The Board has been summoned for eleven meetings since the 2011 Annual Assembly. The majority of these have been Skype meetings, but there has also been physical meetings in Oslo. All reports from Board meetings are accessible to the public on the official website of the chapter.
In the period 2010-11 the Board presented a new Work Programme (Arbeidsplan); this was developed and formally adopted by the Board in November, 2011, in a separate decision on the 2011-2015 Strategy. Through this specification of the Work Programme, the Board adopted the following strategic goals for Wikimedia Norway:
Wikimedia Norway shall be the leading, Norwegian organization for people who believe open sharing of knowledge brings society forwards. We shall be a visible advocate of open and independent sharing of knowledge. We shall contribute to the accessability of Norwegian information and public data to a global public, in free licenses.
The goals of the Strategy are connected to the goals of the Wikimedia Foundation in the similar period. Besides quantitative goals for the Wikipedia pojects of specific interest to Norway, the Strategy also contains goals on increased female participation, increased access to photos, and a more user-friendly interface on mobile and fixed platforms.
Membership and corporate sponsorships
Per January 1, 2012. Wikimedia Norway had 98 paying members. The chapter experienced a considerable increase in individual membership from 2010 to 2011, where the number rose from c. 30 (at the 2010 annual assembly) to 97 (on January 1, 2011), and Wikimedia Norway has managed to retain this membership into 2012.
New members have got a t-shirt as welcoming gift. The Board has also kept the practice where new members joining the chapter towards the end of the year (after september) get the rest of the year and the full next year included in the membership fee.
Wikimedia Norge is a member of the industry association ICT Norway (IKT-Norge), the network Movation, and the vocational training association Studieforbundet næring og samfunn (formerly known as Populus). We have four sponsors that are profiled at the website of the chapter: Opera Software, Norwegian, Melings, and Canon.
The Chapter economy has been solid throughout the period. In 2010, the chapter went through a more turbulent development financially, but by the 2011 Annual Assembly the solidity was restored. Wikimedia Norway had a financial surplus of NOK 3,588 in the financial year 2011. This is slightly lower than the budgeted surplus of NOK 20,000, which basically derives from the fact that a considerable project with Arts Council Norway did not get initiated in 2011. It was first started in March, 2012, and by Spring 2012 Wikimedia Norway got a USD 16,000 (~NOK 91,000) project grant accepted by Wikimedia Foundation. Thereby, Wikimedia Norway har a more solid financial platform into the next period.
Notice in the media
Wikimedia Norge has been very visible in the media during the last year. Among others, we have had media stories in VG in connection with the Norwegian «encyclopedia struggle», and we have had wide coverage of our training activities. A pivotal part of the chapter media strategy is the focus on three, parallel Wikipedia language versions - bokmål, nynorsk and Saami - with a special connection to Norway; it is the two last mentioned versions that are least known to the general public, and need specific promotion. Therefore, it is profoundly positive that we had got media coverage on our efforts to strengthen Wikipedia in Saami.
Among other media stories worth mentioning, have been reports that the share of women in the Wikipedia is too low, the 10 mio edits milestone at Bokmål Wikipedia, and the first ever Norwegian competition on nordic biographies at the Wikipedia. We have also had coverage on Norwegians being world champions in Wikipedia editing. In connection with the Vocational Training Prize we got a somewhat less media coverage than expected.
The media reports on the Terror acts of July 22, we have tried to focus on the fact that the Wikipedia society, generally, are in good control over unwanted [politically extreme] editing, but we have emphasized that control would be even better with more contributors. To the degree possible, we have tried to give journalist a short explanation of Wikipedia routines and quality control, which has earned good feedback. It is clear that the general public of Norway has a gradually better understanding to Wikimedia Norway and the Wikipedia projects that are relevant to Norway.
The Vocational Training Prize
In October, Wikimedia Norway was awarded the Vocational Training Prize 2011. This prize is awarded to persons or organizations for outstanding work in promote knowledge and learning accessible to all, and was presented by the Vocational Training Association of Norway in Oslo.
«The Wikipedia probably does more than anyone else to promote vocational training in Norway», said Board member Grethe Klunderud of the Vocational Training Association (Voksenopplæringsforbundet), while the jury reasoned it's opinion in «Wikimedia Norway contributing to revitalize the vocational training phenomenon, in the meaning of taking teaching to the level of sharing and knowledge creation through community. This is especially illustrated by the fact that everyone can contribute with input to the Wikipedia, whereby partcipation barriers are reduced.»
Jarle Vines, chairman of Wikimedia Norway, expressed his great gratitude towards the recognition that the prize represents, by pointing to the work that all the volunteers are doing. «Thousands have been a part in building Norway's leading internet encyclopedia, which has been built stone on stone - not to say, sentence by sentence. They have achieved this without neither salaries nor other kinds of compensation», said Vines.
