Wikimedia chapters/Reports/Wikimedia Australia/2009-01

Wikimedia Australia chapter report

Edition 4, January-May 2009

By Brianna Laugher, President (blaugher at wikimedia dot org dot au)

Annual General MeetingEdit

Wikimedia Australia had its first AGM on January 11th. Three groups participated via conference call: Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. Other members from different locations participated via IRC. Elections for committee positions were held, with results as following:

  • President: Brianna Laugher (uncontested)
  • Vice President: Liam Wyatt
  • Secretary: Sarah Ewart (uncontested)
  • Treasurer: Brian Salter-Duke (uncontested)
  • Ordinary members: John Vandenberg, Nathan Carter.


Free as in Freedom miniconfEdit

A miniconf called "Free as in Freedom" was held in Hobart, on 20th January, as part of the national Linux conference, (LCA). This miniconf was organised by Brianna Laugher (although not as a Wikimedia Australia event); one of the speakers was Liam Wyatt and one of the Keynote speakers of the whole conference was Wikimedia Foundation advisory board chair Angela Beesley. It included talks on open access, copyright law, geodata and citizen journalism. The first Tasmanian Wikimedia meetup was also held, and a Wikimedia Australia table was present at the LCA Open Day.


Submission on Australian Digital Future DirectionsEdit

In February we made a submission to the federal government Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy (DBCDE) on the "Digital Economy Future Directions Consultation Paper". This is our second submission to government, following our submission in September 2008 to the Victorian parliament's "Inquiry into Improving Access to Victorian Public Sector Information and Data".


Backstage PassEdit

This was an event held on March 13th, with the Powerhouse Museum (PHM) in Sydney. It involved giving Wikimedia Australia members a private tour of the PHM's collections, followed by group editing of articles relating to PHM topics. It was a very successful pilot event, leading the PHM to license their collection documentation under a variety of Creative Commons licenses.


PHM blog: <>

Berlin chapters meetingEdit

During April 3-5, Brianna Laugher and Liam Wyatt took part in the first all chapters meeting in Berlin. It was an excellent opportunity to present Wikimedia Australia and learn about what the other chapters are doing.


Our introductory presentation: <>

Unlocking IPEdit

On April 16-17 Brianna Laugher and Liam Wyatt attended the 'Unlocking IP' conference at the Cyberspace Law and Policy Centre at the University of NSW. Our talk was called "Wikimedia in copyright / Copyright in Wikimedia" and touched on a variety of topics: how the Wikimedia Commons community reconciles many national copyright laws; the license switch; derivative works/the right to fork and the non-commercial paradox.

As a consequence, we were invited to sit on a steering committee to set up a national peak body to represent the public interest in copyright law.

Abstract: <>

Video: <>

EDNA ICT workshopEdit

On 22nd May Brianna Laugher gave a talk at an EDNA workshop at the State Library of Victoria, about using Wikipedia in the classroom. EDNA is a government-funded "network of the education and training community".


Coming upEdit

GLAM-WIKI is a major event planned for August 6-7 at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. This will bring together members of the Gallery, Library, Archive & Museum sector (GLAM) with people from our community to discuss how we can collaborate and learn from each other. In the first week of being open for attendees one third of all places have been already been registered.



[&] = quotes from Wikimedia Australia member



  • 15 January
  • 8 February
  • 15 February
  • 28 February - 1 March - strategic planning meeting
  • 26 March
  • 4 May

Minutes can be found at <>.

Some training has also been undertaken. Brianna Laugher attended a seminar on "Secrets of Successful Boards" in February, and Brianna Laugher and Brian Salter-Duke attended a PILCH seminar on tax concessions for non-profits in May.

The committee submitted several grants to the WMF grants scheme. The submissions can be seen here: <>