UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Thomas Dalton
On 26 August 2012 16:00, Osmar Valdebenito <[hidden email]> wrote:
> WM-UK spending £40,000 is unfair for other future bids

I'm not sure "fairness" should be the goal here. We want to further
our movement's goals the best way we can. If WMUK is able to do that
better than other chapters for some reason, then it shouldn't be
prevented from doing so just because it isn't fair. The reason I
object to spending £40k on a bid is simply that it isn't worth the
money. Spending that money will not further our goals better than the
numerous other things we could do with £40k. There is also the fact
that, if it worth it for WMUK to spend that kind of money on a bid,
then it is also worth it for other bids to spend the same kind of
money, so we end up with hundreds of thousands of pounds going on
bids, most of which fail - that definitely isn't worth the money.

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Thomas Dalton
In reply to this post by Sven Manguard
On 26 August 2012 16:12, Sven <[hidden email]> wrote:
> All of those qualifiers are nice, but the fact that it made it onto a draft
> at all is the issue. This was something that never should have made it that
> far. Lots of things get killed off in committee and never make it on paper.
> I'd be one thing if this was a transcript of the minutes, and it mentioned
> that it was brought up and promptly shelved. It's another thing entirely to
> have it get as far as a working document.

To be clear, there was no committee stage. This draft was stage one.
The process of coming up with a budget started with Jon, our Chief
Executive, posting a draft budget to kick start discussion. This
budget item was on that draft. It got on the draft simply because one
person, Jon, thought it was an idea worth putting out there for
discussion. There was no approval process to get something into the
draft and no opportunity to shelve it before it got there.

Now, it should have been removed from the draft long before now - I
don't know why the WMUK board haven't intervened during the open
discussion phase and removed it as a ridiculous idea, but are instead
waiting until their scheduled board meeting to discuss it. The fact
that it got into the draft isn't a problem; the fact that it is still
there is.

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Cristian Consonni
In reply to this post by HJ Mitchell
2012/8/26 HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]>:
> Right, let me be quite blunt. This thread is not "undiplomatic", it's an
> attempt to meddle in the affairs of other chapters, which do not concern
> you. how would you have liked it if I was trashing the Haifa or DC bids
> before they were even anything as formal as bids?

I disagree, as a chapter board member (WM-IT) I find this discussion
instructive, since we probably may want to present a bid ourselves in
the future. Moreover I think it is a good thing if we are able to
point out a problem when we have (plenty of) time to solve it.

> As to "my opinion of WMUK has been tainted", let me again be very blunt.

This I agree more with, as far as I could read this was only a
proposal, so there's no need to be enraged. I also think that WMUK
board will hear to every suggestion is made in this thread and in the
further stages of the bidding process. Nobody is throwing away the
bid, per sè.

> Now kindly keep your noses out of other people's business.

I strongly disagree with this, it is about the movement and so it's
good to have some opinion sharing.

That said, I repeat, I think that nobody (neither WMUK or Wikimedians)
should feel hurt by a proposal.

Cristian

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

HJ Mitchell
In reply to this post by Sven Manguard
See my previous email. Let me spell this out, since you're obviously too ignorant or too stupid to read what you're commenting on: you are commenting on a suggestion from one person. It hasn't got anywhere, except to a bunch of nosey do-gooders on a public mailing list who apparently not sufficiently fulfilled by building an encyclopaedia that they have to meddle in others' affairs. And we have kept it internal - it was not the bid committee who brought it to this list. Kindly get your facts straight before posting here again. 

Nobody is seriously talking about spending £40k on the bid. As far as I can tell, the number was plucked out of thin air. I've just come from a two-hour meeting with the bid committee, where the idea of spending ~£17k on the bid was discussed. Even that's not a formal proposal - it's something that's being investigated, along with other options, and will have to undergo extensive discussion before we even get to the stage of asking the WMUK board to approve it, and which faces considerable opposition (including, to some extent, from me) even at this stage.
 
