Welcome back from Wikimania 2014!
- Option 3: New Creation: What was one useful outcome that was created at the event for the Wikimedia movement?
- Wiki Loves Monuments 2014! The competition was all but cancelled because there was no organizing team. Deror and I (from Wikimedia Israel) used Wikimania as a platform to recruit volunteers and start the project.
Wiki Loves Monuments 2014
One of the biggest things I managed to do in this Wikimania was, along with Deror (User:Deror_avi), build a team of volunteers and gather interested people in Wiki Loves Monuments 2014. Most of the international team from previous years had not shown interest to participate in 2014, so the competition was all but dead, since most countries would not be able to run it without an international team. A few people thought that this was a shame and rose to the occasion to run the competition. The project is large and still ongoing, with international prizes not yet handed out.
The people in our core team where Deror, myself and Romaine, whom we convinced (at Wikimania) to help with 2014 since he had quite a bit of experience from 12–13. However, at Wikimania, in less than 3 hours of meetings, we also sorted out a number of technical issues with Maarten Dammers (User:Multichill), put together a jury involving long-time Wikimedians mostly active in GLAM (most of them present at Wikimania, it was easier to talk in person!) and many local organizers who told us what they expected, needed and could contribute. I don't think any of this would have been possible remotely, as all of these people are in different timezones, some take less and some longer to answer emails, and in general WLM coordination online has been a recurring nightmare for the international team. Wikimania was perfect to talk to the people and get this thing moving.
I am on the small grants committee at Wikimedia Israel. At Wikimania I talked to Siko Bouterse from the corresponding (but much larger) committee at the foundation, and we discussed a number of ways to improve the small grants process. This learning process was extremely helpful to me, although unfortunately since then we didn't get any serious and realistic grant requests at Wikimedia Israel. We are discussing implementing some changes in the process, some of which were discussed with Siko.
It's hard to sum up all of the activity done at Wikimania. Usually it's just very small things that can have a large impact that is impossible to measure or understand. For example, at this Wikimania we had very fruitful discussions about actual Wikipedia issues (e.g. mass article creation, processes, etc.) which had massive participation compared to previous Wikimanias where such discussions were an afterthought (or happened in the form of a lecture, or didn't happen at all). It is clear though that some kind of learning process is working here: the content committee has been selecting better and better content each year (IMO). Hopefully this continues into future years and I will continue to contribute to this in my own tiny way.