Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

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Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

James Forrester-2

All,


TL;DR: The Wikimania Committee and the WMF Community Engagement department will be working on coming up with a new process for venues for future Wikimanias, which we will be seeking input from the community in the next few months


------


At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.


The existing bidding process has developed over time. It has become unwieldy and hard work for the community and staff. It demands that people pour a huge amount of effort into building local teams, contracts and institutional relationships only for rejected bids' work to be left unused. A lot of pressure is put on volunteers to try to work on logistics rather than dream about what would make a great programme for our communities. Each year, the jury has to decide on a venue based on what is presented by each group divisively, rather than what we as a community could come together and build.


The process is too short-term, setting out venue much less than two years ahead (often only just more than twelve months in advance). This greatly increases expenses when other similar conferences plan locations out many years ahead. This makes it impossible for us to be strategic about location, prevents us from arranging co-location with like-minded conferences, and it means that some areas of the world are ignored when they could provide great Wikimanias.


Consequently, from now on the Committee will pick an area for Wikimania four to five years in advance, from the following (provisional) list.   The years in which we have already held Wikimanias in these areas are shown in parentheses


* Western, Northern, and Southern Europe (2005, 2014)

* Canada and United States (2006, 2012)

* Asia-Pacific (2007, 2013)

* Middle East and North Africa (2008, 2011)

* Latin America (2009, 2015)

* Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia (2010)

* South Asia (none yet)

* Sub-Saharan Africa (none yet)

* Oceania (none yet)


The Committee intends to deliberately rotate between these areas to make sure we allow as many community members to attend as cheaply as possible.


The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.


Locating Wikimania in other continents does not assure that participants from these areas  can attend more cheaply. Nevertheless, to support the movement worldwide, we do want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America.


We  propose that a sequence of "Western, Northern, and Southern Europe", "Canada and United States", and one of the others every three years, picked out several years into the future. Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)


More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.


As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.


Our next few locations will thus go like this:


* 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy

* 2017: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2018: TBD – TBD

* 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD

* 2020: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2021: TBD – TBD


As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.


Thank you.


Yours,

--

James D. Forrester

Chair, Wikimania Committee


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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Joseph Fox
Hi,

[for full disclosure, I work with the WMF's communications department, but this response is in my personal capacity.]

On 4 October 2015 at 19:10, James Forrester <[hidden email]> wrote:

At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.


​I don't mean to slight yourself, James, or the committee, but this seems an unnecessary delay. Why is this only now being communicated?​ Would it not have been wise to reveal this as it was agreed upon rather than now, after at least two bidding parties have put time and effort into their bids for 2017?

I agree with the process as described and put forward, but really, a lot of tears could have been avoided by announcing this sooner.

The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.


​This is true and cannot be ignored. But why, then, is "Europe" such a narrow definition? Why no provision for Eastern Europe and Russia? This seems quite disappointing given we have active affiliates in these areas.

Our next few locations will thus go like this:


* 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy

* 2017: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2018: TBD – TBD

* 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD

* 2020: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2021: TBD – TBD 


As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.


​We should probably cut to the chase and just name the location, since by now it's common knowledge. Other than my previous comment about the lack of inclusion of Eastern Europe—are we seriously suggesting holding one in Russia and then one in (for instance) Warsaw? That seems to defeat the point of this exercise somewhat.

Other than that, I personally commend this change. I only wish it had been communicated more quickly.

best,
Joe
 

Thank you.


Yours,

--

James D. Forrester

Chair, Wikimania Committee


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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Mounir Touzri
In reply to this post by James Forrester-2
Dear all; 
I suggest North Africa for 2018 (Tunisia as an example)

2015-10-04 19:10 GMT+01:00 James Forrester <[hidden email]>:

All,


TL;DR: The Wikimania Committee and the WMF Community Engagement department will be working on coming up with a new process for venues for future Wikimanias, which we will be seeking input from the community in the next few months


------


At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.


The existing bidding process has developed over time. It has become unwieldy and hard work for the community and staff. It demands that people pour a huge amount of effort into building local teams, contracts and institutional relationships only for rejected bids' work to be left unused. A lot of pressure is put on volunteers to try to work on logistics rather than dream about what would make a great programme for our communities. Each year, the jury has to decide on a venue based on what is presented by each group divisively, rather than what we as a community could come together and build.


The process is too short-term, setting out venue much less than two years ahead (often only just more than twelve months in advance). This greatly increases expenses when other similar conferences plan locations out many years ahead. This makes it impossible for us to be strategic about location, prevents us from arranging co-location with like-minded conferences, and it means that some areas of the world are ignored when they could provide great Wikimanias.


Consequently, from now on the Committee will pick an area for Wikimania four to five years in advance, from the following (provisional) list.   The years in which we have already held Wikimanias in these areas are shown in parentheses


* Western, Northern, and Southern Europe (2005, 2014)

* Canada and United States (2006, 2012)

* Asia-Pacific (2007, 2013)

* Middle East and North Africa (2008, 2011)

* Latin America (2009, 2015)

* Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia (2010)

* South Asia (none yet)

* Sub-Saharan Africa (none yet)

* Oceania (none yet)


The Committee intends to deliberately rotate between these areas to make sure we allow as many community members to attend as cheaply as possible.


The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.


