Dear all,

last weekend the annual Chapters Meeting took place in Berlin. Each year 
two representatives of each Wikimedia chapter meet there. During the 
meeting South Africa was recognized as the first african chapter. 
Wikimedia CH and Austria have been represented by Manuel Schneider and 
Kurt Kulac. With this report we'd like to share our experiences with the 
Wikimedia community. Additionally all sessions have been logged and 
published on Meta:

A short TV report on the meeting for ARD Tagesschau (in german) can be 
viewed online:

== Current State of the Chapters ==
Traditionally each chapter meeting starts with a three minute report of 
each chapter about their current state: Members, budget, past and future 
projects, good and bad experiences.

Most of the "State of the Chapter" presentations have been linked on Meta:


== Fundraising Summit ==
There will be again a Fundraising Summit for all chapters participating 
in the Wikimedia Fundraiser by the end of the year. This year's summit 
will be organised in June by Wikimedia Ă–sterreich.


== Movement Roles ==
There are the Wikimedia Foundation and Wikimedia Chapters as branches of 
the Foundation, but there are also other entities and organisations 
withing the Wikiverse. While the relationship between Foundation and 
chapters has been settled by the chapters agreement there are many open 
questions in how to handle other organisations which are not chapters.

A "Movement Roles Working Group" has been set up a year ago that is 
researching this topic. Recently surveys have been sent out to chapter 
people (I have forwarded them to the respective boards) and a public 
survey is planned to be published soon.

All members and inhabitants of the Wikiverse are urged to participate in 
this process, to shape the roles of chapters, foundation and their own.


== Collaborations with Galeries, Libraries, Archives and Museums (GLAMs) ==
The other chapters have presented their experiences with talking to 
GLAMs. In many countries discussions and talks happen and GLAMs are 
willing to cooperate, but a there is little visible output.

The Wiki Loves Monuments project interacts here, aiming to be a 
pan-european project to define, list and illustrate all monuments 
throughout Europe. Ideas are currently being discussed, WMAT started 
talking to the administration bodies taking care of monuments, lists 
need to be digitized and unified. A photo competition and reimbursement 
of travel costs should foster the communities will to take good pictures 
of all monuments. WMNL has been able to get sitenotices up to attract 
more people for the project. Other ideas are to provide extensive 
amounts of swag, such as sticker, pins, T-Shirts etc.


== Hiring Employees ==
Many chapters - as Wikimedia Austria and Switzerland - have been 
thinking about hiring employees or to outsource work to paid people. 
Many projects are time-intensive and participating at the Wikimedia 
Fundraiser is hard to be handled on a volunteer basis due to the high 
amount of donations which need to be booked correctly, thanked and reported.

Several times statements like "Wikimedia chapters are no fan clubs" have 
been made. Conclusion: Wikimedia chapters are primarily administrative 
organisations which enable volunteers to do their work better and 
"enable others to be fan-clubs". With the needed professionalisation of 
the chapters their boards change from executive to overseeing 
committees. Along with this it is important to transfer (seed) the 
enthusiasm by the board members into the director / manager of the 
chapters office.

A few chapters have already stepped forward by applying different 

* WMDE: "Management Approach" - They hired an employee that can manage 
himself and is looking for new tasks and implemented them on his own. 
This is important as management and monitoring of employees - which is 
also a big effort - can be minimised. A good manager can also fund 
himself by finding new opportunities and is able to find new employees 
to support him as the work load increases, a scalable solution.

A manager writes proposals which the board will review and decide. By 
that the board actually gets more power as it can act strategically 
rather than ad-hoc under pressure of daily tasks.

* WMPL: "Outsourcing" - legally neccessary tasks have been outsourced 
early. Problem: different people for different tasks which do not know 
each other and do not act strategically. WMPL: " the end we had an 
accountant, but nobody had time to bring her the receipts so she could 
do her work."

New approach: Hire someone who can do different things on his own and 
have him sit in the WMPL office.

* Office space: Rent offices teogether with other "lime-minded 
organisations", such as the parlamentarian group digital sustainability, 
Free Software Foundation Europe, Swiss Unix Usergroup, Creative Commons...

* Job profiles: Look at what the other chapters have done, for instance 
the "office manager" of WMUK who has handled the fundraiser.

* If you develop your organisation then get a "manager type" of employee.
* If you only need a service center for your administrative tasks then 
outsource it.

