WMUK Board meeting on 1 March 2011, scheduled 7:30-10:30pm
Held on ConferenceGenie. Present by phone were Board trustees Andrew Turvey (AT), Michael Peel (MP), Thomas Dalton (TD), Steve Virgin (SV) from 1942; with Gemma Griffiths (GG) as Head of PR (start to 2057 and 2148 to 2313), and Charles Matthews (CM) taking notes.
Meeting started at 1937.
- 1 A: Minutes and Reports
- 1.1 A1: Apologies for absence
- 1.2 A2: Approval of Minutes for 5 February 11
- 1.3 A3: Review of email decisions already taken
- 1.4 A4: Actions and reports
- 1.4.1 A41. AT - Chair (including Office Manager, Head of PR)
- 1.4.2 A42. MP – Secretary
- 1.4.3 A43. TD – Treasurer
- 1.4.4 A44. SV's Report
- 1.4.5 A45. Redistribution of Joseph Seddon's actions
- 2 B: Decisions needed
- 3 C: AOB
A: Minutes and Reports
A1: Apologies for absence
SV apologized in advance for being a few minutes late.
A2: Approval of Minutes for 5 February 11
The public minutes were approved; the in camera minutes are still pending completion by AT so were not approved.
A3: Review of email decisions already taken
The following decisions were ratified:
- Modification of 2011 Budget to correct calculation error (7 February)
- Resignation of Joseph Seddon from the Board, plus vote of thanks to him from the Board (23 February)
- Approval of new members, as per in camera minutes (25 February)
- Appointment of Chris Keating as internal communications consultant (25 February)
- Approval of Initiatives/WP:CONTRIB Student Outreach with budget of £1,400 from opportunities fund; TD responsible for approving budget expenditure. (27 February)
- Approval of procedure for granting access to WMUK internal: "anyone with the support of any two board members should be given an account. Board members should support if they are feel that (a) the person can be trusted with the low-level confidential things that are on that wiki and that (b) they are engaged in activities that will be significantly benefited by them having access." (28 February)
- Approval of Fundraising Report (1 March)
A4: Actions and reports
A41. AT - Chair (including Office Manager, Head of PR)
AT had communicated the 2010 accounts to the accountants UHY; and had met them on March 1 to discuss the preparation of the 2011 accounts. A fine of £200 for late reporting for corporation tax had been inevitable given the late filing of accounts at Companies House. He has purchased Sage Instant Accounts packages.
SV's outstanding expenses for the 10th Birthday were confirmed at around £400.
On strategy discussion, AT has emailed Sebastian Moleski of WM Germany, and received support from Barry Newstead of the WMF, on the WMUK approach. There was a query from MP about whether WMUK had received the global WMF fundraiser report. ACTION: AT will enquire about it.
CM reported on fundraiser work communicating with donors, now completed, about which the Board had had a concise report: a fuller fundraiser report is being written up on the office wiki. He also has been working on membership in the database and the updated Register (on the office wiki). On the query about the membership of Lodewijk Gelauff, there was nothing on record. ACTION: AT to resolve the position.
ACTION: GG to post the updated press plan to the office wiki
A42. MP – Secretary
It was agreed to transfer money from the Opportunity fund to a new Education budget, to the sum of £5,000, with MP responsible. The EDU-WIKI budget would also be merged with this, bringing the total for Education Projects to £15,000. Expenses for MP to attend the dotAstronomy conference in Oxford (http://dotastronomy.com/programme/) were agreed to the sum of about £310 (TD will sign off).
An independent WMUK OTRS system was discussed as aspiration, but is not currently feasible.
On the outstanding grant in support of the chapters meeting, ACTION: MP to request a report from WM Germany before WMUK makes payment.
A43. TD – Treasurer
TD reported that the outstanding difficulties with the PayPal account had now all been resolved by phone. He reported on progress in other actions. ACTION: AT to upload to the wiki the written legal advice received on the 2010 fundraiser agreement.
