Strategy/Wikimedia movement/2018-20/2019 Community Conversations/Strategy Salons/Reports/UG Tanzania

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Date and location[edit]

  • Date: 06th July 2019
  • Location: Buni Innovation Hub
  • Duration: 08:30 am-04:00pm (EAT)

Participant List[edit]

One of the individual group discussions during Wikimedia 2030 Movement strategy Salon in Tanzania
No Name Affiliation/Institution Username
1 Emmanuel Malongo Creative Commons Tanzania/The Open University of Tanzania Delyamalongo
2 Jackline Gerrald Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Jayln
3 Fatma Maleta Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Fatma26
4 Adella Aniceti Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Adelyln
5 Antoni Mtavangu Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Jadnapac
6 Hamis Juma Aga Khan University Hamisj
7 Clement Makangabila Masele Wikimedia Community User
Group Tanzania
Czeus25 Masele
8 Juma David NALA Money Tz Mozilah jr
9 Rahabu Mwaituka Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Mariana
10 Evans Exad Liberty Sparks
11 Magoiga Mtatiro Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania/ MagoTech Tanzania MagoTech
12 Otto Augustino Nyongole Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Olimasy
13 Bill Joseph Kaduma Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania bill
14 Gilton Bosco Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Giltwizy
15 Zaituni Njovu Zaina Foundation
16 Elizabeth Joseph Wikimedia User Group Tanzania Lisettejoe
17 Ally Hashimu Kiliwasha Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Killy95
18 Hadija Shabani Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania didykivoice
19 Blessing Nathaniel Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania BlessNathan
20 Bennett Benedict Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania BaharaJr
21 Veronica Likunama Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania vee.m.likunama
22 Justine Mahinyila Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Justinlimtz
223 Hebron Geofrey Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania Ronyyz
24 Dr. Juwaji Noor ASSAT jiwaji
25 Paul Mandele Buni hub Paelmand
26 Edwin Bakalemwa Bunihub Baxito
27 Marietha Lwena Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania
28 Anna Ernest Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania
29 Ebenezer Mlay Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania
30 Habib Mrisho Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania
31 Noel Jackson Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania
32 Musaazi Dancun Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania


What happened[edit]

Small groups discussion during Wikimedia 2030 Movement strategy salon in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Wikimedia 2030 Movement Strategy Salon was an inclusive gathering by which volunteers, contributors and users of different Wikimedia projects from Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania, Buni Innovation Hub, Jenga Wikipedia ya Kiswahili User Group, Creative Commons Chapter of Tanzania(CC Tanzania), Astronomy Association of Tanzania (ASSAT), Liberty Sparks and other free knowledge enthusiasts from different institutions were under the same roof. The participants got an introduction to Wikimedia projects, Wikimedia 2030 concept, Wikimedia Movement Strategy salon as well the brief explanation on the scoping questions, then the participants were divided to make 4 groups to have deeper conversations about two strategy themes (Community Healthy & Resource Allocation) hence came up with constructive answers, suggestions, recommendations, ideas and advice to the scoping questions towards making WM 2030 goals come true.

Summary of the discussion points[edit]


THEMATIC AREA 01: COMMUNITY HEALTHY

QN 01: How can structures create, support and reinforce universally acceptable behaviour across our communities?

One example is the English Wikipedia, which in some cases isn't much friendly (too strictly) for new users especially when they do some mistakes during contribution due to lack of enough contributing knowledge. What should be done is that project administrators should try to be more humble to contributors not only pinpointing their mistakes but also to help them know how to rectify them.

The participants otherwise responded to this question by categorizing their answers into the following key categories.
a.CREATE

  • Safe spaceː
    Wikimedia projects platforms should ensure that it is an online space (forum) which is free of conflict, harassment, bias, stalking threatening to ideas or contribution made by an individual user. This will enable contributors not to be afraid to contribute, create or edit information as safe space respect diversity (ethnic, religious, gender orientation differences).
  • Quality contentː
    Wikimedia projects users/contributors should create, modify or contribute content with high quality and relevant to the society in terms of its grammatical structures to ensure the readers get the desired content concepts.
  • Authentic content (truth)ː
    The content has to be original work, researched and cited from reliable sources.
  • Awarenessː
    More efforts should be done to ensure community members are oriented on the existence and usefulness of the Wikimedia projects. This can be achieved by doing more inclusive editathons and workshops and training. In line with this, more education should be given to users on the sense of ownership of the content they contribute in Wikimedia projects such as more knowledge should be given on Creative Commons licences to help contributors to understand under what conditions they want to contribute their content to Wikimedia projects.
  • Transparency and accountability:
    Decision making should be more inclusive to Wikimedia projects volunteers/contributors especially when it comes to who makes decisions regarding various matters by which Wikimedia communities may be affected in one way or the other.
  • Tolerance culture:
    Both Wikimedia projects staff (including Wikimedia projects Administrators) and the volunteers community must be tolerant and assume good faith in the situations of hot moments (misunderstandings) in various discussions that aim to improve Wikimedia projects. This will help to reach a peaceful resolution.