Harry Mitchell
Phone: 024 7698 0977
Skype: harry_j_mitchell


From: Sven <[hidden email]>
To: HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]>; Wikimania general list (opensubscription) <[hidden email]>
Cc: Wikimania general list (open subscription) <[hidden email]>
Sent: Sunday, 26 August 2012, 16:12
Subject: Re: [Wikimania-l] UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

All of those qualifiers are nice, but the fact that it made it onto a draft at all is the issue. This was something that never should have made it that far. Lots of things get killed off in committee and never make it on paper. I'd be one thing if this was a transcript of the minutes, and it mentioned that it was brought up and promptly shelved. It's another thing entirely to have it get as far as a working document.

Wikipedia discussion boards regularly shoot down dangerous and stupid ideas before they make it very far. That's a good thing, it means that the project's defensive filters are working. 

The idea of spending 40K or even 10K on a bid is a dangerous and stupid idea, and my respect for WMUK took a hit because you all let it get way too far. Kill it now.

Oh, and if you're pissed that people from other chapters are tearing WMUK a new one over this (i.e. meddling in your chapter's affairs), that should a) be an indication of how awful the idea being discussed is, and b) has a lot to do with that this discussion is taking place on Wikimania-l, a list subscribed to by large swaths of the movement, including those outside the UK. Don't want criticism? Keep it internal.

Sven 

On Aug 26, 2012, at 8:37 AM, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:

Right, let me be quite blunt. This thread is not "undiplomatic", it's an attempt to meddle in the affairs of other chapters, which do not concern you. how would you have liked it if I was trashing the Haifa or DC bids before they were even anything as formal as bids?

As to "my opinion of WMUK has been tainted", let me again be very blunt. You have clearly not read the documents linked, or not understood what you were looking at. You are looking at suggestions. We are exploring a variety of options, none of which have been discussed or approved. Now, as WSC says, last year's bid failed partly because of insufficient support from  the chapter, so this year, there is a *suggestion* in a *draft* budget to *earmark* *up to* £40k for the bid. That doesn't mean that £40k *will* be allocated, nor that, if it is allocated, the whole £40k will be spent. In fact, I think it's very unlikely we will find anything to spend that kind of money on in just the bidding stage, but that's why it's called a *draft*. You can't criticise the chapter for offering financial support when it was criticised last year for not providing financial support.

Now kindly keep your noses out of other people's business.

(I should probably point out that I'm not speaking on behalf of WMUK)

Thank you,

Harry Mitchell
Phone: 024 7698 0977
Skype: harry_j_mitchell


From: WereSpielChequers <[hidden email]>
To: Wikimania general list (open subscription) <[hidden email]>
Sent: Sunday, 26 August 2012, 12:34
Subject: Re: [Wikimania-l] UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

I agree that it would be wrong for chapter money to go into Wikimania bids, especially as some bid teams have access to resources that others don't. However London lost the last bid against  Hong Kong partly because it was deemed not to have "solid support from the chapter". Considering how much support there was from the chapter it would be difficult to see how the UK chapter could give more solid support without supplying paid staff time. So the logical response to the jury's decision http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimania-l/2012-May/003491.html is to budget for more solid support from the chapter.

If the Jury had said that both bids were very good , but for 2013 it was really time for another Wikimania in the Far East then we'd be in a different situation. 

WSC 



On 25 August 2012 20:32, James Hare <[hidden email][hidden email]> wrote:
Staffing is a very good thing to spend money on—while executing the conference. Spending $62,000 on staff for a bid would be worth the investment if bidding for Wikimania were anything like bidding for the Olympics, but it is not. The spirit of Wikimania is ultimately from its volunteer leadership, and if the Wikimedia UK volunteers cannot muster that spirit to run their own bid, they have no hope and no soul.


James


On Aug 25, 2012, at 3:28 PM, Itzik Edri wrote:

Sorry, it's undiplomatic to interfere with others budget plans - but I just can't ignore how the future of Wikimania will look like if others will follow UK plans to invest £40,000 only for the bid process (about 62,000$).


