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Grants talk:PEG/Shared Knowledge/CEE WikiCamp 2015

Active discussions

GAC members who support this requestEdit

  1. I think that an effort should be made to reduce the grant's total sum, and goals should be more aggressive. Nevertheless, I think it's an excellent proposal. Alleycat80 (talk) 05:58, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. I have the same resalves as Alleycat, is too much money. But not that the project isn1t worth it. Béria L. de Rodríguez msg 15:04, 19 June 2015 (UTC)
  3. Because I have stars in the eyes just to read at the program and I'm pretty sure this is going to be an awesome experience for everyone involved. Léna (talk) 12:41, 23 June 2015 (UTC)
  4. Proposal is good and I support. But I think it would be great if the grant's total sum able to reduce. --Hasivetalk • 05:42, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
  5. Weak support for this time. I will wait for the re-working. --Packa (talk) 09:09, 30 June 2015 (UTC)

GAC members who support this request with adjustmentsEdit

GAC members who oppose this requestEdit

  1. MADe (talk) 20:19, 23 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. It's the second time that the CEE chapters ask to have a quick evaluation (I remember that the same was also for the CEE meeting), sorry but a budget of 50.000$ cannot be discussed in emergency. So quick request for quick evaluation. In my opinion the impact is low in the proposal the impact is not clear (at least 40 participants but new editors or existing editors?). --Ilario (talk) 07:44, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

GAC members who abstain from voting/commentEdit

  1. I abstain from voting, because I am Executive Committee Chair of Shared Knowledge. Regards, --Violetova (talk) 19:58, 16 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. I refrain from evaluating this grant request because of my involvement as President of Shared Knowledge and one of the contact persons for this request.--Kiril Simeonovski (talk) 07:12, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  3. I'm still undecided, there are things that make me say NO and at the same time other that make me say YES, this is a valuable initiative but the YES doesn't outweigh the NO. --DerekvG (talk) 09:34, 24 June 2015 (UTC) It seem to me top heavy budget which doesn't seem to lay any strategic groundwork on which to build further long-term cooperation. and the budget doesn't contribute to that long term objective --DerekvG (talk) 18:50, 27 June 2015 (UTC)

GAC commentsEdit

Call for frugality and more aggressive measuresEdit

Dear friends at Shared Knowledge, I took a look at the proposal, and found it to be worthwhile, if a bit laconic. I took a look at the program proposed, it looks thoroughly planned, and fun... I would've loved to take place in the program, were I a CEE citizen. Kudos.

  Comment Thank you very much for your considered comments and for your ethusiasm for this event. We are glad that with this, we may start a very nice tradition of such events in the countries of our region and improve the knowledge for each other and greatly increase the interpersonal relations between the countries. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

That being said, I have one issue with the plan - and it's the fact that it seems that you rely exclusively on Movement funds, with no apparent attempt to be frugal, with a big ask of >50K US$. What do I mean by that?

  • The meals are one of the most expensive budget items in the plan - have you looked at different alternatives (such as breakfasts on the venue by a catering company)?
  Comment I can assure you that we made every attempt to be cost-effective and this is the best we could manage. The meals are the best option we could find, at about 8-9 euros per person. There is little more we can do about it, as those are the prices in this city, being the capital. And they are quite ordinary ones, at ordinary places, nothing especially lavish. Catering is more expensive. In it is included ordinary and national food, which is essential for events like these, as it has been done in other countries before. I should also mention that this was the allowance for just one meal per person in other events held in other European countries. The only other alternative to this is to buy people sandwiches in stead of meals. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Have you tried negotiating better staying terms in the hotel or switching to a hostel? (you probably did, but still worth asking)
  Comment Yes, we tried with several places, but everywhere else the prices are even higher, as they don't have the capacity of double rooms with separate beds in sufficient numbers, which means that we will then have to accomodate about half of the participants in single rooms, which costs more. There is also no possibility for hostels, as none are prepared to take that many people at that time. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Have you considered dropping the first evening, and starting a bit later in the first day? I know, it'll make the event slightly less "cool", but will shave a few thousand dollars from the budget.
  Comment Starting later on the next day means that we will miss some important things in the programme. The problem would be further exacerbated by the fact that a good number of participants will arrive at the evening, meaning that the day is lost for them and for our event. It is normal practice for all such events for guests to come on the day before for that reason (and to rest and settle too).They do this when we go to movement events in other countries. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)
  • A radical suggestion - since August is heavy with tourism (I guess), and is the hottest month, have you considered moving the camp to Sep-Oct? I also foresee that if you push it back towards winter, you'll have better prices. I know this might not apply for 2015, but in the future please think about this and consider this option.
  Comment It is unfortunately not possible to move the event, as this has been planned long time in advanced, and individual CEE countries have been selecting their winners and already telling them what the prize will be (coming to our event). Also, our volunteer organisators are much freer at this time then later, as they have their holidays then. We would have a problem organising it if we do so later. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