Locating Wikimania in other continents does not assure that participants from these areas  can attend more cheaply. Nevertheless, to support the movement worldwide, we do want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America.


We  propose that a sequence of "Western, Northern, and Southern Europe", "Canada and United States", and one of the others every three years, picked out several years into the future. Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)


More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.


As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.


Our next few locations will thus go like this:


* 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy

* 2017: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2018: TBD – TBD

* 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD

* 2020: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2021: TBD – TBD


As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.


Thank you.


Yours,

--

James D. Forrester

Chair, Wikimania Committee


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Wikimania-l mailing list
[hidden email]
https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimania-l




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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Ralf Roletschek
I suggest the European Parliament in Strasbourgh (France) for 2019.

2015-10-04 20:42 GMT+02:00 Mounir Touzri <[hidden email]>:
Dear all; 
I suggest North Africa for 2018 (Tunisia as an example)

2015-10-04 19:10 GMT+01:00 James Forrester <[hidden email]>:

All,


TL;DR: The Wikimania Committee and the WMF Community Engagement department will be working on coming up with a new process for venues for future Wikimanias, which we will be seeking input from the community in the next few months


------


At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.


The existing bidding process has developed over time. It has become unwieldy and hard work for the community and staff. It demands that people pour a huge amount of effort into building local teams, contracts and institutional relationships only for rejected bids' work to be left unused. A lot of pressure is put on volunteers to try to work on logistics rather than dream about what would make a great programme for our communities. Each year, the jury has to decide on a venue based on what is presented by each group divisively, rather than what we as a community could come together and build.


The process is too short-term, setting out venue much less than two years ahead (often only just more than twelve months in advance). This greatly increases expenses when other similar conferences plan locations out many years ahead. This makes it impossible for us to be strategic about location, prevents us from arranging co-location with like-minded conferences, and it means that some areas of the world are ignored when they could provide great Wikimanias.


Consequently, from now on the Committee will pick an area for Wikimania four to five years in advance, from the following (provisional) list.   The years in which we have already held Wikimanias in these areas are shown in parentheses


* Western, Northern, and Southern Europe (2005, 2014)

* Canada and United States (2006, 2012)

* Asia-Pacific (2007, 2013)

* Middle East and North Africa (2008, 2011)

* Latin America (2009, 2015)

* Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia (2010)

* South Asia (none yet)

* Sub-Saharan Africa (none yet)

* Oceania (none yet)


The Committee intends to deliberately rotate between these areas to make sure we allow as many community members to attend as cheaply as possible.


The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.


Locating Wikimania in other continents does not assure that participants from these areas  can attend more cheaply. Nevertheless, to support the movement worldwide, we do want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America.


We  propose that a sequence of "Western, Northern, and Southern Europe", "Canada and United States", and one of the others every three years, picked out several years into the future. Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)


More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.


As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.


Our next few locations will thus go like this:


* 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy

* 2017: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2018: TBD – TBD

* 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD

* 2020: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2021: TBD – TBD


As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.


Thank you.


Yours,

--

James D. Forrester

Chair, Wikimania Committee


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https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimania-l




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Hinweis wegen immer mehr aufkommendem Werbemüll: Alle Mails, die die Wörter "Faceb00k" oder "Twi††er" enthalten, landen bei mir ungelesen im Spam.

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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

James Forrester-5
In reply to this post by Joseph Fox
On Sun, 4 Oct 2015 at 11:25 Joseph Fox <[hidden email]> wrote:
On 4 October 2015 at 19:10, James Forrester <[hidden email]> wrote:

At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.


​I don't mean to slight yourself, James, or the committee, but this seems an unnecessary delay. Why is this only now being communicated?​

A fair question. We spent too long discussing options rather than presenting this earlier. I'm sorry. I have discussed this change with a variety of people since at least 2007, and others were talking about it before me, but as the complexity of Wikimania rises each year it has become more chronic. As Chair of the Committee, the delay is my fault, and I apologise.

 
Would it not have been wise to reveal this as it was agreed upon rather than now, after at least two bidding parties have put time and effort into their bids for 2017?

I might equally ask why people not associated with running Wikimania decided the create and keep updating mistaken pages on meta about Wikimania 2017 being open for bids without even a post to this list, let alone the Committee, where we could have pointed out it was false before people spent time ill-advisedly. :-(


The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.


​This is true and cannot be ignored. But why, then, is "Europe" such a narrow definition? Why no provision for Eastern Europe and Russia? This seems quite disappointing given we have active affiliates in these areas.

The groupings are based on where the majority of Wikimedians are. They can of course change over time. I was hoping to work with fellow Wikimedians to narrow down these definitions so that it's clear for instance which group each interested community group falls.

I'd note that we've already had one Wikimania in the "Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia" area, which is one more than, for instance, South Asia where we also have a large number of Wikimedians.
 
​We should probably cut to the chase and just name the location, since by now it's common knowledge.

Despite people breaching trust and leaking "news" rather than seeking clarification, the announcement for 2017 is not final and is still subject to approval.

 
Other than my previous comment about the lack of inclusion of Eastern Europe—are we seriously suggesting holding one in Russia and then one in (for instance) Warsaw? That seems to defeat the point of this exercise somewhat.

No. "Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia" would cover both of those locations, so at the smallest they would be three years apart, and in practice probably a great deal more.

