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Posts tagged with : bewelcome
Volunteer Code of Conduct
BeWelcome is a volunteer-run website. Nobody at any level is being paid for their work, with volunteers spending much (if not all) of their spare time helping this community grow and connect. Whether it is programming, translating, organizing meetings, discussing the features and future of BeWelcome on the forums and helping other members, volunteers are central to this community!
To keep things civilized, polite and constructive, we have now introduced a "Volunteer Code of Conduct" which is a set of guidelines to aid volunteers in their interactions both with each other and with our members. These are not rules or reasons to dismiss a volunteer for poor performance but constructive guidance to enable volunteers to find solutions. If members have an issue with a volunteer, they can contact the respective team coordinators or the Board of Directors.
BeVolunteer has a new home
BeWelcome is run by a non-profit organization called BeVolunteer, which in the past, was a concept difficult to understand, given that information about BeVolunteer could only be found on the BeWelcome wiki. We are happy to announce that everything you always wanted to know about BeVolunteer can now be found at www.bevolunteer.org.
Get active and update your profile
- Update your profile: Give other members the chance to get a first impression of yourself by adding a profile picture and fleshing o ut your profile.
- Invite friends to BeWelcome
- Join or start a BeWelcome group: If no group for your region or interests exists, you can create your own and invite others to join.
- Spread the word: We have some active members spreading the word in social networks. If you want to join and promote BeWelcome among your contacts and also get updates about the website, you can follow our Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Use BeWelcome actively for great times, travel and wonderful hospitality experiences.
Successful Donation Campaign: Thank you!
We have recently removed the donation bar from the front page of BeWelcome. This is good rather than bad news, because it means we have reached our yearly donation goal of 1,260 Euros for running the BeWelcome website.
Thank you all for all your generous donations! Your continuous support makes it possible for us to run BeWelcome without any need fo r external funding or advertisements.
If you would like to know more about how the donations are used, please visit our Finances page.
Decision making on BeWelcome: Add your voice and cast your democratic vote!
BeWelcome is set up as a democratic hospitality network. This means we want to give members an opportunity to democratically decide future developments and fundamental changes. The current decision making process on BeWelcome, while an important step in this direction, created some confusion and frustration because it is very difficult to put into practice. Therefore, a new suggestion for a decision making and suggestion process which includes a much clearer process, time frames, responsibilities and tools has been put forward for discussion. Importantly, it is a process that enables the community to select and rank solutions to inform BeWelcome's developmental pri orities.
Please add your comments about this suggested process on the wiki page or post them in the dedicated forum thread. Additionally, please feel free to propose alternative suggestions for a decision making process in the forum thread. If there is no general agreement in the forum, it is likely that all BeWelcome members will be invited to vote among alternative suggestions.
Unconferences: Where great ideas often emerge
T here is a saying in the business world that the best ideas emerge during an informal coffee break. Following on from this logic, "unconferences" were developed as participant-driven meetings that avoid the worst aspects of a conventional conferences such as high fees, sponsored presentations and top-down organization. At a unconference, the agenda is typically created by the attendees at the beginning of the meeting. Anyone who wants to initiate a discussion on a topic can claim time and a space, and thereby such meetings often feature open discussions rather than having a single speaker at the front of the room giving a talk. (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unconference)
BeWelcome adopted this concept at the very start of its existence and held its first unconference in January 2007. A series of BeWelcome unconferences are planned for 2013 to drive forward important improvements for the BeWelcome community and discu ss its future.
Between Friday, March 1st and March 3rd, an unconference was kindly and generously hosted by the BeWelcome member guaka in Brussels. The participants discussed member safety, the BeWelcome groups and forum structure and the decision making process within BeWelcome. The Meeting Minutes are available on the BeWelcome wiki.
The next unconference will take place from April 6th to April 7th in Bamberg, Germany. More details can be found on the wiki page about the 2nd Unconference 2013 and you can also sign up for the unconference there.
If you are interested in hosting a BeWelcome Unconference, please post your ideas in the respective forum thread.
News from the development volunteers
Three new software releases in 2013 have brought some very useful and beneficial improvements to the BeWelcome experience. One big change that you might have already spotted are related groups. This means that if you are a member of a group (e.g. Paris), you can now link it with another group you are a member of (e.g. France). Please use the feature responsibly and if in doubt, contact the group admin(s). Another change focused on privacy which is a vital issue for many. You can now decide on the visibility of your BeWelcome posts. The default value for new posts now ensures that all group posts will stay within those groups and all forum posts are visible to logged in BeWelcome members only, unless you actively choose otherwise.
Several people asked the software development team for a road map of upcoming site changes and when to expect the release of tools and features long discussed in the forums. The good news is that development is current and active on the most eagerly awaited tools and features. However, some of them will take some more time.
- The next software release will focus on languages. We will add sign languages and make the handling of languages easier (e.g. finding a language that you speak but that you don't write).
- The focus will then shift to location issues, which will enable us to improve location search and launch an activities tool.
- Long term plans are also in place to improve the whole website by migrating the code to a new platform. This platform should enable the developers to speed up the development of the website.