Also - I think that bringing 40 people from around Europe to Macedonia entitles you to support from the city / country's tourism ministry. Have you sought support from external sources?

  Comment Yes, we considered asking for help, but we were informed that the budget for such things is made in advance for the following year, so as to have us in mind. For this year, all such finance has already been alloted and there is no extra help possible (see more below). --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

Moreover, I think that for an event costing that much, I would expect more aggressive measures. Why only 20 words recorded, and only 20 entries on Wikitionary? I could do that single-handedly during 3 days, and you have 40+ people on-site. I urge you be more aggressive, so a hefty sum like this seems worthy. By the way, I don't think 2,000 photographs are an aggressive measure - I tend to regard photography as secondary in importance to text, especially with all the WLM contests going on. I do want to say one good thing in this context: your goal of re-using 200 photographs from previous WLM contests is an excellent idea. This should be the standard for all photography-related events in the Movement, in my humble opinion. Thanks Alleycat80 (talk) 05:57, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

  Comment Yes, we had the re-use in mind too and this will have its place when participants edit the articles. We also agree that we need to increase the number of recorded words (we will change that in the request). As for the number of photographs to be taken, we specifically aim for quality rather than quantity, also keeping in mind that not all would like to participate or have suitable cameras to shoot at those expeditions. 2000 photos seem to us like quite an agressive measure, given that the people will be around the bazaar and monuments around, as well as a single day-trip. We think 2000 photos will be an excellent achievement for an event that isn't even primarily focused on photography. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

Hi everyone and thanks for your application :) This WikiCamp is really inspiring and as I'm writting, my brain is already working on how to have a similar event in France ^^ Since my questions are related to metrics, I put them here, but feel free to create a new section if it suits you better.

  Comment Thank you! We are very glad to inspire our fellow Wikimedians and are happy to share any experience and method we have.

Regarding the Upload-a-thon, will you focus on metadatas and/or categories and/or reuse on Wikimedia projects, or the goal is only to upload files ? --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

  Comment We intend to do both. New photographs will have their categorisation, description and metadata as far as possible, and existing ones will be also used in articles, and we also expect to improve their descriptions and categories/metadata too, if they are insufficient. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

Regarding the edit-a-thon, I fear two hours will be very short to create articles. Will you provide ressources (books) ? Do you plan to improve existing articles as well ?

  Comment This was meant to be not very long, but effective, as editing will be planned, organised and structured, with ready resources for each participant. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

Thanks :) Léna (talk) 15:56, 20 June 2015 (UTC)

Looking for other fundingsEdit

Hi :) Did you try to find other ways to fund this events (sponsorships, partnerships, etc) ? Léna (talk) 17:21, 20 June 2015 (UTC)

  Comment Unfortunately, we were not able to procure such funds (I wrote more about this in answer to Alleycat80's comment). The authorities that could have given some support have such assistance planned in the budget for the year in advance, and sponsors and partners with financial ability are still out of our reach, as we need to make ourselves a bit more prominent. Events such as this one enable us to raise the profile and be able to do that very thing in future. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 19:10, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

Photographic workshop timingEdit

Hi again ^^ I'm wondering if it would be possible to have the photographic workshop on the Fridray, meaning before the tourist visit of the Old Bazaar and the Wikiexpedition ? Léna (talk) 17:21, 20 June 2015 (UTC)

  Comment It is a good idea. We need to see how it fits in with other things. Changes such as this can be made, so we will look into it. Thanks for that! --B. Jankuloski (talk) 10:49, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

Comments by MADeEdit

This looks nice idea. I enjoyed the different Wikipedia conferences I was present, and think a CEE conference can be valuable.

