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Talk: 2010-2011 AGM/Candidates/Andrew Owens

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Hello Andrew - I'm assuming you will accept questions and have posted them here but if you want me to put them on the candidature page please let me know.
==Clarification regarding newsletters==
 
I just wanted to clarify for members and other readers your reference to the newsletter. My idea to start a journal/newsletter came out of my meetings and discussions with the Wikimedia De communications staff in Berlin and I was inspired by a range of material I brought back from other chapters at the 2010 WMF chapters meeting in Germany. It's got nothing to do with the committee or the secretary role and I don't want to see a perception given to the community (or the committee, for that matter!) that it is a committee job or the secretary's responsibility. The secretary position already has a ton of work and I don't want future secretary candidates to be frightened off, thinking that they are going to have to write a newsletter if they take on the role. It's not a committee project and and it's definitely not a job or responsibility  of the secretary. It will be sent to members with their membership packs but it is really just a personal project and it could just as easily be edited/written by a chapter member who is not on the committee. It is very different to the information pack which originated as a committee project and was proposed and developed at the committee's retreat in January. I just wanted to clarify this in case people reading got the mistaken perception that the newsletter was a committee project or secretary job or an idea that was developed by the committee as a group, like the info pack. [[User:Sarah|Sarah]] 20:57, 13 September 2010 (EST)
Firstly, well done posting your statement with as much time as possible for all financial members to consider your intentions etc.  I am hopeful that every candidate, whether a vote or not is required puts their position up clearly for all to see.
: Thanks Sarah - pretty much my thoughts exactly! I raised it in my statement only because it was evidence that WMAU is  working harder to communicate with members constructively. Wikimedia Australia in its essence celebrates collectivity, we were born of a collective project, and I hope that once the first newsletter goes out then it will elicit contributions and suggestions from our membership who can contribute columns and such in future editions. For example we might have a column on current government goings-on (Gov 2.0 and its follow-ons), education, media, a member's experience of getting a project going, etc, meaning whoever takes on the newsletter position would basically be an editor and compiler. A committee my dad is on went through exactly the same process a couple of years ago so I have seen how it evolves - the editor needs nerves of steel to keep the contributors on track though :)
 
: With the info pack - I wish it was a committee project! It was certainly allocated by the committee but has not been allocated the resources necessary to ensure its success. My own ingenuity may well be enough to get it over the line - when I uploaded the parts I had completed three months ago, one person said it looked good - but I'm hoping that the new committee who are coming in with "fresh eyes" will be able to offer more concrete feedback and assistance. [[User:Orderinchaos|Orderinchaos]] 21:45, 13 September 2010 (EST)
I have two questions - they may be related.
 
*Question 1 - I (and I'd say others) were fully expecting to see you apply for a more senior position on the committee than a general member - can you tell us why you have decided not to put your application in for those positions? 
 
*Question 2 - which may be related to an answer to question 1 - During this current year of committee work you were at times inundated by real life commitments and you found this to impact to varying degrees upon your achievement of goals which you had set. Given that your stated goals this year are perhaps even more ambitious, what can you tell us about your ability to remain with your 'hands on the wheel' so to speak?
 
I look forward to all financial members being able to read your answers.[[User:VirtualSteve|VirtualSteve]] 18:19, 13 September 2010 (EST)
 
: Hi Steve, and thank you for your questions.
: In answer to (1), I had intended to run for a more senior position, and others had encouraged me to do so. It came down to - others beat me to the nomination, and it seemed senseless to try and knock one of them off simply to get into a position myself and present members with an "either/or" choice, especially when there's such a shortage of candidates. (I would have run for such had the constitutional amendment currently on the table been passed.) John, Adam and Craig all bring things to the table from entirely different fields that I think we desperately need on board, and I particularly like the idea that we can break out of this "Australia is NSW/VIC" mindset that has pervaded the chapter since its foundation. A committee member in every state - now that's something I could never have imagined just 10 months ago.
: I think that (2) is based on a misconception that time and real life commitments were the only difficulties I faced in getting the information pack moving. I have both the time and the ability to see through the commitments I have laid out in this statement.
: Our term was not noted for its activity or level of success, and it's worth noting the decision by more than half of the team including its leader (our second during the term) not to renominate, along with the general feeling inspired by a look across our published minutes over the term (both of which have attracted comment from members and former members). Almost none of the decisions taken at our planning meeting in January, for which a variety of committee members were responsible, were put into effect either. I do not see any advantage in revisiting the past, however, so I will simply say that I am confident that a new leadership team and a new executive, as has been confirmed unopposed, will bring cultural change and offer new talents, skills and ideas to our chapter. Should I be elected, I will be doing everything I can to help them succeed. [[User:Orderinchaos|Orderinchaos]] 19:24, 13 September 2010 (EST)

Latest revision as of 15:55, 15 August 2011

Clarification regarding newsletters

I just wanted to clarify for members and other readers your reference to the newsletter. My idea to start a journal/newsletter came out of my meetings and discussions with the Wikimedia De communications staff in Berlin and I was inspired by a range of material I brought back from other chapters at the 2010 WMF chapters meeting in Germany. It's got nothing to do with the committee or the secretary role and I don't want to see a perception given to the community (or the committee, for that matter!) that it is a committee job or the secretary's responsibility. The secretary position already has a ton of work and I don't want future secretary candidates to be frightened off, thinking that they are going to have to write a newsletter if they take on the role. It's not a committee project and and it's definitely not a job or responsibility of the secretary. It will be sent to members with their membership packs but it is really just a personal project and it could just as easily be edited/written by a chapter member who is not on the committee. It is very different to the information pack which originated as a committee project and was proposed and developed at the committee's retreat in January. I just wanted to clarify this in case people reading got the mistaken perception that the newsletter was a committee project or secretary job or an idea that was developed by the committee as a group, like the info pack. Sarah 20:57, 13 September 2010 (EST)

Thanks Sarah - pretty much my thoughts exactly! I raised it in my statement only because it was evidence that WMAU is working harder to communicate with members constructively. Wikimedia Australia in its essence celebrates collectivity, we were born of a collective project, and I hope that once the first newsletter goes out then it will elicit contributions and suggestions from our membership who can contribute columns and such in future editions. For example we might have a column on current government goings-on (Gov 2.0 and its follow-ons), education, media, a member's experience of getting a project going, etc, meaning whoever takes on the newsletter position would basically be an editor and compiler. A committee my dad is on went through exactly the same process a couple of years ago so I have seen how it evolves - the editor needs nerves of steel to keep the contributors on track though :)
With the info pack - I wish it was a committee project! It was certainly allocated by the committee but has not been allocated the resources necessary to ensure its success. My own ingenuity may well be enough to get it over the line - when I uploaded the parts I had completed three months ago, one person said it looked good - but I'm hoping that the new committee who are coming in with "fresh eyes" will be able to offer more concrete feedback and assistance. Orderinchaos 21:45, 13 September 2010 (EST)