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Google launches 100K Naija Project

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As Nigeria’s centenary anniversary approaches, Google Nigeria has kicked off an initiative called 100k Naija in the bid to document Nigeria’s history in the last one hundred years, through iconic pictures.

Google's Nigerian search engine is the most visited website in Nigeria (image: Google)
Google’s Nigerian search engine is the most visited website in Nigeria (Image source: Google)

The initiative kicked off on October 25, with a Photo Day event attended by a group of professional photographers from Lagos Photo Walk, where they were encouraged by Google to harness the power of the web to tell Nigeria’s story through iconic photographs.

Speaking at the event at the Oriental hotel, Victoria Island, Taiwo Kola-Ogunlade, Google’s Communications and Public Affairs Manager, Anglophone West Africa, said that the 100k Naija project will help document Nigeria’s history and capture memorable and characterful moments about Nigerian themes such as Governance, Lifestyle, Fashion, Nostalgia, Places of Interest, History, Only in Naija Moments, and more.

He added that the centenary photographs have to be “one hundred percent Nigerian” for them to qualify for the 100k Naija project. “Our target is to get 100,000 iconic pictures of Nigeria’s history on a specially dedicated 100K Naija Google+ page at the end of the project,” he stated.

Kola-Ogunlade gave examples of iconic photographs, stating that such pictures could  tell stories ranging from history and politics to arts and culture, from important personalities to everyday life.  For example, photographs could include those from pre- and post-colonial rule, the Nigerian civil war, various coups that took place, independence, architecture, vehicles, old currencies, musicians and celebrities, amongst others.

Lanre Aina, from Google’s Business Development team, said that with the evolution of the web, Google products have created opportunities for photographers to increase awareness about their work locally and internationally.  “For instance, you can edit photos on Google+ and influence your work visibility on Google search,” he explained.

Also speaking at the event, a Commercial Solicitor, Sogo Oyelami spoke about Intellectual Rights, stating that it is important that photographers file for copyright notification to protect their works. He encouraged them to seek legal counsel, and become familiar with governing laws and jurisdiction of the country. He stated: “All these will improve and standardize the practice of the photography profession in Nigeria.”

Reacting to Google’s 100k Naija project, photographer Femi Coker commended the initiative and stated that the project will help Nigerians appreciate their own history. “I am eager to be a part of this project and I’m positive that the iconic pictures will remind Nigerians of those memorable events in the last 100 years that has kept Nigerians united in diversity,” he said.

All photos for the project are to be shared using the #100k Naija hashtag, with a brief description on the dedicated 100k Naija Google+ page.

Staff writer

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