The project has a big budget: 55k$, of which 52k$ is spend on flights and accomodation. This is 95% of the requested budget. This seems excessive to me. I did not find an overview of the travel costs. I personally also think the proposed catering is excessive (in one day: 1 hotel breakfast, 1lunch, 1 supper, 2 coffee breaks). As such, the budget looks unbalanced and not ok to me.

  Comment It goes without saying that travel and accomodation expenses will take the majority of the sum. We also have to stress that It was easy for us to tell each chapter to send people at their own expense (or the person's expense), but we are only too aware that such an approach is not realistic, meaning that an event like this cannot take place. The proposed catering is a very ordinary, and we don't see it as hefty in any way. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 20:38, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

On timing. I checked the different preparation pages, and it seems the preparation of the event only started beginning June (on wiki at least). It is proposed to start on 31 July. It now has to pass this PEG "quick quick". I'm not sure how you will plan the conference talks, confirm the venue and the accomodation, book flights, prepare leaflets, communicate with the relevant people, in the remaining 37 days. (For information, with a budget of 55k€, you will need to spend 1,5 k$ each day until the end of the conference. ) Lastly, I do not see a reason why this project must start end of July. This proposed schedule is too early, I would propose to postphone to a later date.

  Comment I'm afraid you are under the wrong impression here. We have been making preparations since March this year, and the whole thing was agreed with the CEE community on 28 January. We had already taken care of every detail way in advance. We only wrote the page now because we had to wait for one key confirmation, and we got it. All has been arranged. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 20:38, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

Quality wise, the project plan is not yet mature and a lot of valuable information is missing (lacking SMART goals and measures of succes, an unbalanced budget, lack of additional sources of income and community support).

  Comment The measures of success we gave seem to us very adequate and comparable to other successful events in the movement. As mentioned above, we have enormous community support by all participating CEE countries and their communities, plus our own (ad evidenced just by the number of people involved in organising this). --B. Jankuloski (talk) 20:38, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

In total, after assessing budget, quality and timing, this project seems not yet mature and a no go for me. MADe (talk) 20:19, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

  Comment Answered above. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 20:38, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

General remark about commentingEdit

Bjankuloski06, I would like to share with you that I have a bad feeling about your way of reacting and commenting to points of discussion here on this discussion page. Although I appreciate it that you follow this discussion page, I feel somewhat harassed by your way of denying / downplaying any comments that are made. It is also not necessary to have a "last reply" to our comments.

Please consider our comments and remarks as valuable feedback and not as negative comments that you want to deny. MADe (talk) 17:57, 26 June 2015 (UTC)

  Comment This must be some minunderstanding. I understand them as a feedback and had no intention whatsoever to seem edgy or critical. I apologise if it looks like that. What you say now surprised me, as I didn't see it like that at all. As for the comments, I am replying on them precisely because they are concerns raised and it is for me (and us, in general) to offer an explanation to them, since not everything that can be raised as a comment has been included already in our explanation. How else is the GAC to know about those things? Cheers --B. Jankuloski (talk) 18:06, 26 June 2015 (UTC)

Comments by DerekvGEdit

This camp certainly looks like a worthwile project and a very nice idea, I agree with MADe statement that a CEE conference can be valuable.

  Comment Helo Derek. Thank you for the well-considered approach to the issue. I will give the replies below. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 10:04, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

I looked at you projectplan and the responses here. I have following observations : a) on timing : if you started this project in january and worked the budget in March - in combination with it being part of a contest, imho. this project should have been submitted in March rather then a few weeks before the event and then ask for "express" evaluation in the PEG, that is putting unfair pressure on the GAC members, don't get me wrong the pressure is not on the time frame per se, but the pressure is on the members to agree because of the short time-frame because its too late to make changes, and we are then put before a "fait accompli" .

