X-post: Experiment: WordCamp.org bug scrubs

X-post from +make.wordpress.org/meta: Experiment: WordCamp.org bug scrubs

Weekly Updates

Hello to all our Deputies, WordCamp organizers, Meetup wranglers, and WordPress Community builders! You were probably hard at work this weekend. Tell us what you got accomplished in our #weekly-update!

Have you run into a roadblock with the stuff you’re working on? Head over to #community-events or #community-team in Slack and ask for help!

Community Team Decision Making Process

In the past the members of the Community Team had some informal discussions about the decision making process: the conversation is very broad and we haven’t tackled it in a structured way up until now.

Since April, the Community team switched from having a single monthly chat that didn’t always had an agenda, to a bi-monthly chat, held at 08:00 UTC and 20:00 UTC to take into account different timezone, with an agenda that covers topics that might come up in our channels and highlights the latest from our blog. Attendance is good, people are engaged in the discussions and in general it seems that so far this has been a welcome change in our workflow.

It also helped us approaching broader subjects, about the Community team itself and its organisation.

One question that resurfaces every now and then is: how do we come to decisions? How do we wrap up all the discussions that float around us and come to conclusions? From comments in our Slack channels or P2 posts to issues that might be brought up to our support email, there is a lot going on in the Community team!

This is a broad conversation that touches on different subjects. The following are only a few:

  1. Media: the different media we use to communicate have different purposes, the Slack channels are for bouncing off ideas and replying to direct questions, but when we need to agree upon something we direct the person that has raised the issue to post in our P2 to gather feedback. Sometimes delicate issues are not brought in public but are dealt via email between the interested parties and then made public when a decision is made.
  2. Who: some issues are easily solved, everyone says what they think, either via a poll or comments, there are no major roadblocks (usually financial or technical), the majority of the feedback is positive so we move on. This is what happened when we decided to change the chat model. Some issues though require a more structured approach, especially if the outcome has a great impact on the whole WordPress community, not only the Community Team. Who is involved in this kind of decisions?
  3. How: after we identify the who, how those final deciders actually make the decisions they make? What processes and tools and tools can we use?
  4. Tracking: we use our P2 to gather feedback, how do we track open issues? Let’s say we come up with a workflow from now on, how do we deal with the threads that were opened in the past and never reached a conclusion?

The above items are just a few and they are mostly related to a practical workflow that defines roles, capabilities, procedures to gather feedback and come to decisions. But what about the emotional side of things? Who is taking the heat for unpopular decisions? How are they seen in the Community?

So, lots of food for thought!

Let’s set ourselves a goal of spending about two weeks on this discussion, closing it on August 3, in time for our next chat. After that I’ll gather all the comments and we’ll go from there to determine our next steps.

Thank you!

#community-team

Replacing a lost European camera kit + a request for an additional one

Hey team,

One of the five European camera kits got misplaced during WordCamp Europe contributor day. As far as I know there are still people looking for it but unfortunately I think for the sake of planning the shipping of kits to camps this autumn I need to consider it gone.

That leaves us with four kits for all European WordCamps. Three events have already booked kits – WordCamp Varna (September), WordCamp Dublin (October) and WordCamp Sofia (November) but considering the amount of events being planned for this autumn, I expect more requests and most camps request a minimum of two kits, some request three.

So two questions:

1. Can we replace the missing camera kit with a new one?
2. Can we purchase a sixth camera kit so we have three pairs circling around WordCamps in Europe for situations like the weekends that have more than one camp.
3. I can request a a quick inventory from the organisers who currently have the kits to make sure all kits are equipped with everything they need (microphones, stands, Peli cases) and if there’s something missing, it would be great to complete the existing kits with the missing bits. Would that be ok?

Thanks in advance for your help,
Petya

Recap: CampTix payment gateways for Indian currency

Hello everyone,

Thanks for participating in the long, spirited discussion about which payment gateways to use for Indian currency on WordCamp.org. Since I started this hot topic, I will try to recap and suggest a path forward.

  • It is evident from many comments that KDC Pay does in fact work well for lots of people/WordCamps. Many thanks to @vachan for doing a great service to the Indian WP community by enabling organizer teams to receive registration funds without having to register business entities.
  • It also seems that it would be unsustainable to continue relying on only one payment gateway run by a small team as the Indian WP community continues to grow.
  • There are, of course, benefits and drawbacks to each alternative, and each WordCamp organizing team has different styles and preferences, such that there isn’t a good way to pick a single option to move forward with.

Building on the suggestions of many others in the discussion, here is a solution I would like to propose:

  • Keep the existing KDC Pay plugin for the time being.
  • Instead of adding separate plugins for Razorpay and Instamojo, create a single plugin to support multiple gateways/platforms that can be enhanced and expanded in the future. @sanyog has already started one that might serve this purpose. It would be great to figure out how to incorporate @ravinderk‘s contributions as well. I would suggest a platform-neutral name for the plugin, such as “INR Currency for CampTix”.
  • Maintain the plugin in a GitHub repo with multiple contributors. Perhaps house the repo in a GitHub organization for the whole community, rather than in someone’s personal/business account. This way everyone’s contributions can be recognized and the maintenance/enhancement of the plugin can be community-driven.