Yours,

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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Joseph Fox
Thanks for your clarifications, James, they're quite helpful.

Joe

On Sun, 4 Oct 2015 at 19:51 James Forrester <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Sun, 4 Oct 2015 at 11:25 Joseph Fox <[hidden email]> wrote:
On 4 October 2015 at 19:10, James Forrester <[hidden email]> wrote:

At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.


​I don't mean to slight yourself, James, or the committee, but this seems an unnecessary delay. Why is this only now being communicated?​

A fair question. We spent too long discussing options rather than presenting this earlier. I'm sorry. I have discussed this change with a variety of people since at least 2007, and others were talking about it before me, but as the complexity of Wikimania rises each year it has become more chronic. As Chair of the Committee, the delay is my fault, and I apologise.

 
Would it not have been wise to reveal this as it was agreed upon rather than now, after at least two bidding parties have put time and effort into their bids for 2017?

I might equally ask why people not associated with running Wikimania decided the create and keep updating mistaken pages on meta about Wikimania 2017 being open for bids without even a post to this list, let alone the Committee, where we could have pointed out it was false before people spent time ill-advisedly. :-(


The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.


​This is true and cannot be ignored. But why, then, is "Europe" such a narrow definition? Why no provision for Eastern Europe and Russia? This seems quite disappointing given we have active affiliates in these areas.

The groupings are based on where the majority of Wikimedians are. They can of course change over time. I was hoping to work with fellow Wikimedians to narrow down these definitions so that it's clear for instance which group each interested community group falls.

I'd note that we've already had one Wikimania in the "Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia" area, which is one more than, for instance, South Asia where we also have a large number of Wikimedians.
 
​We should probably cut to the chase and just name the location, since by now it's common knowledge.

Despite people breaching trust and leaking "news" rather than seeking clarification, the announcement for 2017 is not final and is still subject to approval.

 
Other than my previous comment about the lack of inclusion of Eastern Europe—are we seriously suggesting holding one in Russia and then one in (for instance) Warsaw? That seems to defeat the point of this exercise somewhat.

No. "Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia" would cover both of those locations, so at the smallest they would be three years apart, and in practice probably a great deal more.

Yours,

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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Michał Buczyński
In reply to this post by James Forrester-2
Hello James,

having read your announcement, I don't really see what you would like to consult with the community and when, as the decisions seem to be made by you and "we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond."

I am also surprised that e.g. Gdańsk is in "Eastern Europe". And you put it in one venue bucket with Uzbekistan for some reason.
Or that you "want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America."  Combining these two would mean we could wait for a Wikimania in Ukraine, Poland, Mexico (Northern America) or some other "Eastern European" country (whatever it means here) forever.

For the future, I would like to ask you and your committee for a more careful wording and a careful definition of geographic terms you want to use.
I see this is a rushed anouncement but knowing that these decisions were done 80+ days ago makes it difficult to accept.

Kind Regards,
Michał Buczyński
WMPL, WMF FDC member

Dnia 4 października 2015 20:10 James Forrester napisał(a):

 

All,

 

TL;DR: The Wikimania Committee and the WMF Community Engagement department will be working on coming up with a new process for venues for future Wikimanias, which we will be seeking input from the community in the next few months

 

------

 

At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.

 

Consequently, from now on the Committee will pick an area for Wikimania four to five years in advance, from the following (provisional) list.   The years in which we have already held Wikimanias in these areas are shown in parentheses

 

* Western, Northern, and Southern Europe (2005, 2014)

* Canada and United States (2006, 2012)

* Asia-Pacific (2007, 2013)

* Middle East and North Africa (2008, 2011)

* Latin America (2009, 2015)

* Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia (2010)

* South Asia (none yet)

* Sub-Saharan Africa (none yet)

* Oceania (none yet)

 

The Committee intends to deliberately rotate between these areas to make sure we allow as many community members to attend as cheaply as possible.

 

The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.

 

Locating Wikimania in other continents does not assure that participants from these areas  can attend more cheaply. Nevertheless, to support the movement worldwide, we do want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America.

 

We  propose that a sequence of "Western, Northern, and Southern Europe", "Canada and United States", and one of the others every three years, picked out several years into the future. Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)

 

More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.

 

As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.

 

Our next few locations will thus go like this:

 

* 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy

* 2017: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2018: TBD – TBD

* 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD

* 2020: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2021: TBD – TBD

 

As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.

 

Thank you.

 

Yours,

--

James D. Forrester

Chair, Wikimania Committee


 


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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Lodewijk
Michal's comments reflect part of what I'm thinking - and I think the exact splits of the regions may require some further discussions. Given the notes I've seen elsewhere, I trust that this is a first draft of the exact outlines of the regions, and not necessarily definitive? For example, I was also surprised to see your definition of 'North America' being US + Canada, and not to include Mexico. 

Either way, the underlying discussion is much more important: how do we select our next Wikimanias, but maybe more importantly, what do we expect from our annual conference. Because there lies an assumption under your methods that we need more than 2 years of preparations, which I'm not certain to agree with. 

I'm all for a lighter conference in general, maybe with more focus on online interaction. I think Esino Lario is a great experiment in that respect, to go back a bit to the roots of Wikimania, in some respects. I would be so glad to see lower standards for Wikimania, allowing more volunteers to feel confident to participate in organising it. Less people, even (I would be totally happy to limit it to 500-800 per year on-site). 

