Wikimedia CEE Meeting 2019/Programme/Submissions/Openness and subsidiarity - how Wikimedia technical efforts should change

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Title of the submission

Openness and subsidiarity - how Wikimedia technical efforts should change

Type of submission (lecture, panel, workshop, lightning talk, roundtable, poster)


Author(s) of the submission

Gergő Tisza




Product & Technology working group

  • Strategy
  • Technology
Abstract (up to 100 words)

I will introduce the movement strategy recommendations by the Product and Technology working group, with the focus on the ones which directly affect affiliates and wiki community members: decentralization of development, and open processes for planning, prioritizing and enabling new software. These recommendations describe a vision of that structural change is necessary to better pursue the movement's goals of knowledge equity and becoming the infrastructure of free knowledge. The session will be an opportunity to provide feedback on them.

(Note that the recommendations are not final and might change by the time of the conference. As such, this abstract is somewhat provisional.)

How will this session be beneficial for the communities in the region of Central and Eastern Europe?

It will help participants (affiliate members and community members) understand the strategy process and shape it.

Special requirements

Slides or further information

Interested attendees[edit]

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  • Movement strategy
  • Structural vs programmatic: Programmatic problems are showing us what are we going to do and structural how will we do it. 7
  • Focusing on 2 areas: Governance and distribution of work.
  • Current problems are for governance, users are consulted before software changes but for the most part do not get to participate in planning, prioritizing and decision making. There is also limited capacity in the communities.
  • For distribution of work, almost all technical work is done by the WMF and WMDE, there is no structure for coordinating technical efforts between organizations or ensuring organizations have the required capacity to take on technical tasks successfully, which is a barrier for a more distributed system of working.
  • Recommendations:
    • Open Product Proposal Process: set up an open and transparent project proposal process.
  • Problem: The quality of discussions in the movement varies and tends to get worse with scale.
    • Evaluate and decentralize technology components. Problem: technology vision needs to remain cohesive and organizations overestimate their ability and fail and/or damage the brand or community trust.