Grants talk:APG/Proposals/2016-2017 round 1/Wikimedia Ukraine/Proposal form

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Thank you for your application[edit]

Hello, WMUA team! Thank you for submitting your complete application on time. We look forward to reviewing it in the coming weeks, and will contact you if we have questions or need more information.

If any questions or concerns arise on your end, please do let us know so we can help. Best, Winifred Olliff (WMF Program Officer) talk 11:19, 2 October 2016 (UTC)

Please correct Table 2 (current year finances).[edit]

Hello, WMUA colleagues:

We believe there is a mistake in Table 2.

In the year-to-date columns you should list the revenues actually received between the start of your current funding period and 1 September 2016 (year-to-date). In this case you would list the total revenues received between 1 January 2016 and 1 September 2016. Likewise, for projected revenues you should list the total projected revenues you expect to receive between the start of your current funding period and the end of your current funding period. In this case you would list the total revenues you would expect to receive between 1 January 2016 and 31 December 2016. By definition this value must equal or exceed the value in the year-to-date columns.

We don't believe the current numbers are correct because your projected values are less than your year-to-date values.

Note that this is also true for the row tracking expenses, so this may also need to be adjusted in case there are any errors.

Please correct these mistakes in Table 2 using strikethrough. These changes are approved.

Thank you! Winifred Olliff (WMF Program Officer) talk 03:09, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

@Wolliff: Sorry but I am confused and cannot understand where the problem is. We added revenues and expenses from 1 January 2016 to 1 September 2016 and estimates from 1 September 2016 to 31 December 2016, as stated above the table (Your current funding period is the funding period now in progress (e.g. 1 January 2016 to 31 December 2016 for most organizations).). Do you want us to replace this with our 2015 figures? Thanks — NickK (talk) 16:18, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
Re-pinging the correct account @Wolliff (WMF):NickK (talk) 16:19, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
Hi, NickK. Projected amounts should be for the entire year, from 1 January 2016 (the start of your current funding period) to 31 December 2016 (the end of your current funding period), as instructed. This projected amount should be cumulative, or include the amount you have received year to date added to whatever else you plan to receive in the remainder of the year. Sorry, I wrote 2015 instead of 2016 in the example by mistake. I corrected it above. Does that make sense now? Winifred Olliff (WMF Program Officer) talk 02:53, 11 October 2016 (UTC)
Hi @Wolliff (WMF):. Thank you for your clarification, I was confused as well first. Now it is clear for me, I made the necessary changes. Please fix your signature as it still uses your old user name (Wolliff instead of Wolliff (WMF)), thus your pings are not working. ThanksNickK (talk) 15:55, 13 October 2016 (UTC)
Thank you, NickK! I will make sure our financial records are up-to-date. Winifred Olliff (WMF Program Officer) talk 21:54, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Questions from FDC[edit]

Aegis Maelstrom[edit]

Hello WMUA and thank you for your proposal! It is quite similar to the last year's proposal but I would like to clarify at least one budget issue:

  1. For 2016 you budgeted 76,200 USD in the previous round; during the first 8 months you spent almost half of it: 37,447.80 USD. In the same time you did explain you are planning to have your main competition (WLE, WLM...) events in the last quarter, and indeed the competitions were the biggest item of your 2016 budget with 31,800 USD (41.7% of total). As you did not change your projected expenses for 2016 and hryvnia is indeed quite volatile, could you provide some bandwith of expenses + the possible balance account (operating reserves) you are planning to have on December 31, 2016?

Best, aegis maelstrom δ 23:13, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi Aegis and thank you for your question.
For contests, our projected expenses for the four remaining months are estimated at 26,000 USD out of 31,800 USD budgeted. The breakdown of these expenses per line and per month is the following: Wiki Loves Monuments and Wiki Loves Earth joint article contest in November with awards to be distributed in December (2,100 USD), international Wiki Loves Earth awards and souvenirs to be distributed around November (around 10,000 USD), Wiki Loves Earth and Wiki Loves Monuments joint award ceremony to be organised in November (with prize and organisational budget of around 11,000 USD), European Science Photo Competition running in October with awards ceremony early November (2,125 USD), thematic weeks and months (ca. 700 USD, mostly on Asian Month in November, plus several other thematic weeks like Science Fiction week in September or Ukrainian-Urdu collaboration in October). This makes the major part (67%) of our projected spendings of 38,752 USD
There are other significant projected expenses on Community Support (Wikiconference was organised in early September with part paid before 1 September and part paid later, Social Media training was held in October and General Meeting is planned for December), estimated at around 5,000 USD. For remaining lines (Outreach and administrative costs) our projected expenses are planned at the same level as between 1 January and 1 September.
We do not plan to create any operating reserves this year (nor the following year).
Please do not hesitate to ask me if you need any further details. Thanks — NickK (talk) 10:20, 18 October 2016 (UTC)

Mike Peel[edit]

Hello. Thanks for your proposal! Please forgive me for the late questions.

