---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Katherine Maher <kmaher(a)wikimedia.org>
Date: Wed, Mar 18, 2020, 20:57
Subject: [Wikimania-l] [Covid-19] Postponing Wikimania Bangkok until 2021
To: Wikimania General List, (open subscription) <
wikimania-l(a)lists.wikimedia.org>, Wikimedia Mailing List <
As a part of the Wikimedia movement’s ongoing response to the COVID-19
pandemic, we are postponing Wikimania Bangkok 2020. This decision was made
with the full support of the ESEAP host team and Wikimania Committee.
Together, we will hold Wikimania in Bangkok in 2021.
We are filled with sadness to not see you all in Bangkok in August.
However, we are confident that this is the best possible decision for the
well-being of our global community and public health overall. This decision
was proposed by the ESEAP organizers in line with their countries’ response
to the COVID-19 pandemic and is in line with recommendations from the World
Health Organization (WHO).
You are certain to have many questions. We hope to answer some of your
questions below. We will continue to answer questions on the Wikimania
Meta-Wiki page and on the Wikimania Telegram group chat (more information
*== What does “postponing” Wikimania mean? ==*
We will not host an in-person Wikimania in 2020. We are rescheduling
Wikimania Bangkok until 2021. The ESEAP organizing team will continue
their work as a regional collaborative between affiliates in the East,
South East, and Pacific regions to host us in Thailand next year.
The hotel and venue in Bangkok will remain the same. We have not yet
finalized dates for 2021. We will work with the ESEAP team and Wikimania
Steering Committee to confirm new dates. We will let you know these dates
by the end of 2020.
The good news is that Wikimania 2021 will coincide with Wikipedia’s 20th
birthday year. We expect this to be a truly memorable Wikimania -- an
opportunity to celebrate reconnection after a year apart, along with the
remarkable accomplishment of two decades of free knowledge.
*== Will there be an alternative to the in-person event? ==*
There are no plans by the 2020 Wikimania hosts to organize a virtual,
online event. Hosting Wikimania is a lot of work. The ESEAP team is
committed to hosting the best possible in-person event in Bangkok in 2021.
Therefore, they will not have the capacity to organize a virtual Wikimania
However, the Wikimania committee, the ESEAP host team, and the Wikimedia
Foundation all recognize that other members of the community may be
interested in organizing a remote, global Wikimedia event for 2020.
Although the Wikimedia Foundation does not have the capacity at this time
to lead the organizing of a virtual online conference, we recognize others
may have the desire to do so.
We welcome discussion about online events. Interested parties are welcome
to contact the Wikimania Steering Committee and Wikimania Foundation staff
for advice on the Wikimania Meta-Wiki page.
We are also considering proposals for improving the capacity of communities
to organize local virtual convenings, and for how we can support
communities in organizing impromptu local and regional Wikimedia events
once the pandemic passes. As the situation has been changing rapidly we are
still working on specifics and will share more information in the coming
*== What does this mean for scholarship applications? ==*
We are working on a plan for how to process Wikimania 2020 scholarship
applications. We will share more information in the coming weeks.
*== How was this decision made? ==*
This recommendation was made by the ESEAP organizers based on what we know
about the current COVID-19 global health pandemic and current WHO
guidelines. The decision was made together with the ESEAP team in
consultation with the Wikimania Steering Committee and Wikimedia
Foundation. Together we are fully and unanimously aligned around this
Although we are genuinely sad to not have the opportunity to see you all
this year, we also are fully supportive of this decision in all of our best
interests. It allows our ESEAP community hosts to focus on the immediate
needs of their families, local Wikimedia communities, and local communities
as a whole. It is in line with global public health guidance and aligns the
Wikimedia movement as a responsible actor in support of our common public
We want to thank all volunteers and affiliates that have been involved with
planning Wikimania. We’re especially appreciative of the ESEAP for their
leadership, flexibility, and compassion, as we have worked together to make
some difficult decisions on this important event.
*== Where can I learn more about Wikimania 2021? ==*
There are a number of channels where Wikimania is regularly discussed and
where plans for 2021 will be posted as they develop. We welcome all
interested participants to bring together our collective wisdom and
creativity to discuss what happens next with Wikimania. You can find these
- Wikimania wiki: https://wikimania.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania
- Wikimania mailing list:
- Freenode IRC channel: #wikimania
- Telegram group chat: https://t.me/wikimaniachat
*== Where can I learn more about COVID-19 and Wikimedia? ==*
We know the Wikimedia community as generous and altruistic. Unsurprisingly,
many volunteers have started applying their skills and attention to this
current global pandemic. The Foundation created a page on Meta-Wiki where
we can share and document the steps the Foundation and movement members are
taking and ways to participate. We invite you to join us in documenting
more about our collective response: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/COVID-19
*== Thank you ==*Our world, and many of our lives, have changed rapidly
over these past few weeks. Yet we can look to history to take comfort that
crises are also often moments when people put aside differences, prioritize
community and care, and find ways to connect. The sense of community and
purpose within the Wikimedia movement is a powerful rejoinder to these
This is a moment in which not only what we do, but how we do it, will make
a meaningful impact on the world. We are so grateful for all that you do as
a movement to continue to rise to the challenges of our moment.