  Comment The preparations slowly started in March (January was just when we agreed on it), and then worked on it further. As I menioned above, the only reason we are putting it for consideration now rather than earlier was due to one variable (out of many already solved) that simply had to wait for a confirmation. Things happen like in event organising and sometimes there is little that can be done about it. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 10:04, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
  Comment To be honest, I don't see why there is any pressure on members to agree. They can decide in accordance with their best judgement. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 10:04, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

b) on measures of succes: if as you are saying this is part of a contest and winners have proven acquired skills in workign with wikipedia than the camp is a ultimate opportunity to show how good they realy are. As per Alleycat I think each participant should have a good production of quality submissions to the Wikiprojects, meaning they shoudl come prepared, bring a lot of information book references, citations, ready to submit what they are going to be writing / working on. Iḿ undecided : the project is valuable and therefore worthy of support, however I'm not convinced that this is the best project that this amount of money can buy - and iḿ taking inot consideration the fact that the CEE countries still have a lot of ground to cover. More over there is validity in the comment that the period chosen (August = holiday season = expensive) might not be the best time of the year - costing wise vs the public attending, if this is an adult public, then you would have to use a hotel but you could consider having the event outside holidays, however if this is a youthful public (students) the period would matter but you could use a youth hostel and cheaper venue. --DerekvG (talk) 09:33, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

  Comment The intention is to create quality content, of course. We will provide the materials needed for participation. Moreover, the focus is not that much on the individual winners in participating countries, as on all who will come (about 3 from each in total). --B. Jankuloski (talk) 10:04, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
  Comment The timing (beginning of August) was also agreed between the countries, as it suited most chapters best. --B. Jankuloski (talk) 10:04, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

Some suggestionsEdit

This is obviously a worthwhile event. And although exhausting, looks like it will be a lot of fun (you might want to make some sessions longer and prioritise one session over one or two others to make it all fit in. I also agree with Lena's logic about putting the photographic workshop before the photographic event).

There is a lot of discussion here and on-list about the budget and timing. Please consider the following compromise, it might help to sort out the concerns of the other GAC members, which I think are all valid. ...

  1. Being a regional event, it is obviously important to have people from across the region, but your aim is also to create content specifically about Macedonia. With these two issues in mind, it would make sense to have one or, if necessary, two people (rather than 3) to come from each country, and have an equal weighting of particpants from Macedonia, for example 20 visitors to 20 locals. This should assist with a reduction in airfare and accommodation load. It will also make the local Macedonian Chapter stronger and potentially increase membership, especially if you can activate more people by inviting newbies to join in some of your events. It will also allow for local media noise.
  2. You also claim to want to get the CEE region together to share experiences and discuss collaboration ... However, apart from a few lightning talks there is no time set aside for this ... And to me this is the most important part of, and the only justification for, a regional conference. By all means have some fun wiki stuff to do (and that is important, although some of these events could be done by the local group before the guests arrive), but really, there should be a session each day where you move closer towards whatever regional idea you have in mind.

As you cannot delay, you will probably have to look at what else can give. And you should really think about what you need to prioritise.

--Islahaddow (talk) 21:36, 24 June 2015 (UTC) You did make a very good point here Isla. --DerekvG (talk) 18:45, 27 June 2015 (UTC)

Community commentsEdit

WMF commentsEdit

As B. Jankuloski mentions at the top of the talk page, we have had a discussion with the organizing team and asked them to re-scope this grant request. There was a misunderstanding and lack of communication around the intended goals of Wikicamp that impacted the number of participants and overall budget. We are supportive of an event that brings together the winners of the CEE Spring writing contests to share experiences, pilot the wikigames model, and introduce them to the Wikimedia movement. Hopefully, a successful pilot can be shared at the upcoming CEE meeting in Estonia and adapted for other local contests. We do not believe that a larger, longer event with representatives from affiliates accompanying the winners is necessary nor appropriate given the close timing with the CEE meeting just 6 weeks later. We look forward to reviewing the updated proposal. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 00:05, 30 June 2015 (UTC)

Hi Alex, the grant request is revised. Regards, --Violetova (talk) 20:06, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
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