On 01/03/2013 05:11 AM, Srikanth Ramakrishnan wrote:
I never mentioned anything about being part of the chapter.
The chapter was set up to promote the movement in India and it has done
so even in cases where a person/participant was NOT a part of the chapter..
I merely asked what benefit the Group recieves by taking the User Group
route over the Chapter SIG route.

What are your thoughts on the Chapter-SIG model.

Can you describe this Chapter SIG route / model, or point to a URL explaining it? The only thing I could find is http://wiki.wikimedia.in/City_and_Language_SIG_subcommittee_chair but nothing about process or even group activities can be found there.

In the meantime, let me add a bit more to Noopur's argument and my previous reply.

The main motivation of MediaWiki groups is unsurprisingly http://mediawiki.org - the open source software and its community around. They can be created in Ahmedabad, San Francisco, Mexico City, Berlin or wherever, but they share common needs, common activities, common materials and so on.

MediaWiki Groups were born at mediawiki.org because they were needed to bring this open source community to the physical space. In a formal sense they are just wiki pages with registered users signing up for them. No non-profit creation, no formal membership... The whole identity is based purely on activities organized.

It was a coincidence that the Wikimedia movement was about to approve the User Groups while MediaWiki Groups were defined. We discussed with the AffCom and we fine tuned the MediaWiki Groups requirements and process in order to make them Wikimedia User Groups as well.

Then Harsh, Yuvi and also Sucheta showed up proposing a MediaWiki Group India. At the end we decided that MediaWiki Groups need to be strictly local, and that MediaWiki activities at a national level should be better organized with the chapters, since they have already the infrastructure for that. Then Harsh evolved the proposal to MediaWiki Group Ahmedabad, Sucheta is already trying to gather critical mass for a MediaWiki Group Kolkata, etc.

That's it. You can still argue that such organizations could be handled a part of Wikimedia India SIGs, and that their promoters wouldn't be required to be chapter members. I don't even disagree with the idea, but in the right sequence of events: the motivation of these groups is mediawiki.org and therefore good alignment and coordination within the MediaWiki community is what matters most. I have no doubt that strong MediaWiki Groups will contribute to the strength of the Wikimedia community and their related chapters.

Quim Gil
Technical Contributor Coordinator @ Wikimedia Foundation

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