As we make our way back home from the hangover and euphoria of
Wikimania 2007, I can only imagine the exhaustion but sense of
accomplishment of the Wikimania conference team. Congratulations to
all the planners for showing us an amazing time.
But I wanted to specifically praise the superb job the Taiwan team
did. We should all thank them for their personal sacrifice of time and
energy for the Wikimedia cause.
It was a staggering achievement. The effort was an eye opener to those
new to Asia and to the growing communities in the region. This year
Wikimania transcended its role as a gathering of Wikimedia projects,
becoming the local event of the year for the free culture community in
Taiwan. Wikimania became a reason for Creative Commons and Debian
Linux to create parallel events, showing Wikimedia's influence
Wikimania had a passionate core team of local Wikimedians, dozens of
Taiwan-based free culture and technology veterans, and over 100
volunteers from the local college. Their commitment and attention to
detail started even before the first speech was given, as they had
volunteers greet attendees at the airport, just outside the gates of
Thanks would not be complete without highlighting the exemplary work
of four individuals. They are not the only ones who worked hard, but
their commitment, organization and professionalism throughout the year
to plan this conference was stellar.
- Theodoranian, having been to every Wikimania conference so far, was
a leader with the passion to bring Wikimania to Asia. (ie. he is the
one crazy enough to try to do it in the first place.) He took "be
bold" to heart and we benefitted.
- KJ, always in control and with checklist in hand, led the way with
sponsorship, and seemed to anticipate things ahead of time. She was a
marvelous host and a consummate professional.
- Frances provided a smile and pleasant demeanor even when being a
traffic cop to the swarm of press inquiries.
- TCliou handled technical and programming crises with authority and
calm (even with the stress of his laptop going missing).
If only we could clone them to help plan every Wikimania.
The staff showed an agility to collaborate with many groups. I can
speak from my own direct experience. This year I redirected all my
involvement into the creation of a Wikimania Lounge. It was in the
works ever since Wikimania 2006. While the Harvard location that year
was top notch, it lacked a central gathering point for community to
meet and exchange ideas outside of conference sessions. It was a
concern many folks had -- Wikimedians were gathering, but were not
So when I proposed the idea of the Lounge for 2007, the Taiwan staff
embraced it wholeheartedly by providing a space and sponsorship.
Specifications for the Lounge were rather demanding -- a large central
space at the venue; free flowing food, coffee and drinks; sofas for
lounging; seating and tables for laptops; a projector, computer
terminals and a learning area. A space was found and allocated.
Theodoranian even went out of his way to transfer sofas from his
workplace for the effort. TC provided volunteers on site to help with
logistical assistance. Honestly, I asked for more than what I thought
was reasonable, knowing full well even a partial fulfillment would
have been an improvement. The team met and exceeded those
The selection of Taiwan for Wikimania 2007 was not without controversy
at the time. There were excellent proposals from many locales, and the
selection jury was surprised the bids had raised the standard so high.
Any of the final three would have been excellent choices for
Wikimania. Taiwan's selection certainly was in the sprit to "Be Bold".
If there were doubts whether Wikimania in Asia was a good idea, the
Taiwan team put those to rest. Wikimania 2007 allowed more
participants than ever from the Indian subcontinent, China, Hong Kong,
Taiwan, Indonesia, Japan and Australia, showing a commitment of
Wikimedia as a global effort.
Kudos to the Taiwan team for a spectacular job.
And just think, we get to do it all over again in 11 months and three weeks.
foundation-l mailing list
On 10/08/07, Andrew Lih <[hidden email]> wrote:
> And just think, we get to do it all over again in 11 months and three
I'm counting down already :P
foundation-l mailing list
|Free forum by Nabble||Edit this page|