WikiConference UK 2012/Elections/Questions/Roger Bamkin
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- I'm a member of a number of Wikipedia communities. Notably the MonmouthpediA, Did You Know and QRpedia groups, but previously Derby and the British Museum projects, Simple and Schools. Outside Wikimedia I'm a registered teacher and a sole trader. Outside of Wiki stuff I used to write and direct pantomimes and I ran a small software business. I have an unusual name and a long history on the internet which probably records more than I can remember here. I'm on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Wikipedia where I'm open about my identity.
- Its the coolest thing I've ever done. Giving everyone on the planet the option to know stuff is the kind of thing the United Nations should be doing - and I get to make a major contribution - wow! Plus I got to work with Andrew, Chris, Fae, Martin, Mike, and Steve. You may have seen us as a secret cabal but the differences between us were small, rare and very brief, unlike the successes which were the exact opposite.
- Wikiversity is a "meme" of an idea. However its a project playing well down the league. I cannot think of one small thing that would help. It needs one enormous thing. I'd look for a partnership, a redefinition and relaunch, but most importantly a messiah with a newsworthy & defining project that would enable WMUK to claim it as their (re)invention. If we could get Wikiversity going then it has the capacity to achieve more of Wikimedia's mission than Wikipedia may ever do.
- The opportunities are ~ infinite as are the financial resources available to us. Currently we are experimenting to find success and then building on that. The limitations are people, thats why this election is important. The wiki-museum - Derby and the wiki-town - Monmouth and the Wiki-University - (working on it) are the kind of models I'm keen on. The work we did on Tipus Tiger illustrated how our community can show the V&A things that they didnt know. (Editors in India supplied new information on V&A exhibit). When we have a successful model like "the backstage pass" then we can roll that out to museums. I "stole" Liam Wyatt's backstage pass recipe and I'm pleased to see others "steal" mine too. We need to establish models that allow these to be scaled up without too much assistance. Ideas like the WWI project are not important because they are about the Great War but because this subject enables us to lever like minded partners. If we are just redirecting efforts from other wiki-projects then we havn't added value or furthered our mission. What is this project doing that wouldn't be done if we weren't there? To be glib - this isn't about doing things better .... we define (and demonstrate?) how to do better things. We are going to establish metrics so that at least our staff's efforts can be measured but I don't intend that we have "more staff than Germany" or "more members than the National Trust" - these are easy to manipulate and they may distract us. We have a mission and WMUK has doubled in its influence in the last 12 months towards taking its share of achieving that goal. So 2,4,8,16,32. I'd like to see our contribution to achieving our mission grow by a factor of at least 30 in the next five years. I'm not going to suggest a single metric apart from the view of the community. Whether we choose to work with the British Library & Coptic scrolls or the Manchester United Heritage Group & Footy biographs is missing the point.
- I hope that situation never arises. The way the question is phrased makes it very difficult to see any doubt in the way that one could answer the question. A more open question would help. See below.
- That depends on intent, damages, the law and how important (or trivial) the error was (e.g. Are there more than 2 or 3 people who understand and rate the importance of the error?). Its a truism that one wouldn't want to see anything be "overly positive" or even "overly negative". (Actually overly anything).
- Yes I have read them and I believe understood them. Some bits are not without ambiguity however. So it says you should not be under an obligation to a partner of WMUK and some may read that as "job" but I see obligation as "debt". 126.96.36.199 09:05, 2 May 2012 (UTC)
- Volunteers are the people who built Wikipedia and it may be that it was the Spanish volunteers who forked their Wikipedia to show that we need to keep our product free. Volunteers lead our organisation in the UK. I have been there at 3 o'clock in the morning making sure that we met an important deadline. I'd like to claim some credit for making sure we are not Wikimedia London but at least Wikimedia England. Many of the board meetings have been in locations like Birmingham, Derby and Monmouth and we have encouraged Wikimeets at new locations. Fae extended our reach to Scotland and I arranged for Monmouthpedia to be backed by WMUK and the County Council. So more of this ...
- Wikipedians as staff members. Yes. Essential. We may need positive discrimination to achieve more of these. However "more staff" is not my priority.