This is a discussion we seem to skip each year as a community - what do we expect exactly of Wikimania, what do we want to accomplish with it? What are its goals? All other things (location, venue, structure, rotation) should be following that outcome. 

Best,
Lodewijk

On Sun, Oct 4, 2015 at 9:37 PM, Michał Buczyński <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hello James,

having read your announcement, I don't really see what you would like to consult with the community and when, as the decisions seem to be made by you and "we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond."

I am also surprised that e.g. Gdańsk is in "Eastern Europe". And you put it in one venue bucket with Uzbekistan for some reason.
Or that you "want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America."  Combining these two would mean we could wait for a Wikimania in Ukraine, Poland, Mexico (Northern America) or some other "Eastern European" country (whatever it means here) forever.

For the future, I would like to ask you and your committee for a more careful wording and a careful definition of geographic terms you want to use.
I see this is a rushed anouncement but knowing that these decisions were done 80+ days ago makes it difficult to accept.

Kind Regards,
Michał Buczyński
WMPL, WMF FDC member

Dnia 4 października 2015 20:10 James Forrester napisał(a):

 

All,

 

TL;DR: The Wikimania Committee and the WMF Community Engagement department will be working on coming up with a new process for venues for future Wikimanias, which we will be seeking input from the community in the next few months

 

------

 

At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.

 

Consequently, from now on the Committee will pick an area for Wikimania four to five years in advance, from the following (provisional) list.   The years in which we have already held Wikimanias in these areas are shown in parentheses

 

* Western, Northern, and Southern Europe (2005, 2014)

* Canada and United States (2006, 2012)

* Asia-Pacific (2007, 2013)

* Middle East and North Africa (2008, 2011)

* Latin America (2009, 2015)

* Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia (2010)

* South Asia (none yet)

* Sub-Saharan Africa (none yet)

* Oceania (none yet)

 

The Committee intends to deliberately rotate between these areas to make sure we allow as many community members to attend as cheaply as possible.

 

The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.

 

Locating Wikimania in other continents does not assure that participants from these areas  can attend more cheaply. Nevertheless, to support the movement worldwide, we do want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America.

 

We  propose that a sequence of "Western, Northern, and Southern Europe", "Canada and United States", and one of the others every three years, picked out several years into the future. Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)

 

More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.

 

As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.

 

Our next few locations will thus go like this:

 

* 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy

* 2017: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2018: TBD – TBD

* 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD

* 2020: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2021: TBD – TBD

 

As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.

 

Thank you.

 

Yours,

--

James D. Forrester

Chair, Wikimania Committee


 


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(no subject)

James Forrester-2
On Sun, 4 Oct 2015 at 12:45 Lodewijk <[hidden email]> wrote:
Michal's comments reflect part of what I'm thinking - and I think the exact splits of the regions may require some further discussions. Given the notes I've seen elsewhere, I trust that this is a first draft of the exact outlines of the regions, and not necessarily definitive?

As has already been stated in this thread, yes. 
 
For example, I was also surprised to see your definition of 'North America' being US + Canada, and not to include Mexico. 

False.

We explicitly a repeatedly used the term "Canada and United States" because "North America" includes Mexico, and we didn't think that was appropriate.

This is a discussion we seem to skip each year as a community - what do we expect exactly of Wikimania, what do we want to accomplish with it? What are its goals?

If you re-read our call for input, you might see that this is precisely the question asked:

We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.

Ensuring that as many Wikimedians can come to Wikimania each year is of little value if they event isn't as useful as it can be.

J. 

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Re: (no subject)

Ralf Roletschek
Why it's no divided by continent?
- North-America (3) Cambridge, USA 2006, Washington, USA 2012, Mexico 2015
- South-America (1) Buenos Aires, Argentinia 2009
- Europe (4) Frankfurt, Germany 2005, Gdansk, Poland 2010, London, UK 2014, Esino Lario, Italia 2016
- Africa (1), Alexandria, Egypt
- Asia (3) Taipeh 2007, Haifa, Israel 2011, Hong Kong 2013
- Oceania (0)
There was a Wikimania four times in America and Europe, tree times in Asia - also we need Africa and particularry Oceania.

2015-10-04 22:03 GMT+02:00 James Forrester <[hidden email]>:
On Sun, 4 Oct 2015 at 12:45 Lodewijk <[hidden email]> wrote:
Michal's comments reflect part of what I'm thinking - and I think the exact splits of the regions may require some further discussions. Given the notes I've seen elsewhere, I trust that this is a first draft of the exact outlines of the regions, and not necessarily definitive?

As has already been stated in this thread, yes. 
 
For example, I was also surprised to see your definition of 'North America' being US + Canada, and not to include Mexico. 

False.

We explicitly a repeatedly used the term "Canada and United States" because "North America" includes Mexico, and we didn't think that was appropriate.

This is a discussion we seem to skip each year as a community - what do we expect exactly of Wikimania, what do we want to accomplish with it? What are its goals?

If you re-read our call for input, you might see that this is precisely the question asked:

We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.

Ensuring that as many Wikimedians can come to Wikimania each year is of little value if they event isn't as useful as it can be.

J. 