Please, stay safe and take care.
Katherine, on behalf of the:
- ESEAP Core Organizing Team
- Wikimania Steering Committee
- Wikimedia Foundation Events Team
P.S. You can help translate and share this message via Meta-Wiki: <
You can also find additional information about Wikimedia's other actions
regarding COVID-19 on Meta-Wiki: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/COVID-19
Katherine Maher (she/her)
Wikimedia Foundation <https://wikimediafoundation.org/>
Wikimania-l mailing list
---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Essie Zar <ezar(a)wikimedia.org>
Date: Thu, Mar 5, 2020 at 12:38 AM
Subject: [Brand Project] Next Steps, FAQs, and Thank You
Cc: Brand Project <brandproject(a)wikimedia.org>
Thanks to you, we have collected 23 different concepts of who we are as a
movement. These concepts have come from 97 total collaborators, who belong
to 58 Wikimedia affiliates, and reflect 41 countries.
We have met together in Oslo, Norway and in Bengaluru, India and online. We
have asked hard questions about branding and the future of our movement.
These are just the beginning of the discussions we will have throughout
this open branding project.
Next week, Snøhetta will publish a summary of the 23 concepts. You will be
invited (along with your communities and anyone interested) to “star” and
comment on the concepts you believe best represent the movement.
In preparation, we wanted to share some materials that have been helpful to
us over the past two months. If you find them useful, please feel free to
share them with your communities. Our process is meant for many voices to
come together, and we appreciate your help in spreading the word to
Wikimedia affiliate members and volunteers that you likely know better than
We are grateful that you have made time to join us in the process and to
collaborate with us on not only the concepts, but also the naming
convention and design work that is still to come.
Let us know if there are any questions we can answer, or key materials you
would like to share with your communities.
Photos & Videos from the Workshops
Ready to be shared on-wiki and on community social media or chat groups!
Bangalore photos on Commons
Oslo photos on Commons
Online video session on Commons
Note: if you have taken photos and wish to share them, please add them to
the right category on Commons.
Summary of workshop activities
Meta-Wiki pages coming soon!
Check out the Project blog <https://brandingwikipedia.org/>
Visit the Meta-Wiki project page
(we welcome translation help!)
Join the “Brand Network”
<https://www.facebook.com/groups/wikipediabrandnetwork/> working group
on Facebook (Meta-wiki solution coming soon)
Key questions and answers about the Brand Project
More answers to frequent questions are available on the project FAQ
These are the questions being asked most frequently of the brand team right
now. We wanted to share them with you as a resource as you continue
thinking about and discussing the project. Feel free to use the information
however is helpful for you. If other questions come up in your
conversations that you would like clarity on, we are happy to provide that.
Send them to us by replying to this email or posting them on the project
page or the Brand Network.
*What is the scope of this project? *
The Wikimedia movement branding will be revised through this design
process. Concretely, this means an alternative naming convention for the
Foundation and for affiliates, which will be opt-in. It also means new
designs, which will also be opt-in. Wikimedia project names and marks will
not be adjusted. See more
*Is “Wikipedia” the only option for naming conventions? *
The 2018 brand research and strategy showed that Wikipedia is a world-class
brand known around the world. It has more than 80% awareness in Europe and
North America, and fast-growing recognition in emerging internet markets.
Wikipedia is much better known than the Wikimedia brand name (which
confuses some due to its similarity to Wikipedia) or the sister projects.
Using the Wikipedia name thus offers our Movement the opportunity to
quickly increase understanding of what we do, and stand for.
Following this research, Snøhetta is going to use Wikipedia as a starting
point for the naming convention discussions. We do not yet know how
Wikipedia will fit into the naming convention (see below). Look for first
proposals around these naming ideas in April. Community guidance will give
us the opportunity to further change and refine the naming.
*How will the naming convention use “Wikipedia”? *
The details of how Wikipedia will be incorporated are still unknown.
Snøhetta is tasked with taking Wikipedia and using the concepts from the
workshops and other feedback points to create a first proposal. This
proposal will be reviewed and refined in consultation with the community.
Because the process is about creating as we go, we do not have this answer
yet. The process will arrive at the answer.
