Grants talk:Project/Wiki Loves Monuments international team/2017 coordination

Latest comment: 6 years ago by Effeietsanders in topic Proposal for expanded budget

Eligibility confirmed, round 1 2017 edit


This Project Grants proposal is under review!

We've confirmed your proposal is eligible for round 1 2017 review. Please feel free to ask questions and make changes to this proposal as discussions continue during the community comments period, through the end of 4 April 2017.

The committee's formal review for round 1 2017 begins on 5 April 2017, and grants will be announced 19 May. See the schedule for more details.

Questions? Contact us.

--Marti (WMF) (talk) 19:53, 27 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Questions from NickK edit

Hi @Ilario: and @Effeietsanders: and thank you for your proposal and volunteering to organise WLM again this year. I have several questions regarding your request:

  • WLM international team meeting. This is probably the most striking as it represents roughly a half of your project expenses. While the 2016 meeting has clear goals, some of these goals will not be applicable this year, like increasing collaboration (team is roughly the same) or reviewing mission (this is not something to be done yearly). I wonder if this can be done either remotely (e.g. video call) or as a part of a meeting during an event most team members attend anyway (Wikimania or Wikimedia Conference). In any case I would not support organising such a meeting without a clear agenda and outcomes (I do understand that it may be too early, but this is too expensive for unconditional support)
  • Branding and thank you gifts: what is your plan for distributing those? Notably I don't see any shipping costs, thus will they be distributed in person?
  • Jury report. How will this sum be used: will it be for production of the online report or for printing it?
  • Blog. I am a bit surprised to see illustrations as a part of the budget: isn't it supposed to use WLM photos that are already available under a free license?

Thank you in advance for your answers! — NickK (talk) 17:09, 14 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi Nick, thanks for your questions! Always good to have the ability to clarify where needed. I'll get to your questions one by one.
  • We had a team meeting earlier this year (February), and it worked rather well in our view to evaluate the previous year thoroughly, and get a kickstart for the following year. This is something we would like to repeat. I can refer to what was reported in our 2016's report: the meeting had the good outcome to build and maintain a team and to internalize lessons that we could draw from the evaluation.
    • We do believe that a good collaboration requires continuous work, and a physical meeting once per year will contribute to that. The international team may be the same group next year as this year, but it's also possible that the member ship may change. There are no guarantees that it will be the same. The mission is unlikely to change drastically, but instead, we could (and perhaps should) focus on strategy more. Where last year we were able to get the abstract level clear, this time we could go a level deeper.
    • We did consider doing this remotely, but concluded that this was not an option. We're already having online team meetings on a biweekly basis, and to get the same level of depth would already take a huge number of meetings, and it would still not get the same level of interaction and intensity. It may indeed save money, but it would be at the cost of effectiveness. We would try to connect the international team meeting to an existing event, but at this point, the calendar does not seem to provide for immediate opportunities there (given our project timeline), January/February would be the logical point in time. If it is a realistic possibility to connect events (as the event calendar develops), that is something we will consider in due course. I won't go into details of such calculation right now, but it's on our mind. For now, we will work from the assumption that it is not possible.
    • An agenda for the international team meeting is indeed a bit too hard to speak to right now, since these exact details will depend on the outcome of the 2017 Wiki Loves Monuments campaign later this year. But the goals of the meeting will eventually all feed into the goals of the whole project. One thing that will probably be a major topic by then, is the transfer of monuments data to Wikidata, and all the consequences and opportunities that brings. If that helps you, I could give an indication of intended outcomes (as long as we agree to be a bit flexible there): Evaluation of the 2017 campaigns, finding ways to continue to improve; redefine and evaluate the end-to-end experience of WLM, incl. workflows; a plan for the challenges of next year, and defining the new focus areas. We're taking on a few big technical projects this year, with a distributed team of volunteers. It would be very helpful for that team to be able to meet in person, and agree what to work on next.
  • What we want to do with the branded gifts and thank-you's, is improve the international connections, reward commitment, and thank some key volunteers where possible. We believe that some branded gifts could go a long way to keep the enthusiasm alive. This includes potentially some thank you gifts to some key volunteers (e.g. jury members) and WLM materials for local teams. For the sake of simplicity, we included all related costs in the 'branding and thank you gifts'. Where possible, distribution would happen during events like Wikimania (which would be timely this year).
  • The jury report proves to be an important component of our work: it provides a level of documentation to the outside world and helps with establishing WLM as a serious photography competition. This also require a professional look and feel. This all has to happen in a very short time frame of less than a week between the jury decision and the announcement. While we prefer to work with volunteers, we find it necessary to ensure that this happens at the quality we aim for given the constraints. That is why we reserved a bit of money to hire someone for the design, if necessary.
  • You're totally right that we would never use that budget to pay people to make photos of monuments! That would indeed not be a logical approach. The 'illustrations' component should rather be seen in the light of data visualizations, infographics etc. We might use a part of that budget component for that, if volunteer capacity or expertise is unavailable.
I hope this clarifies the grant a bit in response to your questions. If you have any further questions, please let us know! öKind regards, Effeietsanders (talk) 15:53, 16 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Effeietsanders: Thank you for your answers! Everything is clear, although I still have doubts regarding this meeting, at least at this point. It is hard to evaluate the impact of this meeting: on one hand, the previous meeting happened just over a month ago when you wrote this proposal, and its impact was not clear yet, on the other hand, the next meeting will take place in ten months and its agenda is not clear. I think it would make sense to discuss this meeting separately, either in the next Project grants round (which will be after WLM) or as a separate grant, as it is too hard to make a decision at the moment — NickK (talk) 23:48, 17 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@NickK: My personal comment, I had the same idea than you to split the grant for meeting but I changed my opinion exactly last year when we applied for two different grants (so the same condition you propose). There was an overlapping of the two grants for some months and it means a double administrative work having two different fiscal sponsors. Practically speaking the best condition to rationalize workload is to have a single grant because we can release more resources for the core activities. In an organizational perspective, the meeting cannot be unrelated to the WLM organization because it can have a relevant impact on the main project. Imagine this meeting like a kickoff of the project where we finalize the last year activities and we can start the new ones. Having a physical meeting will "fast track" all activities. --Ilario (talk) 21:54, 18 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Comments from Atsirlin edit