* Selection of emplyees: It is helpful if the employee is a Wikimedian 
but this is not the qualification you are looking for. If you have to 
choose between a manager which is not a Wikimedian and a Wikimedian 
which is not a manager, choose the manager (Pavel, WMDE).

* Managing remotely is extremely hard. It takes longer to find out if 
something goes into the wrong direction (Thierry, WMFR). A manager will 
also manage itself.

* An employee should have one or at max two bosses and not the board as 
a boss. Otherwise it takes too longe to make management decision.

* At least a weekly Skype meeting is recommended, the verbal contact is 
very important rather than writing e-mails.

* Application process (WMFR):
** received 40 applications, two filters: eight left. These eight 
applicants have been interviewed by eight people from the board and 
involved members.
** a Wikimedian has the advantage that you already know him and how he 
works. But be careful with "super members", there is the risk of leading 
into demotivation and problems. It is sometimes better to employ someone 
from the outside.

Invitation by Pavel (WMDE): "We have gained a lot of experience. Just 
come a week to Berlin and look how I deal with it."


== openZIM (Wikipedia Offline) ==
The ZIM libraries have been recently included into the book printing 
funtion - now everyone can easily create ZIM files from the Wikis.

To make the code and the work on it more visible it should be 
transferred to Each commit is sent to IRC and 
mailinglist, also many developers have a copy of that repository so the 
hurdle to look into the code and work with it is much lower.

== Internal Organisation / Roles within the Chapters ==
Several sessions dealt with the tasks withing the chapters or the 
motivation of members. We agreed on the following types of members:
* proactive (they initiate things and do work on their own)
* active (they are active when being asked)
* inactive
* counter-active (trolls)

The goal is to convert inactive members to active members and active to 
proactive. Trolls are part of the ecosystem and sometimes have a 
corrective function. In doubt when there is to much hassle nobody should 
hesitate to exclude them from the chapter.

* Each organisation needs to fill in four functions - of which a single 
person can at max. fill in three:
** Production (get things done)
** Administration (organisation)
** Innovation (new ideas, development)
** Integration (people person)

* Convert members to active members:
** often it helps to contact people directly and personally - often 
nobody responds on mailinglists
** keep a list of tasks in your chapters wiki to give interested people 
a hint where they can start working on. Ask on your members on the 
mailinglist to sign up for these tasks.

* Each board should consist of the following positions:
** people person, social integrator
** secretary / administrator
** contact person for the community - must have a good standing inside 
the Wikimedia projects before becoming a board member


== Communication ==
Different chapters communicate in different ways. The suggested monthly 
report is provided by a small number of chapters only (WMCH: No report 
since a long time). There has been a lot of discussion on the effort 
needed in writing those reports and the possibility to re-use them. Many 
chapters write blog posts, others communicate on Twitter or Facebook, 
usually in their own language. Other chapters have no benefit from that 
and can't learn from each other or simply know what is going on in the 

The following solution was agreed on:
* each chapter should have a blog and post there regularly
** messages for other chapters should be tagged with "chapter"
** all chapter blogs should be aggregate by two Wikimedia planets:
*** there are already Wikimedia planets for different languages
*** a new Wikimedia planet for chapters (all languages) should be created
** link your blogs with social networks to make your posts to appear there:
*** Twitter
*** Facebook

* publish interesting news also on the Wikimedia SignPost

* monthly newsletter to the members
** newsletter can be prepared publicly on the chapters wiki, so everyone 
can contribute his or her project
** one person writes a summary of what is going on at Wikimedia

* print hand outs or even bulletings when you have conferences or assemblies
** handouts should always be available
** get an ISSN for bulletins to make your publications more visible

* a template for the chapters report should hold the minimal information 
needed by the Wikimedia Foundation
** this template will be published on Meta
** the state of the chapter presentations will have the minimal 
information, they should go directly to the chapters pages on Meta so 
they are updated once a year

* format for chapter reports:
** Revenues
** Expenses
** Activities
** Members


== Group Photo ==

That's it with the summary of the chapters meeting. All members are 
invited to participate in the processes and discussions on Meta.

Best regards,

Manuel Schneider

Wikimedia CH - Verein zur Förderung Freien Wissens
Wikimedia CH - Association for the advancement of free knowledge

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