Grants talk:APG/Proposals/2015-2016 round1/Wikimedia Serbia/Proposal form

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki


Thanks for your plan, it is nice to be able to follow your progress by reading of you activities and thoughts for the future. I like your plan for fress content, GLAM, Wiktionary and micro grants. I am concerned over the major focus on education. While we generaly have learned it is of value, we have also learned of it in general give limited impact in the long term. To be very new you have also a bit (too) broad set of programs, fewer would make it easier for you to focus. I also find the targets/goals not fully up the the standard we would expect from an APG financed organsation. I also find the acititives in the communty support area a bit weak compared what I see from other chapters in this area. So in general I think the plan is on the overambtious side, nd I beleive it would be bette for you to consolidate your activites more, learn of best practice from other chapters and evolve your targeting into more distinct impact related ones. I do not see a rationale for the increase in funding you have requested.Anders Wennersten (talk) 06:15, 8 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]

Thank you Anders Wennersten for you thoughts and comments. We'll think about them. --IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 12:35, 27 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]

questions from FDC staff[edit]

Thank you, friends, for this proposal. It has been reviewed by the FDC staff and we have a few questions. If any are unclear, please ping me! KLove (WMF) (talk) 22:01, 13 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]

Hi IvanaMadzarevic, I've gone through your responses and they are very helpful! Thanks for explaining and clarifying programs and staffing. KLove (WMF) (talk) 00:02, 17 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]

Programs and organization[edit]

  • We’d like some additional information about the Language Laboratory plans. Is this a separate dictionary beyond Wiktionary?
    • Language Laboratory is a separate project from Wiktionary. The activities do not involve workshops and creating standard vocabulary as it has been done so far. The idea is that through the use of this platform quality content can be created and then imported into Wiktionary. Therefore, the ultimate goal is the expansion and development of Wiktionary, with the remark that it will be done through language laboratory platform. --IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 13:50, 16 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
  • Can you give us a general idea of how much staff time you will spend on each program?
    • Predicting how much time employees will spend on projects is always a challenge. We will try to present the responsibilities and engagements of employees in terms of our planned programs in 2016 in most realistic possible way:
      • Office Manager will deal with administrative affairs, finance, smooth functioning of the office. Engagement in projects will not be in the framework of their duties. Office Manager might be involved in public education through the process of fundraising.
      • Communication Manager will invest half of their working time in performing and monitoring GLAM activities, provided that the project Wiki Librarian has independent team that takes care of planned objectives achievement and reporting. Communication Manager will invest the rest of their time in increasing the visibility of the organization. This is difficult to separate, because the promotion and public announcements are closely related to current events - edit-a-thons, Wiki Loves Earth exhibitions, competitions on Wikipedia and such.
      • Education Program Manager will devote all their time to projects, namely Wikipedia in Schools, Professional Training and organization and realization of Edu Wiki camp. In the months in which these activities are reduced, Education Program Manager will assist in the implementation of other ventures such as WikiLive conferences, realization of Micro grants program, lectures and workshops in the framework of other projects and in similar activities.
      • Program and Community Manager will devote most of their time to projects and ensuring that they are implemented without delay and with adequate results. This position involves dealing with the community, animating Wikip/medians and reducing the gap between Wikimedia and Wikipedia. Of course, there are projects that are designed to achieve this goal - WikiLive Conference, Wiki South, animating the community through various activities. In this way, in dealing with the community, a person on this position also deals with projects. As stated in the plan, one focus will be decentralization of activities around the country, so there are projects that will not require extensive operational assistance of the office. Such projects are Valjevo Mountains Through the Lens, Wiki Loves Dragonflies, Wiki South, Zapisi - Sacred trees etc. Program and Community Manager shall supervise and provide advisory assistance as well as assistance in reporting and evaluation.--IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 13:50, 16 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
  • Can you explain the connection between your planned communications / social media work (e.g. blog posts) and increased motivation and community involvement?
    • The general plan for the coming period is to strengthen communication at all levels, which in itself should lead to better informed general public, the community and to contribute to greater "accessibility" of Wikimedia Serbia. When it comes to blog, we are planning interviews and "guest" posts with volunteers, partners, experienced Wikipedians and Wikimedians, recipients of micro and annual grants, in order to get closer to community and demystify the work of the organization, motivate existing members and attract new ones. We want to inform the community and invite them to get involved in WMRS projects, either by organizing them or participating in events (contests, edit-a-thons, exhibitions...). Since large part of volunteers are from younger population which is very active on social networks. These networks are valuable because they increase the visibility of our activities, and experience tells us that they are first point from where the information is spread. People have heard via social networks for many events such as Wiki Camp and Wiki Loves Earth (on Facebook).--IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 13:50, 16 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
  • WMRS has not had an ED for the past several months and we understand you do not intend to hire one. As you look to have 4 full time staff members, how does this change the work and approach of the board in regards to staff management?
    • We have two full-time and two part-time employees at this point. By increasing the activities in program and financial way, the need for spreading the two part-time positions into full-time has been increased as well. The situation will not change a lot in terms of human resources management, given that these positions are existing ones that are only spreading, not the new ones which would take more time on adapting and learning. Office Manager and Communication Manager are already functioning smoothly, they’re well informed, and enlargement of these positions will be the natural path of development. Board members have developed a practice of giving assignments to employees and implementing the evaluation on quarterly basis, which has resulted in a high level of project realization and greater motivation of employees. This practice will be continued during 2016.--IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 13:50, 16 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]

