Grants:PEG/WCUG Wikisource/Wikisource Conference 2015/Report

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Report accepted
This report for a Project and Event grant approved in FY Pending has been reviewed and accepted by the Wikimedia Foundation.
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Group photo
Group photo

Project status[edit]

Did you comply with the requirements specified by WMF in the grant agreement?
Is your project completed?

Activities and lessons learned[edit]


In the preparation of the conference and in consultation with WMF staff it was decided that the main target group for this conference would be experienced Wikisourcians. As the main focus of the conference was the future of Wikisource, its vision and mission and the necessary technological infrastructure to live up to them, it was important to concentrate on those critical issues with a group of people who have the necessary knowledge, experience and skills to contribute. Accordingly, the scope of potential attendants and topics was reduced compared to the original plans outlined in the proposal.
  • Lightning talks and thematic overview:
    • Status quo of Wikisource
    • Technical infrastructure and tools
  • Good practice presentations:
    • Showcasing GLAM partnerships
    • Challenges of digitalization projects
  • Discussions and workshops:
    • Identity of Wikisource
    • Development of a Wikisource manifesto / mission
    • Prioritization of necessary technical developments
    • Wikisource and Wikidata
  • DYI book scanner presentation
  • Leisure activities:
    • Pre-Conference: Visit of the Municipal and Provincial Archives of Vienna
    • Visit of a traditional Austrian Christmas Market at Spittelberg
    • Wikisource Conference Party
    • Post-Conference: City tour to the historic centre of Vienna and dinner in a typical Austrian tavern

Lessons learned[edit]

What worked well?
Visa / Scholarships: Despite comparably late start (the grant took longer to get through than expected), we managed to push through all the visas for our scholarship holders (including a participant from Iran) on short notice. This is mainly because we prepared as much as possible upfront (gathering information about the various requirements for different countries, collecting tricks of the trade from experienced chapters in this regard, preparing texts for invitation letters, clarifying insurance issues etc.) and because some of the volunteers were quite experienced with the visa procedures in their countries and helped us a lot on their side. (For more insights about visa procedures please see our refined learning pattern linked below). Also the survey showed, that the scholarship holders were generally happy and satisfied with the help and support by WMAT, i.e. travel aid, assistance on site etc.
Local impact: Although the focus of the conference narrowed in the wake of the preparations (targeting mainly experienced Wikisourcians, concentrating on internal issues) the opportunities for WMAT to include external GLAM partners or the local community that is not active on Wikisource yet in a meaningful way were decimated. However, we think we could still made most out of the situation under the given circumstances by actively involving our community not only as helpers on site but also actively integrating them in social events (dinners, party) and the fringe program (city tour, archive tour), giving them ample opportunity to mingle with the international crowd. The conference also helped the chapter to connect to some Austrian volunteers that were not on our radar before. For the time being, we also put on a banner about the conference for Austrian users of Wikipedia in order to raise awareness for WMAT activities in the general public - this activity also led to media attention about the conference (newspaper and radio).
What didn't work?
Moderation / facilitation: This Wikisource conference mainly consisted of working sessions and the ambitious goal was to create a shared vision and roadmap for the future of the project. In order to avoid getting lost in too detailed discussions or sideshows (problems not uncommon when a diverse group of volunteers coming from different backgrounds and language versions with very heterogeneous challenges meets for the first time), we decided to bring in an external facilitator to structure the discussion and to ensure the available time will be used as efficiently as possible. We also wanted to make sure, that all participants would be able to join the discussions without forcing one or more of them into the role of a neutral facilitator. However, despite an in-depth briefing by various stakeholders beforehand, the facilitator approach did not really work in this context. WMF staff in this case was better suited to foster and structure the discussion, partly as a result of their first hand knowledge concerning what is necessary for the Foundation to better understand the challenges and wishes of the Wikisource communities and what are the chances and limitations for possible future support and under what circumstances. As a result, the external facilitator only moderated parts of the first day, but was not present for the second day.
What would you do differently if you planned a similar project?
Timing: If WMAT organized another PEG supported conference or event, we would consider to set the date only after the the grant would have been submitted. Given that there is no clear and predictable timeline for a PEG application, delays can lead to severe temporal bottlenecks, and though some things can be prepared in the meantime, other cannot (e.g. visa applications). Contingents in hotels, reserved rooms at the venues need to be confirmed and partly paid at some point, it was a major inconvenience to put all that on hold for such a long time, or constantly negotiate new deadlines. Indeed, it was only possible because it was not high season in Vienna, in spring or early summer this would have been impossible to do.
Coffee supply: The most common criticism among our participants was the coffee shortage! We only planned a formal coffee break for the afternoons, not for the time between breakfast and lunch. For future occasions we might not only provide water but also some tea and coffee in the conference rooms in the morning, so people have enough caffeine supply, even without a coffee break.
Feedback and ideas from participants:
While there was an overall agreement that the content of this first Wikisource Conference was adequate as a starting point and sufficient regarding the given amount of time, there were some ideas mentioned in our participants survey that could be subject of further online collaboration or online meetings. The most commonly mentioned ideas were presentations/skill transfer on technical aspects such as useful tools, more information about Wikidata, and discussions on how to attract new editors for Wikisource. For future conferences the wish for a edit-a-thon or a hackathon for Wikisource was expressed, as well as for an even broader representation of different Wikisource language versions and communities.

