CWG meeting 2016-01-20

From OpenStreetMap Foundation

Communication Working Group meeting on Wednesday 2016-01-20


  • Harry Wood
  • Ilya Zverev
  • Martijn van Exel
  • Willie Marcel
  • Hrvoje Bogner



Next Meeting

Wednesday 2016-01-27, 21:00 UTC

IRC log

20:52 wille: hello!
20:53 hbogner: hi wille
20:58 Zverik: Hi everyone :)
20:59 hbogner: hi Zverik
20:59 hbogner: and hi harry-wood
20:59 Zverik: I'm expecting mvexel here also
21:00 harry-wood: Hi!
21:00 Zverik: been reading Harry's texts from 2013, like this one
21:00 Zverik: harry-wood: evening :)
21:00 wille: hi Zverik !
21:01 harry-wood: Yeah I was just digging out a more recent "report" form the end of 2014
21:01 harry-wood: which I posted just to the "management team"
21:01 harry-wood: I'll stick it in a hackpad
21:02 harry-wood:
21:03 hbogner: ok, i should read those reports :D
21:03 harry-wood: Since then… a few things didn't happen, but some other things happened quite well
21:03 harry-wood: At the end of that report I said I would do a hugely pro-active thing… which I then didn't get round to at all :-( Still a good idea though
21:03 harry-wood: create a 'communicators' group and try to be more widely open with that
21:04 Zverik: harry-wood: well, I see your ideas for growing CWG is similar to mine: "be more casual" :)
21:04 : mvexel [] entered the room.
21:04 Zverik: Hi mvexel :)
21:04 mvexel: hey
21:05 harry-wood: But since then also… we had some more involvement from Mvxell for a while, and he suggested using github more
21:05 harry-wood: aha speak of the devil :-)
21:05 mvexel: yea
21:05 hbogner: hi mvexel
21:05 Zverik: So, let's begin then. The topic is revitalizing the CWG... again
21:05 mvexel: hi all
21:06 Zverik: I have been blogging about OSM news since 2011, but never thought of joining CWG. And most active bloggers, it seems, feel the same way
21:06 mvexel: I haven't looked at the github repos for a little while, have they been useful?
21:07 harry-wood: yeah pretty useful. We've kept a few things ticking over there
21:07 Zverik: oh, github. Around 20 open issues in three projects there, most are aoutdated and with no follow-up
21:07 harry-wood: ( )
21:07 Zverik: e.g. what happened with the Urbanist?
21:08 Zverik: do we have anybody in Netherlands?
21:08 harry-wood: oh I did that!
21:08 harry-wood: there's an urbanist postcast somewhere
21:08 mvexel: github requires some gardening from time to time
21:08 mvexel: I can connect with someone in NL
21:08 mvexel: Floris, Henk
21:08 Zverik: did somebody offer us free imagery and did we accept?
21:08 Zverik: mvexel: all these are from more than half a year ago
21:09 hbogner: i mostly create github tasks when i notice something i'm not sure i can answer in the best way
21:09 harry-wood: yeah. Well I think there's a few missed opportunities there, which we can just close
21:10 Zverik: Is communications@ mailing group active?
21:10 mvexel: github really works best when everyone monitors what's new through either RSS or email notifications
21:10 mvexel: github offers both
21:10 harry-wood: yes we're using that mailing group
21:10 hbogner: ok we should close all that are outdted and no longer available
21:11 harry-wood: and presumably we're now all getting emails about github status changes (if we have notifications on)
21:11 hbogner: i'll continue creating tasks as i se them in the mail, and close them when i see the answer
21:11 harry-wood: yep. Thanks for your githubbing efforts hbogner
21:12 harry-wood: I think that's useful. But there's a few we just need to close and forget about now I suppose
21:12 hbogner: harry-wood, no problem, i do it when i get some free time
21:12 hbogner: i haven't made a changeset in months
21:13 harry-wood: One wider question with this is … does it need to be the same group (CWG) who deal with these kinds of email enquiries AND try to blog and tweet?
21:13 Zverik: Now, to the topic. I see a number of blog posts / tweets / facebook entries / everything else is falling, despite the number of news in OSM constantly rising
21:14 wille: I think we should decide what kind of subjects are important to post on OSMF Blog. I thought it was just to Board/OSMF actions/events. Because of this I haven't proposed more
21:15 Zverik: (that's why I stopped trying to publish everything to the shtosm)
21:15 Zverik: But then, we now have WeeklyOSM in many languages
21:16 Zverik: So I don't think blogging news should be on CWG. On the other hand, blogging OSMF news (which nobody else can reasonably do) still is
21:17 Zverik: And — sharing news. E.g. retweeting, linking on facebook etc.
21:17 hbogner: Zverik, yes, before there was weekly on osmblog, and now there is weeklyosm, so we(at least I) figured osm blog is more for OSMF news
21:17 mvexel: what is the scope of CWG - is blogging, tweeting, responding to press inquiries it?