Budget and financial questions[edit]

  • Can you explain how spending $2,000 on promotional materials will lead to more impact for Wikimedia Serbia?
    • Last year we projected 1,000 euros for promo materials, which in the end turned out to be insufficient, given that printing was more expensive than we thought. Learning from this experience, we did a little research about current prices and projected figure of 2,000 euros. For each project, we planned the type of promotional materials we need and the quantity, and then projected an average price. The type and amount of material can be seen in this table. Brochures are very useful, whether they’re for Education or some other program. Participants at the workshop/edit-a-thons/exhibitions will get brochures and leaflets, which are important for the promotion and general brand awareness.--IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 13:50, 16 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
  • Will WMRS cover the salary of the Wikipedians in Residence, or will the host institution?
    • Salary for WIR will be covered by Wikimedia Serbia, as shown in our budget. GLAM institutions in Serbia are usually not able to provide funding for this program. Because of these circumstances, we are planning to set aside these funds which do not exclude the possibility that some of institutions will cover the costs of these internships.--IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 14:09, 16 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]

Many thanks! KLove (WMF) (talk) 22:01, 13 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]

Questions from FDC members[edit]

Thank you Wittylama for reviewing our annual plan. You can find our answers bellow. I hope this answers you questions. In you have some other concerns, feel free to contact me.--IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 12:32, 27 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]