Learning patterns[edit]

Outcomes and impact[edit]

The Wikisource Conference in numbers
The Wikisource Conference in numbers


Provide the original project goal here.
  • There is the need to empower volunteers both as independent agents of the group that can gather resources from the environment to "make things happen", and as partners of other organizations who might need an insider to also contribute into Wikisource. Building building relationships between Wikisource editors, thus building an international community.
  • There is the need both of renewal, and of greater involvement and collaboration with partner organizations like the WMF and Wikimedia Chapters.
  • An international Wikisource conference can serve for the following purposes:
  • empower volunteers who want to run or activate dormant communities
  • showcase tools, projects, experiences to learn from one another
  • sit-and-talk with chapters representatives to discuss projects that can be done now
  • create a sense of belonging in the sparse international community
  • transfer the "WSCUg representative role" to more volunteers, brief them
  • Not in scope any longer:
  • invite other possible partners like Europeana, Internet Archive, Project Gutenberg
  • invite GLAMs to join Wikisource, as it can be a a very suitable project for libraries and archives
Did you achieve your project goal? How do you know your goal was achieved? Please answer in 1 - 2 short paragraphs.
The main goals of the conference were to empower volunteers and to develop a shared understanding and strategy for the future of Wikisource.

According to the feedback in our participants survey, these goals were achieved - both regarding the program as well as the composition of participants:
Overall, you found the conference to be ...
Very useful 24 66.7 %
Useful 12 33.3 %
The Conference ...
... was suitable for my background and experience.
Strongly agree 15 41.7 %
Agree 21 58.3 %
Disagree 0 0.0 %
Strongly disagree 0 0.0 %
... contributed to reaching a shared understanding of the future of Wikisource.
Strongly agree 19 51.4 %
Agree 16 43.2 %
Disagree 2 5.4 %
Strongly disagree 0 0.0 %

The organization and conference logistics also got some overall positive feedback by the participants:
How satisfied were you with the following aspects of the conference?
Very satisfied 16 44.4 %
Satisfied 18 50 %
Less satisfied 1 2.8 %
Unsatisfied 0 0.0 %
Not applicable 1 2.8 %
Communication with the conference team before the conference
Very satisfied 22 59.5 %
Satisfied 13 35.1 %
Less satisfied 1 2.7 %
Unsatisfied 0 0.0 %
Not applicable 1 2.7 %

How well do you feel the conference team supported you during the conference?
Very well (5) 30 81.1 %
4 7 18.9 %
3 3 8.1 %
2 0 0.0 %
Poorly (1) 0 0.0 %
The full results of our survey can be found here.

Progress towards targets and goals[edit]

Not all the original project metrics turned out to be applicable, as the scope of the conference changed severely from being an outreach event for newbies and GLAMs to be an internal working conference for the exisiting Wikisource communities.

Project metrics

Project metrics Target outcome Achieved outcome Explanation
more than 7 Wikisource language communities represented 23 language communities represented Diversity was - besides experience - an important citerion for selecting scholarship holders
5 biggest Wikisource language communities are represented English, German, Russian, French, and Hebrew where represented. Depending on the metric, the Polish Wikisource might also qualify as part of the top 5. However, there were unfortunately no participants from Poland present.
>= 60% has experience with Wikisource 80% had experience with Wikisource Conference scope was altered so that Wikisource experience became necessary to contribute. Exceptions were Wikidata experts which little Wikisource experience.
Every part of the program attracted >= 50% of the target audience size NA In the end it was a working conference with no parallel sessions, just a breakout room for side meetings, hacking etc.
At least 5 chapters providing travel grants 4 chapters providing travel grants (not counting WMAT) WMUK did not have the resources to fund their volunteers, they had to be supported by conference scholarships
>= 15 news and/or blog posts of Wikimedia chapters or user groups 6 reports/blog posts, 2 live-tweet streams Not entirely in scope as in the new scope the conference was not aimed at a general public / wider movement any more
>= 5 news and/or blogposts of participating GLAMs NA In the new scope of the conference there was no GLAM track / there were no GLAMs invited
Visibility NA The goals in regard of visibility are not applicable anymore, as the scope of the conference has changed

Global Metrics[edit]

We are trying to understand the overall outcomes of the work being funded across our grantees. In addition to the measures of success for your specific program (in above section), please use the table below to let us know how your project contributed to the Global Metrics. We know that not all projects will have results for each type of metric, so feel free to put "0" where necessary.

