Wits Workshop

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Contents

Potential activities

Content creation options

  1. Running drives to acquire non-written information or information not available in written format (e.g. oral)
  2. Making localised and locally relevant video, audio and written guides on using Wikipedia/MediaWiki.
  3. Create space for digital audiovisual content.
  4. Submit/edit by SMS. Look into using USSD technology?
  5. Communities of interest are carriers of information that need to be represented (e.g. Khoisan) - get it

Recognizing contributions

  1. Recognize local content creators by featuring them in Wikimedia projects and old and new media releases
  2. Rewards for best/most contributions: most new articles, most corrections, best new article.
  3. Reward ideas: Sponsorship to international Wikimedia conference(s), T-shirts, money.

Raising awareness and getting people involved

  1. Helping people to take the first step: Get communities (e.g. students) in a computer lab, guide them in creating and verifying accounts and making their first edit.
  2. Campaigns with local celebrities at schools and universities. Identify people who will be willing to support, e.g. progressive artists and Free Kiba artists.
  3. Wikipedia Academy type activities.
  4. Get content through group field activities, especially special interest groups like photojournalists or 4×4 enthusiasts, inspired by Britain Loves Wikipedia
  5. Host virtual events to target a specific topic with potential users such as universities, Linux Users Groups or Bloggers. Involve knowledgeable people who can help steer process.
  6. Wikimedia South Africa Facebook group.
  7. Regular city meetups open to all
  8. Meet up to collaborate together (physically).
  9. Annual conference to create relationships between Wikimedia contributors and content owners, or to focus on academics, explaining how to use Wikipedia in education.
  10. Apply to host Wikimania
  11. Promote language specific meetings (physical and virtual), with the idea of doing translations.
  12. Inform the general public about the advantages of the Wikimedia projects.
  13. Integrate the Wikimedia projects into the educational system.
    1. http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2010/09/07/wikipedia
  14. Raise profile and increase recognition of Wikimedia projects by increasing coverage of events and activities
  15. Keep mailing list up to date and include new members in all channels of communication.

Connecting with society

  1. Build partnerships with Open-Source stakeholders by collaboration on events
  2. Promote multi-lingual contributions.
  3. Document different cultural backgrounds (do a test run first).
  4. Broaden world knowledge about South Africa.
  5. Creating a link between well resourced institutions and underserved communities.
  6. Identifying IP belonging to the government and lobby them to put it under a free license.
  7. Interfacing with the communities that can verify local oral history.

Draft Vision

  1. For a vibrant multilingual and multicultural content community that generates and disseminates content that is used and understood by the local and global community
  2. Facilitating contributions to the commons of African knowledge
  3. Free access to knowledge in home languages to support development, collect and disseminate information about but not exclusive to South Africa
  4. Creation of and access to free and open knowledge in South Africa

Draft Purpose

  1. To support the SAfrican Wikimedia community
  2. To foster a sense of community
  3. To learn from, inspire, and support other African Wikimedia communities
  4. To encourage dialogue between communities of free culture and free software
  5. To build/facilitate/disseminate/provide knowledge in all SAfrican languages
  6. To contribute to the development of local languages (all South African languages)
  7. Making existing knowledge open
  8. Make Wikipedia accessible in terms of technology, language, and accessibility
  9. To provide good quality content on local topics
  10. To protect, preserve and promote local cultures including contemporary culture
  11. Engaging with other open communities
  12. To interact with archives and museums
  13. To build a local community of Wikipedians
  14. Negotiating copyright on behalf of local projects; raising awareness of Wikimedia
  15. Promoting academic use of Wikimedia projects/ get advocacy of academic institutions
  16. Promoting mobile access.
  17. Have the chapter be a link between virtual community and real world
  18. Encourage people to help with problems/bias/lack that they see in Wikipedia? (Wikipedia Academies)
  19. Local chapter can incentivise/motivate local contributors by highlighting their work
  20. Ownership of Wikimedia to South Africans
  21. Connect editors and writers to specialists (public policy initiative for South Africa)
  22. Kickstarting projects; focused activity; nurturing volunteers; encourage not dictate
  23. Raise money to implement development projects (money for specific initiatives)
  24. Central hub: enabler, facilitator, networker, local presence

Draft challenges

  1. Building and maintaining critical mass
  2. Internet access
  3. Focusing on academic use
  4. Access through mobile phones
  5. Localisation
  6. Access to hardware
  7. Creating local content on a global project
  8. Documenting content which is only orally available; finding a workable citation method for languages with oral traditions
  9. Accommodate competing perspectives and promote inclusion
  10. Avoid bias/ culture that is enabling, inclusive (?)
  11. Financing
  12. Potential legal issues (legislation that can be inhibiting)
  13. Geographical distances and resources to enable meetings of the chapter
  14. Identifying relevant sources of knowledge
  15. Proactive advocacy to lobby govt, pvt sector, and civil society
  16. People turnover within the chapter could affect sustainability
  17. Different formats for accessing information esp. for disabled people
  18. Languages (hybrid forms vs formal forms; language varieties vs standard languages)

Possible Initiatives

  • Establish strategic relationships with existing organisations that are already working in the area of educating and supporting stakeholders in key areas (e.g. engage the Cape Film Commission and the Cape Music Commission, which may already be educating artists about key aspects of music or film production, in order to use open strategies to license and market their work as well as utilise the tools that are currently made available by Wikimedia).
  • Upload public domain dictionary entries onto Wikisource; edit this information so that it can be uploaded onto Wiktionary. Encourage publishers to make use of these Wiktionary entries; this could incentivise entrepreneurs (via funding mechanisms / partnerships with government or corporates) to explore ways of creating products or services.
  • Approach the DoE to mandate and/or fund the publication of open textbooks on WikiBooks.
  • Encourage schools to create pages on their region's histories; approach the DoE to integrate such a task into the relevant school curricula.
  • Establish a task team to learn which school learning materials should be licensed alternatively via CC or GPLs.
  • Assist community libraries to establish virtual libraries.
  • Engage organisations (e.g. UWC's Mayibuye Centre, Community Video Education Trust, District Six Museum, Robben Island Museum, the Apartheid Museum, DISA, Centre for Popular Memory, UCT) that are archiving audio, video & film documentary material on South African history.
  • Engage corporations in training initiatives in terms of lectures, workshops and uploading helpful open content by appealing to their knowledge of the BEE scorecard system.
  • Upload content created through public funding, although the copyright assigned to it maybe unclear (e.g. Dept of Arts and Culture, IT technical terms in official languages), in order to promote discussion about the information commons.
  • Work together with the University of Stellenbosch to promote the contribution to Wikimedia projects, as they are planning to supply students with laptops from next year on.
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