"Hire a production company for half of this cost. It's really waste of donors money, for what we expect to be done by volunteers, or for a minimum costs. If every one who going to bid for Wikimania will spent this amount of money (and why them not? if UK can, why others not?), it's mean that for 4 places every year we are "spending" more than 260,000$ only for the bid!!!. --217.132.1.140 19:22, 25 August 2012 (UTC)"

I really think the "Wikimania" groups need to speak about that. It's the first time a group/chapter spending such amount of money for bid, and it's open a door for next cities to do the same - with money which can uses to invest in Wikimania itself.


Itzik

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

HJ Mitchell
See my previous email. Let me spell this out, since you're obviously too ignorant or too stupid to read what you're commenting on: you are commenting on a suggestion from one person. It hasn't got anywhere, except to a bunch of nosey do-gooders on a public mailing list who apparently not sufficiently fulfilled by building an encyclopaedia that they have to meddle in others' affairs. And we have kept it internal - it was not the bid committee who brought it to this list. Kindly get your facts straight before posting here again. 

Nobody is seriously talking about spending £40k on the bid. As far as I can tell, the number was plucked out of thin air. I've just come from a two-hour meeting with the bid committee, where the idea of spending ~£17k on the bid was discussed. Even that's not a formal proposal - it's something that's being investigated, along with other options, and will have to undergo extensive discussion before we even get to the stage of asking the WMUK board to approve it, and which faces considerable opposition (including, to some extent, from me) even at this stage.
 
Harry Mitchell
Phone: 024 7698 0977
Skype: harry_j_mitchell


From: Sven <[hidden email]>
To: HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]>; Wikimania general list (opensubscription) <[hidden email]>
Cc: Wikimania general list (open subscription) <[hidden email]>
Sent: Sunday, 26 August 2012, 16:12
Subject: Re: [Wikimania-l] UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

All of those qualifiers are nice, but the fact that it made it onto a draft at all is the issue. This was something that never should have made it that far. Lots of things get killed off in committee and never make it on paper. I'd be one thing if this was a transcript of the minutes, and it mentioned that it was brought up and promptly shelved. It's another thing entirely to have it get as far as a working document.

Wikipedia discussion boards regularly shoot down dangerous and stupid ideas before they make it very far. That's a good thing, it means that the project's defensive filters are working. 

The idea of spending 40K or even 10K on a bid is a dangerous and stupid idea, and my respect for WMUK took a hit because you all let it get way too far. Kill it now.

Oh, and if you're pissed that people from other chapters are tearing WMUK a new one over this (i.e. meddling in your chapter's affairs), that should a) be an indication of how awful the idea being discussed is, and b) has a lot to do with that this discussion is taking place on Wikimania-l, a list subscribed to by large swaths of the movement, including those outside the UK. Don't want criticism? Keep it internal.

Sven 

On Aug 26, 2012, at 8:37 AM, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:

Right, let me be quite blunt. This thread is not "undiplomatic", it's an attempt to meddle in the affairs of other chapters, which do not concern you. how would you have liked it if I was trashing the Haifa or DC bids before they were even anything as formal as bids?

As to "my opinion of WMUK has been tainted", let me again be very blunt. You have clearly not read the documents linked, or not understood what you were looking at. You are looking at suggestions. We are exploring a variety of options, none of which have been discussed or approved. Now, as WSC says, last year's bid failed partly because of insufficient support from  the chapter, so this year, there is a *suggestion* in a *draft* budget to *earmark* *up to* £40k for the bid. That doesn't mean that £40k *will* be allocated, nor that, if it is allocated, the whole £40k will be spent. In fact, I think it's very unlikely we will find anything to spend that kind of money on in just the bidding stage, but that's why it's called a *draft*. You can't criticise the chapter for offering financial support when it was criticised last year for not providing financial support.

Now kindly keep your noses out of other people's business.