  1. Next to each required metric, list the actual outcome achieved through this project.
  2. Where necessary, explain the context behind your outcome. For example, if you were funded for an edit-a-thon which resulted in 0 new images, your explanation might be "This project focused solely on participation and articles written/improved, the goal was not to collect images."

For more information and a sample, see Global Metrics.

Metric Achieved outcome Explanation
1. # of active editors involved 50 46 of 50 registered conference participants and 4 local volunteers.
2. # of new editors 0 Not in scope.
3. # of individuals involved 54 50 registered conference participants and 4 local volunteers.
4a. # of new images/media added to Wikimedia articles/pages 9 Files from commons:Category:Wikisource Conference 2015.
4b. # of new images/media uploaded to Wikimedia Commons (Optional) 77 Files in commons:Category:Wikisource Conference 2015.
5. # of articles added or improved on Wikimedia projects 79 Registered participants only, time frame: 2015-11-19, 9.30 am - 2015-11-22 8.00 pm; new articles added only.
6. Absolute value of bytes added to or deleted from Wikimedia projects 1315923 Registered participants only, time frame: 2015-11-19, 9.30 am - 2015-11-22 8.00 pm.
Learning question
Did your work increase the motivation of contributors, and how do you know?
The Wikisource community did a tremendous job in showing up and giving support to the Wikisource proposals. The top wishes in that category got 41 and 39 votes, which is really impressive considering the relative size of the projects.

— Danny Horn, WMF (Wikimedia-l, 16-12-2015)

Wikisourcians are very motivated to push the necessary developments as agreed upon during the conference. They seized the opportunity to raise awareness and get the required resources by participating in the WMF Community Wishlist, see here. It shows how the conference contributed to develop a shared vision and concrete next steps which could then be followed up upon by the volunteers, enabling them to act in concert at instances such as the wishlist survey.
Reports, blogs and tweets by participants about the conference:


What impact did this project have on WMF's mission and the strategic priorities?

Option A: How did you increase participation in one or more Wikimedia projects?

The following findings of our participants survey strongly suggest, that the conference will have a positive effect on participation and collaboration in Wikimedia projects:
Have you met anybody at the conference that you are going to collaborate with?
More than ten people 2
More than 5 people 3
Two to five people 8
One 2
Meeting all those Wikimedia people at the conference helped me join or start an initiative.
Strongly agree 10 27.8 %
Agree 22 61.1 %
Disagree 4 11.1 %
Strongly disagree 0 0 %
Meeting all those Wikimedia people at the conference helped me learn about useful tools.
Strongly agree 15 44.1 %
Agree 12 35.3 %
Disagree 7 20.6 %
Strongly disagree 0 0 %

Option B: How did you improve quality on one or more Wikimedia projects?

A lot of development was realized during the conference. For example :
  • rewriting the template Author in LUA to use Wikidata (French Wikisource, s:Module:Auteur2)
  • fixing a lot of bugs caused by Right-to-Left (Hebrew Wikisource)
  • fixing the configuration of the templates (Arabic Wikisource, see log of Tpt)
  • deploying new instances of Wsexport in Wikisources still using the old link.

Option C: How did you increase the reach (readership) of one or more Wikimedia projects?

As mentioned above, the focus of the conference shifted, and introducing new contributors, (GLAM) partners, or an interested public to the project was no longer in the scope of the conference. However, there was some local media attention in the context of the event, which generated awareness in the general public for Wikimedia in general and Wikisource in particular.

Reporting and documentation of expenditures[edit]

This section describes the grant's use of funds


Did you send documentation of all expenses paid with grant funds to grants at wikimedia dot org, according to the guidelines here? Answer "Yes" or "No".
Yes. A Google Drive folder with invoices will be shared with the PEG grants team.


