Project:Calendar/How to schedule an event

This page is outdated. Google+ does not exist anymore; individuals have other responsibilites; Project:Calendar is unused these days. Do not rely on information being up to date here.

Here are instructions and general best practices for organizing successful community meetings and events.

General Event SuggestionsEdit

For events of all types, here are a few suggestions to help schedule a successful event.

1. Pick a topic

This can be difficult to figure out, especially around technical topics. "Is this interesting to others?" can be difficult to discern. If you would like some help in getting feedback on an idea, please contact Technical Collaboration. We can help provide a friendly and informal alternative perspective on your topic.

2. Promote outside the normal channels

Event hosts are always encouraged to promote their event with the traditional wiki methods, but don't just leave it at that. Many people use tools outside of talk pages and IRC to discover and learn. Look to external channels, such as local meet-ups, social media, and related events, to encourage participation.

3. Follow up after the event

Following through after an event can be just as important as proper preparation. After the event, be sure your videos are uploaded and slides are available. If you're using the MediaWiki YouTube channel Chris Koerner can help trimming any unwanted footage (like setup) from the beginning or end. If your video contains multiple topics, think about adding timestamps in the description or even consider breaking up the video into separate, section-specific videos.

Once published, videos can enhance documentation. Add links on wiki pages, such as in “See Also” where relevant. When adding video to YouTube, and especially Commons, be sure to categorize the video appropriate for easier discovery.

Additional SuggestionsEdit

  1. Want to host a videoconference? Send an email request to Quim Gil, Guillaume Paumier, and Rachel Farrand. They will schedule a Hangout-on-air connected to the MediaWiki Google+ page. Your recording will also be saved to the MediaWiki YouTube account.
  2. If you have an idea for a tech talk or meet-up, the WMF offices are available to host the event in the evening. Please add your ideas at the bottom of this page and email Rachel Farrand and Quim Gil.
  3. Upload any free materials used in presentations to Wikimedia Commons. Categorize them properly under e.g. Category:Wikimedia_presentations. Provide a link in your communications.
  4. Contact Rachel Farrand for help publicizing your event. See also Promotion.
  5. If you are running your event with help from WMF please show up 30 min in advance of your meeting to make sure everything works.
    1. If you are going to share your screen, increase the font size of your browser or terminal.
  6. Link your entry in the calendar to the video, IRC log, or blog post of the event.
  7. For specific types of events see Specific Events for more detail.

After the eventEdit

  1. Upload any free materials used in presentations to Wikimedia Commons. Categorize them properly under e.g. Category:Wikimedia_presentations.
  2. Follow through on any action items or off-line discussions that were brought up during your event.
  3. Thank those who attended your event. This can be with a note on their talk page, a barnstar, or a private message.
    1. Remind people who attended of the next meeting (if reoccurring) or of other related events in the near future.
  4. Ask participants for feedback or suggestions. This can help make future events more successful.

PromotionEdit

Once the event is prepared and scheduled, community outreach and promotion are important for success. Event hosts are encouraged to consider all of the possible venues described below.

For one-time events, promotion is important for a well-attended event. Hosts have one chance to promote the event before it happens. For reoccurring events, it's also important to continuously promote and remind people to attend. People get busy and can easily forget a frequent event.

It is recommended that hosts consider promotion not at as a one-time event, but something that is continuous. Letting potential audiences know of your event, and reminding them as the event approaches will lead to better attendance.

  • Rachel Farrand and Chris Koerner can distribute the announcement through Tech News. Send them your short text, URLs, and optional free image.
  • If you would like your event publicized on MediaWiki social media channels, contact Rachel Farrand and Chris Koerner. Send them your short text, URLs, and optional free image.
  • Wikimedia Foundation staff can also create an invitation in the Wikimedia Foundation Engineering calendar (visible to employees only) and send an invitation to the engineering-l mailing list, which most WMF engineers subscribe to.
  • Rachel Farrand generally sends an announcement to wikitech-l mailing list, otherwise the speaker is in charge of sending announcements on wiki pages, mailing lists, and other channels of your choice.
  • After the event or meeting, consider writing a post for the Wikimedia blog.

Specific eventsEdit

There are many larger events scheduled throughout the year. Be sure to add new events to the existing list.

RFC discussionsEdit

  • As part of the Requests For Comment process, create a Phabricator ticket, and when you think it's ready for discussion add a comment requesting discussion.
  • The Architecture committee determines the agenda for an IRC office hour for RFC discussion.
  • An Architecture committee member sends announcement to wikitech-l/development mailing lists.
  • Add meeting to Project:Calendar.
  • Reserve the #wikimedia-office connect IRC channel during meeting time, see m:IRC office hours.
    • People use m:Meetbot during the discussion on IRC to organize the RFC discussion.
  • After the IRC discussion add a link to Meetbot's summary (example) in the RFC's Phabricator task, and optionally the RFC's page on mediawiki.org (in the {{RFC}} extrastatus parameter).

Technical TalksEdit

See:Wikimedia_Technical_Talks

Meet-UpsEdit

WMF has a small physical event space at its current offices. We are often willing to hold meetups of up to 50 people, as long as the content in relevant to our work.

Official San Francisco meetup Group: http://www.meetup.com/wikimedia-tech/

HackathonsEdit

Find a comprehensive documentation for organizers on the page Hackathons and its sub-pages, including an improved timeline and handbook for organizers.

Further ResourcesEdit

Meetings of Wikimedians: See e.g. en:Wikipedia:Meetup and de:Wikipedia:Treffen_der_Wikipedianer.