Questions like this have been common in this process. Ultimately, they are
questions about outcomes that are assumed to be known, but in fact are not
known by design. Similar questions include “Should the Foundation change
its name to the Wikipedia Foundation?” “Will Wikimedia Antarctica be asked
to change its name to Wikipedia Antarctica?” While we do not know what
proposed solutions will be, we do know that this process will not mean that
the word “Wikimedia” is just replaced with “Wikipedia”. When a first
proposal comes out in April, those interested in the project will be able
to have more concrete conversations.
Relatedly, how does the recent Meta-Wiki Request for Comment discussion on
impact this project?
The RfC discussion on naming was ahead of this project’s process. It asked
people to vote on a naming convention that may have very little to do with
what Snøhetta will actually propose when we reach the “naming convention”
portion of this project. Following the project timeline
Snøhetta is collecting and analyzing concepts and feedback this month, and
we expect them to share a first proposal on naming in April. At that point,
the proposal will be released movement-wide for feedback.
*What are the key moments in this process that communities/affiliates
following this process should be aware of?*
There are three key moments when Snøhetta will share work that will need
guidance from across our movement.
Choosing a brand “concept” (March) - This is coming next week. It will
be a chance to look over all 23 concepts that were developed during our
workshops in January and February. After one week of comments, Snøhetta
will review and then finalize the one concept that will be used
moving forward. We will send you an email when this exercise is posted.
Reviewing brand “naming conventions” (April) - This will be a chance to
look over and guide a proposal on movement naming conventions. This will be
a very active discussion time, as we’ve seen with the RfC on
movement/Foundation naming! We want to collect LOTS of perspectives here,
so we hope you can share the proposal widely with your communities. We will
also notify you when this is going live.
Looking at “brand design” (May/June) - This will be a chance to look at
a proposal for new Movement graphics including a proposal for logo, colors,
typeface, etc. This should incorporate naming ideas from Round #2. Expect
an email from us on this as well.
How does the brand project connect to Movement Strategy?
In short, the brand project is inspired by the Strategic Direction and
guided by Movement volunteers in service of the 2030 goals. This project
runs in parallel under the umbrella of the 2030 goals, but our process is
not connected to the continued development of the Movement Strategy
recommendations. Just like the strategy process, the brand process is
participatory and transparent. As a result of opinions uncovered during the
2030 research and planning, and in respect of community self-determination,
any results of the brand project will be opt-in for affiliates.
In more depth, the Movement Strategy process has defined a bold strategic
for Wikimedia’s next 10 years: “By 2030, Wikimedia will become the
essential infrastructure of the ecosystem of free knowledge, and anyone who
shares our vision will be able to join us.”
Recognizing the challenge of serving “anyone who shares our vision [to] be
able to join us,” the Wikimedia Foundation Communications team began
researching the Movement’s global brand positioning in 2017. We wanted to
know how our projects were recognized and understood in the world, what
people know and support of our mission, and how we could simplify our
“brand architecture” to make it easier to understand and join our movement.
The resulting brand research and strategy suggested simplifying Movement
branding by using the name Wikipedia in place of Wikimedia. How this should
be done (as in, how new naming conventions should be developed, along with
what brand design changes) is part of the current Brand Project. Like the
Movement Strategy, the brand project is an open and participatory process.
We invite anyone to join the process as part of the active working group,
or by commenting on draft brand materials via email and on-wiki
*What support will be offered to affiliates who want to make a branding
change at the end of this process?*
The Foundation’s Legal team is reviewing options to help facilitate brand
changes for affiliates. We are also exploring how to support the estimated
costs for affiliates to change their brand materials. This is an important
area we have heard lots of questions about during the workshops and we aim
to share more soon.
*What is the Board’s role in this process?*
The Board has approved this project and the recommendation to move forward
with exploring Wikipedia as a starting point. They also participated in the
same brand workshop you did. Following the end of this process, they will
provide direction on the outcomes and, if relevant, on adoption.
*What will an “opt-in” system mean in practice?*
Affiliates will be free to decide whether they would like to use the new
naming convention and design elements after reviewing them and shaping them
l. Adoption will likely happen in waves, as groups are ready to make a
change, instead of any single change moment. Early adopters will help other
affiliates see how and if they should make brand changes and further refine
the movement brand system in practice.. The goal of this project is to
create a new brand identity that affiliates are excited to use, that acts
as a tool to help clarify and make your work easier.
*Can I invite more people to join? *
YES. Of course! Interested people can follow the project on Meta-Wiki
join the “brand network”
<https://www.facebook.com/groups/wikipediabrandnetwork/> working group on
Facebook. For anyone interested in joining the brand network that does not
have Facebook, there will be a brand network section going live on Meta
when Wikimedia Space closes on 31 March. More information about that will
be posted on the project page at the end of the month.
We look forward to welcoming more people to the process.
*Essie Zar* (she/her)
Wikimedia Foundation <https://wikimediafoundation.org/>
*Freelance Digital Marketer*
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