I did my best to support such initiatives in the past as the organizer of WLM in Russia, but I would abstain this year, because, despite the growing activity of the international team, I see serious gaps in communication with local organizers. Last year the international team requested detailed feedback from us, but I am still waiting for any response to what I wrote there, which basically tells me that the international team is not interested in what we are doing and in what we can do, and plans to go ahead with its own program instead. It is not bad per se (although I am very concerned about some of their recent initiatives like moving everything to Wikidata), and there may be certain overlaps with what we are going to do, but presently it's not enough overlap to warrant my vote of support for this application.

One small, but important detail having immediate relation to the current application is the offline meeting that, as NickK already mentioned, takes a large fraction of the requested funds. The meeting in February 2017 has been arranged in a highly secret manner and excluded most people involved in the practical organization of WLM. I won't comment on the outcome of this meeting, perhaps it had to be performed in this secret way and perhaps it was successful (from the participants' point of view), but, well, how do you want me to support something that excludes me personally and excludes any aspects that I deem relevant to the progress of WLM? --Alexander (talk) 18:55, 16 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi Alexander. Regarding the first point, I expect some more generosity from you. :) Our planning for 2017 took into account the feedback that you and other national organizers had provided to us. All international team members reviewed the results of the surveys in 2016 at our meeting in February and we defined, for example, a project to build an organizer dashboard to address specific needs mentioned in those surveys. In this specific example, the goal of the dashboard is to help organizers like yourself identify the issues that rise as part of their Wiki Loves Monuments campaign more easily and address them more pro-actively. (As we both know, the mass deletion in Commons were a problem in 2016 and the years prior to that). Regarding the specific post you linked, we have missed that, not because we didn't care but because we missed a notification. You have my email address and you are already in contact with me from time to time: if you see no response, assume good faith and ping directly, please.
Regarding your second point: There is a difference between secrecy and limit on the scope of the meeting. The meeting was announced in December on wikilovesmonuments public list and every single session of the meeting is documented publicly and in details. The meeting was instrumental for the work we needed to plan for 2017. The four projects defined for this year are the result of that meeting. On a related note: As the international team and similar to many other movement projects we are very cautious about Movement resources (this includes volunteer time but also financial resources) and we request them only when we really need them. For the 2017 planning, it was more efficient (both in everyone's time and costs) to collect feedback ahead of time and take it into account when planning in a smaller team setting. Meeting with larger groups of organizers is scheduled for venues such as WMCON and Wikimania where we can take advantage of people getting together in one place more naturally without imposing extra costs to the movement (note that we're talking about at least 40-50 national competitions and collecting these many people in one place just for a Wiki Loves Monuments meeting is out of question). If you are interested to learn more about how we are engaging with national organizers in other settings, please check out our presentation in WMCON (slides and abstract) which was attended by around 30 past and future organizers. Also, see our Wikimania submission). --LilyOfTheWest (talk) 21:49, 16 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Dear Lily, I am talking specifically about the field "What other feedback or comments do you have?", where I wrote almost one page of text (unfortunately, I did not save it for my records). There was nothing about Commons in this text, but there were several other things, where not only me but about 15 people were expecting to hear the opinion of the international team and could already do something, should we get response in a timely manner. On top of all other communication channels, you also have my e-mail address and can write me at any time, so the problem seems to be somewhere else (just for the record, someone from your team thanked me for this edit, which makes me believe that the international team has been notified, but there was, again, some other communication problem around it).
While this is not a good place to discuss details, I would mention two aspects in order to explain the context. First, your dashboard solution for Commons is essentially an approach of tracking symptoms instead of curing the disease, and it does not seem to address the problem that we raised. Second, I have written many times and in many places that Montage in its current version is not a solution when a single jury has to deal with a large number of images. We do have more images than all 13 countries that used Montage last year, and we do need more functionality, which is something I have also written on the feedback form. However, from all the long meeting notes I infer that this problem was never discussed, and further development of Montage is not on the list. If some countries do not use Montage, they choose so "for social reasons". Well...
These are just two examples, which make me believe that the international team indeed collected some feedback, but made its own interpretation of what should be done with it, and did not concern too much about whether or not the planned solutions address the needs of local organizers. This I call the communication problem.
Regarding the offline meeting, I do believe that it was not performed in an open manner, because topics of the meeting were not announced beforehand, and the community had no say in what will be discussed, nor could we leave any specific comments for your consideration during the on-site discussion (and I am quite sure that I have something to say about, e.g., migration to Wikidata, let alone the notorious Commons problem). Given that large part of our feedback never received any attention (see above), I can be confident that at the moment we are simply excluded from the process. Secrecy may not be the right word indeed, but it was a closed meeting by all means, not only regarding the participation but also regarding the content. (just to make it clear, I do not oppose such meetings as long as WMF approves them, but I see no reason why anyone outside of the international team should support this).
Regarding the personal meetings in general, I see, contrary to you, 40-50 people as the right size for a dedicated WLM workshop, possibly as a satellite event to a bigger conference, so that no additional costs other than paying for the conference room are incurred. What we had so far is the announcement of a very short session only 12 days before the actual event, which, for many reasons, is not a good way to discuss in person even those two aspects that I raised above. --Alexander (talk) 08:33, 17 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Comments from Braveheart edit