It’s true that there’s not a big difference in the maintenance burden between three small, single-gateway plugins and one large plugin with multiple gateways. However, my hope is that after the initial code review, the community would be able to help with testing/reviewing updates before we apply them on WordCamp.org. This would hopefully help reduce the necessary time commitment for those of us maintaining the network.

I think we should all acknowledge that no matter what decision is ultimately made, some people are probably not going to be satisfied. In a situation like this, the concept of “agree and commit, disagree and commit” can help us move forward in a healthy way. What that means is that regardless of whether we agree with the decision or not, we commit to supporting it for the good of the project, rather than continuing to argue.

To move forward on the above proposed solution, I think the next steps would be:

  • Create a GitHub organization or at least a repo to house the plugin, and open it to contributions from community members. How can this be done in a way that is fair to everyone?
  • Collaborate on a version of the plugin that supports both of the options we have been discussing: Razorpay and Instamojo.
  • Submit this new plugin to the WordPress.org plugin directory.
  • Get the plugin reviewed for inclusion on WordCamp.org.

Thanks again for all the input.

Proposed changes to the Welcome box and sidebar

Welcome Box

The welcome box has some copy that maybe we could review:

We use this blog for status reports, project announcements, and the occasional policy debate.

In the past few months we used it for all of the above, but in reverse order:

  1. Policy debates, ideas, proposals, etc…
  2. Project announcements: are we talking the WP project or our own team projects?
  3. The occasional status reports 😉

In addition to discussions on this blog, we have Office Hours four times a week in the #community-events channel on Slack for real-time communication. Office hours for the next week are scheduled for Tuesday, 25 July 2017, 00:00 CESTTuesday, 25 July 2017, 11:00 CESTThursday, 20 July 2017, 00:00 CEST, and Thursday, 20 July 2017, 11:00 CEST in the #community-events channel on Slack.

Make it shorter, do you think it’s enough to state days and times, as we do in the sidebar?

Missing: a note about bi-monthly chats

This is a great way for people that are interested in joining the team to see how we operate. If we advertise it in the Welcome box it could help having more people join, observe and hopefully volunteer to be part of the team 🎉.

Sidebar

A few days ago @andreamiddleton made a few changes to the sidebar that makes it easier to navigate around the website (thanks!).

I propose to make a couple of additional changes:

  • Remove the Recent Activities widget: we have the Recent Posts, I feel it’s easier to follow what is going on by checking that and subscribing to comments of a topic.
  • Remove the Global Community Team Volunteers, create a page for it and add it to the Welcome Box and to the sidebar but as a link in the same section where we have the links with the icons (Meetups, WordCamps, WordCamp Status, Upcoming Events). Link the names to their WordPress.org profiles.

What do y’all think?

*** Edited to add a deadline: July 26
#p2

Contributor Badges as stickers for all

In preparation for WordCamp Bern, Switzerland in September I was did a bit of research regarding contribution badges as stickers. For our Contributor Day we need only around 50 stickers of each badge.

Our problem is that StickerGiant has a minimum of 250 stickers per badge and the price of per sticker drops a huge amount when the numbers increase. For example

  • 250 0.48 / Sticker
  • 500 0.26 / Sticker
  • 1’000 0.15 / Sticker
  • 2’000 0.10 / Sticker

My initial idea was that just to get a few interested WordCamp together and do a combine order but then Andrea Middleton suggested that the Contributor Badges sticker could be included in with the WordPress swag.

The questions that we need to discuss are:

  • Do we want to do a trial with 10 WordCamps where 1’000 stickers are ordered of the badges and cost distributed across the 10 WordCamps? Each WordCamp would get around 100 stickers of each badge.
  • Do we order 2000 and distribute them to the future WordCamps and review it once the stocks have deplenished?
  • Would the cost of these contributor badge stickers be covered by the foundation like with the WordPress swag or should a small fee like 100$ be deducted from the budget?
  • How much additional work would this create for the Community Team managing the swag?

Also Courtney previously started a discussion on how we should manage the WordPress Swag as they make an order every 18 months.

Swag for Meetup Groups

#community-badges

Regional Camps, Take 2

Pro-tip: this post will refer back heavily to the post on the same subject from October of last year. If you haven’t read it, you might want to. Warning: it’s a long thread!

At the Community Summit, we discussed regional WordCamps — the notes will be found here when they’re published — and I’d like to open up discussion about the expectations we should set for people who want to organize a regional WordCamp.

EDIT: this is a discussion of the expectations we want to set for when a group of people come to us and say, “We want to have a WordCamp that represents a geographical community larger than one city/metro area.” We’re calling that kind of event a Regional WordCamp.

