Forwarding for info; please keep the e-mail conversation on one like, wikimania-l. Thank you.
---------- Forwarded message --------- From: James Forrester <jdforres...@gmail.com> Date: Sun, 4 Oct 2015 at 11:10 Subject: Coming up with a new process for Wikimania selection To: Wikimania general list (open subscription) < wikimani...@lists.wikimedia.org> 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 <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Wikimania>, 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 _______________________________________________ Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines Wikimediafirstname.lastname@example.org Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:wikimedia-l-requ...@lists.wikimedia.org?subject=unsubscribe>