  1. Expanding your part-time employees for longer durations looks sensible (providing, of course, it fits in with your employees' needs. :-) ). I'm curious about your longer-term thinking with staffing - will you head towards employing people full-time, or would you instead hire more part-time employees? Also, will your management approach (through the Board Chair) be sufficient to handle the higher number of FTE's this year?
  2. With your "Media files used" metric - is that *new* files uploaded in the coming year, or existing ones that were uploaded in past years in connection to WMUA's work?
  3. With the two-day training events, I'm curious to know why you go for two days, rather than one (or three)?

Thanks. Mike Peel (talk) 14:17, 2 November 2016 (UTC)

Hi @Mike Peel: Thank you for your questions.
  1. Regarding our 2017 plan, we don't expect any problems with managing staff. The number of employees will be the same as in 2016, thus this will not create any additional administrative burden. At the same time, both project managers already work closely with other board members, thus the Board Chair does not have and will not have to follow all details of all projects himself. Regarding our plan beyond 2017, I cannot give a definite answer yet as we are yet to discuss our staffing strategy for this period. We will most likely switch to having full-time employees at some point but this depends on our staffing needs in the longer term. We will have a more clear answer after having discussed our strategy beyond 2017.
  2. Our "Media files used" metrics cover newly uploaded images, i.e. images uploaded in 2017 that are used in 2017. Sorry for confusion.
  3. Regarding two-day training events, we usually spend the first day on explaining basic principles of Wikimedia projects and working with participants to create their first articles, and we spend the second day on developing specific skills (e.g. using Wikipedia in education). You can see the programme of a workshop taking place right now as an example. Based on our experience, one day is too intensive (people get tired, especially if they arrive in the morning and leave in the evening), three days is not practical (means people must take a day off, spend two nights in a hotel instead of one etc.)
Please do not hesitate to ask if you need any further details. Thanks! — NickK (talk) 13:30, 3 November 2016 (UTC)
Thanks NickK! Mike Peel (talk) 20:56, 4 November 2016 (UTC)

Community comments[edit]

Myslím si, že by ty peníze šli použít i na jiné věci než jen soutěže - to je podezřelé. Sice neznám podrobnosti, ale můj návrh je třeba použít peníze na zázemí pro editory nebo mít schůzky editorů na veřejném místě(restaurace), kde občerstvení bude na Wiki :-) samozřejmě v rámci slušného chování. No a píšu sem i protože jsem neviděl Českou Republiku, kterou jsem chtěl podpořit. Takže ať se vám na na Ukrajině ve Wiki daří. Antonín Klejzar, CZE Profile

@Nixtonin: Thank you for your feedback and for your support. Sorry but my Czech is very limited, so I will answer in English with a (likely bad) translation into Czech.
We do spend money on other things than contests. This is because we want to support various activities, from building partnerships with external institutions like schools or museums to organising events to develop skills of community members. We are transparent about our budget, and roughly half of money go to contests and half to other activities.
We do not offer refreshments during meetups. Our community has regular meetups, including weekly meetups in two cities with most active communities (Kyiv and Lviv). While free weekly dinner for most active Wikipedians may be motivating, we are not sure that this is the best investment of money. Instead we organise many community events, such as Wikiconference, workshops for teachers or award ceremonies of contests, and we do offer free meals during these events.
Thank you again for your interest and support and sorry again for the poor translation in Czech that follows.
(Czech translation, please feel free to improve / Český překlad, neváhejte zlepšit)
Děkuji za váš komentář a za vaši podporu. Je mi líto, ale moje čeština je velmi omezená, takže tento překlad může mít chyby.
Opravdu jsme utrácet peníze na jiné věci než soutěží. Hlavním důvodem pro to je, že chceme podporovat různé činnosti, od vývoje partnerství s externími institucemi (například školy nebo muzea) do organizování za účelem zlepšení dovedností příslušníků naší komunity. Náš rozpočet je veřejně dostupný, a chceme utratit přibližně polovinu peněz za soutěží, a další polovina za jiné činnosti.
Nechceme nabízet občerstvení během setkáních. Naše společenství má pravidelná setkání, včetně setkání každý týden ve dvou městech s nejaktivnějšími komunitami (Kyjevě a Lvově. Zatímco bezplatné večeře každý týden pro nejaktivnější wikipedisty může být dobrá motivace, nejsme si jisti, že se jedná o nejlepší investicí peněz. Místo toho organizujeme mnoho akcí pro naši komunitu, jako Wikikonference, semináře pro učitele nebo slavnostní předávání cen soutěží, a organizujeme bezplatné jídla během těchto akcí.
Ještě jednou děkuji za váš zájem a podporu. Omlouváme se za případné chyby v mém českém překladuNickK (talk) 13:43, 24 October 2016 (UTC)

