This page contains regular updates of the Movement Charter Drafting Committee's work, published at least once at the end of each month. These updates are meant to keep the community and the movement informed of the Committee's internal work, and they are separate from the calls for feedback that will be shared on other pages.
The Movement Charter Drafting Committee (MCDC) is preparing and planning its upcoming work. The Committee met on 5 and 19 December (each meeting is two hours). The first results of the meetings are expected to be shared soon, please see the summary below.
The Drafting Committee is working on the following:
- Principles: The Committee is still working on guiding principles to define its work (for example, the Committee’s mandate, the duration of its work, and so on). Those principles are expected to be finalized and published on Meta by the end of January.
- Internal decision-making: In a related topic, the Committee is also defining how to make its internal decisions (for example: when is consensus needed on a decision?).
- Communications: The Committee is putting together a communications plan, to ensure that its work will include proper outreach and dissemination of information. The Committee is collaborating to create this plan with the Wikimedia Foundation’s Movement Strategy & Governance Team, who will provide support in executing it.
- Timeline: The preliminary timeline for the Movement Charter process is being discussed. It will be published as an update to the Movement Charter Meta page in January. This timeline is not expected to be final, since it will need to be flexible with the consultation and ratification periods.
Summary of meetings
Major topics discussed during the Committee meetings:
- Meetings: The MCDC members agreed to meet once every two weeks on Sundays, except for during the holidays break. The next meeting will be on 9 January.
- Facilitation: The MCDC members will be facilitating the meetings themselves until a professional facilitator is hired (a process also overseen by the MCDC, and supported by the Movement Strategy & Governance Team). Professional facilitation is expected to start in February 2022.
- Diversity & expertise: According to the set up process, the Committee has the option to add “up to three additional candidates by consensus”. While there does not seem to be an immediate gap in diversity, the Committee may request expert advice or add “observer” members in the future.
- Board meeting: Members from the Committee met with two members from the Board of Trustees (BoT) for the first time on 22 December 2021. Besides introductions from both sides, the main talking points were about the form of the collaboration between the MCDC and the BoT, and what type of communication/meetings will be happening to shape this collaboration.
- Task management: The Committee is testing Asana, an online software, to assign and manage its tasks. This service will be provided by the Wikimedia Foundation.
The Movement Charter Drafting Committee (MCDC) was appointed on 1 November 2021. Since then, the group met twice (on 10 November and 18 November), and started working on several tasks between these two meetings and afterwards. Currently, the Committee is in the process of starting to set up a system to work together, and will continue to meet once every two weeks and to provide updates to the community at least once a month. Below is a summary of the discussions that the group has had so far, and the work items that they are handling.
The Committee is currently working on the following things:
- The Drafting Committee is in the process of setting up its internal operations and systems, including: Facilitation, communication, workflows, responsibilities and mandate, principles (see below), timeline and others. Due to the holiday’s break between December and January, these various tasks are expected to take until early 2022.
- The Committee is creating the principles that will guide its future work, including how decisions are made, to whom the Committee reports, what is its mandate, and so on. These principles are projected to be finalized and shared after the Committee’s fourth meeting on 19 December.
- The group is creating a list of roles to clarify the expected responsibilities of the Drafting Committee members and the support that they need from the Wikimedia Foundation, or an external facilitator. Overall, the Foundation is expected to provide operational support so that the MCDC members can focus on collecting and drafting content.
Topics of discussion from meetings:
- Transparency was a popular request from the community. The Committee members agreed to address it by adopting the Chatham House Rule: “anyone who comes to a meeting is free to use information from the discussion, but is not allowed to reveal who made any particular comment”.
- There needs to be a balance between this transparency and the amount of information shared from the MCDC meetings. The main updates will be shared once per month until the Committee is ready to start collecting community feedback and input, hopefully in early 2022.
- The “power” and/or mandate of the MCDC should be clarified: both to the Committee and to the movement. A suggestion was made to use a DARCI matrix to define the committee’s exact role. Regarding who the MCDC “reports to”, there was some support for reporting “to the movement”.
- Ratification of the Movement Charter draft(s) is an open question. Some of the suggestions were:
- 1. Presenting a complete draft to the community with the possibility of approval or rejection,
- 2. Iterative process where the community reviews separate parts of the Movement Charter draft at predefined “milestones”.
- Before drafting, it is expected that the group needs to agree on the main topics or outline of the Movement Charter. Since brainstorming topics with 15 people takes a lot of time, it was suggested that members can brainstorm in smaller “sub-groups” and reconvene later to agree (much like the Global Conversations).
- The timeline of the MCDC work is initially expected to take anywhere from 12 to 18 months. Creating a more detailed timeline for this period is one of the Committee’s next steps and responsibilities.