In Cape Town a three day event overlapping with the international Wikimania was held. The event was held at the iNtaka Law Tech Lab at the University of Cape Town. The Intellectual Property Unit (UCT IP unit) at the University of Cape Town's facility of law very kindly lend WMZA the space for Wikimania. Due to COVID 19 concerns and limited space at the venue the iNtaka Law Tech Lab requested that no more than twenty people could be in the centre at anyone time thereby putting an upper limit on the number of attendees.
The event started with a welcome reception on Friday, 11 August, which was attended by WMZA partner organisations, WMZA chapter members, academics, librarians and WMF staff. The CEO of the WMF, Maryana Iskander, attended the event. Representatives from civil society organisations that joined us included OpenUp, Code for Africa, and ReCreate South Africa. Academic librarians from the University of Cape Town, Stellenbosch University, and the University of the Western Cape were also present as were academics from the UCT computer science department. The event was well attended with the venue reaching maximum capacity on at least two occasions.
The second day, Saturday 12 August, was dominated by the Copyright Round Table digital event that WMZA hosted for Wikimania. Following this event an informal discussion was held with all the people physically attending the Cape Town event joining a discussion about copyright issues and Wikipedia; this discussion was lead by Prof Tobias Schonwetter of the UCT IP Unit. This greatly improved everyone's understanding of copyright law generally and the law in South Africa specifically. Following the copyright discussions attendees joined the international Wikimania digitally until the end of the day's Wikimania schedule. Many other discussions were had about technology and Wikipedia culture. This day's events were well attended with the venue reaching maximum capacity at least three times.
On the third and final day, Sunday 13 August, attendees joined Wikimania events digitally. It was not as well attended as the previous two days events with an average of around 5 people being present at any one time. A highlight of the day was watching the Zulu Dance video prepared for Wikimania by WMZA. Discussions were also held about MySQL and Wikipedia as well as about what activities other Wiki communities are up to.
Overall the event was a great success that did much to increase local participation in Wikimania, improve community health, strengthen relations with partner organisations and increase awareness of what the global community is up to and Wiki culture. It is strongly recommended that this mini-event be repeated in the future. We are also especially thankful for the attendance of scholarship recipient Reda Benkhadra, from WM Morocco, whose full attendance at all the Cape Town events added great depth and insight for all the other attendees.
Funding was a significant challenge as the cost of scholarships was greatly under estimated. As such funding had to be reallocated from other line items to accommodate the overspend. This was mitigated by getting a free location and cutting the catering budget.