Grants talk:TPS/Futureimperfect/ Free Minds free People and IDEC 2013

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A question about your participation[edit]

Hello, FutureImperfect: Thanks for this request and for the work you are doing to reach out to educators in secondary schools.

  1. Please clarify if you will be attending one or both of the conferences for purposes other than promoting Wikipedia.
  2. If you are attending the conferences for other professional purposes, have you sought funding from other sources?

Thank you, Winifred Olliff (Grants Administrator) talk 22:30, 16 May 2013 (U

Participation Clarification[edit]

Hello Winifred, Thank you for your prompt response. I apologize for any confusion, and will now attempt to sort that out.

• I do not intend to go to the Free Minds Free People conference unless I am plugging Wikipedia. It looks like an interesting conference, but quite frankly, I have been on a leave of absence this year and cannot afford to go if it is not funded. Also, I think it would be more fruitful to be there talking about Wikipedia, and having the lens of Open Source software with which to discuss ideas about democratic schooling. I am personally very interested in the democratization of knowledge, and see Wikipedia as an important manifestation of that.

• I do hope to go to the International Democratic Education Conference regardless of this funding. However, if I am not promoting Wikipedia, I will not have to pay the tabling fee. I already intend (as I mentioned in the original proposal) to pay my own way in to the conference. However, Groupuscule will be there only to promote Wikipedia, and having a table with an editing station and good information in a prominent location will make that much more valuable.

• I might note that there are many other costs associated with this trip which we have no intention of asking Wikimedia to shoulder. Both of these conferences offer scholarships, but a) they are not available for tablers, b) I'd like to leave them for people who do not have other options, and c) it seems that bringing Wikipedia to democratic-minded educators is squarely within the mission of Wikimedia.

I do not mean to sound presumptuous, and I know that funds are limited. I am happy to negotiate further if you and others deem that necessary. I am honored to even be considered, and grateful that there is such a wonderful tool for democratization of knowledge. I am happy to do my part in explaining it's usefulness to others.

Thank you,

FutureImperfect (talk) 05:15, 21 May 2013 (UTC)

A few more questions about your request[edit]

Hello, FutureImperfect:

We have a few more questions before making a decision:

  1. We find this request difficult to evaluate because it is being submitted only for you, yet covers costs for bout you and Groupuscule. Would you please reformat your request to show clearly that it is covering the costs for two people by listing both participants?
  2. When you say scholarships are not available for tablers, do you mean that anyone tabling is not eligible for any type of scholarship or simply that scholarships are not available to cover tabling fees specifically, but that those tabling may apply for scholarships to cover other expenses?
  3. If you were to attend only one of the events above, would your printing costs change? Are you able to break down the printing costs for each event separately? Also, please clarify if any of the materials printed will be useful for future events.

Thank you for your answers to the above questions and we hope to deliver a decision shortly.

Regards, Winifred Olliff (Grants Administrator) talk 17:53, 23 May 2013 (UTC)

Reminder: we are still waiting on responses to the above questions before making a decision on this request. Cheers, Winifred Olliff (Grants Administrator) talk 23:12, 28 May 2013 (UTC)
Hello Winifred and unseen others. FutureImperfect asked me to come comment. Sorry I'm late! Regarding #1, yes the grant would cover costs for me also.
I wanted to note that (with support from FutureImperfect) I tabled unofficial for three days at a huge conference last year. I did this on my own because I thought it would be fun and useful. (It was!) But my unofficial table lacked in legitimacy and resources. (I didn't even get a packet of stickers, as promised, shipped from WMF in San Francisco! It's no big deal, but I was sad.) Based on that experience, I'm quite sure that funding for a table and some professional-looking paper resources will do a lot to improve the credibility of the Wikimedia presence.
I will consult shortly with FutureImperfect about itemizing printing costs. It also seems important to mention that we both do Wiki outreach, all the time, particularly to small libraries (and other scholastic institutions), as well as individuals (often from underrepresented demographics). I assure you that we'll do these things regardless of the grant. However, having some funds to print stacks of pamphlets and other outreach materials will really help. These are things we can & will do en route to the conferences also. Having some resources from Wikimedia is likely to intensify and improve these outreach efforts.
Put another way: We will use all of our printing budget for printing, and if we have left over copies of printed outreach materials (as I think we should expect to have), we will use them for outreach in other venues!
Thanks. I'll try to be directly responsive in the next few days if y'all have questions. (Usually my nose is buried in the encyclopedia ;-) ) Groupuscule (talk) 11:47, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
Hello all. As Groupuscule noted, we make and share materials with our own money all the time. Groupuscule especially dedicates hundreds of hours a month to furthering the mission and goals of Wikipedia in very concrete ways. These ways include editing, but also, in non-oppressive, non-coercive ways, encouraging women and people of color to edit. He's really good at it, and giving him space at these conferences (both of which have women and people of color as the vast majority of their attendees) to talk about and recruit for the encyclopedia could be a real boon. And, he won't be a lone white man sitting at a table grinning. As a female and a professional in the field, but also as a (somewhat novice) Wikipedian, I, too, will spend the bulk of my time at the tables, encouraging teachers, students, and parents to rethink their relationship with a tool they probably all use.
I also want to clarify something Groupuscule mentioned in his above post (though not by name): We love libraries at least as much as Wikipedia does. We have noticed that the majority of the Wikipedia Loves Libraries events happen on either coast of the USA, while the vast majority of the country's libraries are thusly unloved. (Why doesn't this spell check know the word thusly?)

