“Hey, computer…

what is the sound of all human knowledge?”

Sound helps shape our perception and how we learn about the world around us. Some sounds are quite simple to identify, like the sound of a rocket launch or the sound of waves crashing against the shore. But how about the sound of all human knowledge?

The Wikimedia movement is searching for a sound logo that will identify content from all of our projects, like Wikipedia, when visual logos are not an option — for example, when virtual voice assistants answer queries.

Through an open contest, organised by the Wikimedia Foundation, we are inviting the world to create The Sound of All Human Knowledge. This sound will help communicate what the Wikimedia movement stands for — trustworthy, reliable, open, and accessible knowledge for all.

Contest overview

Voting is now closed

As a movement, we believe we build better when we build together, which is why we invited the world to help us create The Sound of All Human Knowledge.

Submissions for the Wikimedia sound logo contest are now closed. We invited people from all over the world to create a sound that is global, smart, and familiar — a sound that will soon be recognised around the world as The Sound of All Human Knowledge. Participants were tasked with submitting an original entry that could capture the essence of everything Wikimedia stands for. We asked people to respond 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?”

Submissions were accepted between the 13th of September 2022 at 00:00 UTC and the 10 of October 2022 at 23:59 UTC.

The submissions phase was quite popular: We received over 3230 sound logo entries from 135 countries.

The winner will receive $2,500 USD and a trip to a recording studio to produce the final sound logo.

The review and selection phase of The Sound of All Human Knowledge ended on the 5th of December 2022. A panel of Wikimedia volunteers, together with sound logo experts from MassiveMusic and an independent musicologist reviewed and identified 10 finalists based on the following criteria: Conceptual match, originality/uniqueness, and potential for strong brand recall.

Every day, we invite the world to create the sum of all human knowledge. This time, we invited the world to create The Sound of All Human Knowledge.

Voting for Wikimedia’s new sound logo took place between the 6th of December 2022 at 00:00 UTC and the 19th of December 2022 at 23:59 UTC. Wikimedians from all over the world helped us find the submission that best summarises all that Wikimedia stands for. We are looking to announce the winner in early 2023—stay tuned!

In early 2023, the world will finally hear The Sound of All Human Knowledge! 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.

Contest information and criteria

Submissions are now closed. We asked participants to start by thinking conceptually about the answer to this question: What is The Sound of All Human Knowledge?

  1. The answer should be a sound that is global, smart, and familiar.
  2. It should embody one of the following creative prompts that we put together as inspiration: Connections Forming, Knowledge Growing, Question & Answer, Trusted Information, Free & Open Knowledge, Humans of the Wikimedia Movement, or something similar.
  3. It should feature a mix of sounds, sound effects, and layers.
  4. It should not feature spoken words in any language.
  5. It should use more than just computer-based sounds (e.g. the sound of typing on a keyboard). 
  6. It should be a representation of the shared, global experience of discovery, without singling out a culture or location.

Participants were prompted to read and accept the contest rules, fill out their information, add contributors (if any), add the tools used, and briefly explain their sound and inspiration. By uploading their sound logo they gave the Wikimedia Foundation the right to reproduce and perform their audio without attribution during the duration of the contest. Read more in the contest rules.

Any person who is over the age of 13 years was eligible to enter. Just as we welcome everyone to edit Wikipedia, we welcomed everyone to this contest. Participants did not need to be professional musicians or producers to enter.

Every original sound logo submission should be at least 1 second and no more than 4 seconds long, made with a single/multiple original sounds, and/or a single/multiple CC0 (Creative Commons Zero) or public domain pre-recorded sounds (or a remix of CC0/public domain sounds). Submissions were accepted in MP3, OGG, or WAV in files no larger than 100MB. Each person could make up to 3 sound logo submissions.

A panel of Wikimedia volunteers, with the help of sound logo experts from MassiveMusic and an independent musicologist, gave the entries that met the submission criteria scores out of 10 for each of the following criteria. Each section has a different weight that counted towards the average of the final:

  1. Conceptual match: To what extent did the sound logo represent the spirit of the Wikimedia movement? How closely did the sound logo communicate one of the creative prompts? To what extent did it feel human, inspired, smart and warm?—50% weight.
  2. Originality/uniqueness: To what extent did the sound logo feel original and unique? How much did it stand out compared to other sound logos?—25% weight.
  3. Potential for strong brand recall: How easily did you feel you could recall the sound logo? How easily did you feel you would be able to replicate (sing / hum / tap) the sound logo?—25% weight.

The top ten finalists can be heard on our voting portal on Wikimedia Commons where Wikimedians voted for their favourite sound logos between the 6th of December 2022 and the 19th of December 2022.

Play your part. Stay tuned.

Wikimedia is the movement behind Wikipedia and 12 other free knowledge projects. These projects are made possible by volunteers, affiliate groups, and organisations, including the Wikimedia Foundation. Together, these groups comprise what we call the “Wikimedia movement” which works toward a vision of a world in which every single human being can freely share in the sum of all knowledge.


Free audio software and helpful resources to create your entry.


Ableton Live Lite

Waveform / Tracktion

Read more


Help spread the word about The Sound of All Human Knowledge.

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