(I should probably point out that I'm not speaking on behalf of WMUK)

Thank you,

Harry Mitchell
Phone: 024 7698 0977
Skype: harry_j_mitchell


From: WereSpielChequers <[hidden email]>
To: Wikimania general list (open subscription) <[hidden email]>
Sent: Sunday, 26 August 2012, 12:34
Subject: Re: [Wikimania-l] UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

I agree that it would be wrong for chapter money to go into Wikimania bids, especially as some bid teams have access to resources that others don't. However London lost the last bid against  Hong Kong partly because it was deemed not to have "solid support from the chapter". Considering how much support there was from the chapter it would be difficult to see how the UK chapter could give more solid support without supplying paid staff time. So the logical response to the jury's decision http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimania-l/2012-May/003491.html is to budget for more solid support from the chapter.

If the Jury had said that both bids were very good , but for 2013 it was really time for another Wikimania in the Far East then we'd be in a different situation. 

WSC 



On 25 August 2012 20:32, James Hare <[hidden email][hidden email]> wrote:
Staffing is a very good thing to spend money on—while executing the conference. Spending $62,000 on staff for a bid would be worth the investment if bidding for Wikimania were anything like bidding for the Olympics, but it is not. The spirit of Wikimania is ultimately from its volunteer leadership, and if the Wikimedia UK volunteers cannot muster that spirit to run their own bid, they have no hope and no soul.


James


On Aug 25, 2012, at 3:28 PM, Itzik Edri wrote:

Sorry, it's undiplomatic to interfere with others budget plans - but I just can't ignore how the future of Wikimania will look like if others will follow UK plans to invest £40,000 only for the bid process (about 62,000$).


"Hire a production company for half of this cost. It's really waste of donors money, for what we expect to be done by volunteers, or for a minimum costs. If every one who going to bid for Wikimania will spent this amount of money (and why them not? if UK can, why others not?), it's mean that for 4 places every year we are "spending" more than 260,000$ only for the bid!!!. --217.132.1.140 19:22, 25 August 2012 (UTC)"

I really think the "Wikimania" groups need to speak about that. It's the first time a group/chapter spending such amount of money for bid, and it's open a door for next cities to do the same - with money which can uses to invest in Wikimania itself.


Itzik

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Nathan Awrich
In reply to this post by HJ Mitchell


On Sun, Aug 26, 2012 at 8:37 AM, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:
Right, let me be quite blunt. This thread is not "undiplomatic", it's an attempt to meddle in the affairs of other chapters, which do not concern you. how would you have liked it if I was trashing the Haifa or DC bids before they were even anything as formal as bids?

[snip]

Now kindly keep your noses out of other people's business.

(I should probably point out that I'm not speaking on behalf of WMUK)

Thank you,

Harry Mitchell
Phone: 024 7698 0977
Skype: harry_j_mitchell


You seem to have the impression that the money, which was raised during the Wikimedia Foundation's annual fundraiser, belongs to you and should be spent at your sole discretion. Yet oddly, if I recall correctly, the Wikimedia UK chapter supports the FDC and the WCA - both attempts to internationalize Wikimedia money as 'movement funds.' It should be immediately apparent how these two positions conflict.

It sounds like your UK colleagues may not agree with you, which is heartening, but let me say this anyway: other Wikimedians have, at a minimum, the clear right to express an opinion on how you spend donations from Wikimedia donors. It is rude and way out of line for you to suggest that we not even comment on how you propose to spend donor money or that doing so is inappropriate "meddling in your affairs."

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Nathan Awrich
In reply to this post by HJ Mitchell


On Sun, Aug 26, 2012 at 11:34 AM, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:
See my previous email. Let me spell this out, since you're obviously too ignorant or too stupid to read what you're commenting on: you are commenting on a suggestion from one person. It hasn't got anywhere, except to a bunch of nosey do-gooders on a public mailing list who apparently not sufficiently fulfilled by building an encyclopaedia that they have to meddle in others' affairs. And we have kept it internal - it was not the bid committee who brought it to this list. Kindly get your facts straight before posting here again. 


