As an amateur i have personally contributed all my "Backpacker travel photos" to
"Wikepedia Commons". I find it strange that most professional photographers
avoid donating to "Wikepedia Commons" although the majority of them fail to make
money professionally from their photos. With the arrival of the "Digital era"
the "Professional Photographer" has mostly become redundant as any person with a
slight interest in photography, a little bit of luck and the money to travel exotic places
can become a good photographer.Ultimately, once we humans depart from this earthly World,
photographic memories will be the only remnants of our brief existence on planet
Esrth.Please kindly donate photos to "Wikepedia Commons" and help educate other
netizens. As they say ,"A PICTURE TELLS A THOUSAND WORDS".
----- Original Message -----
From: CherianTinu Abraham
To: Discussion list on Indian language projects of Wikimedia. , Mumbai List Wikimedia ,
Pune Wikimedia , WikiConference India -2011
Sent: Tue, 18 Oct 2011 07:50:36 +0530 (IST)
Subject: Re: [Wikimedia-in-mum] [Press]: DNA : Want to display your photos? Donate them to
If you haven't seen, the web version now included a slideshow of selected images from
On Mon, Oct 17, 2011 at 11:23 AM, CherianTinu Abraham <tinucherian(a)gmail.com>
DNA : Want to display your photos? Donate them to Wikipedia
Kannan Shanmugam's grandfather was the first man to set up a photo studio in south
Kerala at Kollam, giving the locals one of their first tastes of technology.Around 100
years later, Kannan is hoping to continue his legacy in a way that could be just as
revolutionary in today's world — the act of giving something away, for free.
Kannan is an active contributor to Wikimedia Commons, an online repository of free-use
images, sound and other media files primarily used to supplement other Wikimedia projects,
Wikipedia being the most popular.
The project, which began in 2006 and to which anybody can contribute, has amassed over 11
million media files in five years.
With the fast-growing interest in Indian topics on English Wikipedia and 20 Indian
language Wikipedias already in existence, there is a dire need for images from India. In
the run-up to WikiConference 2011 to be held in Mumbai in November, the India Loves
Wikipedia initiative has been launched to encourage people to donate their photos for
Kannan has been one of the biggest contributors in the initiative which has amassed 3,359
photos, but feels it is difficult convincing professional photographers to contribute
"Photography equipment is costly. You don't get any returns from uploading images
on Commons. Only those who share this idea of free information are willing to do it,"
said Kannan, a former press photographer.
Tinu Cherian, executive committee member of the Wikimedia India Chapter, agreed.
"Releasing images for free use isn't a popular concept in India. And once your
image is in the public domain, you are allowing people to use, share, alter the images
(provided it is attributed) for both free and commercial purposes."
However, Wikimedians (contributors to Wikimedia projects) insist you don't have to be
a professional to submit your images.
Vaishak Kallore from Kannur in Kerala believes it is amateur photographers in remote
villages and towns in India who can be the most useful and generous contributors.
"Professionals might not see it worth their while to take photos of seemingly mundane
things. But there is a desperate need for such images to substantiate and inspire articles
From images of panoramas tostructures on the verge of
extinction, almost nothing lies beyond the scope of Commons.
And being a free repository, the images can be picked up for use by news publications,
portals and blogs. However, Kannan said, Indian media companies often tend to use these
images without giving credit to the photographers. "There is a need for greater
awareness about free licensing. If there is proper attribution, more people will be
encouraged to donate their photos."
Explaining how government bodies in the US, especially NASA, release images into the
public domain (including Commons) for free public education and use, Cherian said:
"The biggest goldmine for Commons from India is actually the government. We
haven't approached them officially yet, but we should be lobbying with them to come up
with a similar policy." Want to donate your photos to Wikipedia? Visit
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