- I'm proud of the work that has been done to improve biographies of living people. One move is that we now insist on one reference and I helped (in a small way) with the push to clear the backlog. We have also started to name and shame P.R. agencies and their masters. Is there more to do? Yes, but I don't see this as a "U.K." problem. Its the members who decide what we do.
- Image opt out? Yes, good idea. I don't think that moslems, for instance, should have "our?" values imposed on them - and I don't think a moslempedia is a good idea.
- The current option for schools who want a restricted view is to load Wikipedia from a CD. For senior schools I think it is important that people learn to control their own use of information. Knowing that you can opt out is important. However sixth form children study censorship, prostitution and exploitation. These are valid subjects and we should allow these to be studied in an academic manner.
- Exploitation of models is something we should avoid. We have enough volunteers who want to appear in unusual situations. We can demand clear consent. Although this is not a WMUK issue.
- (Not sure, I might have missed a question). Elections must involve a credible portion of the membership. That's one reason we don't give free membership to every donor (as we do want to be elected by our active members). I was going to say that the quality of the people is the only important decision each year but we do have a billion pound product in the bank. Wikimedia UK is not the result of some all knowing directing intelligence. Succeeding is quite easy for WMUK. The board decide how well and how fast we succeed.
- It has been noted here that your involvement in QRPedia projects presents a conflict of interest due to your partial ownership of the IP rights of QRPedia. In those same minutes, WMUK's continued support and funding of QRPedia and it's various programmes and development was alluded to. Though it was proposed as a follow-up action that a formal agreement be drafted, I am unable to find such an agreement in further minutes or announcements. Given that this issue is apparently still unresolved, I am left with three questions: How do you envision being able to continue your work on WMUK's board without a conflict of interest, how has your vested interest in QRPedia and its success influenced your promotion of MonmouthPedia thus far and what do you stand to gain with the continued proliferation of QRPedia? Panyd (talk) 21:26, 2 May 2012 (UTC)
- QRpedia has continued throughout this year to grow in importance, wooo! It was an idea that was declared before the last AGM and I suspect I was elected because of, and not despite my involvement. I attended the Coventry wikimeet today and whilst I was there I attended a one hour phone conversation trying to work out how we transfer ownership (i.e. as a gift) to WMUK. There seems to be a view that trustees should not have a conflict of interest, whereas trustees are required to not have undeclared conflicts of interest. We have drafted agreements but we have failed to drive them through. I guess you realise that as chair with a COI, I cannot drive this agreement through the board. I do have to avoid COI evev when I am making a gift of a product that takes many hours to create and maintain. So in answer to your first question. I will have a COI, I will declare my interest (just in case anyone is unaware) and the board and I will have to avoid any conflict. Has QRpedia influenced MonmouthpediA? Yes. The leading manager for Monmouthshire credits me and QRpedia for getting her to commit the County Council to this partnership. Obviously I got no financial advantage from this. John Cumming's original proposal was that WMUK should do for a town what it had done for Derby Museum. Derby Museum's success was 90% due to QRpedia. If I have to repay the buzz that I've got from this then I'll need your attention for quite some time and a box of electric amplified kazoos. The Wikimedia Foundation and the UKGov identify QRpedia as an important development for Wikipedia and GLAM (I'm obviously not going to apologise for this success). What do I stand to gain from the proliferation from QRpedia? Nothing? World fame? More debt? The ability to really help WMUK? A reason for the WMUK members to reject my volunteered help? Credit for delivering a use for QR codes? A million pound cheque from a confused Yahoo executive? You choose which you think is credible and what effect WMUK has had on this success. The real driver in my opinion for QRpedia has been the help in Russia and Spain which resulted from my work at Derby as a volunteer Wikipedia in Residence. (The last unpaid one I believe). WikimediaUK has been mentioned dozens of times in the international press because of QRpedia. I have had my travel paid for trips to Norway and Austria as a result of QRpedia which enabled me to spread the WMUK message. I have other offers. I estimate "the profit" that Terence and I have made to date as several thousands of pounds (worth of debt).