For many years Facebook has been promoting innovation across the Middle East and Africa, providing startups with the tools they need to build, grow, monetize, and measure. Facebook grew out of a hacker culture, and we thrive on seeking out and promoting innovation on new platforms. That's why we are launching the Bots for Messenger Challenge, a contest to recognize and reward developers who are able to create the most innovative new bots on Messenger in (i) the Middle East and North Africa; and (ii) Sub-Saharan Africa across one of these these three categories.
1. Gaming and Entertainment
2. Productivity and Utility
3. Social Good
Teams of up to 3 people are invited to participate in the Challenge. The submission period runs from February 15, 2017 to April 28, 2017.
February 15, 2017 at 09:00:00 GMT
April 28, 2017 at 11:59:59 GMT
May 19, 2017 at 09:00:00 GMT
60 finalist teams announced per region
(i) 30 teams in the Middle East and North Africa
(ii) 30 teams in Sub-Saharan Africa
June 2, 2017 at 11:59:59 GMT
Submissions close for 60 finalist teams
June 19, 2017 at 09:00:00 GMT
12 winning teams announced per region
(i) 3 winners and 3 runner up teams in the Middle East and North Africa;
(ii) 3 winners and 3 runner up teams in Sub-Saharan Africa
From each region (i) Middle East and North Africa; and
(ii) Sub-Saharan Africa, 30 finalist teams (10 from each category) will win a Gear VR and mobile phone, one hour of Facebook mentorship, and up to $40,000 USD in tools and services from FbStart, a Facebook program designed to help early stage mobile startups build and grow their bots.
Note: All student teams or indivdiual student entrants who make it to the finals will win an additional $2,000 USD (students will be verified against their registration via their government accredited school email accounts).
Runner Up Teams
For each region (i) Middle East and North Africa; and (ii) Sub-Saharan Africa; 3 runner up teams (1 from each category) will win $10,000 USD and 3 months of Facebook mentorship (1 hour per month).
For each region (i) Middle East and North Africa; and (ii) Sub-Saharan Africa; 3 winning teams (1 from each category) will win $20,000 USD and 3 months of Facebook mentorship (1 hour per month).
Facebook for Developers Messenger Platform
Building on the Messenger Platform
Please review the Terms & Conditions carefully before registering.
Please check the rules box at the end of your registration to complete your application.
Some important rules to note:
• Bots must be created, and will be verified, between February 15, 2017 to April 28, 2017. Bots created before February 15, 2017 will not be eligible to participate.
• Bots must comply with all Facebook for developers Messenger Platform developer guidelines and rules, and use the Messenger Platform API.
• Bots must be created on the Facebook Messenger Platform (but entrant may use any third-party tool to create or add functionality). Bots on any other platform will not be accepted.
• Bots must be created by people in the Entrant's home region of either (i) the Middle East and North Africa or (ii) Sub-Saharan Africa.
• Bots may be in any language (or combination of languages). Only the Bot Submission must be entirely in English.
• It is optional to submit a link to an online video of the bot, but if you do, the video must be under 2 minutes long.
• Bots can be submitted by an individual, a team of up to 3 people, or as an organization.
• Technical Quality – How well does the Bot use the Messenger platform features? [35%]
• Non-Technical Quality - What is the degree of excellence of the Bot, taking into account the Bot's distinctive attributes and characteristics (except for the technical aspects)? [35%]
• User Experience – How useable is the Bot for the intended audience, including how well the conversation flows? [30%]
* NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. A PURCHASE WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. Entries must be received no later than April 28, 2017 at 11:59:59pm UTC. In order to move forward in the contest, selected and verified finalists will be required to submit content later in the contest between May 19, 2017 and June 2, 2017 at 11:59:59 p.m. UTC. Open to Individuals, formal Organizations, and informal Groups that are organized in or legal residents of select countries in either the Middle East and North African Region or the Sub-Saharan African Region (each, a “Region”) as set forth in the full Terms & Conditions and who meet the other stated eligibility requirements in the terms. Internet access required. Void where prohibited by law. ANY AND ALL PARTICIPATION MUST COMPLY WITH THE FULL TERMS & CONDITIONS INCLUDING THE SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS. Content you submit or link to may be posted online or elsewhere by Sponsor. Finalists will be notified on or about May 12th and Winners will be notified on or about June 12nd. Finalists and Winners (and each team member) will be required to sign and return documentation to Sponsor within 4 days (or other timeframe as required by Sponsor in the notification). Judges will determine the finalists and winners as fully described in the Official Rules, based on following criteria/weights: Technical quality (35%), non-technical quality (35%), and user experience (30%). ARV of each Finalist prize: USD$$40,700; ARV of each Student Entrant prize: USD$2000; ARV of each Runner Up Prize: USD$10,300; and ARV of the Grand Prize: USD$20,300. Total ARV of all prizes: up to USD$$2,745,600 if student prizes are awarded (if not, total ARV is USD$$2,625,600). Prize details may vary. Sponsor: Facebook, Inc., 1 Hacker Way, Menlo Park, CA 94025 USA.
Mohamed Ali Ben Ammar (MABA), c. journalist and blogger
MABA Facebook certifications