Grants talk:IEG/Art+Feminism Editathon training materials and network building/Renewal

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Review Period through 10/31/15[edit]

Hello Siankevans, Failedprojects, and Theredproject,

Thank you for submitting this renewal request. We are pleased that you are interested in continuing this project!

Since this renewal request will be in its community review period through the end of Saturday, October 31, I am documenting the special circumstances of the budget on the talk page:

  • Last year, this team was awarded separate grants from IEG ($14,175) and PEG ($11,226), for a total of $25,401 in funding. This created an extra administrative burden for Grants Program Officers at the Wikimedia Foundation because of duplicate funds disbursement, reporting, multiple POs, multiple committees and different requirements.
  • After their Final Report was accepted, the team prepared to submit a renewal request. Initially, they intended to apply again separately for an IEG (to fund project management and infrastructure development), a PEG (to cover event coordination and implementation) and a TPS grant (to cover travel costs). However, in an effort to simplify last year’s administrative hassles, we’ve asked them to roll all of these costs into a single IEG request instead. As a result, we’re considering total of $56,510 USD for this renewal (note that the Combined Total Budget of $216,510 includes $160,000 of in kind venue costs).
  • The recent consultation, Reimagining WMF Grants, envisions a new structure in the coming year which will roll IEG and part of PEG together into “Projects Grants”, with a new ceiling of $100,000 for projects in a growth phase. In light of this, we see this renewal request as a perfect pilot opportunity, allowing us to test out the new setup with a project that has a demonstrated track record of success.

In the wake of the review period, I will be making a final decision on this renewal on November 1.

Warm regards,

--Marti (WMF) (talk) 16:37, 23 October 2015 (UTC)

Measures of success[edit]

As is, I don't think the renewal should be granted for more than what was paid initially. Frankly, it's wonderful to have this injection of enthusiasm and content, but without the ability to measure the impact, it just costs a lot of money. In order for us to be able to believe that a real dent is being made in the gendergap in the arts, we need some concrete numbers. In the lead it mentions the articles created and approved. We want to see those numbers under measures of success, as well as the number of first-time attendees who continued to contribute afterwards. The gendergap as we define it is officially an underrepresentation of women who edit Wikipedia, not too few articles, though personally I think the content gap is caused by the participation gap. However, we are not a social network and are building an encyclopedia, so we can't and shouldn't fund meetups without tangible evidence that this leads to more content, either through higher participation or numbers of articles created and improved (and not deleted over time). So all articles created and improved need to be tracked as part of this grant, and the trackability can be something added by some tool that is also part of the grant. But just throwing money at meetups is not going to do much I'm afraid to win partners at chapters, because the chapters need to show impact for all funding, and the impact of this is not clear from the renewal proposal. After all, in order to put the numbers in perspective, we need numbers on article growth for women's subjects on any other weekend than this particular weekend, etc. etc. A few hundred or a few thousand articles just doesn't mean very much in the greater Wiki scheme of things. --Jane023 (talk) 15:05, 25 October 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for your feedback Jane023. As you may have seen, we did include metrics, including itemized lists of articles created, usernames created and basic retention rates in our previous Final Grant Report. We will continue to track these. We just added direct links to these in the renewal request itself. You are correct, however, that we did not include long-term retention rates, partially because of the brevity of our grant reporting period and because of the limitations of the metrics tool. This year, however, we plan to work more closely with Wikimedia NYC to flesh out our metrics at the end of our grant period. And we appreciate your thoughts on how chapters measure their success; we would love to learn more about how we might use Wikimetrics in the future and welcome your suggestions!
That said, we do not simply measure this event's success by the statistics. As you mention, building female editorship is a long-term goal and not a weekend-long project. This is why we have focused heavily on training materials and outreach. Our materials and our web presence will hopefully outlive the in-person events. As we noted in our final report, attendees from our events have gone on to create Wikipedia programs on their campuses, have founded successful campaigns like AfroCROWD and have held their own edit-a-thons. It is our belief that this consciousness raising aspect of the project is not social networking, but rather grassroots community organizing. And, of course, an important aspect of community organizing is in-person engagement, discussion and critique. We believe that the events foster this spirit and help build on other successful WikiWomen campaigns in creating a space for cis and trans women in the Wikipedia community. ----Siankevans (talk) 15:19, 27 October 2015 (UTC)

comments from Thepwnco[edit]

@Siankevans, Failedprojects, and Theredproject:

Hello and thanks for the renewal request, as well as your comprehensive final report. Congratulations too on the success of this project to date! As Marti pointed out on your final report, it's wonderful that - in addition to surpassing many of your goals - participants trained through your TtT sessions also went on to organize their own events as well as successfully apply for Inspire funding.

