[Wikimedia-l] Wikimania - annually, with South Africa in 2018?

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[Wikimedia-l] Wikimania - annually, with South Africa in 2018?

Chris Keating-2
Hoi,

I was interested to read the minutes of the most recent Wikimania Committee
meeting, which decided that Wikimania will be held annually from now on,
and that it will be in sub-Saharan Africa (effectively meaning South
Africa) in 2018.

https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_Committee/Minutes/2016-06-26

Interestingly, I couldn't see any sign of the Committee's decision being
informed by the WMF's consultation on the future of Wikimania, or anyone
from the WMF's community engagement department being present.

I have to say I'm a bit confused, not least about who actually makes the
decision about how frequently Wikimania happens. Is anyone able to shed any
more light on this?

Thanks,

Chris
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[Wikimedia-l] Fwd: [Wikimania-l] Wikimania - annually, with South Africa in 2018?

Richard Ames
Forwarded as germane to current conversation on wikimedia-l

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Christophe Henner <[hidden email]>
Date: Sat, Jul 9, 2016 at 12:18 PM
Subject: Re: [Wikimania-l] Wikimania - annually, with South Africa in 2018?
To: "Wikimania General List, (open subscription)"
<[hidden email]>


Hi everyone,

The same question was raised to the board a few days ago by chairs of
Wikimedia organizations asking Foundation's board to make sure there's
a comprehensive decision on this very topic.

The chairs letter wasn't public, I let them share it on meta or here
if they want to :)

First step, in my opinion, is to set expectations and define the scope
(in the role of the event but also in the ressources (both human and
financial) we commit to the event.

Katherine is working with the staff to provide groundings.

Here is the answer I provided them with.

----

Hi chairs!

First of all, thank you with the email, the feedback is clearly useful
and raises interesting point.

Now, the Wikimania discussion definitly is on the table. Living by
what we said during Wikimania, we, as WMF, will make sure we end up
with a clear answer to your questions but also to the different points
you raise.

Wikimania is an important time in our movement, but as you said it
also comes with costs and challenges that we have to adress. Katherine
is going to meet in the coming days with the staff in charge of that
topic to start that discussion within WMF and provide groundings for a
comprehensive decision.

We will try to be as diligent as possible on that topic, but I would
ask you to keep in mind that as we're in a transition phase and that
might take a little more time than you could expect.

Again thank you for your email, I love the fact that he raises issues
but also includes the challenges we have to take care of :)

We'll get back to you as soon as possible to continue that discussion.

Have all a really great day / night :)

Christophe

While I concur with Coren’s conclusion, I’ll try to neutrally report
on the events at Wikimania which led to this result. :)

Full disclosure: I’m a fan of Wikimania being yearly, and was asked to
serve on the Wikimania Committee after Esino Lario. I was also the
main moderator of the Wikimania 2016 session on the “Future of
Wikimania.” These views are my own, and not anything official from the
committee.

Background: Many folks (I’d say a majority) who I talked to in Esino
Lario early in the conference thought that the decision to do
Wikimania every other year was a done deal, as a result of the IdeaLab
consultation. I told them that might not necessarily be so. The vote
was close, not particularly widely known, and we could still be heard.
Chris Schilling from the WMF, who oversaw the Idealab consultation,
sought me out specifically at the start of the conference and to my
delight, said that the consultation was “just another data point,” and
that it was by no means the final word on things. Obviously, this was
good news to people who were interested in keeping a yearly Wikimania.

I was scheduled to moderate the “Future of Wikimania” discussion
session [1] at the very end of the conference, and encouraged people
to let their views be heard. It was under these conditions that we
entered into the final discussion room and I asked Chris Schilling to
give an opening statement to the room. Most people were happy to hear
him say that it was “just another data point.” During the discussion,
there was overwhelming support to keep Wikimania going every year,
which is not a surprise considering this was *at* Wikimania. I
encourage folks to peruse the Etherpad notes, which are quite
extensive and expertly done by several folks there.