21:18 mvexel: just curious
21:18 Zverik: harry-wood mentioned attracting members to the groups is hard, mostly because nobody knows what it does, and thus thinks they would be tasked with everything and asap
21:18 hbogner: more info from board/osmf/working gropups is welcomed on osm blog
21:18 harry-wood: "communication" is too broad a term
21:18 mvexel: + what is the target audience of the blog. I am assuming not the same as weekly OSM
21:19 mvexel: the great wide world, folks who don't necessarily know a lot about OSM - do they want to hear about working groups
21:19 Zverik: from my notes: "Leave blogging to bloggers, serve as a hub and contact point."
21:20 mvexel: hub and contact point - what does that mean?
21:20 Zverik: that is, the blog ( is purely for OSMF news
21:20 harry-wood: I'm impressed they've kept weeklyOSM going quite a while. These things often appear and last for a spurt of enthusiasm then die out
21:20 mvexel: yea that makes sense
21:20 Zverik: but — it should link to every other news source on osm
21:20 Zverik: so people coming to the blog could easily find other sources, even in their local language
21:21 Zverik: currently it is nearly impossible
21:21 hbogner: Zverik, that is the problem, local teams, chapters, gropups, pages, ...
21:22 Zverik: hbogner: if only there were many of these
21:22 hbogner: ...
21:22 Zverik: the thing is, wiki doesn't solve communication and discovery issues
21:22 mvexel: I don't think we can keep up with that
21:22 mvexel: nor should we want to
21:23 Zverik: two minutes ago I didn't know there are lists of twitter accounts in the wiki, for example
21:23 Zverik: and I'm reading it since 2011!
21:23 harry-wood: it's a good list
21:23 hbogner: i said it last year, we shouls set up guidelines for social network usage of OpenStreetMap name
21:23 mvexel: hbogner: how would we enforce
21:24 hbogner: there are some countries that have 3 facebook osm pages
21:24 hbogner: mvexel, guidelines
21:24 mvexel: I don't think there is too much we can do about it
21:24 mvexel: these things have a tendency to converge anyway
21:24 hbogner: not enforcing right now, just set up guidelnes
21:24 harry-wood: We should add a 'maintainer' column on there I think
21:24 mvexel: that would help
21:25 hbogner: there are also some pages/groups that have the name "OpenStreetMap" nothing else
21:25 hbogner: just OpenStreetMap and if you dob't know you can think it's official OSM page/group, etc ..
21:26 harry-wood: some of them could be stamped on by mentioning the OpenStreetMap trademark and saying "you can't call it that". We do actually do that already for iPhone and Android apps on the appstores
21:26 Zverik: there are two OpenStreetMap groups in Facebook, both with thousands of followers, for example
21:27 Zverik: I'm pretty sure there is a process to merge these
21:27 mvexel: I would love for the diaries to be better
21:27 mvexel: there is so much great community content there
21:27 hbogner: Zverik, there are two on google plus also, but g+ doesn't merge
21:27 mvexel: but: spam, no search, no language filter
21:27 Zverik: mvexel: there is a language filter:
21:28 hbogner: as harry-wood said mentioning osm trademark for some of those
21:28 Zverik: but spam is a major problem, making reading the rss feed a pain
21:28 mvexel: and RSS is cool but it's for geeks
21:28 mvexel: I use it, you use it, but the rest of the internet doesn't
21:29 mvexel: I didn't even know about the diary language filter - probably a UX problem
21:29 mvexel: anyway didn't mean to derail the discussion
21:30 mvexel: just looking for some low hanging fruit to expose the vibrance of the community more directly on
21:30 Zverik: mvexel: where do non-technical people usually get news?
21:30 harry-wood: So… language filter. That'd be a reasonable thing to suggest to developers I suppose
21:31 Zverik: the first thing to do with the diaries should be subscriptions to comments
21:31 harry-wood: oh.. you're saying there *is* a filter? :-)
21:31 mvexel: and I would really like an upvote / downvote system so spam would be weeded out by the community
21:31 wille: mvexel: it would be cool to have some "Like" button and a counter of views on blog posts so we could classify it by relevance
21:31 Zverik: because currently it is very hard to use diaries for discussions
21:31 mvexel: wille: exactly
21:31 hbogner: regarding social guidelines, something from 6 months ago :
21:32 mvexel: Zverik: that is a good one too
21:33 Zverik: the problem with diaries is that we need a programmer with a lot of free time to improve them :)
21:33 mvexel: or a code sprint
21:33 hbogner: and that is not going to happen soon
21:33 Zverik: we all live in different countries, so that would be a challenge :)
21:33 mvexel: I already have two ideas for code sprints: 1) group feature 2) diaries
