Just one not about the subject:
If WMIN don't use that money to WCI, it needs to be returned to WMF. This
money was not "given" to WMIN for no reason, was given *to be used in WCI* -
if that would not be the case anymore, the money need to be returned.
So all those arguments that "We have better things to do with that money"
are not true.
<http://wikimedia.pt/>(351) 925 171 484
*Imagine um mundo onde é dada a qualquer pessoa a possibilidade de ter livre
acesso ao somatório de todo o conhecimento humano. É isso o que estamos a
On 25 August 2011 08:59, Ravishankar <ravidre...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi all,
> I appreciate the transparent, detailed and professional planning of
> conference and I am sorry I couldn't take part in WikiConference related
> planning earlier.
> For those who don't know, I am a Tamil Wikimedian since 2005 with 20,000+
> edits. My major interest lies in outreach and policy decisions concerning
> Tamil Wikimedia projects.
> Am I qualified to express my opinions now ? ;)
> I have two major concerns:
> 1. The overall budget. It is huge even if we get 100% commercial
> sponsorship. We could do more useful things with this budget.
> 2. The amount of money that is being granted from the foundation.
> Given the indication that this may be an annual event, here are my ideas on
> *how a WikiConference shall be arranged. *
> * WikiConference need not be an annual event.
> * It should be planned well in advance ( a year in advance at least to
> allow time for planning and fund-raising )
> * Let's not have an ambitious plan and wonder for funding. We should have a
> realistic estimate for non-grant funding and plan accordingly. *Bidding
> city / community should show guarantee to meet at least half the budget by
> means of commercial sponsors and other revenue sources.* If they cannot
> provide this guarantee, they should revise the budget.
> * Tie up with local universities / academic institutions for free venue /
> dorms and look for the dates when these can be available. WikiConference is
> a media event and I am sure there will be many hosting partners for a brand
> like Wikipedia. If we can convince schools to run campus ambassador programs
> why not they be convinced to host this?
> * Need not be a 3 day event. Even a 1 or 2 day event will be good. (will
> cut down logistics, accommodation costs) .
> *What if this is 2001 with no WMF and grants? How will we plan and
> *This is not a corporate conference to have 100% professional and rocking
> experience at any cost. This is a community conference and that spirit
> should be kept. *
> *Here are some ways to minimise expense and generate revenue:*
> * We are getting lakhs of eyeballs for sponsorship / participation
> announcement and they all land in WikiConference India home page. But
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/WikiConference_India_2011/Sponsorship has
> no info and I couldn't find sponsorship related info anywhere else. This
> should be the highlighted info in conference homepage asking for sponsors.
> * Why not convert the conference itself into a fund-raiser? Open a donation
> booth. Have an agreement with chapter / foundation to get 50% donations for
> conference expenses and donate the rest to the movement. Can we place a
> banner of this budget in the conference venue? Will our expenses be
> justified to a common man? Will people be motivated to donate? If not, we
> are doing something the wrong way.
> * Registration cost should be at least 300 INR per day. ( The current
> budget allots 200 INR plus per day for food alone). The value of the
> conference is in the knowledge they gain and not in the goodies we give.
> Meritorious candidates can apply for sponsorships. We don't need a crowd.
> The local crowd may come and forget it as yet another event. The prime focus
> should be to bring together best minds already active in Wikimedia at one
> place. The attendees party can be free for scholarship recipients but others
> can pay. If you compare that a movie going experience in Mumbai should cost
> at least 200 INR per head, we need not feel shy to charge where it is due.
> * Sell Wikipedia souvenirs including T-Shirts, mugs etc.,. Or give them as
> a freebie when people make large donations.
> * If we can make the event a two-day conference, we can cut down logistics
> and accommodation costs. Even an international event like Wikimania has some
> less quality presentations. Have four tracks: Language Wikipedia projects,
> English Wikipedia, Tech and General. ( I found only two seminar rooms in the
> budget and assume only 2 or 3 tracks) Have only the best papers and move the
> rest to lighting talks.
> Personally, I am not so happy with some of the ways WMF, chapters are
> spending the donated money and I know there are more people feeling this
> way. If even regular Wikipedians feel like this, we should be more
> responsible in how we project ourselves for the public. I have been a
> regular donor to WMF but will reconsider from this year on. A good idea will
> be to apply to join the grants committee or take part in the discussions
> there. So, this is nothing personal against WikiConference India.
> Personally, I have experiences running a whole day blog camp for 200 people
> with less than 50,000 INR with no registration cost and free lunch. In
> another instance, Tamil Wikipedians ran a 3 day Wikipedia workshop for 1000s
> of people with less than a 20,000 INR budget. So, I can't help compare the
> value brought forth by some of the items in the current WikiConference
> budget. There have been tens of outreach programs by local communities so
> far with zero grants and zero cost. Special mention can be made of annual
> Wikipedia meetup, CD releases by Malayalam Wikipedia and State wide article
> contest by Tamil Wikipedia. Just because we have a chapter and grants now
> doesn't mean we can spend it somehow.
> We shall look for unconventional ways to invest wisely which will have
> maximum ROI. Here are some examples:
> * Once, a financially striving Tamil Wikipedian was contributing regularly
> by spending his own money from a browsing center. We managed to collect some
> cash from the community and presented him a PC with internet connection.
> Cost: 25,000 INR. You can guess his edit activity now and the lifetime value
> it brings.
> India is still a developing country and there may be many more such
> Wikipedians. Why not develop a Laptop scholarship program for qualified
> * http://www.noolaham.org is a volunteer driven NPO that aims to digitize
> Tamil resources from Sri Lanka. Their annual budget for 2010 was roughly
> 8 lakh INR and they have digitized 1000s of books so far. This is a
> significant achievement for a regional language given their civil war
> situations. When we wonder about lack of citations for Indian languages,
> imagine the impact of similar projects bootstrapped for all Indian
> * A resource center with one or two full-time professionals can be run for
> each Wikipedia with an annual cost of less than 10 lakh INR and this will
> have a huge impact on the quality and quantity of the Wikipedias.
> Finally, every Wikimedian has his own way of contributing to the movement.
> He cannot and need not take part in all activities but if he has an opinion
> on what is done in the name of community, I believe it should be discussed
> with an open mind.
> I will not be able to attend this year's WikiConference due to personal
> My best wishes for the event and special kudos for the organisers.
> Wikimediaindia-l mailing list
Wikimediaindia-l mailing list