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Meeting 2009 07 11 KMs notes

Page history last edited by KM 12 years, 6 months ago

KM's NOTES of planning meeting 11.07.09, 11.00 am. Friends House 

(subsequently combined with MP's notes into notes circulated by GF)


Notes not comprehensive - I only jotted down what interested me.




Everyone seemed to agree that the timetable for both days is pretty jam-packed.


Some rearranging was done (?) and more may be done by teleconference.


Regardless of what the final timetable is we agreed on the need for REALLY GOOD PEOPLE to keep things to time - who can insist that there is no over-running, without being seen as bullies.





Currently, there are  6 workshop topics (maybe there will be some combining - to be decided later)


It was agreed that the people running a workshop will decide how their workshop will be run.


Each workshop might therefore be structured, facilitated and recorded in different ways.


It seems to be assumed that each workshop will have 'one facilitator and one rapporteur'.   


Afterthoughts: I'm getting bolshie here and not necessarily going along with that assumption - at least for the IT workshop which is the one I'm interested in.  I'd like to think more about how to structure it.


Isn't what we really need a 'contract' defining WHAT OUTPUTS BY WHEN  a workshop team is expected to produce, and a NAMED PERSON per workshop, responsible for ensuring the outputs are delivered, rather than assumptions about how the workshop team  will share and perform their tasks?


Each workshop team will run its workshop 4 times  (in the four different sessions which are (currently) timetabled).


In each session, they should brief the particpants about where they got to in the previous session(s), so later groups can pick up and run with what was produced by ealier groups.


The workshop team is expected to produce a cumulative report (summing up the whole 4 sessions) for the pleanary session at end of day two.  This should be brief (HOW BRIEF?).


The full output from the workshops should also be made available (in, say, a Word file or other computer-readable  form) (BY WHEN?).


As there will be six workshop topics and only four workshop sessions, conference participants will have to make some choices.


They might choose to do 4 and ignore 2.  Or maybe some might want to flit from one to another till they find something they like.  We cannot (and I think should not) control people's behaviour here.





Martha will try to find young computer-literate people (nterns?) to take notes direct to laptops on the day.



IT workshop 


The papers KM circulated at the meeting were broadly accepted as a brief for the IT workshop. [I'll put them on this wiki soon. KM] 


KM will contact mySociety asking if anyone can attend the conference.  [Note to self: be explicit about what's so good about mySociety. Its not just the tecchy cleverness and the fact that their web-sites really take off and get used by people.  Its also the open-source ethos, the non-partisan ethos and the refusal to be manipulated by government even when being paid by government (as in No 10 petitions web-site).  Martha suggests also tell them conference might increase traffic to their existing web-sites.].


George will email Kitty a paper containing basic conference info (inc aims - words about 'empowering' etc?), which she will include in what she sends to mySociety.


[I've just realised my naming conventions are inconsistent - initials or first names? Heigh ho.  KM]


George: can you also give me contact details for Ashley Woods who, I understand, is likely to be particualry interested in this workshop.



House of Commons Reception


Martha is organising this.  Everyone else happy to leave it in her hands.



Rooms and facilities to be provided by Friends House


Some IT facilities (eg laptops with projection) will be made avaliable to workshops - but not every workshop team will want to use them and we are not yet sure if there are enough to go round.  


The rooms we will have are: the small meeting 'house', plus some (how many?) break-out rooms.


George:  I held back from volunteering for anything other  than IT workshop BUT talking to people at Friends House about rooms, and facilities (inc catering) is something I'd quite like to do, if you're not desparate to keep that job yourself.  I now go up to that area quite often so it is no problem to call in and I do like to know exactly what rooms, walls, tea-drinking spaces etc there will be, when I'm involved in a conference. 



Refreshments (tea, coffee etc)


We agreed (I think) that conference participants  would be asked to pay for their tea/coffee/biscuits, using some sort of raffle ticket system that I did not understand.


I'm quite happy to be outvoted on my suggestion that we might ask Friends House if we can do our own drinks.   But I'd just like to explain that I made that suggestion partly because then we'd have more control over where and when people could get cuppas, not just because it would be cheaper.   And having places where people can chat over the water cooler or whatever, at any time during the conference, can be very productive.  I know that I for one won't be able to sit through all those lectures on day 1. 


I understand that George does not want to impose further on Friends  House, which has been very good to this project.  But  George: isn't  supporting this sort  of work  what RSoF exists for!   I would not want to do anything that cuts against the catering contract but I wonder if thaf is really the case (especially if the request came from  Would it be different if the request were to come, say from Croydon Friends, rather than a non-Quaker group?  




People will be given hand-out stating where food can be bought.


A few other things that were mentioned (not strictly conference-organsising stuff)


Problem: ministers and post-holders who move on just as soon as activists have built up a good relationship with them.  



Data analysis:  some ways of classifying replies (or parts of a reply) to an activist's letter:


Point raised by activist but ignored in reply.


Point raised by activtist but answered evasively.


Additional point raised by respondent (not raised in activist's letter).


'Genuine' points made by respondent, to which activist can counter-argue.


'Gonad-related' points: simply not true.


[hmmmm. we will have to think hard about how to phrase such a classification.   Strangely, on my way home from the meeting I got caught up in the 'Testicle Tour' - a parade of men carrying large (2 foot diameter)  furry balls to raise awareness of testicular cancer].


Pre-conference study pack 


George will add something about mySociety so people can look at their web-sites before the conference.


Post conference


On the day we'll need to be able to say something like 'meet back here in one month'


So presumably room availablity needs to be checked / pencilled in.


Maybe some new 'outfit' (if not exactly an 'organisation' will emerge.



Next Meeting(s) 


Tele-conferences soon,  George will arrange?   One for publicity and one for I'm-not-sure-what but I'll be there.


Next 'normal' meeting: Saturday August 1st (I'm guessing it will be 11 am,Friends House).


Post-meeting discovery: legal wikis


The website I used for setting up this wiki (www.pbworks.com) provides special types of wiki for legal firms and claims that people in 24 of the top 25 US law firms are using it.


Kitty will look into this (at some point).  Maybe it might provide a way of getting lawyers involved?


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