Grants talk:PEG/Outernet/Satellite Broadcasts of Wikipedia

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Evaluation by the GAC[edit]

GAC Members who read the grant request without comments[edit]

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GAC Members who approve this grant request[edit]

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GAC Members who oppose this grant request[edit]

  1. Given the lack of detail and responses to questions, I feel I have no choice. Craig Franklin (talk) 13:30, 11 March 2014 (UTC).[reply]
  2. The project is ambitious and expensive. At the moment the risks seem to me more than the benefits. --Ilario (talk) 09:56, 12 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]

GAC Members who abstain from voting/comment[edit]

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Lack of detail[edit]

Hi. Given the large amount of money being requested, I'm a little disappointed at the lack of detail in this request. Specifically, I'm not sure that this is the most cost-effective way to bring Wikipedia to those in parts of the world with limited Internet access, and would like to see some documentation or other discussion of why this particular approach has been taken. I would also prefer that the satellite operators and other stakeholders are contacted and are on board with this process to make sure that what you're planning is technically feasible before handing out any money. It might be a great idea, but given the current request I think this is a bit early. Craig Franklin (talk) 06:13, 1 March 2014 (UTC).[reply]

Hmm, I agree with Craig. I'm not sure if Wikimedia is the best organiation to act as early stage investor MADe (talk) 12:57, 2 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]
Agreed with Craig. I will go even further to propose some tips on what kind of specific details should be disclosed. First, we need a detailed budget on how the amount of US$120,000 will be spent. Since you mention that you've inferred making adjustments on the amounts upon conclusions drawn from results of a statistical survey, we'd also like to know more about the survey and the test(s) that you used for inferring statistical significance. Second, it will be useful if you could reveal the other parties taking part in this project that will have to cover the rest of the projected expenses that account to US$320,000. Third, we also lack information about the number of people involved in this project and how does the name 'Outernet' associate to a group rather than an organisation. In addition, I'd like to know whether there are ongoing activities as part of the project since it has officially started according to the timeframe set in this request. Best regards.--Kiril Simeonovski (talk) 13:59, 2 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]
I agree on these points. In addition I am not sure if this investment is one time or is connected with the costs of setup and must be included recurrent costs afterwards. --Ilario (talk) 17:29, 2 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]
Thanks for the feedback. I can understand the reservations and concern. Might I suggest another way to offer a grant that supports greater access to Wikipedia? Instead of offering a speculative grant, that could end up not producing the sought after results, what if the grant was structured in a more performance-oriented manner? The committee could then assign a value to every new Wikipedia user and after Outernet is operational, we could show the number of new users through a collaboratively designed survey. The grant could then be disbursed based on the the value that has been created. To me, it seems that this method reduces risk for the foundation and rewards evidence-based outcomes. --Syedkarim (talk) 03:50, 10 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]

Does it make sense nowadays?[edit]

Although it is hard to evaluate it without more technical details - if it is going to work like Sat@Once - i.e one needs to have DVB receiver and SAT antena - it is now - when broadband Internet is no so expensive and widely available via mobile devices - rather hopeless and dead idea, mainly because it is one way connection and need relatively expensive hardware. For example in Poland rural areas - one can buy mobile internet plan (3G/LTE) with 2 GB a month for around 20 USD + there are offers for 16 months plans with starting smartphone and/or tablet for symbolic 1 USD. In order to use Sat@Once one have to buy DVB receiver for around 200 USD + SAT antenna (around 30 USD) + pay for mounting and cables (around 50-60 USD). Does it make sense? Maybe still in some countries with low density of population and not very well developed mobile networks (Interior of Australia, Africa, Central Asia, Syberia?), but for sure not in Europe, US, Japan etc.. Polimerek (talk) 23:44, 11 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]

Proposal declined[edit]

Thank you for submitting this request to the Wikimedia Foundation. We appreciate your interest in increasing access to Wikipedia and thank you for engaging with the Grant Advisory Committee. We agree with the above comments -- considering advances in mobile use and coverage, using geostationary satellites to broadcast Wikipedia no longer seems the most effective way to disseminate its contents. Because of this reason and considering the investment is quite large, we unfortunately cannot fund this project. We welcome you to apply again for future grants. Please let us know if you have any questions. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 00:25, 18 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]