Speaker information

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We are pleased to have you join us as a speaker for this year’s Wikimania! Please refer to this page for the latest information, especially regarding logistics.

Your checklist

  • Check back in July for the final date, time and room assignment of your session on the program page.
  • Book your accommodation. Accommodations are subject to availability so book soon. Note the deadlines to book.
  • Register for Wikimania. All speakers are required to be registered. If this will be a hardship, or if you will only be attending one day, please let us know by emailing wikimania-info@wikimedia.org.
  • Check if you need a visa and apply ASAP. If you require a visa, please email visas@wikimedia.org and let us know when your visa has been confirmed.
  • Review onsite logistics, below.

If you have any questions that we may help you with, please email wikimania-info@wikimedia.org and someone will respond to your inquiry.


  • A presentation slide template has been prepared for you, if you would like to use it.
  • Please ensure you arrive in the room 15 minutes prior to your start time.
  • Please make sure your presentation is available on USB as well as on your computer; having your presentation available online may also be a good idea.
  • Please bring the proper connectors for your device/laptop for presentations. The projectors will have both VGA and HDMI (?) connections
  • Presentations should be in 16:9 ratio
  • Every session room will have the following
    • Projector and Screen
    • Audio
    • Handheld microphones
  • Your room will be setup in theatre style - chairs facing the presenters
  • Start the conversation with a quick introduction from each person.
  • Encourage contributions from everyone on the panel throughout the discussion.
  • Keep visual presentations to a minimum to encourage conversation.
  • Reserve at least 15 minutes for questions and answers after the panel discussion.
  • The person who organized the panel is responsible for finding a moderator or acting as the moderator. That person will keep an eye on the time and make sure everyone participates. It is a good idea to have emails or phone calls with your panelists ahead of the conference so everyone knows what to expect.
Individual Lectures
  • Your room will be setup in theatre style - chairs facing the presenter
  • Start with a quick introduction. Tell us who you are and why this topic is of interest to you.
  • Do not rely too much on slides. This can make for a dry session. Think about how to make your topic dynamic and engage the audience in your talk.
  • Reserve time for questions and answers at the session end .
  • Your room will be setup in theater style. There will also be a place for a presenter to stand at the front of the room.
  • At the beginning, introduce the topic of the round-table, why you are interested, and what you hope the discussion will achieve.
  • The person who organized the round-table is responsible for moderating the discussion or finding a moderator. Round-tables are meant for more discussion among audience members. Make sure that no one dominates the conversation and everyone who wants to gets a chance to speak.
  • Your room will be setup in theatre style
  • For longer sessions, make sure a break is scheduled and that you have adequate time for questions. If needed, recruit other people who know the topic to circulate and help out with technical questions.
Birds of Feather
  • Rooms will be set up in theater style
  • These are meant as free-form sessions. Consider having a brief round of introductions. The person who organized the birds of a feather is responsible for moderating the discussion or finding a moderator. Make sure that no one dominates the conversation and everyone who wants to gets a chance to speak.

If you have any questions once you arrive at the Sheraton, you can come to the Help Desk in the Wikimania 2018 registration area.

Tips for speakers presenting at Wikimania

  • Presentations are 25 minutes for talks, 55 minutes for most panels, 85 minutes for workshops. Practice making your presentation concise and focusing on what you want your audience to take away. What did you learn? What would you recommend to others trying to do similar projects? What were your biggest challenges and what do you hope to do in future? If it is helpful, consider putting methodological and background details on a project page and linking to this in your presentation for audience members who want to know more.
  • Remember that the parts that are interesting to you (like how long the project took, or how much work it was to coordinate everyone) may not be the most interesting parts to your audience. Practice describing your talk in one minute or less (an elevator pitch). Why should someone attend your talk? Practice your talk with a friend and ask them what the most interesting parts were and what parts were unclear.
  • Put your materials online for those who can't attend Wikimania or who miss your session! Slides and handouts can go on Commons (if freely licensed) and be linked to your session abstract; feel free to link to project pages in your session abstract on the wiki.
  • Practice, practice, practice -- practicing your presentation two or three times in front of a mirror (even if it feels unnecessary) will make it a lot better. This is good advice even for people who give many talks.
  • Don't use too many slides and keep screenshots to a minimum -- figure on no more than 15-20 slides MAXIMUM for an individual presentation. Remember that screenshots are hard to read in the back of the room. Instead, enlarge the portion of the screen you are showing or describe it in words, and don't rely on people being able to read the screen if you are showing a screenshot of a wiki or code. If you want notes to read while you talk, print notes for yourself rather than putting all the words on the screen.
  • Leave time for questions: Do not plan to talk for the whole 25 minutes. Leave some time for questions and discussion! If you have to talk really quickly to fit the whole talk in, slow down, cut some material and put it on a project page that you link.
  • Bring a way for people to contact you: bring business cards if you have them, and put your email and username in the presentation. After the presentation, if people want to discuss more, make sure that they know how to find you. Presentations are a great opportunity for meeting people who have worked on similar projects.

You can also have a look at these recommendations for speakers.

Notetaking during sessions

We are asking each session speaker to begin their session by asking for a note-taker to take detailed notes during the session. The note-taker should be instructed to:

  1. Go to the session's wiki page. Open the "Etherpad" link in the infobox, and open the "(template)" link next to it. Copy the template's content into your session's Etherpad, to use as a structure.
  2. Take notes during the session. Details within the template.
  3. After the session, copy the notes from the Etherpad to the sessions' own page on the wiki. (Etherpad should not be used as long-term storage)

Note: Preferred number of note-takers: 2(min) or 3(max). We do not encourage everyone to multi-task during the sessions.

We also ask you to put your slides and handouts on Commons (cf. Category:Wikimania 2018 presentations) — and then paste a link to them on the sessions' own page on the wiki.

We look forward to seeing you in Cape Town!