I'm not sure what kind of discussion relating to Wikipedia would be appropriate for an online meetup, but maybe others have an idea. As I said, what I've found about WP meetups is that people each work on a different page, but make use of nearby folks for advice, ideas, and company.

I feel strongly about encouraging non-nerd humanists to participate in WP, as well as people of all ages and levels of computer experience. I believe that this was also the motivation for the development of the WYSIWYG editor: for some people, wiki markup alone is a deterrent. I would say the same about IRC, which is a nerd-heavy communications channel.

Unfortunately, Google, being now a key player in the military-industrial-surveillance community is something I would not recommend for anyone to join, although current members may wish to meet on a hangout. It works well for small numbers, but I have never tried to push it beyond 3-4 participants.

I do agree that any kind of meeting has more chance of success if it has a theme or project. For Berkeley, the Berkeley-specific pages are in need of work, so we can easily start there. It would be fun, if we could do it, to meet with the public library librarian in charge of the history archives.


On 7/29/13 1:50 PM, Jeremy Baron wrote:

On Mon, Jul 29, 2013 at 6:57 PM, Michael Kelly <> wrote:
There are two online ways
to meet that come to mind: we could use something like gotomeeting where
everyone signs on to a site and has the ability to talk or type, and become
the presenter, showing anything they want on the screen (examples, articles,
etc.) then turn the presenter role over to someone else.

I suggest either using
* MeetBot on freenode (#wikimedia-us for now, #wikimedia-westcoast if
you can get people to regularly show up there)
** I'm running a MeetBot instance on a Wikimedia DC server and it's
lurking now in both #wikimedia-us and #wikimedia-westcoast waiting for
a meeting to start.
** in this case it's useful to make an agenda so you talk about one
topic and when you finish then you move on and don't mix topics too
much. to make the MeetBot output more useful for people that are not
able to read the whole log or so they can get some idea about the
discussion before they have a chance to read it in full. arbitrary
example of the power of MeetBot chosen from a directory listing:


* a Google hangout on air (which means broadcast live to a nearly
unlimited number of anonymous viewers and allows active participation
by more than a few people at a time. (I don't know exactly what the
limit is there))
** (we should use a [[free software]] alternative at some point (so
that when Google decides to modify, limit or discontinue hangouts
we're not screwed among other reasons) but I'm not able to work on
that right now and I think it's more important to offer a tool that
can be used immediately. so for now I say hangouts but other people
are welcome to find/make something even better.)

Or a combination of both.

FWIW, I personally am opposed to using any sort of solution that would
not allow 50 (or even 100) people simultaneous viewers. (and though
Google does limit the number of active participants (speakers) I
believe they can be rotated so that by the end of the broadcast you
could have had a total number of speakers in excess of the limit of
simultaneous participants) But, OTOH, I've never set foot within 350
miles of the area covered by this list and haven't been to the west
coast since I was <= 10 years old. So, just my 2 cents and I'll let
you make your own decisions. (but let me know if you want help with
either of those options above)


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