b.SUPPORT

There should be more support on provision of knowledge to Wikimedia projects users/ contributors through talks, salons, training, conferences and workshops. Also the participants suggested that there should be some kind of appreciation, and recognition to active Wikimedia projects volunteers/contributors.

c.REINFORCE

When it comes to reinforcement the participants suggested that there should be inclusion of marginalized communities such as people with disabilities, bringing more awareness on the availability of guidelines resources that helps to contribute to Wikimedia projects,respecting cultural diversity and pluralism also there should be an increase in the level of decentralization of Wikimedia projects content verification (increase the number of administrators for Wikimedia projects) in order to raise the quality of Wikimedia projects’ content.


QN 02:How can cultural shift in communities be initiated to make contributing a more positive experience for everyone participating in good faith?

The participants raised their opinions that Wikimedia volunteer/contributors should engage cultural leaders/influential figures in the community. Also in order to ensure more cultural stakeholders joins our movement there is a need to find and identify the respective cultural areas/activities of interest in various communities to engage with Wikimedia projects. Moreover there should be a clear understanding and respecting the elements of culture for each community and under what terms they feel comfortable to get involved in Wikimedia projects.

This involves recruiting people with influence in a specific culture to be part of contributors community so they can be of help to matters that focus on a specific community .Here the agent of change are the individual user groups with support from Wikimedia Foundation and can be achieved by doing editathons, workshops and training.

QN 03: How can access to our projects be improved as access is the first essential step towards participation in a thriving movement?

Joint response from all 4 groups was that there should be more creation of awareness on Wikimedia projects, platforms, tools and events. Other aspect is that there should be Language localization of content relevant to local communities to ensure they get what they are thirst to see and that improvement of internet infrastructure, especially in rural areas should be done so as to have offline access of contents and affordable internet access.

One good example here is that although we edit Swahili Wikipedia in Tanzania, still many features and functionalities of Swahili are in English, therefore there is lack of full freedom for someone to create a quality content especially those who don't understand English. One of the challenges is that some of the English info box returns some error notification when used in Swahili Wikipedia as well some of the infoboxes doesn't exist to fit local content.What is needed is Wikimedia Foundation to find a way to empower local developers to create user interfaces that are full customized to local languages to ensure inclusion of people towards contributing to Wikimedia projects.

QN4: What are the social and technical challenges within the current administrative and decision making system that hinder the creation and maintenance of community health?

Discussions from the 4 individual groups pin-pointed the following as challenges:

Existence of Cultural Diversity where aspects, perception, practices and values that differs from one culture to another. Other cultural diversity may include social life, sports interests, politics hence both diversities suggests that Wikimedia projects should be more culturally aware to ensure good contribution attitudes of users/contributors of a particular community.

Culturally aware refers to understanding and respecting the boundaries whether context A is considered legal to specific community X while at the same time context A may be considered illegal in another specific community Z. Therefore while supporting Wikimedia projects across the communities Wikimedia Foundation in cooperation with local communities must cooperate to crosscheck whether the community has positive perception about the specific project / program.

Another challenge was Delay of Resources for supporting the implementation of Wikimedia projects in local communities.This includes the monetary support to aid in buying the tools required for special functions /events that are necessary for the implementation of a specific projects into the communities. Here the matter is the slowness and time taken after the application of the grant. The community think that if the time response to grants can be further shortened it will increase the efficiency of Wikimedia events and programs as things will be done on time.

On the other hand, participants pointed out the Lack of Referencing Sources which makes some limitations to users and contributors of Wikimedia projects to contribute good, quality and detailed content especially for some left behind topics such as issues related to women and monuments in Tanzania.Hence there is a Need of more options for Referencing the information that is to be contributed in Wikimedia projects.

The main problems with topics like women and monuments among other many are firstly the Lack of published sources sources ,secondly even the published sources sometimes doesn't meet the current verifiability standards and that is the second main barrier. Example,When writing about Women in Sports and Cinema during Wiki Loves Women project in Tanzania, most of the information you can find are on the private blog platforms which aren't much considered reliable sources in Swahili Wikipedia and even harder in English Wikipedia.This calls for brainstorming action among both Wikimedia Foundation and Community members on what other alternatives can be done and considered legal to overcome those barriers.