I can't imagine how you can write this and stay affiliated with the UK chapter in any formal capacity.  

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Thomas Dalton
In reply to this post by HJ Mitchell
On 26 August 2012 16:34, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Nobody is seriously talking about spending £40k on the bid. As far as I can
> tell, the number was plucked out of thin air. I've just come from a two-hour
> meeting with the bid committee, where the idea of spending ~£17k on the bid
> was discussed. Even that's not a formal proposal - it's something that's
> being investigated, along with other options, and will have to undergo
> extensive discussion before we even get to the stage of asking the WMUK
> board to approve it, and which faces considerable opposition (including, to
> some extent, from me) even at this stage.

Have you looked at the budget proposal from the bid committee (I
linked to it earlier in this thread)? That £17k is just for paying the
professional conference organiser and it in addition to a proposed
£45k to go to the bid committee themselves to pay them for their time.
As far as I can tell, that is a serious proposal from the bid
committee. It is linked to from their minutes with the title "budget
proposal agreed".

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

WereSpielChequers-2
In reply to this post by Thomas Dalton
Of course the wider community is entitled to comment on an individual chapter's decisions. But budgets are misleading things, if the support that WMUK gave to a London 2014 bid was in the form of grants for bid team members to attend Wikimania and a proportion of the event organiser's time then it might not be readily identifiable as Wikimania bid related expense.

If I may suggest a practical resolution here, perhaps the jury for 2013 could clarify what they meant when they criticised the London bid for not having strong support from the UK chapter. If they thought that there was something non-financial that was missing in the UK chapter's support for the London 2013 bid then now would be a good time to tell us all. Otherwise please can those who don't want chapters spending lots of money on Wikimania bids please communicate that publicly to the jury. There is little point criticising the UK chapter for responding so positively to feedback from the 2013 jury.

Ideally I'd like to see a level playing field for all serious bids, including giving active Wikimedians who are  potential bidders grants to attend Wikimania. It might even be worth the WMF giving each shortlisted bid a few hundred dollars for incidental expenses. At the same time it would be best if we had a clear ruling from the Wikimania team that despite what they said re London 2013, where chapters have professional staff and their own budgets they should stand back, leave the bidding to volunteers and only involve themselves after a bid succeeds. 

WSC 

On 26 August 2012 14:01, Thomas Dalton <[hidden email]> wrote:
On 26 August 2012 13:37, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Right, let me be quite blunt. This thread is not "undiplomatic", it's an
> attempt to meddle in the affairs of other chapters, which do not concern
> you. how would you have liked it if I was trashing the Haifa or DC bids
> before they were even anything as formal as bids?

How is it not of concern to the rest of the movement how £40k of
movement funds is spent?

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

HJ Mitchell
In reply to this post by Nathan Awrich
I'm not affiliated with the UK chapter in any formal capacity. But If you'd read my emails, you'd know that. 
 
Harry Mitchell
Phone: 024 7698 0977
Skype: harry_j_mitchell


From: Nathan <[hidden email]>
To: HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]>; Wikimania general list (open subscription) <[hidden email]>
Sent: Sunday, 26 August 2012, 16:39
Subject: Re: [Wikimania-l] UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid



On Sun, Aug 26, 2012 at 11:34 AM, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:
See my previous email. Let me spell this out, since you're obviously too ignorant or too stupid to read what you're commenting on: you are commenting on a suggestion from one person. It hasn't got anywhere, except to a bunch of nosey do-gooders on a public mailing list who apparently not sufficiently fulfilled by building an encyclopaedia that they have to meddle in others' affairs. And we have kept it internal - it was not the bid committee who brought it to this list. Kindly get your facts straight before posting here again. 


I can't imagine how you can write this and stay affiliated with the UK chapter in any formal capacity.  