Some views I’d highlight:
- Having yearly Wikimania is important to keep the momentum of the
movement going, according to many
- A case for cancelling yearly Wikimania was to encourage/fund
regional meetups. However, there is no guarantee that those regional
meetups would actually take place, or that WMF would necessarily take
the money saved from Wikimania to fund them. Some folks from Asia
specifically said that there is weaker linguistic, cultural and
geographic synergy for an “Asian” conference like there is in Europe
and Africa, which is why it has been hard to do one.
- One person noted that one trip to Wikimania served the same role as
several international trips to get the same benefit from meeting other
Wikimedians/developers, so there are indeed cost efficiencies in
having a central conference.

Thanks.

[1] https://wikimania2016.wikimedia.org/wiki/Discussions/The_future_of_Wikimania
[2] https://etherpad.wikimedia.org/p/Wikimania2016-discussion7b




-Andrew Lih
Associate professor of journalism, American University
Email: [hidden email]
WEB: http://www.andrewlih.com
BOOK: The Wikipedia Revolution: http://www.wikipediarevolution.com
PROJECT: Wiki Makes Video
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Wiki_Makes_Video

On Fri, Jul 8, 2016 at 10:18 AM, Marc-Andre <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> On 2016-07-08 10:01 AM, Chris Keating wrote:
>>
>> Interestingly, I couldn't see any sign of the Committee's decision being informed by the WMF's consultation on the future of Wikimania, or anyone from the WMF's community engagement department being present.
>
>
> Wikimania is, and always was, a community led and organized event. The WMF, as its traditional biggest sponsor[1], has a great deal of influence in the matter - but ultimately no decision power beyond "fund and resource or not".
>
> The committee's decision has indeed taken into account the consultation you refer to - as well as the roundtable discussion on the "Future of Wikimania" that took place earlier[2].  Our evaluation, which is reflected in that resolution, is that the consultation was clearly flawed and that its conclusion does not reflect consensus - neither of the community members who organize nor of those who attend Wikimania.
>
> -- Coren / Marc
>
> [1] Although "underwrite" might be a better term - the WMF has pretty much shouldered the vast majority of the costs and given the most logistical support year in and year out.
>
> [2] Where the consensus was to overwhelmingly reject that consultation's conclusion in favor or continuing with Wikimania as a yearly even given its irreplaceable role in our movement.
>
<cut>

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimania - annually, with South Africa in 2018?

Chris Keating-2
In reply to this post by Chris Keating-2
So, to summarise the discussion (from Wikimania-l)

* The WMF is still coming to a view on whether it supports a 2018
Wikimania, but the issue is being considered by the Board and the ED. The
WMF don't consider the results of their consultation on the matter as
conclusive
* The Wikimania Committee have an ambition/intention to hold a 2018
Wikimania, but don't feel this is based solely on the sample of people who
showed up to the future of Wikimania session at Wikimania
* A number of chapters have expressed support for Wikimania remaining an
annual event, though also thinking that the programme design process needs
to be improved
* There is in fact some dialogue between the Wikimania Committe, the WMF
board, WMF staff, and the chapters

Have I got that right?

Thanks,

Chris

On Fri, Jul 8, 2016 at 3:01 PM, Chris Keating <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> Hoi,
>
> I was interested to read the minutes of the most recent Wikimania
> Committee meeting, which decided that Wikimania will be held annually from
> now on, and that it will be in sub-Saharan Africa (effectively meaning
> South Africa) in 2018.
>
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_Committee/Minutes/2016-06-26
>
> Interestingly, I couldn't see any sign of the Committee's decision being
> informed by the WMF's consultation on the future of Wikimania, or anyone
> from the WMF's community engagement department being present.
>
> I have to say I'm a bit confused, not least about who actually makes the
> decision about how frequently Wikimania happens. Is anyone able to shed any
> more light on this?
>
> Thanks,
>
> Chris
>
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