Submissions/Video games and how I successfully used Kickstarter to fund Wikimedia content

From Wikimania 2014 • London, United Kingdom

After careful consideration, the Programme Committee has decided not to accept the below submission at this time. Thank you to the author(s) for participating in the Wikimania 2014 programme submission, we hope to still see you at Wikimania this August.

Submission no. 1121
Magnavox Odyssey console
Title of the submission

Video Game Photography: How I successfully used Kickstarter to fund Wikimedia content

Type of submission (discussion, hot seat, panel, presentation, tutorial, workshop)


Author of the submission

Evan Amos

E-mail address




Country of origin

United States

Personal homepage or blog

Abstract (at least 300 words to describe your proposal)

My presentation focuses on how the Wikipedia community – and internet community at large – helped transform my photography hobby into a comprehensive and free visual resource used around the world.

For the past few years I have been taking quality, public domain pictures for Wikipedia, with an emphasis on video game hardware. Over time and through community outreach, I have taken pictures of almost every video game console and greatly improved the overall quality of the video game articles on Wikipedia. My images have proven to be important and popular in the gaming community, even being used by companies such as Microsoft and Nintendo.

In an effort to expand and refine my galleries, I launched a Kickstarter campaign in October 2013 to raise funds to buy game consoles to photograph for Wikimedia. (Owning hardware – over borrowing it from collectors – allows me to spend more time with each item and expand the range of photographs.) The effort received attention from sites such as Gamasutra, Kotaku, Gizmondo, Petapixel, Popular Science and many others, and I was even interviewed by sites like Mashable and Polygon about my accomplishments. This attention caused the Kickstarter to be funded with over twice its goal, bringing in $17,000. It also led to a book deal with No Starch Press about video game hardware that will be released in 2015.

The presentation will briefly go over the history of my work, from why I decided to begin contributing to Wikimedia and how I was able to use community outreach to track down over a hundred systems to photograph. I will also talk about my decision to use crowdfunding to create Wikimedia content and my experience with Kickstarter, from the project's struggling early days to its amazing turnaround in the final days. Finally, I will go over my photography and how I take my images. After this presentation I can field questions from the audience.

Due to the nature of my work, there are many visuals to accompany my presentation, which should keep it interesting for the audience.

  • WikiCulture & Community
  • Legal & Free Culture
Length of session

30 minutes

Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?

Yes, but I would only be able to attend the conference and give the presentation with a travel scholarship.

Slides or further information (optional)

The images shown here have been designated as featured pictures.

Interested attendees

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  1. I think this might be the first time that any individual crowdsourced funding to create Wikimedia content. I am curious as to whether this could be a model and example for others. Blue Rasberry (talk) 15:00, 17 February 2014 (UTC)[reply]
  2. --Frank Schulenburg (talk) 19:20, 19 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]
  3. Ocaasi (talk) 23:13, 6 April 2014 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Lionel Allorge (talk) 17:54, 28 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]
  5. --Another Believer (talk) 18:14, 6 May 2014 (UTC)[reply]
  6. --Discott (talk) 13:23, 2 June 2014 (UTC)[reply]