The Saami project
Wikimedia Norway got a project grant in 2009, of totally NOK 350.000 from the Saami Ting, to strengthen the Wikipedia version in Northern Saami. It was first in April, 2010 that the project really took off, and through the spring editing courses and workshops were staged both in Finnmark and in Oslo. In the training courses, the Saami-writing editors got training in disposing en encyclopedian article, adding photos, and the use of references. Morten Haugen was the project lead, and he developed a preparatory list of main articles that Saami Wikipedia needed. After the training courses, seven contributors have written articls on the Saami Wikipedia. The work has been compensation through the project grant, and by the end of the period 2011-12 there are still some unspent funds.
The Sami Ting has evaluated the project report and financials of the Project Phase 1, and approved these. The Saami Ting has approved that the remaining funds be spent to take the project further if a new plan is sent in by May 15, 2012.
Wikimedia Norge wishes to contribute to a broader range of editors at the Wikipedia; the chapter has therefore prioritized editing training courses and workshops for new groups of contributors. Much of the training has been conducted by Ulf Larsen, who has reached out to hundreds of senior citizens through Seniornett. Wikimedia Norway has also focused on reaching out to other parts of the civil society, through training of (among others): WWF, Zero Emission Resource Organisation (ZERO), ATTAC, RORG, LO, the Progress Party, etc. There have also been wokshops for employees at the Universities of Oslo, Tromsø and Stavanger, and the water research institute (NIVA), the geological survey (NGU), Norwegian Local History Institute, and Hospital Innlandet. At the annual communication conference of forskning.no, the chapter lectured to an assembly of information officers from all the universities, colleges, and public research institutes of Norway.
After the 2010 success, Wikimedia Norway was also present at the 2011 Oslo Book Festival. Here, we recruited some members, demonstrated editing, distributed magazines and sold effects, besides making Wikipedia and Wikimedia Norway known to a wider public among the book community.
The Wikipedia.no portal
The 2011 Annual Assembly adopted the change of making the domain www.wikipedia.no into a joint portal for the three language versions of Wikipedia relevant to Norway - Bokmål, Nynorsk and Saami. The change was implemented in August, and the new portal was on the air before the start of the school semester. The change was noted by the Nynorsk media community, Framtida.no reported the issue under the headline "Wikipedia being united into one realm", while chairman Jarle Vines said in an interview to LNK-Nytt that "this is a milestone to the Nynorsk Wikipedia... it is good that users of Wikipedia now get a more easy access to the Nynorsk and Saami versions. Many people do not even know that these versions exist, and more traffic to these will give more users. Wikimedia Norway is focused on supporting all the Wikimedia projects."
Visitor statistics of wikipedia.no show that 15 - 20,000 unique visitors access the site every day by March, 2012. These numbers have been stable throughout the period when we have had the portal, so there are few signs that users increasingly start going directly to the language version that they wish to visit.
In may the article contest Nordic biographies was concluded with an award ceremony at the headquarters of Norwegian Air Shuttle outside Oslo. The first prize was taken by the contributor Kjetil Ree, who had written anarticle on the politician Carl I Hagen. Mr Hagen was himself present at the waard ceremony, and presented (with CEO Bjørn Kjos) a gift card on a free travel for two persons within Europe. The second and third prize went to Erik Fløan and Jan Wilhelm Kavli, and aeards were also presented to the quantitatively largest editing contribution.
Mr Hagen showed great interest in Wikipedia, and after the award ceremony representatives of Wikimedia Norway held editing courses to the staff of the Progress Party, and their parliamentary group.
The Board of Directors of Wikimedia Norway has adopted a policy to regularly award Ukens konkurranse (Contest of the Weak) with small gifts. However, that has not yet been implemented.
At Wikipedia Academy 2012, Wikimedia Norway will award the prize Wikipedian of the Year. This prize is aearded on the background of proposals from the Wikipedia societies in Bokmål and Nynorsk, and the Board has got a sponsor to the awarding.
Wiki Loves Monuments
Norway for the first time joined the international photo contest Wiki Loves Monuments 2011 in September, 2011. The theme of the competition is cultural monuments, and Wikimedia Norway (Jørund Leknes) organized the Norwegian part of the competition. The best Norwegian contributors were awarded, and the Norwegian jury contested of people from the media and cultural institutions, sending the ten best photos to the international finale.
In total, 170,000 photos were uploaded to Wikimedia Commons in the contest, running through one month during fall 2011. Some 1,200 out of these were uploaded from Norway, where the cultural heritage site database of the national antiquarian authority was utilized to produce object lists. Canon Norway sponsored prizes to the best contributors, and the jury awarded Marius Meyer's photo of Vallersund manor in Sør-Trøndelag as the winner in Norway.
