The NSW Board of Studies has included Wikipedia as a text in an
elective of its 2009-2012 HSC English Syllabus (see
This is obviously a great opportunity for us, and given that I think
they're going to release some more support documents in June or July,
it would be good to get in contact with them before then, whether
we've sorted out our incorporation blues or not (although preferably
so). As such, I've drafted a letter to them, currently at
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:ConMan/NSW_BoS_Letter for your
perusal and comment. Once it's presentable, I'll have a little chat
with the interim committee about timing so we can hopefully get it
sent off at around the same time that we have an organisation behind
With a little luck, this will be the beginning of a beautiful
friendship, and a model for cooperation with other state, territory
and federal education departments.
We have had a couple of committee meetings on IRC. Discussion has
mostly revolved around the new Statement of Purpose (SoP) draft.
Our main concerns have been about explicitly meeting the wishes of
both Chapcom and Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV). CAV in particular
wants more explicit, concrete points, it seems.
For CAV, they would like us to mention the WMF projects explicitly by
name, but for Chapcom, they would prefer we don't. So, there are some
different tensions there we have to negotiate a little.
So, I guess, we will have another week, see if members are happy
enough with it, run it by Chapcom and then ask Brian to take it back
thanks everyone for your patience and work on the SoP so far.
They've just been waiting in a mountain for the right moment:
So, thinking about this stuff kept me awake last night. All the little
cogs in my brain were churning very busily! I hope by writing it down
I can get some more restful sleep tonight. :)
I hope everyone can see from my list below that there is huge scope
for members to drive most of the items below.
OK, so... Stuff we can do!
* "Editors Challenges": hold regular competitions/contests for
creating and improving Wikimedia content. These could be for
Australia-related content, or just for Australian/member editors. They
could be focused on a particular project. There could be themed ones
like "Greatest improvement to an Australian town/suburb article" or
"Best brand new article developed within 2 weeks". or "Best
improvement to MediaWiki.org documentation" or whatever. lots of
* "Australian content portal": we should start a cross-project portal
that highlights high-quality Australia-related content from all
projects. (portal.wikimedia.org.au ?) Eventually I'd like to see this
develop into a "Wikimedia Australia Live Content CD/DVD" or something
similar. Lots of work in sorting and assessing and actually improving
content. Esp. hook into Australian curricula too.
* Blog! ( blog.wikimedia.org.au ) Not sure if this needs justifying,
but it's a great way to communicate to members, potential members, the
wider Wikimedia community and also the wider Australian community. I
was thinking one thing that might be nice would be little "interviews"
with longstanding Australian editors, about their Wiki*edia
experience, favourite articles, disputes, memories, that kind of
* "How to contribute to Wikimedia CD/DVD": For this I would look for
specific funding. But it would be cool to create/collect and collate
introductory "How to contribute" style manuals for each of the
projects, screencasts, video, who knows... Maybe also
audience-specific stuff, like for schools, local community history
groups, businesses/orgs who want to know how they can interact with
the article on their group.
*? I thought of this last night, maybe encourage "Wikimedia Editors
Clubs" in schools/universities? like enable local groups that are
extremely light-weight on the admin side.
*? "Certificate of Appreciation" scheme... so I thought of this last
night too. Let's see what people think. Lots of people spend a lot of
time contributing to Wikimedia, and you typically learn/utilise useful
skills in doing so, but it's not something that sits easily on a CV
(thinking of high school/uni students here). So, maybe we could
develop a scheme where on request we perform some semi-automatic
analysis of a user's contribs, and create a "Certificate of
Appreciation" that mentions the generic skills typically gained, and
highlights strengths of that user's contribs (eg attained admin, has
FAs, dispute resolution). We could then email this nice summary to the
user and they have some useful phrases to use in their CV about their
Wikimedia involvement. Or, for an administration fee (discounted for
members :)), we could print and laminate such a certificate and send
it to the person, + a listing on the website.
There are lots of caveats and details to work out (like, a block
record probably disallows you from using this, and maybe there should
be a edits/time threshold), but at its base I think it may be useful
as a "bridge" of formal recognition between the Wikipedia world and
the "real" world. I just remember when I was a uni student, I spent a
*lot* of time editing Wikipedia and it kinda sucked that I couldn't
really put that on my CV. :)
*? Maybe offer more generic MediaWiki services to companies, groups
etc? I think there is a certain amount of scope, not heaps, for us to
promote MediaWiki and wikis as a generally useful tool rather than
only for Wikimedia. I think that way because the first step to
becoming comfortable contributing to Wikimedia is becoming comfortable
with wikis as a general tool, and the second step is becoming
comfortable with MediaWiki specifically.
Organisational/administration stuff that's important:
* Setting up the basic website, making it look less like the MW
default would be nice...
* Setting up the members DB and joining procedure, incl. payment handling
* decide what we want WRT state branches
* hopefully helping to institute more regular meetups. events
calendar! (Germany has multiple meetups every month, or maybe even
every week, which is pretty amazing)
* start to explore funding/grants options more seriously
feedback and other ideas welcome...
They've just been waiting in a mountain for the right moment:
> Yes, sadly there are dead aboriginal languages, but there are plenty of
> others that are not only alive, but are the first and primary language of
> many people.
> I saw a program on Four Corners* looking into the poor English literacy
> rates on the Tiwi Islands. The reason -- the children were instead literate
> in Tiwi -- their first language. To me that screams "opportunity for
> language Wikipedia & Wiktionary".
Saw the same one :) Here in Perth and in the South West, Nyungar/Noongar is
very common, and in the far north (Kimberley region) two or three languages
are particularly common, as is a standardised Kriol (which is different to
other creoles of course due to different source languages and, oddly, the
influence of Malay and Mandarin which goes back a long way).