Goals for a Regional WordCamp

I think we all mostly agree on the goals for an event of this type: to celebrate, represent, and grow local WordPress communities in the affected region. A primary goal for the WordPress Global Community Team is to help support a WordPress meetup group and annual WordCamp in as many cities as possible in the world. Regional WordCamps work toward that goal by connecting people who weren’t already active in their local WordPress community and/or inspiring attendees to start communities in their hometowns.

(If you would like to suggest some changes to the goals, please feel free to share your thoughts in a comment on this post!)

Here are many questions:

A) What defines a region?

We already have WordCamp US and WordCamp Europe. Different groups of people have expressed interest in organizing a country-based event (WordCamp Netherlands), a continent-based event (WordCamp Asia/Southeast Asia, final name TBD), and a group-of-countries-based event (WordCamp Nordic).

  1. How small or large a region do we want to entertain?

For example: WordCamp Bihar (states/provinces)? WordCamp Upstate New York (a region within a state/province)? WordCamp Andalucía (a region made up of many states/provinces)?

B) What level of local community development should a region have?

Regional WordCamps need a lot of local, experienced organizers and volunteers wherever the event is hosted. If there aren’t already a certain number of local communities in a region that have hosted successful WordCamps, then a regional event won’t be able to move around the region, share the organizing work, and provide new leadership opportunities.

  1. What expectation should we set for the requisite number of local communities, WordCamps, and number of consecutive WordCamps?
  2. Should we place any expectation on how active the local community is, and how successful the WordCamps were?

For example: should we expect a country like Bolivia to have 5 WordCamps in one year before they propose a WordCamp Bolivia? Or 5 WordCamps for two years straight? And what if some of those 5 WordCamps lost money or had a lot of problems?

C) What kind of oversight and support should regional WordCamps expect?

These are probably mostly going to be larger-than-usual, flagship events. Some exceptions to our normal expectations are made for this type of event already, as can be seen in the cases of WordCamp US and WordCamp Europe, which are not casual events with lean operating budgets.

Should we set higher-than-usual standards for the organizing team? For example:

  1. Is it reasonable to ask all members of a regional WordCamp organizing team to take the deputy training course?
  2. Should we expect that all members of the organizing team be experienced WordCamp organizers?
  3. Should we recruit an experienced community deputy work closely with a regional team to help them model our best practices and stay focused on the event goals?
  4. Is it reasonable to ask the lead organizer of a regional WordCamp to make a monthly report on this blog?

D) What questions are missing?

If you have another doubt or consideration that isn’t covered here, please share it with the team by commenting on this post!

Now what?

If you have an opinion on these topics, please share them in a comment on this post. 🙂

Based on the discussions we have here and in the upcoming team meetings, I would like to see us create a new page or section of the WordCamp Organizer Handbook for Regional WordCamps, with some clear expectations for would-be organizers.

Let’s set ourselves a goal of spending a week on this discussion, closing it on Wednesday July 26. I’ll summarize the comments by the end of next week, with the goal of having the new handbook documentation published by August 4, 2017.

#deputies, #community-management, #wordcamps

CampTix payment gateways for Indian currency

Recently, within a 48 hour period, we received two separate requests to add two separate, new payment gateways to WordCamp.org for processing Indian currency (INR). One is for a service called Razorpay, and the other is for a service called Instamojo. These are in addition to the existing INR payment gateway we already have available, called KDC Pay.

One thing that seems clear to me from this is that the KDC Pay gateway is not an optimal solution for everyone, although it should be noted that the WordCamps in India that are currently using it are successfully selling tickets.

Ultimately my question to the community, though, is how many INR payment gateways do we need?

As someone who helps to maintain the WordCamp.org network, I think it’s not ideal for us to have all three, because:

  • Each plugin we add to the network increases the maintenance burden. It’s another piece of software that we need to keep updated and be vigilant for related security issues.
  • Every gateway has its own API that we have to monitor so we don’t get caught unprepared if breaking changes are introduced.
  • Each additional gateway is a new platform we have to learn in order to troubleshoot payment issues when they arise.

Ideally, we would identify one INR payment gateway that works for everyone and just offer that moving forward.

With that said, I’d like to gain some perspective on online payment processing in India. I invite all community members who have some perspective on this to weigh in so we can come up with a solution that works for everyone.

cc @arvindsinghu @sanyog @bornforphp @adityakane @mbigul

Community Team Chat Agenda | 20 July 2017

Hello community team!

Our bi-monthly Community Team chat is happening this Thursday, July 20th. Meeting times are 08:00 UTC and 20:00 UTC in #community-team on Slack – we use the same agenda for both meetings in order to include all time zones.

Agenda

Please post in the comments if you have some agenda items to add so we can update this post as we go.

1. Deputy check-in – What have you been working on? Any blockers? Anything that you need help with?
2. Decision Making Process
3. Highlighting a few P2 posts – No real discussion needed, but these are posts worth highlighting for all deputies:

Recaps in the comments

#meetings #agenda #meeting-notes