Please list all project expenses in a table here, with descriptions and dates. Review the instructions here.
Number Category Item description Unit Number of units Actual cost per unit Actual total Budgeted total Currency Notes
1 Venue 1,500.00 EUR
Rent for rooms Rooms/days 2x3 250 1,500 1,500 EUR
2 Dinner 2,099.20 EUR
3 days dinner buffet: soup, main course, vegetarian option, salads, dessert Participants/days 164 12.80 2,099.20 1,920 EUR The amount of participants varied between conference days.
3 Lunch 1,676.00 EUR
3 days lunch buffet: soup, main course, vegetarian option, salads, dessert participants/days 131 12,80 1,676.00 1,920 EUR The amount of participants varied between conference days.
4 Coffee breaks 1,265.70 EUR
3 days snack buffet: sweet or salty, tea, coffee, water participants/days 86 9.50 817 825 EUR The amount of participants varied between conference days.
3 days drinks (non-alcoholic) - - - 448.70 600 EUR The amount of participants varied between conference days.
5 Travel scholarship holders (overseas) 6,486.24 EUR
Flight fares Scholarship holders 7 550-1,750 6,486.24 10,000 EUR Fewer scholarship holders from overseas than projected.
6 Travel scholarship Europe 2,997.90 EUR
Train/bus/flight fares Scholarship holders 8 23-500 2,997.90 1,250 EUR More scholarship holders from Europe than projected.
8, 10 Public transport, airport transfer scholarship holders 352.10 EUR
Public transport tickets scholarship holders 15 4-19 352.10 319.50 EUR
14 Accomodation scholarship holders 1,660.00 EUR
Rooms for scholarshipholders at venue rooms/nights - 80-96 1,660.00 1,140.00 EUR Various different travel dates among scholarship holders, triple rooms were not always possible.
15, 16, 17 Leisure activities 485.66 EUR
Christmas market: mulled wine or punch Participants 25 2-3.20 74 150 EUR Not all participants joined the activity.
Archive tour: admission fee Participants 20 0 0 125 EUR Sponsored by the City of Vienna/Municipal Archive.
Party: venue, DJ, snacks, drinks - - - 411.66 1,000 EUR Negotiated cheap deal with no rent for the venue, only cleaning costs.
18 Printing material, welcome package 1,664.48 EUR
Design (conference logo, print marerial) - - - 595.50 595.50 EUR
Lanyards for name tags Lanyards 100 1.10 110 110 EUR
T-shirts for participants Shirts 38 9.61 365.28 200 EUR More expensive shirts due to express production / lack of time.
Wikisource Roll-ups Roll-ups 2 79 158 158 EUR
Conference Bags Bags 50 7.20 306.43 50 EUR We used the sponsorship of the VCB to produce fancy bags as souvenirs for participants.
Other Paper, copies, post its, name tags - - 129.27 - EUR
19 Staff costs 1,823.69 EUR
Additional hours WMAT administrative assistant 10 additional hours of administrative tasks and event management for three months 10x3 60.79 1,823.69 1,800 EUR
20 Unforseen 1,489.74 EUR
Moderator/ Facilitator 701.20 EUR External facilitator as a major unforseen budget item
Translation of documents for Austrian embassy in Iran 325.85 EUR
Dinner for staff on Sunday/ unpaid dinner bill 103.40 EUR
Mailing visa documents 122.82 EUR
Presents for speakers 110.21 EUR
Mailing grant agreement to US 60 EUR
Transport in Vienna 40.40 EUR
Multi-plugs 19.96 EUR
Tools for DIY-Scanner 5.90 EUR
Total project budget (from your approved grant submission)
40,045 EUR
Total amount requested from WMF (from your approved grant submission, this total will be the same as the total project budget if PEG is your only funding source)
24,850 EUR
Total amount spent on this project
23,500.71 EUR
Total amount of Project and Event grant funds spent on this project
23,200.71 EUR
Are there additional sources that funded any part of this project? List them here.
  • 300 EUR sponsoring from the Vienna Convention Bureau (VCB)
  • Travel grants from chapters for their participating volunteers (WMFR, WMNL, WMIT, WMDE)

Remaining funds[edit]

The funds remaining from this grant in the amount of 1470 EUR were deducted from another grant payment for Grants:APG/Proposals/2015-2016 round1/Wikimedia Österreich/Proposal form.
Are there any grant funds remaining?
Answer YES or NO.
Please list the total amount (specify currency) remaining here. (This is the amount you did not use, or the amount you still have after completing your grant.)
1,470 EUR (including currently outstanding receviables mentioned above)
If funds are remaining they must be returned to WMF, reallocated to mission-aligned activities, or applied to another approved grant.
Please state here if you intend to return unused funds to WMF, submit a request for reallocation, or submit a new grant request, and then follow the instructions on your approved grant submission.
Yes, an option to "return" the funds would be to set this remaining amount against our outstanding 2016 FDC grant allocation.

Documentation of expenditures has been received by WMF.