If I may add a comment at this point - to me it seems like the grant should offer some kind of orientation for local organisers as to what they can and can NOT expect from the international team, since expectations can differ quite greatly depending on the country in question (the MoSCoW method would be one example for clarifying the level of support offered). What should also be clarified is that the "internal team meetings" probably take place online? Maybe also clarifying that all attendees of that meeting attended in a volunteer capacity would make it clearer as to who exactly you're supporting with the travel costs for that meeting, since a majority is closely affiliated with chapters or the WMF and it's unclear why chapters like WMDE, WMIT, WMCH, WMSE or the WMF itself would not find it worthwhile to support these efforts internationally (again, something that probably leads to a larger discussion on how much the movement does or does not value international cooperation right now ;-) ). Braveheart (talk) 23:19, 17 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thanks Braveheart for your comments, always appreciated. Your suggestion on how to set expectations is something always in the back of our minds - although especially important in our communication towards the national organizers.
You're correct that the 'internal team meetings' are online - which is probably implied given that we didn't reserve big budgets for travel.
The planned team meeting would indeed cover all team members, with some invited experts where needed. It is the expectation that the vast majority of these participants will be doing this in a purely volunteer capacity. Asking their employers (or otherwise associated organizations) to fund their trip would, in my opinion, be equally undesirable as when we would do so with a university that employs them, or a supermarket chain. Additionally, it wouldn't make sense to only shift expenses to other movement organizations - the whole point of requesting a single international grant is that we don't have to go make the rounds and ask all kind of different organizations for a contribution. Some may find it very well worthwhile to support, but we would rather deal with one centralized grant for the sake of overhead and transparency. For those reasons, we decided to include all costs in this budget, rather than spreading it over multiple organizations. Effeietsanders (talk) 12:44, 21 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Atsirlin: a workshop is a very work-intensive meeting that will definitely not work with 40-50 people involved - of course you could split it up into 4 to 5 different workshops, but that requires some overhead, which makes the whole thing a lot more bureaucratic and the overall outcome even less clear. 40-50 people also pose a way greater organisational challenge than 15 do, and neither Wikimania nor Wikimedia Conference offer a setting where all organisers are able to make it there (especially with Montreal and Capetown being nowhere close to WLM-centric Europe and WMCon (usually) having a very different focus). Braveheart (talk) 23:19, 17 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Braveheart:, in my field, which is physics research, workshops with 40-50 (and even up to 100) people are the most efficient way of personal communication. One day of such a workshop can easily fit 10-15 presentations, while leaving enough space for formal and informal discussions. It is not brainstorming or team-building, but it is the best way of exchanging opinions and keeping each other updated. For example, a 15-20 min presentation with specific ideas about migration to Wikidata would be a lot more useful than the simple statement "We want to move the monument database to Wikidata" that we hear every now and then.
I don't see how such a one-day workshop, where participants make their own travel arrangements, is more difficult to organize than the 3-day all-included session that the international team plans. I do agree that big conferences are usually held outside Europe, and it poses a challenge, but no additional challenge compared to the current approach, where we are supposed to attend Wikimania on the other side of the globe for a 60-min WLM session, while a dedicated WLM event in Europe is only for the international team. --Alexander (talk) 07:21, 18 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think the international team will respond to the suggestions concerning the format of the international team meeting. It would be cool if everyone organised and payed for their own travel arrangements, but I'm not sure that's realistic. Braveheart (talk) 14:12, 18 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Round 1 2017 decision edit