21:34 Zverik: let's talk about @OpenStreetMap twitter
21:34 wille: mvexel: +1 to sprints!
21:34 harry-wood: Another problem is that TomH gets super grumpy (like more grumpy than normal) whenever anyone mentions the spam problem :-) Don't know why really. We need him to explain what his proposed solution is that .
21:34 mvexel: because he's probably the only person who has access to delete it
21:34 mvexel: that would make me grumpy
21:35 mvexel: QGIS, Wikipedia, Leaflet, Openlayers all do code sprints. We have hack weekends but it's not quite the same
21:35 Zverik: the twitter is mostly empty nowadays. I see an attempt to tweet news, but I don't think that's sustainable
21:35 Zverik: mvexel: what's the difference?
21:35 mvexel: it's more 'bring your own problem / idea'
21:36 mvexel: (hack weeekend)
21:36 hbogner: mvexel, i meant programmer with a lot of free time is not going to nappen, not the code sprint
21:36 mvexel: in a code sprint, everybody works towards solving the same problem: a new release, a new feature. We had one for API 0.6
21:36 hbogner: :D
21:37 Zverik: how do you feel about using @openstreetmap to retweet everything osm-related, so it's like news, but more social?
21:37 mvexel: anyway derailing the discussion again. I will stew on this a bit. I am sure there are a few companies willing to sponsor something like that
21:37 mvexel: shuts up and listens
21:38 harry-wood: Zverik I'd like to do more retweeting. Grouptweet doesn't support proper native retweets though
21:38 harry-wood: I can only do "RT @bob xxx"
21:38 Zverik: mvexel: do you have any links to articles on organizing code sprints? Because it doesn't see like a working idea. You would spend a day just explaining osm infrastructure to programmers
21:38 wille: Zverik: On the last months I have scheduled twitter posts once a day from monday to friday to OpenStreetMap Brazil account. It increased a lot the number of followers
21:38 Zverik: harry-wood: what is grouptweet?
21:39 mvexel: some example twitter accounts:
21:39 hbogner: as I recall there was a problem finding out who posted a gropuptweet, or something like that
21:40 harry-wood: grouptweet is how we allow a few people to tweet from @OpenStreetMap without all knowing the password
21:40 harry-wood: I alway tweet via grouptweet
21:40 mvexel: Zverik: I think if the topic is well contained a group of good devs would not need to know too much context.
21:40 harry-wood: it also allows us to see *who* tweet what messages
21:41 harry-wood: works quite well except… no native retweets
21:41 harry-wood: also we pay for it
21:41 hbogner: ahaa, so it works
21:43 hbogner: we should define what is cwg main objective/taks/job
21:43 Zverik: harry-wood: did you contact grouptweet on retweets issue?
21:43 harry-wood: I didn't
21:44 harry-wood: maybe I should, it's true
21:44 hbogner: there are only few of us and so much to do, that sometimes i feel like not doing it :D
21:45 mvexel:
21:45 harry-wood: on spam, TomH shares his design thoughts here: It's a website coding issue to be tackled.
21:45 harry-wood: Not sure if CWG needs to be involved.
21:46 mvexel: no not directly
21:46 Zverik: from what I gatheres, the cwg should be for: 1) publishing osmf news; 2) the main press contact; 3) making other osm news/blogs discoverable; 4) a meeting point for active local communicators to share ideas; 5) encouraging anything written, e.g. documentation and leaflets
21:46 mvexel: mugs
21:47 harry-wood: It's a working group about "communication" which is very broad. I wrote a list of communication aspects here:
21:48 harry-wood: which is too much for a small group of people to do
21:49 harry-wood: hence we're just keeping the blogs and tweets ticking over and replying to some press enquiries :-)
21:49 Zverik: yes, that's why my list requires of cwg members very little, and that's what I propose :)
21:49 harry-wood: your list?
21:50 hbogner: few lines up harry-wood
21:50 mvexel: perhaps we can ask other WGs what we can do for them?
21:50 hbogner: 5 point list
21:51 hbogner: mvexel, communication with other WGs is good idea
21:51 wille: mvexel: maybe it would be better if each of us subscribe to another WG list, so we should see what's going on and proposing posts
21:51 Zverik: but other WGs don't seem eager to publish anything :)
21:52 Zverik: to the point the OWG even made their own twitter account
21:53 Zverik: harry-wood: how many people post to @OpenStreetMap? Is it just you and Steve?
21:53 harry-wood: Well I think they decided that'd be a good idea because otherwise they are breaking the silence on the @OpenStreetMap account to announce some bad news stories (downtime etc)
21:54 harry-wood: yes. just me really
21:54 Zverik: how do you feel about letting 10-20 people on the group? :)