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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Luca Martinelli
In reply to this post by Lodewijk
2015-10-04 21:37 GMT+02:00 Michał Buczyński <[hidden email]>:

> I am also surprised that e.g. Gdańsk is in "Eastern Europe". And you put it
> in one venue bucket with Uzbekistan for some reason.
> Or that you "want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take
> place neither in Europe nor North America."  Combining these two would mean
> we could wait for a Wikimania in Ukraine, Poland, Mexico (Northern America)
> or some other "Eastern European" country (whatever it means here) forever.
>
> For the future, I would like to ask you and your committee for a more
> careful wording and a careful definition of geographic terms you want to
> use.

2015-10-04 21:44 GMT+02:00 Lodewijk <[hidden email]>:
> Michal's comments reflect part of what I'm thinking - and I think the exact
> splits of the regions may require some further discussions. Given the notes
> I've seen elsewhere, I trust that this is a first draft of the exact
> outlines of the regions, and not necessarily definitive? For example, I was
> also surprised to see your definition of 'North America' being US + Canada,
> and not to include Mexico.

While I do agree with the necessity of a reform of the Wikimania
bidding process, I have to say that I totally quote those two passages
from Michal and Lodewijk. My main concern is how the areas will be
defined (and probably the UN macro-region division doesn't work that
well), and secondly how the areas will rotate.

At the moment, I do acknowledge that the "Western World" may have more
users than other areas, but if our idea is (to quote James himself)
"to support the movement worldwide", allowing countries that are not
the US, Canada or
just-any-European-country-that-is-not-a-Central-Eastern-Europe-country
to organise just one in three Wikimania IMHO won't work.

Anyway, let's just think of how to refine this draft. :)

--
Luca "Sannita" Martinelli
http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utente:Sannita

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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Federico Leva (Nemo)
In reply to this post by James Forrester-2
What I like about the explicit rotation:
* more transparency, the rotation is no longer an unwritten rule;
* more time (2 years) to make Wikimania great, less volunteer time spent
on (concurring) bids;
* more concreteness and (hopefully) cooperation in the selection stage,
less "let's beat continent X";
* more pragmatism, recognising we can't always flight the biggest groups
of people in the farthest places.

Nemo

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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Ralf Roletschek
Yes, thats right. +1

2015-10-04 22:55 GMT+02:00 Federico Leva (Nemo) <[hidden email]>:
What I like about the explicit rotation:
* more transparency, the rotation is no longer an unwritten rule;
* more time (2 years) to make Wikimania great, less volunteer time spent on (concurring) bids;
* more concreteness and (hopefully) cooperation in the selection stage, less "let's beat continent X";
* more pragmatism, recognising we can't always flight the biggest groups of people in the farthest places.

Nemo


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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Aude-2
In reply to this post by James Forrester-2


On Oct 4, 2015 8:10 PM, "James Forrester" <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> All,
>
>
> TL;DR: The Wikimania Committee and the WMF Community Engagement department will be working on coming up with a new process for venues for future Wikimanias, which we will be seeking input from the community in the next few months
>
>
> ------
>
>
> At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.
>
>
> The existing bidding process has developed over time. It has become unwieldy and hard work for the community and staff. It demands that people pour a huge amount of effort into building local teams, contracts and institutional relationships only for rejected bids' work to be left unused. A lot of pressure is put on volunteers to try to work on logistics rather than dream about what would make a great programme for our communities. Each year, the jury has to decide on a venue based on what is presented by each group divisively, rather than what we as a community could come together and build.
>
>
> The process is too short-term, setting out venue much less than two years ahead (often only just more than twelve months in advance). This greatly increases expenses when other similar conferences plan locations out many years ahead. This makes it impossible for us to be strategic about location, prevents us from arranging co-location with like-minded conferences, and it means that some areas of the world are ignored when they could provide great Wikimanias.
>
>
> Consequently, from now on the Committee will pick an area for Wikimania four to five years in advance, from the following (provisional) list.   The years in which we have already held Wikimanias in these areas are shown in parentheses
>
>
> * Western, Northern, and Southern Europe (2005, 2014)
>
> * Canada and United States (2006, 2012)
>
> * Asia-Pacific (2007, 2013)
>
> * Middle East and North Africa (2008, 2011)
>
> * Latin America (2009, 2015)
>
> * Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia (2010)
>
> * South Asia (none yet)
>
> * Sub-Saharan Africa (none yet)
>
> * Oceania (none yet)
>
>
> The Committee intends to deliberately rotate between these areas to make sure we allow as many community members to attend as cheaply as possible.
>
>
> The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.
>
>
> Locating Wikimania in other continents does not assure that participants from these areas  can attend more cheaply. Nevertheless, to support the movement worldwide, we do want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America.
>
>
> We  propose that a sequence of "Western, Northern, and Southern Europe", "Canada and United States", and one of the others every three years, picked out several years into the future.

I am not convinced this is a good idea, given this definition of regions.

Eastern Europe should definitely be considered along with western, southern, ...  It is pretty cheap to travel there from elsewhere in europe, probably venue + accommodations are cheaper, and most important we have significant communities there with track record of organising regional conferences.
I would also be tempted to include north Africa and middle east with europe. (after all, the next European hackathon is being held in Israel)

I also think having wikimania in Canada + US every three years is too often. The visa process for the US is hugely annoying, difficult and results in excluding attendees.

