WikiNusantara, the First Nationwide Conference for the Indonesian Wikimedia Community, Successfully Took Place

After successfully organising a regional conference the East Asia, Southeast Asia, and Pacific (ESEAP) Conference last year, Wikimedia Indonesia went forward in organising another conference, nationwide for the first time, officially named WikiNusantara. The conference was designed especially for Wikimedia project contributors living in Indonesia in order to gather and let them meet in person while giving them a breath of fresh air from usual online discussions. Hold for two days on 27-28 April 2019, WikiNusantara took place in Yogyakarta, the Indonesian city of art, culture, and education.

With the theme “a window for collaboration”, WikiNusantara invited Wikimedia contributors to put up a spirit of collaboration to free knowledge. As many as 82 contributors from various Wikimedia projects such as Indonesian Wikipedia, Javanese Wikipedia, Sundanese Wikipedia, Minangkabau Wikipedia, Banjar Wikipedia, Aceh Wikipedia, Wikimedia incubator, Wikidata, Wikisource, and Wikimedia Commons were united. The conference was kicked off by Cahyo Ramadhani, the Conference Coordinator, and Rinto Jio, the chair of Wikimedia Indonesia’s Board of Trustees.

Within the two-day conference, attendees can take part in 25 scheduled sessions. The sessions were categorized into two themes, capacity building and community strengthening. On the former theme, some sessions include the introduction of Creative Commons licenses, bot workshop, and Wikipedia training of trainer. Meanwhile, some other sessions on the latter theme include community sessions of Wikipedia language versions in Indonesia such as Indonesian, Malay, Javanese, Sundanese, Minangkabau, Banjar, Aceh, and Osing. Among this series of sessions, a session was open for public with Ivan Lanin, an Indonesian Wikipedian, well-known for his contribution on the development of the Indonesian language on the Internet, as the speaker and bringing a discussion on Knowledge Crowdsourcing in Wikipedia. Enthusiastic public to attend the session was high as seen from the number of registrants reaching 257 people. However, due to limited seats, only 100 people were selected to join the session.

In addition to the sessions, there was also a social event Sesrawungan or a familiarity event for all the attendees. This familiarity event was carried out on Saturday night and invited a group of students-gamelan players Prasasti from the English Department of Universitas Gadjah Mada. In the social event, attendees were treated with gamelan performance. They were also invited to try the gamelan instruments and brought a simple song entitled Suwé Ora Jamu. The event went lively by the fact that many attendees just experienced gamelan instruments for the first time yet were asked to bring together a song. The interesting part was that a funny situation occurred during the group of attendees brought a song but had no idea when to stop the song so that one should shout “stop! stop!” in order to halt, instead of the song ended with kendhang.

The conference was put on an end by Biyanto Rebin, the chair of Board of Executive. He displayed Wikimedia Indonesia’s achievements in the past year in its effort to free knowledge to society. One of the programs that were carried out many times in the past year was WikiLatih or writing workshops of Wikipedia. In a year, 48 workshops were held and participated by more than 1,000 people. WikiLatih collaborated with more than 50 institutions and was held in 6 languages of Indonesia. In total, there were 25 regencies and cities in 5 islands in Indonesia that were visited by WikiLatih teams in order to spread the spirit of freeing knowledge.