Summary of Media Corps Group Kickoff Call

The first WordPress Media Corps group kickoff call was held on Wednesday, May 22, 2024, and included contributors who expressed interest in joining the Media Corps contributor group. This meeting provided a space for contributors to get to know each other, align on the project plan, and discuss how we’ll organize before starting any work. It was the first step in forming and aligning the Media Corps contributor group that will work on this experiment’s first phase.

Project overview

After participants’ introductions, an overview and recap of the goal and scope documented in the initial WordPress Media Corps roadmap was shared to ensure alignment across the contributor working group.

Questions and clarifications about the criteria

During this portion of the meeting, the group reviewed the Media Corps partner criteria set for the experiment, mixed with the following questions and clarifications.

  • Why these criteria? They can help us limit variables in the short term and allow the Media Corps to work closely with a smaller group of qualified media partners for the duration of the experiment.
  • What do high standards of content quality/journalism mean? Within the context of the WordPress project, content quality standards refer to content that is accurate, clear, relevant, and free from grammatical or brand errors (e.g., spelling the WordPress brand name correctly.) Other common journalism standards include accuracy and fact-checking, objectivity, respect in conduct and interaction with sources, and public accountability (responsiveness to corrections of errors or inaccuracies in reporting).
  • Should we also consider the publishing frequency of media partners? Quality is preferred over quantity. We expect media partners to be active and publish content regularly, but there won’t be any requirements regarding the number of pieces or the frequency of publication.
  • The criteria mentions news and educational content. What happens if a media partner reports news and shares occasional editorial or opinion pieces? This point of the criteria means the Media Corps experiment will look to collaborate closely with partners who have an interest and focus on informing, amplifying, and teaching their audiences about relevant WordPress news and topics. An editorial piece does not compromise a media partner’s status. However, any content is expected to be well-informed and presented in a manner that fosters constructive dialogue, contributing positively to the WordPress ecosystem and community.

Tasks and work involved in Phase 1

This part of the meeting touched on the first tasks in the roadmap and estimated deadlines. Notes are captured below:

  • Phase 1 (research and outreach) is expected to be completed by the end of June.
  • Reyes noted that some potential Media Corps partners have expressed interest in participating. Bob can also assist and guide the team to finish identifying the first possible group of media and content folks to work with.
  • Any notes when identifying and reviewing current candidates will be kept in a spreadsheet only accessible to the Media Corps contributors. This spreadsheet won’t be openly shared to avoid privacy and other concerns within the community. The Community team currently follows a similar approach to vet WordPress meetupMeetup All local/regional gatherings that are officially a part of the WordPress world but are not WordCamps are organized through A meetup is typically a chance for local WordPress users to get together and share new ideas and seek help from one another. Searching for ‘WordPress’ on will help you find options in your area. applications.
  • While these notes will not be shared publicly, the process for identifying qualified candidates will be documented for transparency.
  • After completing the identification work, we’ll contact the first group of qualified media partners individually to confirm their interest in participating.
  • Lastly, we’ll survey interested media partners and shape the implementation phase with their feedback. E.g., the information and updates they would be most interested in hearing about, the frequency/time they might prefer for meetings/briefings, etc.
  • All the above high-level tasks will be divided into smaller subtasks assigned to contributors. We’ll use a GitHubGitHub GitHub is a website that offers online implementation of git repositories that can easily be shared, copied and modified by other developers. Public repositories are free to host, private repositories require a paid subscription. GitHub introduced the concept of the ‘pull request’ where code changes done in branches by contributors can be reviewed and discussed before being merged be the repository owner. project board to track tasks.

Expectations for the contributor group

The group also discussed the importance of the Media Corps contributors being accountable and visible. Common expectations for everyone include:

  • Maintain visibility and communicate proactively. We will do regular weekly SlackSlack Slack is a Collaborative Group Chat Platform The WordPress community has its own Slack Channel at check-ins and updates.
  • Be accountable and considerate of other contributors. Communicate if you know you’ll miss a commitment, if there are any changes in availability, or if there are unforeseen circumstances/difficulties in completing a task so others can take over or support you. This will also help us identify when we need additional support.
  • Ask for clarification and follow-up in discussions to avoid potential confusion and/or help things move forward.

Questions and open floor

  • We discussed where/how the contributor group should communicate and coordinate work and agreed to create an open but separate Slack channel for the Media Corps group’s general discussions.
  • With media and content folks in the current Media Corps Slack channel, there’s been confusion between the contributor group/work and the media stakeholders. Having a separate channel could help. Other Make teams seem to follow a similar approach by having different channels (e.g., #community-events for event organizers and #community-team for general team discussions and work).
  • To summarize:
    • Vetting notes or comments will be kept in a spreadsheet only accessible to the contributor group
    • The group will use a separate Slack channel for their general discussions and communications
    • Tasks will be tracked using a GitHub project board

Next action items

  • Create a Slack channel for the Media Corps contributor group
  • Document the process for identifying qualified Media Corps partners
  • Set up and assign subtasks to the contributor group on a GitHub board

Thank you to @jenblogs4u, @mohiuddinomran, @bernard0omnisend, @hellosatya, and @bobdunn-trainer for reviewing and proofreading.