Wiki Loves Monuments was organized for the first time in the Netherlands in September 2010. It is the successor to Wiki Loves Art in the Netherlands organized in 2009. With Wiki Loves Monuments in 2010, participants were encouraged to photograph some of the more than 50,000 national monuments (so-called "Rijksmonumenten") throughout the Netherlands as part of a photo competition. These are buildings or objects of general importance because of their beauty, importance to science, or cultural history – like archaeological sites in Drenthe, the canal houses in Amsterdam, and the Royal Palace in The Hague. To do this we contacted the Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed (RCE), a Dutch heritage organisation working for the protection and conservation of National Heritage Sites, and signed an agreement in which the conditions were written down. Basically, we agreed that Wikipedia got information like location data of all these Rijksmonumenten, and the volunteers of Wikipedia would report errors as feedback to the RCE. With this geographical information it is easier to find the monuments and to photograph them.
In total 12,501 photographs were made of the national monuments in the Netherlands. It resulted in many monuments having pictures on Wikipedia shown in lists of monuments and in articles. There were three categories in which awards have been presented: a category for photos from Vlissingen (Flushing); a category for the contestants with the highest number of objects photographed and a category for the best photo over all, awarded by a jury. All prizes were announced at a prize ceremony in Utrecht on November 20, 2010. See the top-10 at Wiki Loves Monuments 2010 and the uploaded pictures at Images from Wiki Loves Monuments 2010.
Big success: Upscaling in 2011
Participating countries 2011
The photo competition of 2010 was very successful and we wanted to continue the contest in 2011. This time we up-scaled the project to a European level wherein 18 countries participated. This was mostly organized by the chapters in co-operation with users of Wikipedia, or by users of Wikipedia alone. In total 169.150 pictures of European monuments were uploaded. In each country winners were selected. The best 10 pictures of each country also participated in the European Contest.
The preparations have already started in several countries. Forming a team of users to organize the contest in their country. Contacting the national agency concerning national monuments to receive information to create lists of monuments on Wikipedia. To build a website in each country. Getting sponsors and organizing prizes. Getting publicity in the media about the contest. Creating awareness on the local Wikipedia('s) in the particular country. And more...