Congratulations! Your proposal has been selected for a Project Grant.

WMF has approved partial funding for this project, in accordance with the committee's recommendation. This project is funded with 13,200 EUR

Comments regarding this decision:
The committee is pleased to support partial funding for international coordination of Wiki Loves Monuments.

The project budget has been reduced to exclude the team meeting, travel and unforeseen categories. The meeting is eligible for funding through a WMF grant, but we would like to first review a completed report for your Conference Grant for the last meeting, and a developed agenda for the coming meeting. Consequently, we ask you to submit a separate proposal when your plans for the meeting are further along. You may use the budget request button in your Project Grant to ask for additional funding to cover unforeseen expenses or travel once you are able to specify the purpose or the need.

We are happy to be one of the sources of support for the significant convergence of creative contributions that constitute Wiki Loves Monuments. We look forward to seeing the results for this year's contest.

Next steps:

  1. You will be contacted to sign a grant agreement and setup a monthly check-in schedule.
  2. Review the information for grantees.
  3. Use the new buttons on your original proposal to create your project pages.
  4. Start work on your project!

Upcoming changes to Wikimedia Foundation Grants

Over the last year, the Wikimedia Foundation has been undergoing a community consultation process to launch a new grants strategy. Our proposed programs are posted on Meta here: Grants Strategy Relaunch 2020-2021. If you have suggestions about how we can improve our programs in the future, you can find information about how to give feedback here: Get involved. We will launch our new programs in July 2021. If you are interested in submitting future proposals for funding, stay tuned to learn more about our future programs.

Aggregated feedback from the committee for Wiki Loves Monuments international team/2017 coordination edit

Scoring rubric Score
(A) Impact potential
  • Does it have the potential to increase gender diversity in Wikimedia projects, either in terms of content, contributors, or both?
  • Does it have the potential for online impact?
  • Can it be sustained, scaled, or adapted elsewhere after the grant ends?
(B) Community engagement
  • Does it have a specific target community and plan to engage it often?
  • Does it have community support?
(C) Ability to execute
  • Can the scope be accomplished in the proposed timeframe?
  • Is the budget realistic/efficient ?
  • Do the participants have the necessary skills/experience?
(D) Measures of success
  • Are there both quantitative and qualitative measures of success?
  • Are they realistic?
  • Can they be measured?
Additional comments from the Committee:
  • Wiki Loves Monuments has traditionally served as a high-impact program for the global movement. It has produced a significant amount of content for Commons. However, clarity needed about whether this impact remains sustainable given the saturation of documented monuments in a number of regions and the shift towards other photography contests, such as Wiki Loves Earth.
  • This project has a long history of success and gigantic impact for our movement.
  • WLM has great potential for online impact (cf. Commons active users graph), and good solutions can be used in other photo contests (WLE, ESPC,...)
  • The goals of the project are clearly defined, and appear to be in line with the results of past Wiki Loves Monuments campaigns.
  • Very consistent targets and planning.
  • Very good iterative project that brings good results from one year to another :) Great to see that the team is interested in learning for it.
  • The participants are highly experienced Wiki Loves Monuments organizers, and there is little doubt of their ability to successfully execute the program. The budget is reasonable for a global campaign; however, a significant portion of it appears to consist of contingencies... more specificity would be appreciated here.
  • Excellent professionals with lots of experience.
  • I have no doubt the team will be able to do it, but I am concerned about the effectiveness of plans to fund the team meeting offline.
  • There is, as always, a significant degree of community support and engagement with the Wiki Loves Monuments campaign as a whole. However, it is unclear how much engagement exists at the international coordinating level, as opposed to the individual national contests.
  • This project can continue to find engagement, especially with other small communities.
  • There is a strong community behind WLM, and the WLM team has rather good engagement with this community.
  • While the project itself deserves funding, some reduction in the budget -- particularly through the removal of some of the more expensive contingencies, such as prizes and travel -- may be appropriate.
  • Concerns about funding: Every local team already get funds for local prizes. Also, travel budget seems likely to exceed actual costs.
  • I support funding everything except the team meeting (which should be discussed after the WLM 2017 happens, either in the next Project grants round or as a Conference grant).