In light of your past accomplishments and plans for the future, I am endorsing the renewal of this IEG. Here are a few comments/questions I have:

  • with regards to the conversation above about measures of success...as someone who contributes to WMF projects through e-mail and other tools, I think it's important that when we speak about closing the gender gap, we should also consider off-wiki work (i.e. event organizing, in-person engagement, etc.) as equally valid forms of participation as editing. Off-wiki work is definitely an area that is more difficult to quantify but the analytics available through a CRM system sounds like a good start for expanding the way we think about and measure participation
  • in your midpoint report you identified safe space issues as a challenge, and noted that there was need for support from the WMF or a third party mediator. I'm curious then how this may impact the review of safe space agreements (as part of the diversity audit). Is the idea to develop recommendations and mechanisms for dealing with violations independently?
  • seeing as you hope to recruit a fourth person, should this be included in the budget (i.e. 40 hours of collective work per week, not 30?) or do the calculation of 30 hours x 24 weeks already represent the amount of work to be divided evenly amongst the project team whether there are 3 or 4 lead organizers?

-Thepwnco (talk) 19:53, 31 October 2015 (UTC)

Hi Thepwnco,
Thanks for your thoughtful review of our grant renewal. We really appreciate your feedback and continued support of our project.
To your second point, we do not have an answer as to the best way to deal with harassment at events. We know that Bluerasberry and Hexatekin have been doing work around harassment reporting, and we are eager to review the conclusions/findings of those projects. But we think there should be a standard process for conflict resolution. Organizers are not trained in conflict resolution and we believe that they should be supported by someone with professional experience.
To your third point, thank you for catching that lack of clarity in the budget request. You're right, we should be requesting the additional labor costs at this point. We've amended the budget to account for an additional lead organizer.
On behalf of my collaborators,
--Failedprojects (talk) 19:58, 1 November 2015 (UTC)
Thepwnco I would be willing to talk with you about harassment by voice or video. I have nothing private to say on the matter, but I prefer to avoid talking on-wiki because I feel that it is difficult to communicate effectively on the topic of harassment in wiki-text exchange. Email me if you like.
I feel that A+F should avoid directly addressing harassment and that the project should not be obligated to have a response to that issue. A+F is good at meeting its mission. It should not be further pressed with the burden of addressing harassment beyond its place as a minority stakeholder, especially when other stakeholders are not also collaborating in an organized way to lessen the problem. If A+F were to take responsibility for addressing harassment then it would be a disproportionate burden on an outreach project which already experiences far more than its share of the difficulties in this space. A+F is doing a favor to the harassment problem by persisting, and should not be further pressed to do a second larger favor by also expanding its scope toward a goal that would be impossible to manage with as few resources as A+F has and seeks. Blue Rasberry (talk) 11:46, 2 November 2015 (UTC)

Request Approved[edit]

@Siankevans, Failedprojects, and Theredproject:

Congratulations on your successes so far! I'm approving this 6-month renewal for the initial request of $56,510 based on the remarkable impact you've achieved to date, the strong community support offered in favor of this renewal--as indicated by your 22 endorsements, and the timely, much-needed resources you are proposing to bring to the effort to foster inclusivity in the Wikimedia movement. As Jane023 has suggested, the increased cost of this project creates a bigger responsibility to demonstrate impact in your Final Report. Since the primary impact of your project--particularly the diversity audit--may not be best conveyed through the usual metrics, we'll want to think about and plan for additional and more nuanced measures of success.

In regard to the recent expansion of your request for a fourth team member, I'd like to discuss this with you further before finalizing a decision.

I'm looking forward to partnering with you as you continue to grow and organize the community in working to close the gender gap. Our grants administrator, Jtud (WMF) will be in touch soon to setup your renewed agreement.

Warm regards,

--Marti (WMF) (talk) 00:43, 4 November 2015 (UTC)