Last February, I wrote about Mozilla Spaces, a project about Mozilla offices, with co-working inside. After sharing this article with members of Mozilla Reps, I got a lot of feedbacks, mostly very positive. And some made me think about issues and extensions that this project could take.
Mozilla office, yes, but if not?
The first problem is: what if there is no Mozilla office in the city or if the office is too small for hosting events? In this case, it's hard for a Mozillians' community renting an office space (in Paris, it is extremely expensive, even for special events less than a day). A first line of thought would be to invest places that are already "open", according to the different kind of events you want to organize:
- cafés: many cafés / bars can be reserved for informal community events, small meetings conferences. For my part, I have organized this kind of thing in Paris, Corcoran's, Great Canadian, Players or IT Place. But these are only examples ;).
- hacker-spaces: a little more underground, these places are often large sympathizers of free software / open source. You just have to come and talk with persons present to see if the place can host an event. Still in Paris: LeLoop, BlackBloxe, TMP/LAB...
- co-working places: here, you must find out about this places, because if it's possible to come and work individually, organizing a bigger event may be paid. For Paris, the best is La Cantine, but it is not alone: La Ruche, La Mutinerie, Soleilles, Next & Co-working...
There are other ideas that can be explored for "affiliate" Mozilla Spaces:
- museums: this may seem a little huge, but this already happens: la Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie of Paris regularly provides its digital space to Ubuntu-Fr a>, who organize events about Free Software. In the same kind, la Gaîté Lyrique opened its office for one year to the hacker-space TMP/LAB.
- associations and business partners: I do it regularly with Girls in Tech Paris, which organizes events around diversity in entrepreneurship. The difficulty lies in finding the sponsor, whose ideas are in place with your mission/vision.
With all this, there is work to do!
Second important question: what kind of presence can we organize? It depends on the presence of an employee whose mission is to do this (I talked in my previous article about a community manager associated with this Space, who would manage activities around the office and Mozilla affiliate places).
Typically, this presence includes a large number of events:
- every day presence: welcome and assistance, driving in the office and projects, translation,... With this real presence, we should add a virtual presence, of course.
- occasional workshops, with communities, on a specific topic: it's already common in Mozilla Paris, with workshops such as TupperVim, Documentation of Wednesday,...
- workshops more "generic":projects' presentation, education, support, evangelism,... li>
- workshops on selective news: SOPA and PIPA made great noise in the U.S., Mozilla reacts about these law. Little noise was made about ACTA, HADOPI, LOPPSI or some laws in the same vein. In a less politicized way, we can do things during Internet's festival, Music' fest or the Women's Day, for example.
Enlarge your UX!
This last question is from my own idea: how can we improve the user experience around this kind of project? When I come in a Mozilla office, what I expect of it? What can I win by coming to such a place? What can make me want to return or to participate more?
Awaiting responses, more for the next episode