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Submissions/Hacking Brussels: Giving Free Knowledge a Voice

From Wikimania 2013 • Hong Kong

This is an accepted submission for Wikimania 2013.

Submission no.
Subject no.
Presentation slides
Title of the submission
Hacking Brussels: Giving Free Knowledge a Voice (former working title: "A Roadmap to Brussels: How to monitor legislative procedures the wiki way")
Type of submission
Presentation (with the possibility of a panel discussion)
Author of the submission
Dimitar Dimitrov; Nikolas Becker
Country of origin
Wikimedia Austria; Wikimedia Deutschland
E-mail address
dimitar.dimitrov@wikipedia.at; nikolas.becker@wikimedia.de
dimi_z; theredmonkey
Personal homepage or blog

The EU Policy project aims mainly at the European Wikimedia chapters and the European communities so that they can have access to in-time and in-depth information about legislative proposals and initiatives at the European Union level. It strives to create a platform that monitors and explains law-making proceedings so that we can have a unified and clear position on major legislative and political changes affecting the goals and vision of the Wikimedia movement.

Detailed proposal

The European Union is a common market, information sphere and living space for the citizens of its 27 member states. Most of the issues regarding this shared space are co-regulated by the members and the EU institutions. Some are exclusive competence of the EU. Such an exclusive competence is the internal market under which the copyright regulations fall.

The question of monitoring and perhaps even lobbying for free knowledge is far from being new in the Wikimedia movement. During the Wikimania 2009 in Buenos Aires, a group of activists suggested some core issues which should be monitored on a regular basis. During the Wikimania 2011 in Haifa and the Wikimania 2012 in Washington D.C. Lodewijk Gelauff from WMNL presented a variety of Chapters’ projects which indicated clearly that there is a constant level of advocacy work. So there is an underlying consensus that the legislative framework of the EU really matters to the movement.

Monitoring the political framework is not something one can or should do alone, especially in a wiki. I would like to use the opportunity of this conference to get in (real-life) touch with the community, receive some feedback and even listen to complaints and worries. It would also be really interesting to exchange experiences and information with the chapters and communities from Asia, Africa and the Americas and hear what they have done and think.

The current project outline is: To build and create the infrastructure necessary to monitor EU policy proceedings and initiatives, inform the participant chapters and community in an understandable way, stage discussions about what is desirable or dangerous and take action, mainly by making ourselves heard. It would be proficient to also reach out to like-minded projects and communities.

The motivation and initial idea for this project was and remains that while I supported blacking out Wikipedia globally this one time I would really prefer if it remained a big exception. If we just hide our toy like little kids every time we dislike something (and this will inevitably happen sooner or later), there will come a time when people will stop taking us seriously. In my point of view, the only way to prevent last minute, chaotic actions resembling an end-of-world panic is to be informed way ahead of the actual vote in the respective legislative bodies. Laws and international agreements take years to write and negotiate. There's no reason why we should wait until the very last moment to see what's going on.

UPDATE: As this is an ongoing project the contents of the presentation are likely to change reflecting the latest developments. The minutes of the last real-life meeting do give an overview of what is to be expected in the next months.

  • Analysis and Public Engagement

Length of presentation/talk
25 Minutes
Language of presentation/talk
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  1. See also German laws on GitHub. -- Daniel Mietchen - WiR/OS (talk) 21:55, 23 January 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  2. Danny B.
  3. Jeromy-Yu Chan, COIC (talk) 14:15, 30 January 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Madcoverboy (talk) 05:01, 17 February 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  5. Phoebe (talk) 19:36, 9 April 2013 (UTC) it would be nice to see an advocacy block to talk about these issues from different perspectives.[reply]
  6. MADe (talk) 08:38, 16 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  7. CT Cooper · talk 23:23, 28 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  8. --Claudia.Garad (talk) 19:27, 29 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  9. Brest (talk) 14:21, 30 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  10. Mglaser (talk) 23:47, 30 April 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  11. Jon Davies WMUK
  12. Ijon (talk) 08:28, 2 May 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  13. John Andersson (WMSE) (talk) 15:25, 3 May 2013 (UTC) I still feel a bit sad that I could not attend the Brussels meeting in the end.[reply]
  14. Oop (talk) 18:03, 29 May 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  15. Mathias Schindler (WMDE) (talk) 12:45, 11 June 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  16. Marcio De Assis (talk) 03:53, 31 July 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  17. Nicole Ebber (WMDE) (talk) 23:41, 31 July 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  18. Mccapra (talk) 21:54, 10 August 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  19. Vera (talk) 20:29, 4 August 2013 (UTC)[reply]
  20. Your name here!