When we travel together, our first stop in a new town is almost always the main branch of the public library. It would be easy and fun for us to call ahead and organize formal and informal meetups at libraries across the middle of the country, sharing skills and materials, and encouraging people to take a more active role in recording the history and present of their places.

Finally, as to scholarships: These are, as I have alluded to, but will now say in no uncertain terms, events attended mostly by poor people, marginalized by society. Both conferences have women and children of color as the majority of their attendees. I believe strongly that it is in Wikipedia's best interest to show as many of these particular people as possible that the encyclopedia is trying to be open to their truths and their truth telling. Although we cannot afford to go to the conferences otherwise, we are not disadvantaged in the same systemic ways, and we will not apply for scholarships, because we do not want to take money away from people who do not have other funding options. FutureImperfect (talk) 04:36, 1 June 2013 (UTC)

Request partially funded[edit]

Thank you very much for the detailed responses and for making it clear that your request is funding the participation of two volunteers. We appreciate your engagement in the Participation Support process. Thank you also for reaching out to a diverse group of educators to encourage use of Wikipedia in the classroom. We are pleased to support your work and we are thankful for your contributions to the movement.

We will fund your request partially as follows: up to US$400.00 to cover the cost of tabling registration at IDEC and up to the full US$285.00 for printing costs, for a total of US$685.00. If you provide us with your mailing address by Email, we would be very pleased to also send you some buttons and stickers to distribute at IDEC.

We hope you are not too disappointed by our decision to fund your request only partially, and we would like to provide you with some rationale for our funding decision:

  1. When considering requests, we evaluate the total cost of the request with respect to potential outcomes and impact (specifically, impact on the Wikimedia Strategic Priorities); while your budget is reasonable and covers the costs of two people, we note that US$2,500.00 is a relatively expensive request for travel within the US. While we sincerely appreciate the work you are doing to reach out to educators, this request did not demonstrate clear enough outcomes directly related to Wikimedia's strategic priorities to balance the level of funding requested.
  2. Of the two events, we believe your Wikipedia-related participation in IDEC has more potential for impact, which is why we will reimburse you for the tabling fees for this event only. We do note that your attendance at IDEC is most closely tied with your non-Wikipedia work and that you are planning on attending the conference anyway; therefore, we think it is reasonable for you to fund most of your own participation in IDEC or seek funding from other sources, but we are happy to fund the costs of your Wikipedia-related participation. Note that although we are only funding your participation in IDEC, we are happy to provide the full cost of printed materials as we are convinced that you will put them to good use for your outreach work at this and other events.
  3. Note that we do explicitly state that events with other scholarships, bursaries or grants programs are generally out of scope of the Participation Support program. While we can certainly respect your reasons for not seeking funding through the conference's scholarship program, we are still not able to fund the costs of your travel and lodging if we do not believe you have not exhausted other reasonable funding options.

If you would like to accept this partial funding, we will contact you to arrange the details of your reimbursement. We hope that you will accept this partial support, and we look forward to learning more about the results of your participation. I have also noted your question about where to best share the lesson plans you have created and I will reach out to some of our program staff to find an answer for you before the event.

Best regards, Winifred Olliff (Grants Administrator) talk 19:05, 5 June 2013 (UTC)