Dear Fellow-Wikipedians/Wikimedians, Could the German Federal Press Conferences serve as a model to improve communications between WMF officials/bodies and the community (and the public at large)?
Unlike in other countries, where governments face the press at their own will, choosing topics and interlocutors as they please, in Germany the press-conference takes place three times a week, according to a regular schedule, and is hosted and moderated by an independent association. Participants on the government side are usually a spoke-person of the Chancellery (Bundeskanzleramt, roughly equivalent with a Prime Minister's Office) and of all the ministries. On the other side, the press-conference is open to journalists based in Berlin who regularly cover German federal politics. Since last year (?) the entire press-conferences are video-taped and made available on Youtube by a team of journalists for everyone to watch . I wonder whether this might be a viable approach to improve communications by the WMF BoT and management with regard to various stakeholder groups. The ingredients would be: - Regular information and Q&A sessions with the participation of official spoke-persons of the WMF BoT and WMF Management (i.e. professional communicators) on the one hand and a number of more or less regular participants acting as multipliers with regard to the community as well as journalists regularly covering WM-related issues on the other hand. - Interval: to be decided. Every two weeks might be reasonable. It seems important that these information and Q&A sessions take place on a regular basis at the same interval, no matter how many burning issues are around at any given time. As the information and Q&A sessions have a clear time limit, this obliges everyone to focus on the most burning issues at any given time. - The information and Q&A sessions are hosted and moderated by an independent entity according to a pre-established set of rules. - The spoke-persons have to respond to every question asked, choosing between three options: answer the question directly if they can; explain why they aren't able or willing to answer the question; send the answer later by email to the participants if specific information needs to be gathered first. - If the answer is deemed insufficient or too imprecise by the person who asked the question, they are allowed to dig deeper by asking a further question. - The Q&A sessions are recorded, so that everyone interested is able to keep up with the main issues raised within the movement and the official stance taken by the BoT and/or WMF management as well as the critical questions raised by those closely following the issues. Personally, I believe that this might smoothen out communications with the community and have some potential to scale - even with regard to non-English-speaking communities thanks to multipliers. Drama might not be avoided, but at least it would be given a clear frame and be somewhat detached from individuals by focusing more on roles. Furthermore, transparency and accountability would be increased, serious problems may be spotted earlier, and misunderstandings would more easily surface. Any thoughts about pros and cons? Beat  https://www.youtube.com/user/Nfes2005/videos _____________________________________________________ Beat Estermann Coordinator OpenGLAM CH Working Group http://openglam.ch<http://openglam.ch/> Berne University of Applied Sciences E-Government Institute Brückenstrasse 73 CH-3005 Bern beat.esterm...@openglam.ch<mailto:beat.esterm...@openglam.ch> Phone +41 31 848 34 38 Second Swiss Open Cultural Data Hackathon - 1/2 July 2016 - Save the date<http://make.opendata.ch/wiki/event:2016-07>! _______________________________________________ Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines New messages to: Wikimediaemail@example.com Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:wikimedia-l-requ...@lists.wikimedia.org?subject=unsubscribe>