User talk:LoriLee/GLAM-Wiki US Consortium

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Role of chapters[edit]

This seems like an interesting enough proposal, but traditionally, the role of regionalized outreach has been conducted by chapters. The best kind of outreach, after all, is through grassroots organizations. The danger in this is that it stunts the growth of chapters who exist to conduct this very type of networking. Of course, so long as we only have chapters covering the east coast and nowhere else in the country, we need something that can fill in the gap, and this would do a decent job. But why stop at a gap-filler for only U.S. cultural organizations? Why not also provide service for countries that lack chapters such as Belgium? Harej (talk) 23:10, 23 June 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Obviously, I can't speak for Lori, but I don't think this was envisioned a project only for the US. However, it just happened that it is Americans (and one American in particular, who happens to be the US cultural partnerships coordinator) who are organizing it in order to fill a need of theirs. If the model works well for other countries, or for a broader global consortium, all the better. A lot more, and more diverse, people would need to get involved to organize on that scale, though, and it's something to think about for down the road.
I don't think that the GLAM-Wiki US Consortium is an attempt to cut out chapters, or that it should have that effect. Actually, I think it is incumbent upon chapters, where they exist, to ensure that they are involved in the local GLAM efforts. When we are talking about networking between cultural institutions and Wikipedians, chapters are part of that network! The chapters need to be a resource on the ground in a location for when we want to put someone in the area in contact with local Wikipedians. This is neither intended to be something to usurp chapters' role, or to fill in the gap in places where there are no chapters. If used right, it should be a tool for chapters, as much as for the chapterless Wikipedians. Dominic (talk) 18:02, 25 June 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks for your feedback James and for your reply Dominic. I echo all of Dominic's thoughts. As for why this is focused on the US for now, it's because my core goal as US Cultural Partnerships Coordinator is to make GLAM self-sustaining in the US. This is just a practical matter and if this model is successful, then I hope to see others like it in other countries (or perhaps this model can grow to encompass other countries.) I'm not willing to go that big without first piloting it in the US.
Obviously we're still in the early discussion phases of this idea and I welcome your insights on how this should be structured. This is still in draft form in my sandbox simply because I'd like a small group (which certainly can and should include you!) to help shape the broader goals first, before laying it out as a proposal to sort the the finer details.
As Dominic mentioned, chapters are of course an important partner within the GLAM-Wiki US Consortium. But this is meant to be a pan-chapter organization with its focus on the GLAM organizations themselves. In other words, "GLAMs helping GLAMs," with Wikipedians there as support and co-partners but not leading in every project, event, or cooperation. In my mind, this is an informal mailing list and network of GLAM professionals and Wikipedians who together share resources. In the future, this may grow to be a more formal entity. But much needs to be discussed first. Also, it's important that we have GLAM professionals in this discussion, and that may come in the form of an advisory committee in the months following Wikimania. This group needs to make sense for those who will be using it, GLAM professionals, chapters, and individual supporters alike.
WM:DC, WM:NY and beyond are important players in this and I hope you'll continue to take part. I've been just trying to get my head around the premise myself first before I open up the dialogue more broadly. Thank you again for chiming in! HstryQT (talk) 18:16, 25 June 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]