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Feedback from the Wikimedia Conference

This post was written by Stuart Prior, Wikimedia UK project co-ordinator

Attendees at the conference

Berlin, this year’s host city for the Wikimedia Conference, is full of sparrows. Which for me seem a strange and exotic bird these days given their sad and unexplained decline in the UK, but it’s another thing Germany still has that we seem to have lost here in the UK (along with efficient public transport and affordable housing!).

It certainly makes for a pleasant visit, and I was there to attend the annual gathering of the Wikimedia Foundation and Affiliate organisations, organised by Wikimedia Deutschland and held at the Tagesspiegel offices.

The three day event (with some pre-conference meetings) is designed for people starting, or already involved with established, Wikimedia Affiliate organisations, to meet and share knowledge and experiences about how best to facilitate the work of the movement. Over 50 organisations and countries were represented at the conference, from usergroups, thematic organisations and chapters.

I attended some great sessions on program management, fundraising and events, though the programme covered finance, governance, volunteer support and various other activities that we all need to understand. But a lot of the benefit was meeting other affiliates and exploring ways we can help each other.

As an example, Wikimedia Netherlands has helped Wikimedia Poland with access to content on the Battle of Arnhem, which involved numerous Poles but which Poland itself has little record or artifacts from. This is just a hint of what cooperation can do, and something that the UK could really achieve in with our strong cultural institutions and diverse society.

Lila Tretikov, the Executive Director of the Foundation, gave a talk about their strategic direction, emphasising the fact that the Foundation cannot achieve the goals of the movement on its own, and that local organisations like us are a valuable asset for effecting change on the ground.

Additionally, a lot of focus was given to follow up on the conference, and how momentum built can be carried on at Wikimania 2015. Ivan Martinez and Cornelius Kibelka gave a good presentation about just this.

I myself will be trying to carry on those conversations and expand those ideas in the coming months, and prevent this just being a weekend of ideas when it can be a starting point for actions.

[Read more on our blog here...]

Read more at blog.wikimedia.org.uk

About Wikimedia UK

The Wikimedia projects are special: they are written and curated by thousands of volunteers. They are also supported by voluntary donations, through Wikimedia UK, the Wikimedia Foundation and other international chapters.

Wikimedia UK is a charity registered in England and Wales that supports and promotes Wikipedia and the other Wikimedia projects such as Wikimedia Commons. Our mission is to help people and organisations create and preserve open knowledge, and to help provide easy access for all. We do this by supporting volunteer editors and contributors ('Wikimedians'), by working in partnership with cultural and educational institutions, by hosting training sessions and editing events, and by acting to advocate the benefits of open knowledge generally.

There are several ways to get involved in the charity's work. You can become a member for just £5 per year. You can volunteer to work with us in a variety of ways, both online and offline. You can also make a donation (and if you're a UK taxpayer, we can claim Gift Aid). Subscribe to our Friends' Newsletter to stay in touch. Click the buttons below to learn more.

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General inquiries: infoatwikimedia.org.uk
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We are always interested to hear from new volunteers. If you have an idea you'd like to help make happen, or time and skills you would like to offer Wikimedia UK, please get in touch on volunteeringatwikimedia.org.uk


Для української мови Вікіпедії ласка, відвідайте http://uk.wikipedia.org; для Вікімедіа Україна відвідайте http://ua.wikimedia.org
For the Ukrainian language Wikipedia please visit http://uk.wikipedia.org; for Wikimedia Ukraine please visit http://ua.wikimedia.org

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