21:54 harry-wood: I'd rather not give 10-20 access suddenly all at once.
21:54 harry-wood: but also who are these 10-20 people? where are they hiding
21:55 hbogner: Zverik, get them to joun cwg :D
21:55 hbogner: *join
21:55 harry-wood: I've tried to get people to suggest tweets
21:55 Zverik: WeeklyOSM would retweet their announcements, SotM WG would write things, people who read a lot of osm-related twitter feeds would retweet everything 10 times a day
21:55 Zverik: harry-wood: twitter doesn't work like that (re: suggested tweets) :)
21:56 Zverik: it's "write/rt and forget", not "plan and schedule and have people double-check"
21:56 harry-wood: The other idea I had was give loads of people permission to schedule tweets which would go out after a period of time, if nobody had corrections/overrides
21:57 mvexel: harry-wood: does grouptweet support that dynamic
21:57 harry-wood: nope
21:57 harry-wood: that would be using some hitherto non-existent tweeting system :-)
21:57 mvexel: perhaps it's overly democratic :)
21:58 mvexel: you could set up something with a google spreadsheed and IFTTT I am sure :D
21:58 harry-wood: I know twitter doen't *really* work like that. people prefer to be a bit more dynamic than editing a wiki page
21:58 harry-wood: but I hadn't predicted what a *total* failure that approach would be
21:58 harry-wood: In the time since I set up that wiki page we've had… zero suggested tweets
21:58 harry-wood: thanks for that OpenStreetMap community :-)
21:58 Zverik: harry-wood: can I suggest myself and some more active tweeters (mine is @shtosm, but it's mostly in Russian) for @OpenStreetMap, so we could dramatically change its... forgot he word... how it feels and operates and interacts with others?
21:59 wille: harry-wood: have you used ?
21:59 Zverik: with no cross-checking of wording, no scheduling, no suggestions
21:59 harry-wood: wille: yes. And it has a nice 'teams' feature
21:59 harry-wood: which *does* support native retweeting
21:59 harry-wood: and it's free
22:00 harry-wood: BUT….
22:00 harry-wood: no feature to see who sent what
22:00 harry-wood: we tried it:
22:00 harry-wood: so that's annoying!
22:01 hbogner: ahaa, that was tweetdeck
22:02 harry-wood: Crazy though this is… I have actually almost managed to re-implement grouptweet! :
22:02 mvexel: sorry folks need to jump on another call
22:02 harry-wood: Bit more work on that, and we could be adding some funky scheduling and native retweeting features as we need them
22:03 harry-wood: The "code it yourself" solution
22:05 wille: harry-wood: good!
22:06 hbogner: i get up for work in 6 hours so i'll be leaving you soon, but i hope we'll do this again soon, and short witten summary from tonight would be good idea
22:06 Zverik: so I've just did a quick research, and there are two alternatives to GroupTweet: SproutSocial and MediaFunnel.
22:06 Zverik: okay, let's wrap this up, but first — is the next Wednesday, the same time, good for you?
22:07 harry-wood: Zverik: One bit of perspective to add here, I was on CWG throughout the license change years. This was *stressful*. A lot of attention on how OSMF was communicating the license change. At that stage there was no way in hell we could let 10-20 people manage the twitter account. We had to be so careful about what we said and how we said it. It needed some very *trusted* individuals being the voice of the foundation.
22:07 wille: Zverik: yes
22:07 harry-wood: These days there's less of that tension, so it feels like throwing open the channels to more contribution is what we need to do. But there's still issues we need to "treat carefully" around
22:07 harry-wood: "tread carefully" I mean
22:08 Zverik: harry-wood: there is a trend in russian social media now: websites publish official news and are serious and all that, and social media accounts are much more relaxed, though often making mistakes
22:08 harry-wood: Areas described in the Comms Guidelines:
22:09 hbogner: this time, or maby one hour earlyer maybe wouls be fine for me next week
22:09 Zverik: I'll be busy an hour earlier, so it's either the same time or a different day for me :)
22:11 harry-wood: This time of day is usually good for me. Don't have many "going out" evening plans lately :-)
22:11 Zverik: :)
22:11 hbogner: ok, i'll try to fit in next week
22:12 Zverik: okay, thanks everyone for coming. I hope we would make a change in coming weeks or months.
22:12 hbogner: bye from me
22:12 wille: bye!
22:12 : hbogner left the room (quit: Quit: Pozdrav).
22:12 : wille left the room (quit: Quit: Page closed).
22:12 Zverik: good night or day, whatever your time zone is :)
22:12 harry-wood: see ya!
22:13 harry-wood: oh. want me to post the chat transcript?
22:13 Zverik: harry-wood: I'll do it myself, I have the access :)
22:13 harry-wood:
22:14 harry-wood: but do you have the power of