|Sairch uiser leids|
As some of you already know (people I mostly know only virtually, but that I consider friends!), I'm a member of the Catalan association "Amical de la Viquipèdia" which is working to become a Chapter.
This is a structure between Wikipedias and the Wikimedia Foundation. Its purpose is to assist in promoting the activities of the various Wikipedias, allowing them some official access to certain free material, also raising money for the Foundation and receiving funds, among many other things... (click the links above for more details).
After a preliminary campaign by members of the Catalan Wikipedia, I was asked if I could seek support from the Occitan Wikipedia (where I mainly contribute to the Occitan Wiktionary) and I offered to 'travel across the Wikiworld and spread the word', hoping that the majority of Wikipedians who recognized its value would support our modest cause.
We all share similar values, bringing free and freely given knowledge to everyone, and in every language. Trying also to support/promote/help linguistic diversity and diverse cultures, we think that Chapters should be based on the quality of organization, ideas and projects, and not be solely dependent on whether a potential Chapter corresponds exactly with a Sovereign state.
Many Wikipedias for minority languages and/or those that are considered 'stateless' (Catalan, Esperanto, Basque, Breton, Occitan, Maya, Tibetan...) would otherwise never have a Chapter, nor be considered equal to the bigger or 'official' state languages. This in my view would be unfair, since all Wikipedias are supposed to be equal...
Thanks again to all the people who supported our cause and gave me their support (more than 57 people here in the English Wikipedia and, well, I'm not done yet. There are probably more than 350 who have expressed support and currently 302 persons in our Members and Supporters list (Well, I didn't know you could sign it at first and some people pasted the template and didn't sign there, especially in this Wikipedia, sorry!).
The Catalan Chapter hasn't been accepted so far. Our delegation went to the Wikimania event a few days ago and things were less than encouraging since there are currently no linguistic Chapters. At least one Foundation representative, who overlooked to introduce himself, indicated there never will be (in my opinion a strange assumption for an institution that advocates for change and evolution!). If you don't have a state, it seems, you can't have a Chapter!.
Another important point was that the Chapters Committee seemed to have a problem defining exactly what a Chapter is. Our association president, Joan Ramon Gomà, then created this informative page in an effort to clarify the issue.
I'll try to keep all interested persons informed of the progress of our campaign at this page as developments arise. Thanks again for your support! You can write to me anytime, I'll be happy to correspond. I may not reply at once since I could be occupied on the project, but I'll do the best I can to keep in touch with this Wikipedia!
I wish the very best to all of you and right now a wonderful, warm and pleasant Summer! Take care!
Since some of you might find yourselves in a situation similar to mine before I was informed about the diverse superior institutions, I'll add a few useful links here.
Note: There doesn't seem to be a rule prohibiting members of a family from belonging to different levels of the Wikimedia/Wikipedia institutions.