Re: Creating a Regional Wikimedia Chapter

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Re: Creating a Regional Wikimedia Chapter

metasj
There have been a few disjoint discussions about US chapter formation recently.  Austin mentioned this in a foundation-l thread last month; Alex756 yesterday mentioned the idea of a regional chapter, and I note he had started a page about "wikimedia new york", reminding me that there is a [dormant] mailing list for such discussions.  Those who are interested, please sign up for the mailing list, and use Meta, so the discussions do not get too fragmented. 

Outstanding issues : Does it make sense to have regional chapters?  How could a national chapter work in a large country with  distributed clusters of users?  What are the legal issues involved?  (Alex can help here).  What are possible projects to take on?

http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimediaus-l
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_United_States_of_America
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_New_York

Cheers,
   SJ

[cc:ing others who have recently brought up related ideas but aren't yet on that list.]


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Re: Creating a Regional Wikimedia Chapter

Robert S. Horning
Samuel Klein wrote:

> There have been a few disjoint discussions about US chapter formation
> recently.  Austin mentioned this in a foundation-l thread last month;
> Alex756 yesterday mentioned the idea of a regional chapter, and I note
> he had started a page about "wikimedia new york", reminding me that
> there is a [dormant] mailing list for such discussions.  Those who are
> interested, please sign up for the mailing list, and use Meta, so the
> discussions do not get too fragmented.
>
> Outstanding issues : Does it make sense to have regional chapters?  
> How could a national chapter work in a large country with  distributed
> clusters of users?  What are the legal issues involved?  (Alex can
> help here).  What are possible projects to take on?
>
> http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimediaus-l
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_United_States_of_America 
> <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_United_States_of_America>
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_New_York
>
> Cheers,
>    SJ
>
> [cc:ing others who have recently brought up related ideas but aren't
> yet on that list.]
>
I think there are some things that could be done with regional
"chapters", even if done for strictly social reasons.  I'm glad to see
that this mailing list is actually being used for a change.

One of the problems with the USA is that it is more organized like the
EU in terms of national politics.  In other words, the U.S. Federal
government is best compared to that of the EU, and not Germany, France,
or Poland.  There is no move that I see for a single EU Wikimedia
organization at the moment, and state-level chapters might be a better
way to deal with organizations within the USA, or at least regional
chapters like Wikimedia New England or Wikimedia Dixie.

In addition to all of that, there doesn't seem to be a major push for
organization as the tax benefits aren't there, nor is there going to be
a huge drive to have a seperate independent budget from the main
Wikimedia Foundation for just American Wikimedia users.

At least if there were a seperate budget, what would the money be spent
on that wouldn't go straight to the WMF?  A WM-USA organization would
also have to go through the whole nasty process of filing as a
non-profit organization, go through the IRS hoops, and get some lawyers
(hopefully pro bono) to assist with this whole process.  This seems like
a waste of effort for what is right now simply duplicating the WMF.
 Activities that would go beyond paying for servers would have to be a
part of WM-USA in order for it to be successful.

One reason for a national charter is that it would be legally much
easier to "charter" local organizations such as Wikimedia New York.
 They would not have to go through the legal process of full
incorporation, and instead only have to be "chartered" through the
national organization.  The real question then is how much independence
from the main Wikimedia Foundation does the WM-USA wish to have,
particularly from participants in such an organization?

--
Robert Scott Horning



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Fwd: Creating a Regional Wikimedia Chapter

metasj
In reply to this post by metasj
Alex just pinged me about this again; didn't seem to catch it then.
We have been saying here at Wikimania that we could meet tomorrow at
12:30 or Monday during the morning --- or both.

Thoughts?  Which of you on this list are here and interested in a
meeting?  Please respond with which of the two times you can make.

--SJ


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Samuel Klein <[hidden email]>
Date: Jun 17, 2006 12:46 PM
Subject: Re: Creating a Regional Wikimedia Chapter
To: "Alex T. Roshuk" <[hidden email]>, [hidden email],
[hidden email], Daniel Mayer <[hidden email]>
Cc: [hidden email]


There have been a few disjoint discussions about US chapter formation
recently.  Austin mentioned this in a foundation-l thread last month;
Alex756 yesterday mentioned the idea of a regional chapter, and I note
he had started a page about "wikimedia new york", reminding me that
there is a [dormant] mailing list for such discussions.  Those who are
interested, please sign up for the mailing list, and use Meta, so the
discussions do not get too fragmented.

Outstanding issues : Does it make sense to have regional chapters?
How could a national chapter work in a large country with  distributed
clusters of users?  What are the legal issues involved?  (Alex can
help here).  What are possible projects to take on?

http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimediaus-l
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_United_States_of_America
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_New_York

Cheers,
   SJ

[cc:ing others who have recently brought up related ideas but aren't
yet on that list.]
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