Reflecting on the GV Summit 2012

As the GV Summit 2012 came to an end, most of us have the impression that it wasn’t actually coming to an end, but quite the opposite.
The working and discussion groups generated some interesting ideas for the future of Global Voices, and aim to keep on working and refining those ideas as well as encouraging their acceptance by GV.

This is not the place for sharing those ideas, but having the organization itself bringing about and listening those debates is a token of how special GV is, and also the way it sees itself and walks into its future.

Talking with other fellows contributors, many of them agreed that the best part of the summit were the intern sessions. This said obviously without belittling the public part of the event. But the level of involvement and participation, and the shared feeling present in the three-day long sessions can hardly be compared to those of the lectures that came later. No matter how interesting they might have been.

There was also an influence from the fact that the groups started their work weeks before in some cases, and that increased the level of unity within the working teams.

As nothing is perfect, however, there are some criticism that can be made. As for the internal sessions:

– I think the time and space dedicated to those topics considered as less important wasn’t enough. It didn’t help with improving the idea, nor considered the participation of people that, at that moment, weren’t involved. Although by own initiatives there were good interactions. The fact that “working groups” meetings were also being done simultaneously played against greater involvement of the community.

– As for the “strategic” topics, I think it should have been clearer for everybody how the next steps will be taken in order to make these proposals become part of GV. This is, there is the intention but what’s missing is how to implement them.

– All the meetings not directly related with planning new things for the future, such as the regional teams or Linguas (the ones I saw) were badly presented. They were little more than a space for raising some topics from the leaders and make their opinions and experiences heard by the contributors. This isn’t necessarily wrong, but considering the effort that means for GV to get the whole group together, I think it deserves something more structured and productive than the same old questions and answers… Maybe these teams should have also started their discussions previously to the summit to solve their routine issues.

– As part of Lingua team, I received suggestions that there should have been specific activities for translators. Although there were some of them, I think they didn’t receive enough importance in the general schedule. In my opinion, for the next summit we should be more creative and inclusive about this.

About the external meetings:

– I think it’s great that some of us have a space here for us to share the reality and what’s being done in our own neck of the woods. The same goes for the people funding the event. But I think there should have been more internationally well-known lecturers that are trending topics for similar issues that concern the Global Voices community. Probably this will demand a higher budget, but I think this will provide more variety and diversity to our meetings.

– As a fan of the barcamp format as I am, I think in our case there was too much time dedicated to this aspect, which turned out to be counterproductive, as it made some people tiresome and some others (me included) chose to make other activities during that period.

– I’m not sure if it’s good to have several activities held simultaneously, sometimes it would have been nice to be cloned.

About the positive aspects of the Summit, I already mentioned that the internal part was the best one. Besides the aforementioned comments, I think the highlights were:

– Getting started with the discussions beforehand.
– Including activities in order to get involved with the local community.
– Including the group of the “academics” all along the summit. Even though I didn’t interact with any of them, I deemed the idea as interesting, and I think it can be improved for the future, having them involved beforehand in some of our scheduled discussions.

Having to wait two years until the next Summit may sound like a long waiting, but we will always have Internet to keep in touch with fellow GVers and to raise any new crazy ideas for Global Voices and for ourselves, its community.

Publicado el 12-07-2012 - Etiquetas: , []