Internationally, the contest was won by Mihai Petre with a photo of the Chiajna monastery in Romania. One of the Norwegian contributions, Erlend Bjørtvedt's photo of Hotellneset harbour on Svalbard, took a strong fourth place. The international jury reasoned their opinion that the photo «is perfectly framed and of high quality, showing exactly where the monument is situated with the sea
and mountains around it. The fog and colours give the image a cold far northern atmosphere. It is
provoking thoughts on the imprint of man on the natural environment.» Bjørn Heidenstrøm's photo of the Cathedral of Hamar also got positive mention by the international jury.
Wikimedia Norge has given two public hearing responds during the year:
In August we addressed the proposal of a new state, open lisence (NLOD) that various types of public information and data cannot, due to lisencing, be used at the Wikipedia, for example many types of map data, photographic portraits of politicians, and publicly funded language databases. Therefore, Wikimedia Norway asked the Ministry of IT and Renewal (FAD) to release public data to a much greater extent, for open access and free use under a free lisence like NLOD or Creative Commons.
In September, Wikimedia Norwau delivered response to the Ministry of Culture in connection with the White Book on archive policy. Here, we asked to get involved in the work with the White book regarding distribution and communication of digital material (like public phtographic databases), and we expressed the concern for choosing free lisences.
During fall, 2011, Wikimedia Norway established its own internet shop, through the partner Melings. The shop can be found at the addressnettbutikk.wikimedia.no. Here one can buy pins, t-skhirts, sweaters, and other effects to show one's devotion to the Norwegian Wikipedia projects. One can also pay one's membership fee and donate money to the chapter.
In spite of the exponation at the portal www.wikipedia.no, the turnover of the internet shop has been lower than expected. Thrpough a good agreement with Melings, Wikimedia Norway has however obtained a far greater profit on sold effects than one usually has under such agreements.
Arts Council Norway and Wikipedia Academy
The Board (Lars Roede) has had a substantial contact with Arts Council Norway, which has established a working group called "Cultural Heritage at the Wikipedia". Here, we also find the Trøndelag museums, Oslo Museum, Norsk Folkemuseum, and Kultur-IT, and the working group has publicly decleared that Wikipedia is a preferred channel of communication. The cooperation with Arts Council Norway was officially presented to the media on April 19, 2012, in the offices of Arts Council Norway, and it continues into the next Board period.
The cooperation between Arts Council Norway and Wikimedia Norway, and the communication by the GLAM sector at the Wikipedia, are main issues to be discussed at the Wikipedia Academy 2012, which is carried out in Oslo on April, 23. In addition to representatives of the GLAM sector in Norway and neighbouring countries, and wikipedians, guests will include HRH Crown Prince Haakon, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, Minister of Aid Mr Heikki Holmaas, and EVP Kristin Skogen Lund of Telenor. The academy is arranged in cooperation with the Go Open conference.
Representatives of Wikimedia Norway met with representatives from the chapters of Sweden, Denmark and Finland in November, in Gothenburg. Here, we exchanged experience and best practice, and laid the foundation for further co-operation. The talks with the chapters of Sweden, Denmark and Finland continued during the chapters meeting in Berlin, in March. In connection with the Wikipedia Academy in April, Wikimedia Norway has invited representatives of the other Nordic chapters to Oslo, and we have set aside one day to working with joint projects.
Jarle Vines and Kjetil Ree represented Wikimedia Norway at eh annual chapters meeting in Berlin, in March. The main topic was the establishment of an international Wikimedia Chapters Association; it was adopted with Tomer Ashur as constituted, secretary general. The first meeting of the association will be held in connection with Wikimania 2012 in Washington, DC - in July, 2012. Wikimedia Norway did not sign the chapter agreement in Berlin, since the Board regarded that the issue had to be put before the Annual Aseembly first. The Board advises the Annual Assembly that Wikimedia Norway joins the Wikimedia Chapters Association.
Kjetil Ree represented Wikimedia Norway during Wikimania 2011 in Haifa, Israel.
The Board of Wikimedia Foundation adopted a change in the model of fundraising during the period. In the next four years, no new chapters can obtain status as «payment processors». This means that it is not any longer relevant to Wikimedia Norway to take a direct part in the annual fundraising campaign.
As a compensation to the chapters that previously could raise their own funds, WMF has made it considerably easier to apply for grants to projects. The new model is probably an improvement to smaller chapters like Wikimedia Norway. Per April, 19, Wikimedia Norway has got one application approved by Wikimedia Foundation, while another application is under preparation. The Board views this possibility to be much more utilized in the coming years.