Also, while great and important to have wmf support for wikimania, imho it is important that ultimate leadership for wikimania each year is from volunteers. I am not sure the volunteer community in the US + Canada has this capacity to be lead organizer every three years. Maybe once every four years is reasonable, imho.

Also, stuff like accommodations tends to be a bit expensive in the US compared to elsewhere, and flights within north America (especially Canada) are also somewhat pricey in my experience.

Cheers,
Katie

Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)
>
>
> More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.
>
>
> As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.
>
>
> Our next few locations will thus go like this:
>
>
> * 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy
>
> * 2017: Canada and United States – TBD
>
> * 2018: TBD – TBD
>
> * 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD
>
> * 2020: Canada and United States – TBD
>
> * 2021: TBD – TBD
>
>
> As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.
>
>
> Thank you.
>
>
> Yours,
>
> --
>
> James D. Forrester
>
> Chair, Wikimania Committee
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimania-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimania-l
>


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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Osmar Valdebenito-3
I'm simply baffled in the way the Committee has just decided to explicitly reduce the participation from the so-called Global South, specially when we are supposed to promote the communities in those countries. Although I agree and understand that places with bigger communities should host Wikimania more often, the decided rotation is more unbalanced that in the past. Since 2009, Wikimania has rotated between the Global North and the Global South each year; now, the Global North will have 2 Wikimanias for each one hosted in the Global South (and I'm not considering the case of developed countries -such as Poland or Australia- hosting those years with the weird classification others have pointed out).

Considering this rotation system, one of 21 countries from Latin America will only have an opportunity to host in 2035, while the US will have the opportunity 7 times in the same timespan. Absurd.

2015-10-04 18:01 GMT-03:00 aude <[hidden email]>:


On Oct 4, 2015 8:10 PM, "James Forrester" <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> All,
>
>
> TL;DR: The Wikimania Committee and the WMF Community Engagement department will be working on coming up with a new process for venues for future Wikimanias, which we will be seeking input from the community in the next few months
>
>
> ------
>
>
> At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.
>
>
> The existing bidding process has developed over time. It has become unwieldy and hard work for the community and staff. It demands that people pour a huge amount of effort into building local teams, contracts and institutional relationships only for rejected bids' work to be left unused. A lot of pressure is put on volunteers to try to work on logistics rather than dream about what would make a great programme for our communities. Each year, the jury has to decide on a venue based on what is presented by each group divisively, rather than what we as a community could come together and build.
>
>
> The process is too short-term, setting out venue much less than two years ahead (often only just more than twelve months in advance). This greatly increases expenses when other similar conferences plan locations out many years ahead. This makes it impossible for us to be strategic about location, prevents us from arranging co-location with like-minded conferences, and it means that some areas of the world are ignored when they could provide great Wikimanias.
>
>
> Consequently, from now on the Committee will pick an area for Wikimania four to five years in advance, from the following (provisional) list.   The years in which we have already held Wikimanias in these areas are shown in parentheses
>
>
> * Western, Northern, and Southern Europe (2005, 2014)
>
> * Canada and United States (2006, 2012)
>
> * Asia-Pacific (2007, 2013)
>
> * Middle East and North Africa (2008, 2011)
>
> * Latin America (2009, 2015)
>
> * Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia (2010)
>
> * South Asia (none yet)
>
> * Sub-Saharan Africa (none yet)
>
> * Oceania (none yet)
>
>
> The Committee intends to deliberately rotate between these areas to make sure we allow as many community members to attend as cheaply as possible.
>
>
> The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.
>
>
> Locating Wikimania in other continents does not assure that participants from these areas  can attend more cheaply. Nevertheless, to support the movement worldwide, we do want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America.
>
>
> We  propose that a sequence of "Western, Northern, and Southern Europe", "Canada and United States", and one of the others every three years, picked out several years into the future.

I am not convinced this is a good idea, given this definition of regions.

Eastern Europe should definitely be considered along with western, southern, ...  It is pretty cheap to travel there from elsewhere in europe, probably venue + accommodations are cheaper, and most important we have significant communities there with track record of organising regional conferences.
I would also be tempted to include north Africa and middle east with europe. (after all, the next European hackathon is being held in Israel)

I also think having wikimania in Canada + US every three years is too often. The visa process for the US is hugely annoying, difficult and results in excluding attendees.

Also, while great and important to have wmf support for wikimania, imho it is important that ultimate leadership for wikimania each year is from volunteers. I am not sure the volunteer community in the US + Canada has this capacity to be lead organizer every three years. Maybe once every four years is reasonable, imho.

Also, stuff like accommodations tends to be a bit expensive in the US compared to elsewhere, and flights within north America (especially Canada) are also somewhat pricey in my experience.

Cheers,
Katie

Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)
>
>
> More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.
>
>
> As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.
>
>
> Our next few locations will thus go like this:
>
>
> * 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy
>
> * 2017: Canada and United States – TBD
>
> * 2018: TBD – TBD
>
> * 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD
>
> * 2020: Canada and United States – TBD
>
> * 2021: TBD – TBD
>
>
> As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.
>
>
> Thank you.
>
>
> Yours,
>
> --
>
> James D. Forrester
>
> Chair, Wikimania Committee
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimania-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimania-l
>


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[hidden email]
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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Joseph Fox
In reply to this post by Aude-2
On 4 October 2015 at 22:01, aude <[hidden email]> wrote:

I am not convinced this is a good idea, given this definition of regions.

