Wikimedia Foundation signed an MoU to collaborate on digitizing cultural heritage, promoting free knowledge, and making resources available under open licenses. Following this, the Department released a decade's worth of cultural media archives to Wikimedia Common, Newly appointed Wikimedian in Residence began organizing the media for upload. More information can be accessed here.

From the Team- Editorial[edit]

“భారతీయ భాషల వికీమీడియా సముదాయలతో సీఐఎస్-ఎ2కె కలసి పనిచేయడం అన్నది కొత్త సంగతి కాదు. దాదాపు పుష్కర కాలంగా మా జట్టు వివిధ భారతీయ భాషల సముదాయాలతో కలసి అనేక కార్యక్రమాలు, వివిధ స్థాయిల్లో పనిచేస్తూ వస్తోంది. వివిధ రకాల పద్ధతుల్లో సందర్భాన్ని బట్టి, ప్రాజెక్టును బట్టి ఈ తోడ్పాటు, సహకారం సాగుతూ వస్తోంది. అయితే, కోవిడ్-19 మహమ్మారి ప్రభావం వల్ల, సహజంగానే కాలం గడిచేకొద్దీ వచ్చే మార్పుల వల్ల భారతీయ వికీమీడియా ప్రాజెక్టుల్లో కొత్త నాయకత్వం వచ్చింది. ఈ నేపథ్యంలో సీఐఎస్-ఎ2కె కూడా సముదాయంతో కలసి పనిచేయడంలో కొత్తగా పంథాలోనూ, కొత్త ఉత్సాహంతోనూ ముందుకు సాగాలని నిర్ణయించుకుంది. అందుకే, సముదాయంతో కలసి పనిచేయడానికి కమ్యూనిటీ కొలాబరేషన్స్ అన్న ఒక కొత్త ప్రయత్నాన్ని ప్రారంభించాము. ఏ భారతీయ వికీమీడియా సముదాయం అయినా, సముదాయ సభ్యులు అయినా భారతీయ భాషల వికీమీడియా ప్రాజెక్టుల అభివృద్ధికి ఉపయోగపడే ఆలోచనతో మా వద్దకు రావచ్చు. ఇందుకు ఒక ఇద్దరు ముగ్గురు వికీమీడియన్లు కలసి వస్తే, సరిపోతుంది. ఆ తర్వాత మా జట్టులోని సభ్యులు ఒకరు ప్రతిపాదించిన సముదాయ సభ్యులతో మాట్లాడి వాళ్ళ ఆలోచనల నుంచి, అనుభవం నుంచి మేం నేర్చుకోవడానికి ఆసక్తితో ఉన్నాం, అలాగే మా వనరులు (మానవ, సాంకేతిక, ఆర్థిక, మేధో), అనుభవం, వ్యూహం ఉపయోగించి మెరుగుపరచడానికి సూచనలు మేమూ ఇస్తాము. వీటితో పాటు ఎవరెవరు ఏమేం చేస్తారు, ఏ టైంలైన్‌లో పనిచేస్తాము, వనరులను ఎలా ఉపయోగించాలి, ఫలితాలు ఎలా ఉండొచ్చు, కార్యక్రమం పూర్తయ్యాకా ఫాలో అప్ ఏం చేస్తాం వంటివన్నీ కూడా మాట్లాడుకుందాం. ఇలా కలసి ఆలోచించి, చేయికలపి, భారతీయ భాషల వికీమీడియా ప్రాజెక్టులకు మనవంతుగా గట్టిమేలు తలపెడదాం. అందరికీ ఇదే ఆహ్వానం.”

“CIS-A2K team has been working with various Indian language communities on many programs and at various levels for a long time now. This support and cooperation has taken different forms in different contexts and projects. However, due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and due to changes that naturally occur over time has brought new leadership to Indian Wikimedia projects. In this background, CIS-A2K has also decided to adopt new ways of working with the community. Therefore, we have launched a new initiative called Community Collaborations. We invite any and all Indian Wikimedia communities or community members to come to us with ideas of collaboration for the development of Indian language Wikimedia projects. We are keen to learn from your ideas and experience, and facilitate these initiatives through the use of our resources (human, technical, financial, intellectual), experience and strategy. We’d like for these programs to be a collaborative effort furthering the cause of open knowledge in India. Let's think together, join hands and work hard for the Wikimedia projects of Indian languages.”

- Pavan Santhosh Surampudi, Program Manager, CIS-A2K

Coming Soon - Upcoming Activities[edit]

She Leads[edit]

The She Leads initiative will be inviting proposals till the 15th of May. After the closure of this support initiative, CIS-A2K will be organizing a women-centered leadership training program to encourage and facilitate women leadership within Indian wiki communities. We are working on curating this event and we’ll share more updates soon.

Wiki Loves Initiatives[edit]

Wiki Loves Vizag is a prototype that can be adapted and emulated by different communities, Visually centered initiatives to expand the existing body of knowledge have proven to be effective and impactful. Therefore, we are anticipating and looking forward to various Wiki Loves campaigns across different communities and contexts. We encourage you to reach out with ideas and insights for similar projects.

Technical Training Event[edit]

CIS-A2K is working on technical training initiatives in the coming months to provide necessary support and capacity building for technical wikimedians. Stay tuned for more information.

Telugu Wikipedia Training Session[edit]

On April 19th and 20th, A2K will organize a Telugu Wikipedia Training Session for Telugu Lecturers from the Godavari Districts in Tadepalligudem, Andhra Pradesh, in collaboration with DRG Degree College, Tadepalligudem. This session will serve as the pilot project for our broader outreach program named 'Wikipedia Training for Indian Language Educators,' as outlined here.


In an attempt to expand our communications framework, we are starting a new comic strip series. We believe this comic series will be a fun way to encourage people to think about open knowledge. We invite you to translate and share this comic within your communities and social media channels. Let's make free knowledge fun!