President, Wikimedia Nigeria, Mr. Olaniyan Olushola, has emphasized the need for the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) to further explore the digital space to sell the rich tourism and cultural potentialities of Nigeria to the global world.
Olushola said this during a training session to introduce some members of staff of the Corporation to the workings of Wikipedia and how it could help bridge the content gap between Nigeria’s natural and historical sites and the people. The training was held at the Corporation’s headquarters in Abuja, recently.
Wikipedia, the world’s largest encyclopedia, is a global movement whose mission is to bring free educational content to the world.
The Wikimedia Nigeria boss disclosed that the partnership between the organization and NTDC was to ensure that the good assets and history of Nigeria are given better visibility on the global internet space.
He said: “We need to show the beauty of our history to the global world, and also, correct some of the erroneous information on the internet and put them in better perspective. “It is worrisome that there are lots of misrepresentations in the content related to Nigeria on the internet. For instance, you would see Zuma Rock being captioned as Idanre Hill.
“Nigeria doesn’t have enough content on the global internet space, hence we need to contribute our own content to this information platform. This, the global world will surely appreciate, and through this, we can change the perception of the whole world about Nigeria.”
Olusola, while discussing the operations of Wikimedia said, through various projects, chapters, and the support structure of the non-profit Wikipedia Foundation, Wikimedia strives to bring about a world in which every single human being can freely share in the sum of knowledge.
He also noted that the ongoing Wiki Loves Earth (WLE), an annual international photographic competition usually held during the month of May, organized worldwide by Wikimedia chapters, groups and local Wikipedia volunteers, also gives Nigeria the opportunity to promote her history, cultural heritage and tourism potentialities.
He said the basic aim of the competition is to collect photos of natural heritage sites – such as nature reserves, land scape conservation areas, national parks, scenic/landscape areas, remarkable gardens, etc. – to illustrate articles in the worldwide free encyclopedia Wikipedia and other Wikimedia Foundation projects. “The focus is not only on sites of national importance, but also on those protected at the regional level, and on the widest variety of natural sites possible: forests, parks, gardens, rocks, caves, or whatever part of nature is protected in your country. This means that most users will be able to find several natural heritage sites close to them.
“Participants take pictures of local natural heritage and scenic landscape in their countries, and upload them to Wikimedia Commons. For all participating countries there are separate competitions corganized by local teams, so periods, rules, prizes etc. might differ a bit,” Olushola said.