MP introduced the timeline on Meta applying to both routine financial reporting to the WMF and annual fundraiser matters.
A432 Modification of 2011 Budget to include admin costs
It was AGREED that a retrospective change to the 2011 Budget could be made with an item set at £1000 under the heading Miscellaneous Administrative and Office Costs (TD responsible). Relevant items included telephone calls, postage, domain names; with retroactive approval of wikimedia.*.uk domain name renewals
A433 Reallocation of Joseph Seddon's budget items
The EDU-WIKI budget was assigned to MP, the Annual Conference budget to SV. Open Knowledge Conference to AT.
A434 Travel expense policy
It was AGREED as proposed by MP that the Expenses Policy be revised so that car travel expenses could be claimed, going forward, at 40p per mile up to 150 miles per journey and 25p per mile thereafter. Taxi claims must supported by reasonable need.
A44. SV's Report
SV reported on the Bristol Wiki Academy 1 event of 19 March. ACTION: SV to apply for travel expenses, to TD. The budget will be handled as 50% to the new Education budget, 50% to the Culture budget.
SV's report also mentioned the interest of ARKive in a resident Wikipedian.
A45. Redistribution of Joseph Seddon's actions
Annual Conference to be shared by MP and SV; Open Knowledge Foundation by AT. V&A action was dropped (to be covered outside of board actions).
A break was then taken 2107 to 2121
B: Decisions needed
B1 Annual Conference 2011 and AGM
Two tellers will be required: James Farrar has been approached and Joseph Seddon could be.
Notices would be sent to the Board before they were circulated. After discussion of motions on Board membership it was AGREED that MP and TD would propose terms of two years.
AT raised the administrative issue including badging. ACTION: TD has blank badges, will get them to SV, and will email MP with label dimensions.
ACTION: SV to approach the economist Noreena Hertz as a keynote speaker. Other speakers and the timetable were discussed.
AT will submit WMUK's hiring needs, after meeting recruitment consultants in March (possibly with other Board members). The full roster of posts under discussion is: Office Manager; Developer; Chapter Manager; Events Organiser; Communications Staff. All staff would be expected to cooperate with volunteers. Positions should be advertised in ways that included the possibility of Wikimedians seeing them.
The agreed approach was:
- All hirings sought would be initiated at the same time;
- Second interviews would be handled after the AGM by the new Board;
- The Office Manager and Developer posts to be filled as the priority, the Chapter Manager and Events Organiser posts subsequently, those latter two in an order not yet decided.
The Comms position would not be full-time in 2011, and AT wanted to avoid an interim position: comms duties might be rolled into the Chapter Manager post as an expedient, or a part-time consultant at 2/3 of a position might be hired in 2011, in preference to using an agency.
In detailed discussion of the job descriptions as posted it was commented that:
- Comms would not be an Officer Manager task;
- Charity compliance would fall to the Chapter Manager, not the Office Manager;
- The Events Organiser would only have responsibility for events, and would have relevant experience of events attended by up to 200.
- The Developer post would not cover UK wiki content, which would be a comms matter. A graduate was sought, with relevant skills such as PHP, MySQL, and servers.
- For the Chapter Manager, relevant managerial experience was sought, which could be as number two in a department or organisation in WMUK's budget range. As well as charity matters, the Campus Ambassadors and similar outreach work would be a responsibility. Looking ahead, press and media work would be through the comms person.
TD commented that the office arrangements also needed attention, and AT that the first hires should start at the same time as the office opened.
C1 Initiatives/Proposals/Wikipedia Portal
MP raised a legal issue and concern to do with WMUK's ownership of “wikipedia” domain names. SV asked for a precisely-phrased question to put to a lawyer, on liability.ACTION: MP to draft this question
C2 Initiatives/Proposals/Geo-information meeting
The feeling of the meeting was that an event involving geographical-information organizations would be positive; but that in the first instance it should be for one day. A budget of £500 was agreed.
The meeting then considered in camera business; and closed after 2319.