  • The education program, particularly the 'wikipedia in schools' project is arguably the biggest single activity you propose, with a 1.0 FTE allocation and it has "been going on for 8 years". Can you link to the education project homepage or documentation about the curriculum design etc. (e.g. Wiki-ed dashboard page)? Wittylama (talk) 21:20, 22 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
  • For the very specifically targeted projects (in particular the technically difficult Dragonfly project), do you have specific people who already want to do this (and all you need is the money to support it), or are they topics that the Chapter board/staff have decided are important and, if you receive the grant request, you will then try to recruit volunteers to take the photos? Basically, for all the "free photo content" projects, are the topics being chosen by people volunteering to do the work, or by people who want that specific work to be done? Wittylama (talk) 21:37, 22 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
    • All these photo projects are proposed by individuals who are either experienced photographs or they have been working with a group of people who dealt with proposed topics. When it comes to Wiki Loves Dragonflies project, we indicated in the plan that this project has been organized for the past several years (you can find links to the reports in the proposal). BOOM gathers not just people from Serbia but also from region. These enthusiasts are engaged in collecting data (text and photo materials) about dragonflies but also other things (natural and cultural heritage, other insects, etc.). Therefore, our part would be providing funds for realization of the gathering with the emphasis on creating free content and training of the people who didn’t have the chance to contribute Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons. Project leader of Wiki Loves Dragonflies has talked with the participants of BOOM and everyone are familiar with goals of Wikimedia and its projects. In addition, before accepting proposals, checking photo coverage of the topics has been done (dragonflies, Valjevo mountains etc.). On the one hand we have topics that are not very well (or not at all) covered with photos and on the other we have people who want to work on creating and gathering these materials. Topics were chosen by volunteers who want to work on this but before that we checked are these topics relevant and how many of them already exist on Commons.--IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 12:32, 27 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
  • The "Techno" digitisation project is an innovative idea - recognising the need to preserve contemporary culture. My question is, because this material is all so new, and much of it is ephemera (like posters, tickets), this makes copyright very difficult to confirm or to clear (I know, I used to work at the National Library of Australia, which collects/digitises exactly this kind of materials). A large proportion of this material will, probably, not be able to be released under a free license. My question is therefore, is this a project that a GLAM with a broader collecting/digitising goal should be doing instead WMRS? Wittylama (talk) 21:48, 22 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
    • This is a project with great potential. We received the proposal from a person who is also the owner of Technokratia, who holds copyright over the most of materials. Technokratia owns a great amount of the materials that can be released. The owner himself is the author of many works and he’s familiar with Creative Commons licences. This won’t be a huge expense for Wikimedia Serbia in terms of funds/human resources/energy giving in mind that the biggest part will be digitizing itself. In addition, this will be a pilot project. If results are successful, the project tends to be long term.--IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 12:32, 27 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
  • Regarding the "Language Laboratory" project, are you proposing that WMRS will be responsible for the project management and development of a new piece of (open source) software itself, or that it will be helping an existing project that is being run by the University Library? If you are proposing to do this yourselves: do you have any experience as an organisation in software development? If an external group is the major 'owner' of the project, wouldn't it be more appropriate for them to apply to the WMF 'PEG' grant for the necessary funding? More importantly: do you think that a piece of unique and standalone software is more likely to be successful at solving the task, rather than trying to improve the existing software (Wiktionary, or even Wikidata) for the specific use-case that you have? This question relates to the sustainability of the Language Laboratory if it is standalone, and it's replicability by other groups/languages if it is unique. Wittylama (talk) 21:58, 22 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]
    • Wikimedia Serbia will be helping an existing project that is being run by the University Library. The goal of the Language Laboratory project is not fixing the existing software but enrichment of WM projects through filling them with content. As far as development concerns, this is referred specifically and solely to the dictionary Language Laboratory. Project itself is being created for Serbian language and its peculiarities. It is important to mention that replication on related languages is possible, primarily on Slovenian languages and then on others.--IvanaMadzarevic (talk) 12:32, 27 October 2015 (UTC)[reply]

Wikipedia in schools[edit]

Main problem here is Wikipedia's concept of knowledge. Everybody can contribute but the contributions are not always knowledge. The only solution is to accept the true nature of the knowledge concept: hierarchy. To make it simpler, professor teaches student and validates his level of knowledge. Here in Serbian Wikipedia there is a great number of so-called administrators, rollbackers, patrollers, then selfproclaimed encyclopaedists, stylists, grammarians, advisers etc with little or no academic background in any field of human knowledge. Many times they have last word about article's content and quality. As a result of such mindset power many articles in mathematics, computer science, history (the three fields I reviewed) are worthless. Some of them, especially in mathematics, information/computer science are unintelligible for being translations from English made by people who do not have neither sufficient knowledge of English nor mathematics, for example. "Encyclopaedization", "stylization", "grammar corrections" are often damaging the articles quality.

The only solution is to have university scholars, professors and researchers in the role of chief editors in the fields of their academic background who should have the last word about the articles content and quality. That means removal of all administrators, rollbackers and patrollers or eventually reducing their role to plain technical help when and if needed.--RegisteredUser (talk) 19:37, 22 February 2017 (UTC)[reply]