Eastern Europe should definitely be considered along with western, southern, ...  It is pretty cheap to travel there from elsewhere in europe, probably venue + accommodations are cheaper, and most important we have significant communities there with track record of organising regional conferences.
I would also be tempted to include north Africa and middle east with europe. (after all, the next European hackathon is being held in Israel)

I also think having wikimania in Canada + US every three years is too often. The visa process for the US is hugely annoying, difficult and results in excluding attendees.

Also, while great and important to have wmf support for wikimania, imho it is important that ultimate leadership for wikimania each year is from volunteers. I am not sure the volunteer community in the US + Canada has this capacity to be lead organizer every three years. Maybe once every four years is reasonable, imho.

Also, stuff like accommodations tends to be a bit expensive in the US compared to elsewhere, and flights within north America (especially Canada) are also somewhat pricey in my experience.

​Likewise, accommodation in western, northern and southern Europe is also pretty expensive.

I'll agree that having US/Canada hold the conference every three years is a bad idea for the community, even if convenient for the WMF and their staff.

Cheers,
Katie

Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)
>
>
> More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.
>
>
> As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.
>
>
> Our next few locations will thus go like this:
>
>
> * 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy
>
> * 2017: Canada and United States – TBD
>
> * 2018: TBD – TBD
>
> * 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD
>
> * 2020: Canada and United States – TBD
>
> * 2021: TBD – TBD
>
>
> As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.
>
>
> Thank you.
>
>
> Yours,
>
> --
>
> James D. Forrester
>
> Chair, Wikimania Committee
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimania-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimania-l
>


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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Joseph Fox
(I mean in terms of applying for and receiving visas, sorry if that wasn't clear.)


On 4 October 2015 at 22:42, Joseph Fox <[hidden email]> wrote:
On 4 October 2015 at 22:01, aude <[hidden email]> wrote:

I am not convinced this is a good idea, given this definition of regions.

Eastern Europe should definitely be considered along with western, southern, ...  It is pretty cheap to travel there from elsewhere in europe, probably venue + accommodations are cheaper, and most important we have significant communities there with track record of organising regional conferences.
I would also be tempted to include north Africa and middle east with europe. (after all, the next European hackathon is being held in Israel)

I also think having wikimania in Canada + US every three years is too often. The visa process for the US is hugely annoying, difficult and results in excluding attendees.

Also, while great and important to have wmf support for wikimania, imho it is important that ultimate leadership for wikimania each year is from volunteers. I am not sure the volunteer community in the US + Canada has this capacity to be lead organizer every three years. Maybe once every four years is reasonable, imho.

Also, stuff like accommodations tends to be a bit expensive in the US compared to elsewhere, and flights within north America (especially Canada) are also somewhat pricey in my experience.

​Likewise, accommodation in western, northern and southern Europe is also pretty expensive.

I'll agree that having US/Canada hold the conference every three years is a bad idea for the community, even if convenient for the WMF and their staff.

Cheers,
Katie

Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)
>
>
> More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.
>
>
> As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.
>
>
> Our next few locations will thus go like this:
>
>
> * 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy
>
> * 2017: Canada and United States – TBD
>
> * 2018: TBD – TBD
>
> * 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD
>
> * 2020: Canada and United States – TBD
>
> * 2021: TBD – TBD
>
>
> As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.
>
>
> Thank you.
>
>
> Yours,
>
> --
>
> James D. Forrester
>
> Chair, Wikimania Committee
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimania-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimania-l
>


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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Charles Gregory-2
In reply to this post by James Forrester-2


On Mon, Oct 5, 2015 at 8:41 AM, Osmar Valdebenito <[hidden email]> wrote:
I'm simply baffled in the way the Committee has just decided to explicitly reduce the participation from the so-called Global South, specially when we are supposed to promote the communities in those countries. Although I agree and understand that places with bigger communities should host Wikimania more often, the decided rotation is more unbalanced that in the past. Since 2009, Wikimania has rotated between the Global North and the Global South each year; now, the Global North will have 2 Wikimanias for each one hosted in the Global South (and I'm not considering the case of developed countries -such as Poland or Australia- hosting those years with the weird classification others have pointed out).

Considering this rotation system, one of 21 countries from Latin America will only have an opportunity to host in 2035, while the US will have the opportunity 7 times in the same timespan. Absurd.

.. and if Mexico, Eastern Europe, and North Africa hosts (because so far as accessibility goes - travel time/costs, etc - these practically are North America and European hosts) are chosen, then according to these rules it could easily go over 10 consecutive years without leaving those regions.  Pushing areas like South America and the Asia-Pacific further down the priority list, and Australia from "almost never" to "never".

Regards,
Charles / User:Chuq



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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Luca Martinelli
In reply to this post by Aude-2
2015-10-04 23:01 GMT+02:00 aude <[hidden email]>:

> On Oct 4, 2015 8:10 PM, "James Forrester" <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> We  propose that a sequence of "Western, Northern, and Southern Europe",
>> "Canada and United States", and one of the others every three years, picked
>> out several years into the future.
>
> I am not convinced this is a good idea, given this definition of regions.
>
> Eastern Europe should definitely be considered along with western, southern,
> ...  It is pretty cheap to travel there from elsewhere in europe, probably
> venue + accommodations are cheaper, and most important we have significant
> communities there with track record of organising regional conferences.
> I would also be tempted to include north Africa and middle east with europe.
> (after all, the next European hackathon is being held in Israel)

I think that the mistake comes from the UN macroregion system, which
is unfortunately still affected by Cold War considerations for what it
may concern the "Eastern Europe" macroregion.