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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Nathan Awrich
In reply to this post by Nathan Awrich
No, I'm not completely illiterate. I'd appreciate it if you kept your replies on-list. Perhaps you should take a break from this discussion until you have had a chance to calm down. You aren't doing yourself or WM-UK any favors with these kinds of comments. 

On Sun, Aug 26, 2012 at 11:47 AM, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:
Are you completely illiterate, or do you always reply to people without reading their emails first?
 
Harry Mitchell
Phone: 024 7698 0977
Skype: harry_j_mitchell


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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

HJ Mitchell
In reply to this post by Thomas Dalton
If that's a serious proposal, it isn't one that's been put to the Conference Committee (of which I'm acting chair, and which is overseeing the bid). We just had a two-hour meeting and it wasn't raised once. 
 
Harry Mitchell
Phone: 024 7698 0977
Skype: harry_j_mitchell


From: Thomas Dalton <[hidden email]>
To: HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]>; Wikimania general list (open subscription) <[hidden email]>
Sent: Sunday, 26 August 2012, 16:45
Subject: Re: [Wikimania-l] UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

On 26 August 2012 16:34, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Nobody is seriously talking about spending £40k on the bid. As far as I can
> tell, the number was plucked out of thin air. I've just come from a two-hour
> meeting with the bid committee, where the idea of spending ~£17k on the bid
> was discussed. Even that's not a formal proposal - it's something that's
> being investigated, along with other options, and will have to undergo
> extensive discussion before we even get to the stage of asking the WMUK
> board to approve it, and which faces considerable opposition (including, to
> some extent, from me) even at this stage.

Have you looked at the budget proposal from the bid committee (I
linked to it earlier in this thread)? That £17k is just for paying the
professional conference organiser and it in addition to a proposed
£45k to go to the bid committee themselves to pay them for their time.
As far as I can tell, that is a serious proposal from the bid
committee. It is linked to from their minutes with the title "budget
proposal agreed".



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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Thomas Dalton
On 26 August 2012 16:52, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:
> If that's a serious proposal, it isn't one that's been put to the Conference
> Committee (of which I'm acting chair, and which is overseeing the bid). We
> just had a two-hour meeting and it wasn't raised once.

There there are some procedural issues with your committee structure...

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

James Hare
In reply to this post by WereSpielChequers-2
On Aug 26, 2012, at 11:46 AM, WereSpielChequers wrote:
>
> If I may suggest a practical resolution here, perhaps the jury for 2013 could clarify what they meant when they criticised the London bid for not having strong support from the UK chapter. If they thought that there was something non-financial that was missing in the UK chapter's support for the London 2013 bid then now would be a good time to tell us all. Otherwise please can those who don't want chapters spending lots of money on Wikimania bids please communicate that publicly to the jury. There is little point criticising the UK chapter for responding so positively to feedback from the 2013 jury.

Indeed. The winning bid for Wikimania 2012 had no financial support. It wasn't even backed by a chapter; the chapter came later. What it did have though was the kind of people power necessary to execute a bid.

And even with people power, it's always good to hire some outside help to fill in the gaps. Many of us find it silly, though, to make that level of investment at the *bid* stage.

As for paying the Wikimania host committee... I will say I personally would have appreciated some kind of income because Wikimania, in its last couple of months, was literally a full time job, but I feel like my relationship with Wikimania would've changed if it had become a job and not this thing I was building from the ground up as a labor of love. When you pay people, their work is different than if they volunteer.

This gets back to the people power of Wikimania. You can hire all the professionals in the world. Over the past two days I checked the financial math on Wikimania and we spent $61,430 on conference staffing. The lady with the silly wig? We would've died without her. The two assistants she brought on who were even more experienced than she was? We needed them too. The registration company who helped us order the name badges and run the on-site registration? The hired hands who helped direct the flow of traffic and run the store? The sign language interpreters? (Our volunteer who knew sign language was not enough.) These are all people who help take a conference that was attended by over a thousand Wikimaniacs and 300 Tech@Staters and make it work.

