MozFdn May 2010 status update

May 26, 2010 § Leave a comment

Almost five months into 2010, key Drumbeat projects and the Drumbeat local event series are picking up speed. Web Made Movies, Universal Subtitles and P2PU Open Web Career Track have all released new material and gotten more people involved. And additional events have taken place in Toronto, Berlin, Sao Carlos and Florianapolis. We’re also making progress on our overall fundraising and engagement efforts — albeit slower than hoped.

One things that has been particularly good to see: our first efforts to push community support and donations to a Drumbeat project have started to show (modest) results. By actively promoting Universal Subtitles in late April, Drumbeat helped to surface 600 beta testers as well as other offers of support. We generated over 100 comments like this one:

“Hi, I don’t have any talent in computer. I’m just a common people who can speak Mandarin, Cantonese, English, Malay, and little Japanese. And maybe very little Spanish. Is there anything 
I can do to help?”

Of course, support like this isn’t an end itself — the real goal is to make sure Universal Subtitles succeeds in bringing open video translation to the web. But it’s still good to see that the Drumbeat concept of bringing new people to participate in projects that improve the web has at least some early traction.

As we go into the summer, we’ll need to make some decisions about where to push hardest on Drumbeat for the rest of the year. The current plan is to focus on a few key projects build up strong participation and impact — the ones mentioned above plus a few more based in Europe or Brasil. We also want to pick a handful of cities to really invest in where we can get a vibrant community going. Sao Paulo is one of these. Berlin may be another. Finally, we need to pick a theme for the 2010 Drumbeat Festival. The current thinking is something around education (‘learning, freedom and the web’).

My May Mozilla Foundation status update provides a detailed overview on all of this, with a special focus on where and how we should focus our resources for the rest of the year. Here it is:

You can also view this in open video (ogg theora) or download the slide deck (PDF).

This slidecast offers slightly shorter version of info presented at our most recent board meeting. I’ll continue to provide these updates every two months, following the board meeting schedule. Comments welcomed here on my blog or by email.

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