Proposal:Regional Working Groups

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  1. Achieve continued growth in readership
  2. Focus on quality content
  3. Increase Participation
  4. Stabilize and improve the infrastructure
  5. Encourage Innovation


Summary

Regional "Working Groups" as a sub-Chapter status for volunteer groups in areas where full Chapters are not practicable.

Proposal

The establishment of Regional "Working Groups", each carefully organized under a "Working Group Organizer" who has a time-limited charter to lead such a group.

The issue here is that when dealing with a small unorganized group, really the only practicable way to maintain communication and accountability is through an individual (or at least a clearly identified "body of individuals").

Of course, the "Working Group Organizer" can and should delegate activities to other trusted persons, but the overall responsibility (and the blame if things somehow go horribly wrong) is theirs.

Motivation

The formation of Wikimedia Chapters which are legal organizations registered with the government is beyond the current capacity and desires of many local volunteer groups. But the ability to cooperate with local institutions and to pursue grants would be greatly improved by even a semi-formal recognition from the WMF.

This proposal was primarily conceived with small sub-national efforts in mind, such as a "Wikimedia Working Group for Tennessee". However, an analogous model could also apply to countries with a very small group of volunteers who might not otherwise be granted Chapter status (eg Wikimedia Macedonia), as well as to countries that choose not to form a legal organization for their own reasons (eg Wikimedia Brasil).

This general model may also be useful in establishing relationships between a Chapter and peripheral volunteer groups within that Chapter's area.

Key Questions

  • What qualifies someone to be a "Working Group Organizer"; probably a simple consensus of a local volunteer group
  • The relationship of "Working Groups" to the Chapters and to the WMF
  • How a "Working Group" can evolve into a Chapter

Potential Costs

  • Volunteer/staff time in verifying identity of "Working Group Organizers", and their proper role in the volunteer group, and in maintaining communication and a relationship.

References



Community Discussion

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