Calling All Audio Pros: What’s THE Sound of All Human Knowledge?

sound of all human knowledge

What is the Sound of All Human Knowledge?

Here’s a challenge for audio pros and everyone else: Through an open contest, the Wikimedia Foundation invites you to create nothing less than “The Sound of All Human Knowledge.”

The Wikimedia Foundation is the global nonprofit that hosts Wikipedia and Wikimedia, the movement behind Wikipedia and 12 other free knowledge projects. Made possible by volunteers, affiliate groups and organizations, every month more than 300,000 volunteers create and curate free and open knowledge in more than 300 languages.

The Contest

Wikimedia wants a sound logo that will identify content from its projects (like Wikipedia) whenever visual logos aren’t an option. Wikimedia’s new sound logo will help users all over the world know when they are listening to credible, open content sourced from Wikimedia projects. For example, when their virtual voice assistants answer queries.

This sound will “help communicate what the Wikimedia movement stands for — trustworthy, reliable, open, and accessible knowledge for all.”

The winning sound should be global, smart and familiar.

The original submission must capture the essence of Wikimedia by responding to questions like: “What is the sound of discovering something new?” or “What is the sound of trusted information?” or even “What is the sound of winning an argument?”

It should embody one of the following creative prompts that Wikimedia suggests as inspiration: Connections Forming, Knowledge Growing, Question & Answer, Trusted Information, Free & Open Knowledge, Humans of the Wikimedia Movement — or something similar.

  • It should feature a mix of sounds, sound effects and layers.
  • It should not feature spoken words in any language.
  • It should use more than just computer-based sounds (e.g., the sound of typing on a keyboard).
  • It should be a representation of the shared, global experience of discovery, without singling out a culture or location.
  • Any person who is over the age of 13 years can enter.
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Submissions end Oct. 10, 2022. A panel of Wikimedia volunteers, together with sound logo experts from MassiveMusic and an independent musicologist will review submissions until Nov. 29, 2022. They will identify 10 finalists based on the following criteria: conceptual match, originality/uniqueness, and potential for strong brand recall.

Once the finalists have been selected, you (and everyone else) will be able to listen and cast a vote for the winner until Dec. 19, 2022.

“Every day, we invite the world to create the sum of all human knowledge. Now, we are inviting the world to create The Sound of All Human Knowledge,” says the Foundation.

The winner will receive $2500 USD and a trip to a recording studio to produce the final sound logo. But folks, it’s not about the money — we’re talking about global recognition for your expertise with sound here.

Recognition for a sound that will reverberate for decades across 300 languages and almost all the world’s countries: this is a contest for kudos. For glory. Before submitting a glorious entry, make sure your entry follows the contest rules listed in the contest information and criteria.

Not sure where to start? Try these free resources:

Learn More

For more contest info:

To submit your sound: