Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2008-11-17/Wikimedia events

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The Wikipedia Signpost

Wikimedia Events Roundup

By Phoebe, 17 November 2008

Many Wikimedians and local Wikimedia groups and chapters are active in producing Wikimedia-centered events, from ongoing meetups to annual conferences, and in promoting a Wikimedia presence at outside events. Several Wikimedia events have happened around the world in the past few weeks.

Wikimedia Conference Netherlands

Jan-Bart discusses the Wikimedia Foundation at the fourth Wikimedia Conferentie Nederland

On November 1, 2008, Wikimedia Nederland (Wikimedia Netherlands) had its fourth conference, "De Wikimedia Conferentie Nederland" (WCN for short), in Utrecht. There were around 100 attendees. There were 19 speakers, including WMF board member Jan-Bart de Vreede, Philipp Birken, Erik Zachte, Esther Hoorn (who helped with WMNL's reaction to the EC green paper) and Arnoud Engelfriet (a lawyer specializing in Internet topics).

Some of the topics covered were an introduction to copyright, EU copyright legislation (the green paper by the European Commission was discussed), the German Flagged Revisions system by Philipp Birken, the use of wikis for educational purposes, and language support in Wikimedia Commons.[1] and Kennisnet sponsored the event.[2] Many people blogged about the conference.[3]

Wikipedia Academy Lund

Workshop at the Wikipedia Academy 2008

Wikimedia Sverige (Wikimedia Sweden) had a "Wikipedia Academy" in Lund from November 12-13, which was a big success, attracting twice the numbers of participants expected[4]. The program featured workshops, discussions, and presentations by Wikipedians.[5] Topics included a basic introduction to Wikipedia, inclusionism/exclusionism, source criticism, the legal aspects of Wikipedia, Wikipedia and education, and others. The conference was put on by a team of Wikimedia volunteers and staff from Lund University library,[4] and was blogged throughout by three participants.[6]

"Wikipedia Academies" were first started in 2006 in Germany. To quote Lars Aronsson, "Wikipedia Academy is a two-day conference and boot camp for academic researchers and teachers, who need to get deeper involved in Wikipedia, and a chance for the Wikipedia community to get in touch with the research community."[7] Past Academies have been held in Germany, France, South Africa, Argentina and Poland.[8]

Wikis Take Manhattan

The "Wikis Take Manhattan" event logo

The second Wikis Take Manhattan event was held on October 4th, 2008, in New York City. To quote from the project page, the event was "a scavenger hunt and free content photography contest coordinated with Columbia University and New York University students and The Open Planning Project, aimed at illustrating Wikipedia and Streetswiki articles covering the wondrous sights of the isle of Manhattan, and all across the Five Boroughs of New York City."[9] The event was co-sponsored by several groups devoted to free culture projects, including the Columbia University chapter of Students for Free Culture, the NYU chapter of Students for Free Culture, the Open Planning Project, Wikimedia New York City and Wikipedia volunteers.

There were 23 teams and over 50 participants, many of whom were not Wikimedians. The end result was thousands of photos contributed to Commons, which helped go towards meeting the goal of taking free photos of over 650 locations in the city.

The success of the first such event in NYC, "Wikipedia Takes Manhattan", which was held last spring, helped inspire a larger project page called Wikipedia Takes The City, which includes advice and suggestions for running similar projects and a list of such events. "Wikipedia Takes The City" events have now been held all over the world, including on Oct. 4th 2008 in Angers, France, and October 18-19, 2008 in Berlin, Germany.


  • On September 27, members of Wikimedia Polska met up for their General Assembly, in Poznań. Before and after the assembly members met to discuss the future direction of Wikimedia Polska ("GDJ 2008").[10][11]
  • On October 11th, the Wikimedia San Francisco meetup group had a table at the first annual Students for Free Culture conference, in Berkeley, California.[12]
  • The second annual conference of the Russian Wikipedia took place on October 18-19, in Moscow.[13]
  • Wikimedia Italia had a presence at several events, including for the second year in a row a booth at the "Festival Della Creatività" from October 23th-26th in Florence, a huge event with over 350,000 visitors.[14][15]
  • Several Wikimedians participated in free content activism days. Members of Wikimedia Italia and Wikimedia Australia presented talks or had a Wikimedia presence at Software Freedom Day events on September 20th,[16][17] while Wikimedia Polska organized an action for the first annual Open Access Day on October 14th.[18]

For more information

If you are interested in finding out more information about events near you, there are several places to look. For English Wikipedians, the main source is the meetups page at Wikipedia:Meetups, which chronicles ongoing meetups and serves as a place to announce new meetups. Meetups of Wikipedia editors occur all over the world. These meetups range from the very informal -- meeting up at a restaurant or pub to chat socially about Wikipedia -- to the more formal, such as meetups with presentations or a theme. Advice on starting a new meetup for areas without an active group is also on the meetups page.

For larger, international events, there is a page on Meta which lists regional conferences, workshops and symposia[19]. For those living within the area of a Wikimedia Chapter, chapter reports also serve as announcements and discussion of upcoming and past events.[20] Contact the officers of the specific chapter, or visit their website, for more information.

Do you have an event that you would like to be noted in the Signpost? Contact phoebe with details, for future events roundups.


Also this week:

Wikimedia Deutschland case — GFDL 1.3 — Wikimedia events — News and notes — Features and admins — Technology report — Arbitration report

Signpost archives