Making Australian Music Visible

A guide to uploading images onto Wikimedia Commons
, James Gaunt.

During Aus Music Month there are plenty of chances to see your favourite bands and discover new ones. This is also a chance to take some photos and put them online for the world to see with Wikimedia Commons.

What is Wikimedia Commons?

Wikimedia Commons is a media file repository making public domain and freely licensed media available to everyone.

You can upload images, audio, and video to Wikimedia Commons, and these can all be easily shared onto Wikipedia too.

Wikimedia Commons is full of photos of jazz musicians, hip hop musicians, Kylie Minogue, Nick Cave, and much more. If you have a photo of a band on your phone you can upload it right now!

How do I upload?

A guide to licensing and Wikimedia Commons

First, sign up for an account on Wikimedia Commons. If you already have a Wikipedia account you can login with that.

After clicking upload you will see a graphic (right) explaining licensing and why you should only upload work created entirely by yourself.

Click next, and you can begin uploading your images.

You can upload multiple files at the same time.

By default anything uploaded to Wikimedia Commons has a Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0 license which allows others to share your work as long as they give appropriate credit to you. You can change the license if needed.

Next, you need to give each image a title, caption, and description. You can add categories now or later, and you can edit your captions later too.

Click Publish Files.

Add Metadata such as who or what your image depicts. Click Publish or skip this step for now.

Done! Your image is on Wikimedia Commons!

What should I upload?

You can upload anything you own to Wikimedia Commons. Old photos, new photos, photos taken with a phone or 35mm film. As long as you created it you can share it.

You can also share images that are out of copyright, such as photographs taken in Australia before 1955 which are now in the public domain.

Many libraries, archives, and museums share public domain images. For example, State Library Victoria have a searchable collection of public domain images.

When using these images you should acknowledge where they came from, and include any other useful information in the image description when you upload it.

But be careful when uploading images that aren't yours. Make sure you understand whether the image really is out of copyright or not, and if you're unsure you should contact the website or institution to ask first.

Adding images to Wikipedia

Wikipedia pages are created and maintained by volunteers. If you'd like to learn how to edit, consider joining one of our events like our Aus Music Month Introduction to Wikipedia at Darling Square Library in Sydney, Saturday 12 November.

Our events are free and no experience is needed. Just sign up for a Wikipedia account in advance and bring along your laptop to connect to the free wifi! You can book your spot for our Aus Music Month event here.

If you can't make it in person, you can also watch some tutorials about Wikipedia, or read this guide on how to add images.

Further Reading

Image Credit: Grace Funston and Roy Brinsden performing in Pat Hanna's Diggers, Theatre Royal, Brisbane, 1926. via Wikimedia Commons

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