Review of the output/outcome edit

As per our last discussion, we have reviewed the output/outcome as consequence of the budget's reduction. --Ilario (talk) 18:01, 4 August 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Proposal for expanded budget edit

@Mjohnson (WMF): As per the funding decision, I would like to request a change in our budget. We agreed earlier that if we would arrive at a more specific proposal for travel costs, we could request an expansion of our budget for that. Based on our inventory of challenges, we came to the conclusion that it would be very helpful to our longer term goals to participate in WikiIndaba 2018. This year we have helped two new countries from Africa to participate, but in our experience there are specific challenges for sub-Saharan countries to participate. As a follow-up for those observations, we would like to involve African organizers in the conversation, and make optimal use of the opportunity to inform & discuss participation in 2018. We specifically refer here to sub-Saharan Africa, because we have seen great participation in Saharan Africa already; the challenges they face may or may not be shared and we don't want to make assumptions there.

During WikiIndaba, we would like to present Wiki Loves Monuments (as a concept) to the participants (outreach to new small communities), but also start a conversation around how the concept could be further developed and how it could be improved to make it a more impactful concept in Africa. We think a roundtable discussion is the best start for that conversation, and I plan to have follow-up conversations during and after the roundtable with people who have organized WLM in the past in Africa (feedback, why did/didn't it work). I would compile that information and feed it back to the international team, and probably write up a quick report for the WikiIndaba and if suitable, to the wider international community for feedback. Based on that, we can look into improving the situation, infrastructure or rethinking our concept (which we promised to do anyway). I don't expect this process to finalize before Wikimania, and there we could continue the conversation, hopefully leading to broader participation in 2019. Also, we trust that participation will help in general with future participation from African countries.

Specifically, the following goals are being aimed for:

  • Building lasting relationships with local organizers in Africa
  • Raising Awareness among African organizers of best practices that exist internationally and among themselves regarding organizing WLM and encouraging them to implement
  • Learn about challenges of organizing a contest in (especially sub-Saharan) Africa. Have a focused discussion and learn from and about the African communities what issues they are facing, and how the international team can help.
  • Identify pathways to potential improvements to the WLM concept

The submission for the program can be found here: . The group of members of the international team that would be able to make the time available, has the required experience and is able to follow-up on the process afterwards is unfortunately limited to the SF Bay area.

Estimated expenses
Travel (Air): 1424 USD
Accommodation: 72 USD * 4 nights = 288
Local transportation: negligable (~15 USD?)
Per diem (for food that is not covered in the conference): 4 * $97 * 75% * 50% = $ 145
Total: 1872 USD ~ 1550 EUR (rounded)

WikiIndaba takes place after the end of this project (16-18 March) - but the expenses would happen in February. Would we have to request extension of the end of the project (which technically runs 1 July - 28 Feb), or can we assume this is OK?

Thanks, Effeietsanders (talk) 19:14, 18 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Mjohnson (WMF): Quick update: the program proposal has been accepted. Effeietsanders (talk) 18:48, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Budget request approved edit


I am approving this request for travel, accommodation, local transportation and food costs beyond meals provided in support of your participation in Wiki Indaba.

From the perspective of the Wiki Indaba program, Kacie Harold (WMF) tells me it would be very useful if you could make yourself available to offer mentorship support for Wikimedians who are new(er) to photo contests and who may need support understanding copyright on Commons--not just within but also beyond Wiki Loves Monuments. Kacie may reach out to you directly to request help with this.

I'm pinging our grants administrator so she is aware of this approval.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Warm regards,

--Marti (WMF) (talk) 18:51, 13 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Adding that I am approving an extension of the project end date to end of March 2018 to include participation in Wiki Indaba. --Marti (WMF) (talk) 20:54, 13 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Marti: Thank you. And of course, always happy to help out with people who want to get some input, or think through a situation around photo competitions! Effeietsanders (talk) 02:27, 16 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
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