Categories: Summit

The difficult task of deciding.

Today we invited over 880 of our amazing volunteer contributors to the 2013 Mozilla Summit.  These people, along with our paid-staff, will come this event from countries all over the world (I’m sheepish to admit I had to look up one or two) to do something incredibly important and meaningful to all of us (and to have a ton of fun.)

I think it’s important at this point to share publicly how we decided on the 880.  Below is a note that was sent out to our Mozilla Reps yesterday:

“As you know, invitations have been sent out for the Mozilla Summit 2013.  As for all large contributor events at Mozilla, the invitation process is a big challenge since our community is constantly growing and evolving. The priority is *always* to make sure we have as fair a selection process as possible and we don’t forget anyone. 

The reality is (as with any event or activity with a large scale), there is a high likelihood that a few names that would fall through the cracks. There was an intense effort on our part to reduce this to a minimum.  

For those wondering how the final invitation list was established, here’s a brief recap: 

The first step in selecting invitees to the Summit was to ask volunteer Mozillians interested in attending the summit to join the “summit2013” group on their profile page. We gave Mozillians a few weeks to do that and sent out multiple reminders across several communication channels. 

The next step was to ask one community builder (aka Steward) from *each* functional area at Mozilla and all Mozilla Reps Council members to thoroughly review the list of all those who had joined  “summit2013” and cast a vote for each name. The criteria was straightforward: vote for those Mozillians you feel have made a meaningful contribution to the project these past 6 months and who you feel should participate in the Summit. We ended up with 45 people reviewing a list of close to 1,000 names. To be as effective and efficient as possible, the ReMo webdev team created a very simple tool to help make the voting process as easy but as thorough as possible. 

The tool enabled reviewers to quickly skim through the profile of each person and gave four voting options: “No”, “Skip”,  “Probably” and “Definitely”. 

For 3 weeks, all 45 reviewers had the opportunity to review the list and  vote. When voting closed, each name had a final voting score, which determined whether or not they would make the cut and be invited to the summit. The criteria was as follows: 

  • if a Mozillian had at least 1 ‘Probably” vote and no more than 1 “No” vote, then the Mozillian should be invited
  • if a Mozillian had at least 2 ‘No’ votes, then the Mozillian was NOT invited
  • if a Mozillian had only “Skip” votes, then the Mozillian was NOT invited

Based on these voting criteria, a final list of 827 names was established out of an initial list of 990 names. 

As mentioned above, some names have most certainly not been included in the invitation list and the Mozilla Reps Mentors reviewed the list a second time to flag any omissions. A few additional invitations were sent today. 

As imperfect as this review process was used, it’s a huge improvement from the previous one and we’ll continue gathering feedback and continue improving it.”

This is a lot to share here but I think transparency of process is important.  At this time, the list is final and we are moving forward.

That’s what needs to happen to make it happen.