Hello WMUA - I support the proposal of Ukraine wikipedia. --Elekes Andor (talk) 17:31, 30 October 2016 (UTC)

@Elekes Andor: Thank you for your support! — NickK (talk) 09:03, 31 October 2016 (UTC)

Targets for photo contests[edit]

  • Please do not use the numbers of quality images, featured or valued images as indicators for project success. Regulars at QI wrote this year that they do not run an evaluation service to help other contests meet their targets. In my opinion, nominating pictures from one contest with specific criteria (WLE/WLM) in another contest (such as QI) with other criteria is strange anyhow. --Blech (talk) 21:34, 25 October 2016 (UTC)
  • What do you mean with figures like "8000 (and 10%)"? 10% plus 8000, or at least 8000 or at least 10% ... --Blech (talk) 21:34, 25 October 2016 (UTC)
Hi @Blech: and thank you for your comments.
  • Regarding QI, we would like to have a measure of quality of our images. We do not consider this as an evaluation service as we have our own jury that evaluates all images, although we know that some countries do it for WLE. However, we suggested Wiki Loves participants to nominate their images for QI as this a useful experience for them as well and a recognition of quality of their work. If you think that we should not nominate WLE/WLM images for QI, what measure of quality would you suggest instead?
  • Regarding targets, this means at least 8000 and at least 10%. Sorry for confusion
Thanks — NickK (talk) 09:38, 26 October 2016 (UTC)
Thanks @NickK: for your answer and the clarification. I think nobody has a measure for photo quality for contests with ten thousands of images. File usage is more or less the only indicator. The majority of these images will illustrate lists or Wikipedia articles. QI has a focus on technical perfection that is not required for Wikipedia illustration. Simply delete the two lines in your proposal that refer to quality, featured or valued images. The QI guys already have the impression that their wonderful institution is abused. They complained in a very unfriendly way when two German WLE staffers dared to nominate our Top 10 photographs this summer. I do not think QI is a suitable environment for WLE/WLM-participants. --Blech (talk) 18:51, 26 October 2016 (UTC)
@Blech: I disagree that file usage is a measure of quality. We want to adress a claim that WLE/WLM result in thousands of files of poor quality — which is probably true as not all participants are great photographers — by showing that WLE and WLM result in great number of high-quality uploads. For us those are two distinct measures:
  • Usage shows that files are of an encyclopaedic value, e.g. they illustrate monuments or natural sites that had no pictures before. However, one may use a photo of poor quality (e.g. an overexposed photo taken with an old mobile phone) if there is no better alternative.
  • Quality shows that files are of a good technical level and have no significant technical problems. However, they might not be used in articles as editors may prefer other photos (e.g. they may prefer daytime views to night views) but they will be most likely interesting for users of our content elsewhere (travel websites, media etc.)
Thus we want to have numbers that prove that our photos of are not much like this (sorry Anna) or at least not all like this. Unfortunately we have no better idea than number of QI/VI/FP — NickK (talk) 06:28, 27 October 2016 (UTC)

Questions from RightCowLeftCoast[edit]

Why this amount? What is the minimum amount that the grant submitter believes is needed to accomplish these goals? Can the grant submitter accomplish the goals stated in your proposal, without funding? If the grant submitter can't, why not? If the grant submitters grant request is not approved, what alternative sources of funding are you seeking? If only one grant is approved during this round of grant approvals, why should this grant be approved rather than all the other grant proposals--RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 17:12, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