Moving from James' idea of a three-years rotation between regions, and
taking into account Katie's idea, we may define three rotating areas:
* First year: Europe + Middle East + North Africa
* Second year: Americas + Oceania
* Third year: rest of Asia + Sub-Saharan Africa

This will give Global North a slight statistical advantage over Global
South (all of Europe is included in GN) the first year, a 50/50 chance
the second year, while on the third year it will be Global South to
have a slight statistical advantage over Global North.

--
Luca "Sannita" Martinelli
http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utente:Sannita

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Re: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection

Nathan Awrich
In reply to this post by James Forrester-2
James,

Can you describe the source of your authority, and that of the committee, to make such a decision? Do you have the approval of Lila and/or the Board? Which movement organizations, including those responsible for funding endeavours like Wikimania, did you consult?

~Nathan

On Sun, Oct 4, 2015 at 2:10 PM, James Forrester <[hidden email]> wrote:

All,


TL;DR: The Wikimania Committee and the WMF Community Engagement department will be working on coming up with a new process for venues for future Wikimanias, which we will be seeking input from the community in the next few months


------


At the Committee’s meeting in Mexico City in August, we agreed to alter the way that Wikimania locations are decided.


The existing bidding process has developed over time. It has become unwieldy and hard work for the community and staff. It demands that people pour a huge amount of effort into building local teams, contracts and institutional relationships only for rejected bids' work to be left unused. A lot of pressure is put on volunteers to try to work on logistics rather than dream about what would make a great programme for our communities. Each year, the jury has to decide on a venue based on what is presented by each group divisively, rather than what we as a community could come together and build.


The process is too short-term, setting out venue much less than two years ahead (often only just more than twelve months in advance). This greatly increases expenses when other similar conferences plan locations out many years ahead. This makes it impossible for us to be strategic about location, prevents us from arranging co-location with like-minded conferences, and it means that some areas of the world are ignored when they could provide great Wikimanias.


Consequently, from now on the Committee will pick an area for Wikimania four to five years in advance, from the following (provisional) list.   The years in which we have already held Wikimanias in these areas are shown in parentheses


* Western, Northern, and Southern Europe (2005, 2014)

* Canada and United States (2006, 2012)

* Asia-Pacific (2007, 2013)

* Middle East and North Africa (2008, 2011)

* Latin America (2009, 2015)

* Eastern Europe, Russia, and Central Asia (2010)

* South Asia (none yet)

* Sub-Saharan Africa (none yet)

* Oceania (none yet)


The Committee intends to deliberately rotate between these areas to make sure we allow as many community members to attend as cheaply as possible.


The large majority of our community members are based in either North America or Europe; organising Wikimanias in these areas allows the majority of our community members to attend cheaply, so that money spent on scholarships can go further, and be more focussed in supporting our community members wherever they are based.


Locating Wikimania in other continents does not assure that participants from these areas  can attend more cheaply. Nevertheless, to support the movement worldwide, we do want to ensure that, every third year, Wikimania will take place neither in Europe nor North America.


We  propose that a sequence of "Western, Northern, and Southern Europe", "Canada and United States", and one of the others every three years, picked out several years into the future. Beyond the first two areas, we may not visit some as often as others. (I have not listed Antarctica as an area to which we will rotate, which may well be a disappointment to members of the British Antarctic Survey and others in that location.)


More widely, we would like to encourage Wikimedia conferences as open, engaging and fun community meetups, alongside the annual Wikimania conference. I know that several chapters run country-specific conferences each year, which is a good move. I think that there should be at least one annual Wikimedia conference in each of these areas. This would help newer editors know that there are people like them nearby without requiring the existence of, or putting too great a demand on, every national chapter or other local affiliated body. In some areas like Africa where the distances are great, multiple regional conferences may make sense.


As part of the new system of location selection, we will no longer have a 'bidding' process. Instead, the Committee invites people interested in leading or helping to run a Wikimania to contact us on-wiki, or via the wikimania-l list. If you think that you know a great team, venue or concept for holding Wikimania, in your area or anywhere else, please discuss the possibilities with us. We will work with interested community members to narrow down the selection to a particular venue.


Our next few locations will thus go like this:


* 2016: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – Esino Lario in Italy

* 2017: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2018: TBD – TBD

* 2019: Western, Northern, and Southern Europe – TBD

* 2020: Canada and United States – TBD

* 2021: TBD – TBD


As you can see, as well as picking the 2017 venue in Canada or the United States, for which we have a candidate lined up, we need to select very quickly the area for 2018, and after that, 2019 and beyond. There are several areas we’ve outlined above that have never had a Wikimania, and others where we have not visited for some time. We would love your thoughts on the areas on which we should focus for 2018 and beyond. We’ll also be asking in future for your thoughts about how to structure the programme of each Wikimania to make it as good as it can be for you, for others, and for our community overall.


Thank you.


Yours,

--

James D. Forrester

Chair, Wikimania Committee


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