Ice breaker and Lunch[edit]

THEMATIC AREA 02: RESOURCE ALLOCATION

Qn 1: .Who should be the recipients of resources? How do we determine the boundaries, who or what is included?
The recipients of resources should be individual volunteer or group of volunteers on the following conditions;

Recipient should be an active member and regular volunteer who contribute to Wikimedia projects, Should have a cover referees/trusted supporters for endorsements and there should be a high level of transparency and accountability to the recipients.

QN 2: The Strategic Direction prioritizes “communities who have been left out …” Who are they? Who should we reach out to and on what principle?

Concerning who are the communities who have been left out the discussions came out with the mention of People with disabilities, People who don't have information concerning wikimedia projects as sources of free and reliable knowledge, People who don't have access to digital devices and Children with reasonable ages to consume Wikimedia projects educational content. Also on the aspect of Who should we reach the participants responded that its basically everyone should be reached because information is important to every one and every one of us should participate to reach them.On the matter of What principles should be used the participants concluded that there should be Knowledge equity as per strategic direction and there should be a customized content for specific group. e.g children.

QN 3: Who should be the recipients of resources? How do we determine the boundaries, who or what is included?

Responding to the Who it was observed that both individual Wikimedians, Wikimedian groups and Affiliates .Coming to the determination of boundaries key response to this was that individuals should be an active user/contributor of Wikimedia projects, should have a cover referee, should be someone able to maintain transparency and accountability as well as good communication skills to make others understand what they have to do. On the matter of who should be included was seen that both Wikimedian Groups and other active non-Wikimedian groups having similar vision and mission of promoting an open knowledge advocacy.

QN 04: Who are we accountable to and how do we organize accountability?

1. Who are we accountable to?
a. Community
This includes both users and recipients. Users refers to all individuals who create, edit or publishing the content and recipients refers to all individuals who use or read from the published Wikimedia projects content.

b. Knowledge
Ensuring knowledge provided is authentic and has quality to a recipient and has been carefully researched.
c. Wikimedia Foundation'ːShould continue to manage and improve their projects platforms, assisting in ways to maintain these platforms and making awareness to people about the importance of free knowledge via its projects and even cooperating with non Wikimedia projects for the same purpose.

2. How do we organize accountability?
Below are the ways by which accountability can be achieved as per participants opinions. Firstly is through Follow up goals where Wikimedia 2030 goals have to be well clear understood to all content users and recipients to raise awareness within communities. Delegation is another way where there should be clear roles and leadership structure to improve performance at each strategic responsibility which goes in line with having clear guidelines for contribution of content into Wikimedia projects where users/contributors have to be educated on the content that is acceptable and what are not, also rules applied in acceptance or rejection of content must be well be made clear to users. Another ways are Integrity check and Authentication strategy which refers to using peer review in checking the integrity of the information, knowledge or content provided and the content created or moderated has to be authentic and proven its integrity by peers respectively.Moreover the participants suggested that there should be New entry content Categories which will be containing the list of all new entries made per each specific time (say per each week/month) so as to make it easy for peers to have a look at the new entries as a package and improve them where seems necessary to do so.

Participants have some understanding with how accountability currently is, although their main point of discussion was checking the integrity of the information, knowledge or content provided and the content created or moderated especially to developing projects such as Swahili Wikipedia. Example, there is relatively small number of Swahili Wikipedia admins enough to cross check everything coming in Swahili Wikipedia although they do their best.One of the things which Wikimedia Foundation is preparing a special program to train more volunteers to be admins to different projects to ensure there is increased man force to refine the content.

Reflections from participants or partners[edit]

Some of the miscellaneous issues arose from the discussions were:

  • Using the upcoming East Africa strategy Salon to strengthen the cooperation between East African Wikimedians.
  • To develop strategies for the Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania to become a Chapter.
  • Wikimedia Foundation and its affiliates to come up with alternatives of how to represent the content in Wikimedia projects, especially Wikipedia that seem to have a limited number of documented and reliable referencing sources to some important left behind topics such as content about Women and natural things (eg. monuments, forests, rivers and sports).


Exoplanet Nomenclature Guidance[edit]

Dr.Noorali Jiwaji at Wikimedia 2030 Strategy Salon 2019 in Dar es Salaam.

Near the end of our strategy salon event we were privileged to welcome Dr.Jiwaji from Astronomy Union of Tanzania who explained to the participant the invitation and guidance to the Tanzanian groups (including Wikimedia Community User Group Tanzania) to participate in a contest that aims at giving new names to unnamed two heavenly bodies as released by the International Astronomy Union.





Photographs or videos[edit]

Statement on your budget[edit]

The total spent budget for this event was 1398USD which generally covered local travel, Outside Dar es salaam travel, Food,snacks, drinks, projector rent and stationery