Oh and Alex - gmail doesn't easily allow one to change the topic and when I
do (such as now), I have to actually remember or guess at what the old topic
was. If gmail allowed folders I'd undigest it and set up a rule but
otherwise at times like the last few days I'd be getting a flood of little
I've always said a Melbourne bid would be a good thing. I'd be happy to go
over there and support it at a local level. What sort of conference
facilities exist? (I'm thinking Arts Centre, Crown and Federation Square,
but actual locals probably have better ideas :P)
This is a bit of a heads up to our warmer cousins in the north and
west, and our unfortunate cousins in the south of this great land...
Sydney is planning a meetup, and all are welcome! - it's looking like
the 13th August at 18.30;
I also saw Brian's post about refunding his credit card payment
through collection of membership fees, thought that this was a great
idea, and wanted to see if we can't make it happen (hey - if we do
this quickly, he can even make a few micro-cents profit from an
interest paying account :-) )....I'm certainly willing to send some
money over to somewhere
- in fact, it would be particularly cool if we could have a system in
place by the time of the Sydney meetup, so someone (angela?) could be
press ganged into collecting some cash and depositing it under a
suitable bed / in a suitable airport locker / into the correct
account...... (presuming recent overseas trips have helped with that
rather debilitating pokie habit.... ;-) )
I reckon it's quite likely the meetup will stretch to 7 - 10 people,
and it'd be cool to strike while the Iron's hot to keep recent strong
thoughts most welcome.....
I see that Melbourne has been listed in the "unofficial" bids list for
WM2010. Given that we seem to have a very strong wiki base in Melbourne, I
for one am interested in establishing a bid for that city. Obviously WMAU
would then have to consider it against any other AU bids and decide which to
throw its weight behind, should it choose to only support one (lots of open
questions about that).
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_2010/Bids/Melbourne is the page.
One of the most difficult steps is actually starting, so anyone else
interested in helping kick-start the Melbourne bid would be much
I feel my ears burning... :)
Sorry, have been out of reach for a couple of days but I've just caught up
on this discussion. I'm on the LCA 2009 organising team if that is any
assistance... probably more of a hindrance since I will be flat out with
main LCA stuff over that time, and as you say, there aren't many other
Hobart editors. However if anyone wants to present a WMAU miniconf I am
happy to support it and assist where possible!
If it doesn't happen... we can still have a wikimeet at some stage if people
are going to be there anyway!
On Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 12:39 PM, Sarah Ewart <sarahewart(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> Co-locating with Linux might be a really good option to explore, but I
> don't think we really have enough people in Hobart and it might be difficult
> to organise from interstate. Chuq is the only person I can think of in
> On Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 12:30 PM, Daniel Bryant <dbwiki(a)gmail.com> wrote:
>> Acting on the presumption that we would use this weekend (a big
>> presumption, I know, but it's handy given a lot of OS people are down that
>> way on this weekend in Hobart), we basically need to decide what is more
>> *Not having to arrange a venue and getting everyone to Hobart on a Monday
>> or a Tuesday
>> *Arranging a venue in Melbourne and hoping that the Linux/WMAU people from
>> Hobart will duck up after the Saturday event
>> If we're looking for a one-day conference either could work; a two day
>> conference (which may be overkill) will not with the first, unless we hold
>> it on the weekend before Linux. The downside of holding it at Linux is it's
>> a Mon/Tue, but that might not be so bad given it's January (ie. holidays for
>> On Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 11:49 AM, Angela <beesley(a)gmail.com> wrote:
>>> On Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 12:14 PM, Daniel Bryant <dbwiki(a)gmail.com>
>>> > Is Linux one day, or both? if it's one, maybe we could hold it in
>>> > on the other day of the weekend. I'd certainly be happy to jump across
>>> > Melbourne for a weekend
>>> It's a whole week. They have "mini-confs" on Monday and Tuesday. Any
>>> open source project can apply to hold one. This is where WMAU could
>>> fit it. I'm not saying it's the best option for us - just an
>>> alternative to be considered.
>>> Then the main conference is Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and a
>>> closing event on Saturday (January 24th).
>>> Wikimediaau-l mailing list
>> Daniel Bryant
>> Wikimediaau-l mailing list
> Wikimediaau-l mailing list
2008/7/28 Angela <beesley(a)gmail.com>:
> On Sun, Jul 27, 2008 at 3:11 PM, James R. <e.wikipedia(a)gmail.com> wrote:
>> I also believe we need a web presence also, similar to Wikimedia New Zealand
>> at http://nz.wikimedia.org/.
>> We could get a MediaWiki installed by one of the developers at
>> http://au.wikimedia.org/ and branch off from there; let me know your
>> thoughts and if/when we can put this through (I could organise this).
> Most chapters use their own domain. We have wikimedia.org.au. I
> believe the interim committee have found hosting and are planning what
> to do with the website once it moves off meta. It was a while ago I
> heard that though, so it would be useful to have confirmation of
> what's planned.
I am sure WMF will also institute au.wikimedia.org as a redirect when
we have something to show.
We have started set up of an "official site". I will let Daniel
comment on when it might be ready for unveiling since he was doing
some work on that.
I was thinking it might be cool to have
http://members.wikimedia.org.au/ for members to use as a working
space. Then there would be a nice separation between "official" pages
However it might be wiki overkill. For just about any purpose I can
think of for memberswiki, meta would also be appropriate.
We also set up a committee wiki which will be very useful for keeping
contacts and records etc over the years.
They've just been waiting in a mountain for the right moment: