(Lodewijk Gelauff is a member of the Wikimedia Affiliations Committee and Nicole Ebber is staff member of Wikimedia Deutschland. This blog post expands on their presentation at Wikimania 2013 in Hong Kong.)
At Wikimania in Hong Kong, we presented a selection of the coolest Wikimedia projects organized around the world. We aimed to inspire people on the kinds of cool projects you can organize at any chapter. We hoped to pass on a bit of that inspiration.
So how do you give people an inspirational overview of the coolness of our movement? We decided that the concept that Lodewijk used in 2011 and 2012 (Wikimania in Haifa and Washington DC) still worked: Present a large number of cool projects in a relatively short amount of time. Of course this means you can’t go into depth and explain the projects thoroughly, but it does allow you to exhibit a wide range of opportunities.
We asked all the Wikimedia affiliate organizations around the world what they thought their three coolest projects were. Being well rooted in the international community of Wikimedia Chapters, we took the opportunity to also reach out to thematic organizations and user groups. We ended up collecting 80 amazing projects, 40 of which we presented.
Preparing this presentation took several months. Ultimately we had more material than we could present. Compared to 2011 and 2012, the projects were significantly more diverse. Instead of simply copying the same formula over and over again, it was impressive to see how new initiatives were developed to create a creative array of new projects. We picked selections based on the following criteria:
- Is the project well-documented and easy to re-use or transform?
- How much time and money does it involve?
- Does it scale nicely?
- Which projects, goals and audiences does it address?
- Does it enable and facilitate volunteers?
- But most importantly: is it inspiring?
In Hong Kong, we took the stage right after the opening ceremony and provided the audience with a printed list of the projects. In order to give the audience a chance to participate, we decided to play a game. We selected the five top projects and asked the audience to applaud enthusiastically for the project they felt inspired them most. These were the five projects.