Welcome to the FAQ for WikiConference USA! If you have questions not listed here, feel free to email us.
What is WikiConference USA?
WikiConference USA is the first national Wikimedia conference of its kind in the United States. The conference will be held on May 30 – June 1, 2014 at New York Law School, located in Tribeca district of Manhattan, New York City. WikiConference USA’s program will be devoted to topics concerning the Wikimedia movement in the United States, as well as related topics of free culture and digital rights. WikiConference USA will feature a diverse array of conference offerings such as keynotes, presentations, panels, and workshop sessions; provide a lounge space and break areas for conference attendees to gather and mingle; and host an unconference day for attendees to design their own schedule and engage with each other around common interests.
What will happen at the conference?
At any given time, there will be multiple presentations given, which may be lectures, panels, workshops, or interactive demonstrations. If you do not want to attend a scheduled presentation then you can go to the chill lounge and do Wikipedia with other people.
How much does the conference cost?
WikiConference USA is free to attend. Registration is here: http://wikiconferenceusa.org/wiki/Registration.
We do welcome donations, however! A donation of $20 or more will get you an official conference t-shirt!
Who should attend WikiConference USA?
This conference is open to everyone, but is particularly geared for those who have an interest in Wikipedia, the Wikimedia movement, open knowledge, free culture, and/or free culture. A primary goal of the conference is to bring together those with a diversity of experiences and expertises. Any active contributor to a Wikimedia project and/or Wikimedia volunteer in any other capacity, from anywhere in the United States, is considered eligible. Participants in other free knowledge, free software, collaborative and/or educational initiatives are also encouraged to apply.
Do I have to be an Wikipedia editor to attend WikiConference USA?
You do not have to be a Wikipedia editor to attend. New contributors and those not yet contributing, but interested in becoming an editor are as welcome as well.
We invite newcomers to experience The Wikipedia Adventure, a beginner’s introduction to Wikipedia.
Is the conference just for English Wikipedia?
This conference targets Wikipedians in the United States, but anyone is welcome attend, particularly, people interested in Wikipedia/Wikimedia from all over North America.
The conference will be conducted in English, but those editing other language Wikipedias are welcomed to attend.
Do I need to register for the conference in order to attend?
We ask that attendees register in advance to facilitate planning.
Those planning to attend should plan their travel arrangements and accommodations as soon as possible, since New York City is major tourist attraction. Even expensive hotels can be sold out months well before a planned visit.
Who can I contact about bringing a large group?
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to bring a group.
The hashtag for WikiConference USA 2014 is: #wikiconusa.
How do I get to the conference venue?
Please visit New York Law School’s website for directions and general information.
Is the Conference venue compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act requirements?
The Law School is accessible to individuals in wheelchairs and those with mobility impairments. If you require specific accommodations such as the removal of a stationary seat in a classroom or event center, please contact email@example.com.
All restrooms in 185 West Broadway are wheelchair accessible.
Will there be food at the conference?
Yes! A light breakfast and a sandwich lunch will be served during the first two days of the conference. Water, coffee, and other beverages will also be served. Traditional New York style pizza will be served on the third day of the conference.
Who do I contact for special dietary restrictions?
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any special dietary restrictions. We will try and accommodate your needs.
Will there be WiFi available at the conference?
Will the conference be recorded and livestreamed?
We have plans to record the major sessions for the conference. More details soon.
Is there a code of conduct for the conference?
The Conference will be a friendly, supportive, and accommodating space for everyone. Please see our Friendly Space Policy for appropriate conference conduct.
Where can I stay near the conference?
There is a list of cheap places, to stay such as hostels, that are either close to the conference venue, or are easy for transportation using mass transit. However, note that the subway station nearest the venue (Franklin Street station on the #1 train) is NOT handicap accessible.
Some suggestions for venues include the following:
- Hostel International New York City, less than $50 per night, and the most recommended option for being the best value
The cheap accommodations are all taken! Where can I find an inexpensive hotel?
Consider visiting the Wikivoyage guide to New York City for suggestions.
I found a cheap hostel but on the map it seems far away; should I stay there?
Check Google Maps for travel times. Many people in New York City have daily commutes which are one hour each way or longer, and traveling on the subway is part of local culture.
Attendees visiting from elsewhere are advised to stay in New York City, near a subway line, and as close as reasonable when considering the available options and one’s own budget.
How do I apply for a scholarship to attend the conference? See the scholarship page and submit the application to the scholarship committee.
How do I know if I qualify for a scholarship?
See the scholarships page for more details, but in general, have some history of participation in a Wikimedia project and be ready to describe that to the scholarship committee.
Conference Program and Schedule
What should I do if I have an idea for a workshop or panel?
Propose it! There are multiple conference tracks and the conference is being organized so that attendees of the conference can present to each other. We invite you to be creative with your proposals and welcome proposals for workshop, panels, case-studies, group editing and tech trainings, and other formats you can think of!