But these professionals all take orders from the core team of Wikimedia volunteers, who are doing this not because they are paid to, but because they love Wikimania. And you have to love Wikimania, or the energy is just not there. I don't see it working any other way.

>
> Ideally I'd like to see a level playing field for all serious bids, including giving active Wikimedians who are  potential bidders grants to attend Wikimania. It might even be worth the WMF giving each shortlisted bid a few hundred dollars for incidental expenses. At the same time it would be best if we had a clear ruling from the Wikimania team that despite what they said re London 2013, where chapters have professional staff and their own budgets they should stand back, leave the bidding to volunteers and only involve themselves after a bid succeeds.

I mean the whole bidding process is broken, but I'm not getting into that just yet.

>
> WSC


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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Katie Chan
In reply to this post by Thomas Dalton
On 26/08/2012 16:54, Thomas Dalton wrote:
> On 26 August 2012 16:52, HJ Mitchell <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> If that's a serious proposal, it isn't one that's been put to the Conference
>> Committee (of which I'm acting chair, and which is overseeing the bid). We
>> just had a two-hour meeting and it wasn't raised once.
>
> There there are some procedural issues with your committee structure...
>

Why is there issues when something that's not being proposed not get raised?

KTC

--
Experience is a good school but the fees are high.
     - Heinrich Heine

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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Phoebe Ayers-2
In reply to this post by HJ Mitchell

Harry and all,
This is just a quick reminder to please keep it civil on this list - namecalling isn't necessary. This list is for discussing all aspects of wikimania - both the conference itself and the bid process - and the discussion here is open to all wikimedians, as it's a subject that concerns all of us.

Best,
Phoebe
(Listmod)


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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

HJ Mitchell
In reply to this post by James Hare
James, I completely agree with you. In fact, Ed Saperia is probably sick of hearing me say exactly that.

I disagree with assertions that the UK bid team doesn't have that, and with suggestions that WMUK is trying to substitute for this by throwing money around.
 
Harry Mitchell
Phone: 024 7698 0977
Skype: harry_j_mitchell


From: James Hare <[hidden email]>
To: Wikimania general list (open subscription) <[hidden email]>
Sent: Sunday, 26 August 2012, 17:00
Subject: Re: [Wikimania-l] UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

On Aug 26, 2012, at 11:46 AM, WereSpielChequers wrote:
>
> If I may suggest a practical resolution here, perhaps the jury for 2013 could clarify what they meant when they criticised the London bid for not having strong support from the UK chapter. If they thought that there was something non-financial that was missing in the UK chapter's support for the London 2013 bid then now would be a good time to tell us all. Otherwise please can those who don't want chapters spending lots of money on Wikimania bids please communicate that publicly to the jury. There is little point criticising the UK chapter for responding so positively to feedback from the 2013 jury.

Indeed. The winning bid for Wikimania 2012 had no financial support. It wasn't even backed by a chapter; the chapter came later. What it did have though was the kind of people power necessary to execute a bid.

And even with people power, it's always good to hire some outside help to fill in the gaps. Many of us find it silly, though, to make that level of investment at the *bid* stage.

As for paying the Wikimania host committee... I will say I personally would have appreciated some kind of income because Wikimania, in its last couple of months, was literally a full time job, but I feel like my relationship with Wikimania would've changed if it had become a job and not this thing I was building from the ground up as a labor of love. When you pay people, their work is different than if they volunteer.

This gets back to the people power of Wikimania. You can hire all the professionals in the world. Over the past two days I checked the financial math on Wikimania and we spent $61,430 on conference staffing. The lady with the silly wig? We would've died without her. The two assistants she brought on who were even more experienced than she was? We needed them too. The registration company who helped us order the name badges and run the on-site registration? The hired hands who helped direct the flow of traffic and run the store? The sign language interpreters? (Our volunteer who knew sign language was not enough.) These are all people who help take a conference that was attended by over a thousand Wikimaniacs and 300 Tech@Staters and make it work.

