Wikimedia South Africa/Board Meeting 13 July 2021

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki Wikimedia South Africa Board meeting 2021-07-13 18.00


  • Bobby Shabangu
  • Douglas Scott
  • Coenrad Loubser
  • Deon Steyn
  • Nobantu Modise
  • Wynad van der Walt
  • Ngonidzashe Delight


  • Ilana Fried


  • Michael Graaf
  • Rossouw van Rooyen

Previous minutes[edit]

Ilana Fried Presentation[edit]

Ilana Fried joined the board meeting. Ilana Fried works for Community Wikimedia Foundation and she is in the campaigns team. The campaigns team is a software development team and their goal is to build and improve tools for campaigns organizers and participants.

It was said that Wikimedia campaigns are important for the movement, for filling knowledge gaps, bringing on new editors, and creating a community. They should be a team that builds software that can support the campaign organizers. As a new team, they haven't started recruiting engineers as yet they need to see what is working in different chapters in terms of their campaigns as their building tools for the campaign organizers.

The presentation served to see how WikimediaZA goes about organizing and running their campaigns and what help they need from the Wikimedia campaigns team to make their campaigns successful, and also looking at what is working and not working.

At WikimediaZA there are a lot of campaigns that are put into the plan. Chapter members are always asked to put forward their project ideas before the grant application. The campaigns or projects comprise different ideas such as edit workshops within institutions (GLAM). This takes place in the forms of writing competitions, photo competitions, which run with other partners.

It was said that this year the plan was to go out to communities and have their project ideas and see where the chapter can assist in making the projects a success.

WikimediaZA is individual-based structured and volunteer-oriented. It relies on volunteer members who put forward projects to run and implement the projects. It was said board members end up proposing and running the projects as their the most actives volunteer members.

Their two sets of activities within the chapter are in Cape Town and Gauteng. There is Wynand who is in Makanda and runs that side. It is always encouraged to have activities in other parts of the country.

It was said that when partnering with different organizations, the chapter always looks at their interest, organizations always approach different social justice issues they would like to edit on and create content on those issues. This could be content on law, languages, cultural issues, etc.

As a South African chapter, we advocate for African content which is around the volunteer's interest, such as Afrikaans writing, etc.

The chapter is good at running programs such as edit-thons, and various other programs, but the chapter lacks at filling up a room within those programs. The chapter needs partners who are like-minded and who are advocates on free knowledge to fill up the room when there is a program

It was further said that there is a need for a strategic partnership of people with the same passion. The chapter would like the campaigns team to help with the translation tool and the dashboard tracker because they find it problematic as it is not user-friendly. It was further said that it would be great to see more development on wiki data as it will help a lot with wiki projects.

Visual editor works well but can stand with some improvements to work better. It was that as much as this might be a policy issue, the visual editor can benefit from being made into the default editor and also increase language support. Overall, the tool needs to be a graphical tool that will make life easier for wikiprojects. It was said that as the chapter is trying to attract a lot of young people, these young people use smartphones. It would be beneficial to create an app that can be used on the smartphone, which can attract young people to use their phones and edit on them. Ilana will go back and talk to campaign managers and she will reach out after the campaign has been launched for further feedback.


Our first-ever virtual Wikimania will be taking place on 13-17 August 2021. Board members were encouraged to register for the Wikimania and spread the word about the event. A lot of people are expected to attend as there is less hassle of logistics. Wikimania will provide data, laptops, and phones for people who might not.

Review of the Chapters Policies and Protocols[edit]

There are policies that were set as the chapter was founded in 2012, these policies need to be changed as some of the policies have become obsolete. There is a need for updating them. The board members can discuss this as they start preparing for the upcoming AGM. Board members were asked to bring forward their thoughts on the current policies to be discussed at the next board meeting and put forward for the upcoming AGM.

Virtual Community Meetup[edit]

The purpose of this meetup is for the South African Community of Wikimedians and GLAMS to meet the board, find out about various decisions we've made as a chapter, and catch them up on what's happening throughout the continent. it was said it is important to have these meetups and involve the community. It is also important to promote the meetups so we can have full attendance. Shupai to create a spreadsheet of meetups to be held for the rest of the year which will be held once a month.

End of Year Report[edit]

AGM Preparations[edit]

WikimediaZA Preparations[edit]

Board-Meeting Meeting time and Meeting Portal[edit]