Hi @RightCowLeftCoast: and thank you for your question.
We requested this amount based on our budget: we calculated what amount we need for all budget lines and made a sum of them. We never had a bad habit of overspending, thus we believe this is the minimum amount we need to accomplish this goals.
We will be unable to achieve most of these goals without funding. We worked without funding for about a year back in 2009—2010, and our major achievements were existing (also costs money as organisations have to do a lot of paperwork in Ukraine) and organising one press conference. Being volunteer-only organisation and having next to no funding (1200USD from other sources will only prevent us from being disbanded immediately) would most likely result in burnout of these volunteers and closure of most of our projects.
There are very limited funding opportunities in Ukraine. People do not donate much to free knowledge when there is a war in their country, and recent (June 2016) WMF fundraiser confirmed this. We have also very few grant opportunities (1 per year or less) as free knowledge is not a priority for major Ukrainian donors. There is little opportunity to get funding from Ukrainian sponsors as well due to economic crisis in the country. Our only realistic way to get sizeable alternative funding might be accepting money from politicians or political organisations, something we don't want to do for reputational reasons (e.g. "Ukrainian Wikipedia is now funded by That Political Party and is supported by Foundation of That Corrupt Politician").
If WMF were to approve only one grant during this round, this would have meant that WMF had severe problems, and not only financial ones. I think in this very unfortunate case it would be better to let WMF announce this in advance so that chapters include only vital spendings in their budgets. Choosing why money should go to Ukraine and not to Germany or to Argentina is not a responsible approach. However, I hope we will never have to deal with this kind of situation — NickK (talk) 08:30, 30 October 2016 (UTC)
The grant request 17.4kUSD in prizes; How is that reasonable? What prize cost 1.6kUSD? The last response did not provide a great answer as to why this grant proposal should be prioritized over other grant proposals. I can understand wanting to not receive political based funding, thanks for that specific response, I found that to be the best of all of them. That said, while some of the costs seem very reasonable, others appear to be rather extravagant. Thanks for your reply, and best of luck.--RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 17:11, 30 October 2016 (UTC)
@RightCowLeftCoast: We do not intend to offer any prize worth 1.6kUSD, except possibly a Wikimania scholarship for international Wiki Loves Earth photo contest winner: it may cost up to 2000 USD if they live really far from Wikimania 2018 venue (e.g. we will have to bring a person from Iceland to Australia). We estimate that we will award prizes to about 100—150 people: article contest winners, national photo contest winners (including regional winners) and international photo contest winners. We found that offering many smaller prizes makes more impact than offering few big prizes: people feel that they can win at least something and are more likely to pariticpate. Thus our average prize would be somewhere around 100—150 USD.
Regarding your statement that I did not provide a great answer as to why this grant proposal should be prioritized over other grant proposals, the answer is simple: FDC does not prioritise grant proposals. Our plan is better in some way than others (perhaps we are the best in terms of content generated per dollar invested) but I really don't want such comparisons — NickK (talk) 09:03, 31 October 2016 (UTC)

Frugality[edit]

In general, nice plans; anyway, here are my 2 small suggestions for Wikimedia Fundation:

  1. a more conservative funds spending strategy (to prevent the need of displaying "PLEASE DONATE NOW!" banners every month);
  2. a good audit for local Wikimedia organizations from countries with high corruption risks (e. g., post-USSR ones) ;)

Best wishes, Djadjko (talk) 01:28, 1 November 2016 (UTC)

@Djadjko: Thank you for your comment. On the second point, please be aware that audited financial statements are already a requirement for chapters applying for an annual plant grant, and Wikimedia Ukraine will also be a subject to audit in early 2017. Thanks — NickK (talk) 19:42, 1 November 2016 (UTC)
@NickK: that's good! :) --Djadjko (talk) 00:31, 2 November 2016 (UTC)

switch to Simple APG[edit]

Dear Delphine and Winifred, following the site visit and your recommendations, the Board of Wikimedia Ukraine has agreed that it would be best if we switch to Simple APG. Please find the resolution (in Ukrainian though) here: Рішення Правління №22/2017 від 28 квітня 2017. Please advise us on how to proceed with this and what are the steps we should take. Best regards --Ilya 19:48, 28 April 2017 (UTC)

Dear Ilya and all at Wikimedia Ukraine. Welcome to simple APG! As discussed, we approve of this switch and I am looking forward to seeing Wikimedia Uktraine grow in the simple APG framework. We will be following up on this per email as to the next steps. Those include: signing a new grant agreement, working together on implementing recommendations to be made from the site visit, working hand in hand with the simple APG committee. Talk to you soon! Delphine (WMF) (talk) 14:51, 29 June 2017 (UTC) cc/Winifred
(as obviously your ping didn't work - Winifred) --Base (talk) 15:51, 29 June 2017 (UTC)