I would strongly oppose anything that led to "two-tier" chapters. All Wikimedians should have the opportunity, should they choose, to organise a recognised chapter with the full rights and obligations of the current chapters. That's not to say I don't think there should be higher threshold for chapter recognition - I do - just that any such working group should not prevent the formation of a formal chapter in the future. AndrewRT 10:31, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
- As the initiator of this proposal, I certainly agree. Working Groups should not at all be impeded from evolving into full Chapters, and it is my hope that allowing for Working Groups will lead to more Chapters eventually..--Pharos 17:01, 5 August 2009 (UTC)
Working groups would allow for much more community interacton, I live in a major metropolitan area and to get to the closest wikiproject I would have to drive close to 6 hours. Sadads 13:06, 13 August 2009 (UTC)
sub national chapters
There are bureaucratic things like charitable status that we only need at a national level, but issues like meetups and relations with museums that probably work best at a city level. So I see a role for subnational organisations and would like to see them at least in all major metropolitan areas where we have volunteers that want to do this. WereSpielChequers 19:49, 18 September 2009 (UTC)
one unique leader
I think the bits of the proposal about having one responsible individual are anti wiki and the proposal would be much stronger without them. I'm an active participant in the London meetups - we recently had our 25th meetup, had four people at Wikimania in Buenos Aires and are I believe a logical candidate for a subnational chapter. If we can organise ourselves pretty well without having a defined leader or membership list, can sub national chapters that follow the elected leader model do better? Is there one out there with a longer track record than London with its 25 meetups? (If any of you are in London on the 11th October check out en:Wikipedia:Meetup/London 26 it would be great to meet you). WereSpielChequers 19:49, 18 September 2009 (UTC)
- While I do understand where you come from, I have to say that the idea of a person "responsible" is extremely important (it could of course be more than one person). If the Foundation, or a national chapter, is to delegate any kind of real life responsibility, then the person responsible needs to be very clearly identified. An organisation...is not a wiki :) Delphine (notafish) 20:04, 24 September 2009 (UTC)
Some proposals will have massive impact on end-users, including non-editors. Some will have minimal impact. What will be the impact of this proposal on our end-users? -- Philippe 00:15, 3 September 2009 (UTC)
This is an excellent idea, and is certainly something that many others have felt on the ground, especially outside the developed world (see for eg http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Brasil/Chapter_Report_2008).
My additional suggestion: we need not necessarily have the "working group" structured as a permanent grouping, like the chapter. For instance, a working group could be created around a specific, time-bound and otherwise bounded event or exercise that a group of Wikipedians would like to engage in for a certain period of time.
The key point of working groups, whether permanent or temporary, would be their relationship with the local chapter. To this effect, here's a suggestion: in countries where there is no chapter, it seems simple to get the working group permission, since there is no local conflict. In countries where there is a chapter, perhaps the permission of the chapter as well as the WMF could be mandated in getting the working group up and going.
Lastly, two more points worth noting: 1) Would we want to restrict working groups only to work that does NOT require legal certification from the country in which it is happening? (it seems like there is any amount of informal volunteer activity that does not need legal cover). 2) Chapters have legal and formal endorsement by and connection with the WMF. Do we want working groups to have the same? Or not? If the same, then why have them at all, since what makes them distinct from chapters?
In any case, the idea is an excellent and timely proposal. Aprabhala 06:32, 4 September 2009 (UTC)