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Proposed logo of JoburgpediA Project

Monmouthpedia is the first Wikipedia project to embrace a whole town—specifically, the Welsh town of Monmouth. This was done through installing Cream plaques containing QRCodes next to buildings and other objects and linking these to Wikipedia articles.

A QR Code (it stands for "Quick Response") is a cell phone readable bar code that can store website URL's, when scanned by a smart phone, it will direct the browser of the smart phone to the url.

A blue plaque is a tool used to commemorate significant sites (sites can be significant to a community for a whole host of reasons). It is an invitation to people to discover more about a site and its history. The iconic look is the circular shape with white writing on a blue background. It is currently estimated that there are about 150 to 200 blue plaques in and around Johannesburg.



The aim of this project is to increase Wikipedia coverage of iconic buildings around Johanesburg with historic and heritage importance. QR codes ( in a ceramic or metallic plate ) will be installed next to blue plaques in Johannesburg city as a pilot project during the year 2013.

Project Implementation

The project will be implemented in four phases during the year 2013. It will include selection of ten buildings in Johannesburg to be used as pilot, the upload of basic metadata and low resolution images to new or existing Wikipedia Articles (English), Installation of QR code ceramic/metallic plates next to Blue Plaques and editathons and translation rallies. The details of the phases are as follows:

Phase 1: Selection and endorsement

The first phase of this project entails project inception and conceptualisation. Due to the nature and scale of the project, all affected stakeholders (WM-ZA, Blue Plaques and City of Jo'burg) must finalise the scale, all necessary endorsements and legal agreements on technicalities of the project upfront.

Phase 2: Sourcing of Metadata

James to investigate possibility of JHF (and other bodies) to donate minimum meta data on these sites. This meta data can include:

  • Low resolution image of site
  • Site description
  • Date of construction
  • Architect name and company
  • Cultural significance

The basic premise is that Organizations would be willing to part with basic non-sensitive information and articles would then direct traffic to their portals for detailed information and high resolution images.

Phase 3: Installation of QR Code tiles

Once meta data has been donated and uploaded on wikipedia and commons, QR Code images must be created of the articles in Wikipedia created or enhanced from donated metadata. An external company will have to be employed for the manufacture and installation of the cream plaques with corresponding QR codes.

Phase 4: Content creation

The final phase of the project will involve content creation/enhancement and translation to small languages wikis through a series of Editathons and translation rallies. The idea is to ensure wider coverage of the pilot project preferably in all south African wikis. project evaluations and reporting will naturaly follow at the completion of the project.

Project Timeline

Item Activity Date Status
Phase 1 Selection and endorsement Jan - Feb Symbol wait.svg Doing...
1 Project Conception meeting with James Ball 21-Dec-2012 Yes check.svg Done
2 Chapter endorsement in board meeting 12-Jan-2013
3 Issue call for participation amongst wikimedians around JHB 13-Jan-2013
4 Project partners follow up meeting to finalise all necessary endorsements 19-Jan-2013
5 Finalise agreement details on donation of meta data between JHF, blue plaques and WM-ZA 26-Jan-2013
6 Finalise list of buildings for implementation 26-Jan-2013
Phase 2 Sourcing of Metadata Feb - Mar
1 Create and submit grant request to WMF/WM-ZA Feb-2013
2 Begin sourcing batch upload of basic metadata and low res photos from JHF Feb-2013
3 Populate QRCodes for selected buildings on Wikipedia Feb-2013
Phase 3 Installation of QR Code tiles March
1 Hire company to produce cream plaques for selected sites Mar-2013
Phase 4 Content creation April - Jun
1 Organise editathon 1 around JoburgpediA April-2013
2 Organise editathon 2 around JoburgpediA April-2013
3 Organise translation Rally around JoburgpediA May-2013
4 Write and submit report on pilot project Jun-2013

Impact and Monitoring

QRpedia is able to track the number of times a QRCode is used and the language wiki being accessed, this will be a valuable tool in assessing the impact of this pilot project and feasibility of rolling it out to more blue plaques around the city. A feedback mechanism is however required to allow users to interact with articles and ultimately city authorities to commend or report vandalism. Crowd sourcing and other software tools must be considered in order to monitor and boost the impact of this project.


The estimated budget for this project is R xxx, xxx.xx and the breakdown is as follows:


  • Blue Plaque - James Hall
  • City of JHB- Eric Itzkin
  • Wikimedia ZA- Dumisani Ndubane

More about QR coding

  1. Official QRPedia website. Can be used to create QR codes to WP Articles by dropping WP article URL.
  2. QR Stuff
  3. QR Code on Wikipedia
  4. QRpedia on Wikipedia
  5. QR Pedia on Wikimedia Outreach Portal
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