But these professionals all take orders from the core team of Wikimedia volunteers, who are doing this not because they are paid to, but because they love Wikimania. And you have to love Wikimania, or the energy is just not there. I don't see it working any other way.

>
> Ideally I'd like to see a level playing field for all serious bids, including giving active Wikimedians who are  potential bidders grants to attend Wikimania. It might even be worth the WMF giving each shortlisted bid a few hundred dollars for incidental expenses. At the same time it would be best if we had a clear ruling from the Wikimania team that despite what they said re London 2013, where chapters have professional staff and their own budgets they should stand back, leave the bidding to volunteers and only involve themselves after a bid succeeds.

I mean the whole bidding process is broken, but I'm not getting into that just yet.

>
> WSC


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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Gordon Joly
In reply to this post by Phoebe Ayers-2

I guess any bid has to be realistic, and in line with the standards of
the day. We are currently between The Olympics and The Paralympics,
where there were 70,000 volunteers to drive down costs (called "Games
Makers") of running the London 2012 Games. And we assume that the London
2012 bid was funded.....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_bid_for_the_2012_Summer_Olympics

As for Wikimania bid costs (that is up to the bid being won) expenses
would be a good start.

And that other figure (of around £40K) perhaps could be a "no win, no
fee" deal?

Gordo



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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

James Hare
But we're not at the Olympic level yet. Wikimania, after considering scholarships and staff travel, barely reaches a couple million dollars. And the bidding process is pretty unsophisticated for a conference that has become as large as it has.



On Aug 26, 2012, at 1:17 PM, Gordon Joly wrote:

>
> I guess any bid has to be realistic, and in line with the standards of the day. We are currently between The Olympics and The Paralympics, where there were 70,000 volunteers to drive down costs (called "Games Makers") of running the London 2012 Games. And we assume that the London 2012 bid was funded.....
>
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_bid_for_the_2012_Summer_Olympics
>
> As for Wikimania bid costs (that is up to the bid being won) expenses would be a good start.
>
> And that other figure (of around £40K) perhaps could be a "no win, no fee" deal?
>
> Gordo
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimania-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimania-l


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Re: UK budget plan for 2014 Wikimania bid

Tobias
In reply to this post by Lodewijk
On 08/25/2012 09:46 PM, Lodewijk wrote:
> Maybe the question should first be: what kind of Wikimania do we want.
> Personally, I would be totally happy with down scaling the conference a
> bit. Less visitors (500-600), less events and less professional. Let it
> be more volunteer focused, and yes, perhaps also a bit more chaotic.

I concur and I'm glad you brought this topic up.

Wikimedians are not professionals, they are volunteers. Our community
/is/ chaotic and a bit unorganized. It's fine if Wikimania reflects that.

> That also means we can change the nature of bids: more back to basic and
> more focus on location, venue and accomodation.

We should also focus on making Wikimania more affordable. If that means
choosing cheaper locations that might be a bit less spectacular, that's
fine with me. I've always thought the charm of Wikimania stems from its
participants and not a particular venue.

Manuel (among others) is organizing WikiCon 2012, which will start in a
few days in Austria. The fee is only 10 Euro for the full conference
(three days), and that even includes meals and a place to sleep in a gym.
Last year's WikiCon was fantastic even though there was not an exotic
venue, a beach party, a wonderful port or a disco night in the center of
a large city. I'm not saying that I don't enjoy such events, nor that
they aren't parts of the positive memory I have of past Wikimanias, but
expensive and exotic events and locations should not be considered a
"must" for future Wikimanias.

Regards,
Tobias

Ps.: The WikiCon conference for german-speaking countries is a great
example of an event between the magnitude of million-dollar-events like
Wikimania and zero-dollar local community meetups. They work great, help
to get to know each other in real life (and to sort out differences) as
well as exchanging ideas and bringing the movement forward. You should
have a WikiCon in your country, too!

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