DFD Start Guide
This start guide is designed to introduce you to DFD and give you some tips and pointers for organizing your own DFD event. If you have any questions please join and use the DFD mailing lists or contact us though our contact form. You can also chat with us via IRC on #dfd on Freenode if you want to bounce ideas around or get more advice. Also check our SocialNetworks page to start networking with the DFD community around the world.
Organizing a DFD event is a fun and effective community building experience for your area. Document Freedom Day is a ... FIXME
How can I celebrate Document Freedom Day?
There are three primary ways to celebrate HFD:
- Join an existing local DFD organization and help make their DFD event a success.
- Host your own DFD event!
- Encourage local organizations to make their own DFD events!
DFD will be most effective if we keep some target groups in mind:
Steps to organize your HFD event
Read the CodeOfConduct page and see if you can agree!
RSS feed the [[|DFD news]]. Event discussions happen on the DFD mailing lists which you are also encouraged to join.
Join the mailing list to get feedback of your planning.
- Register your event so people can find your event from our website.
- Report on your event. We'll have an easy report webform for you to fill in after the event!
The average DFD event usually requires only a few organisers to share the workload and ensure the event is in hand. You can often recruit helpers from:
- People who refuse vendors lock-in
- Linux User Groups
- Special Interest Groups
Universities & schools
- Family and friends
- Companies (Developers, Marketing departments, etc.)
We have found that the event can FIXME /!\. Besides it can encourage other people to join current efforts and help grow the movement. The number of helpers required depends on the sort of activities you choose, but generally, the more the better. That way people have a good time and it also becomes a social event. If your volunteers enjoy themselves, they will pass on a good vibe and offer to volunteer next year too
Remember, we are all volunteers so it is a matter of what we can, when we can. Always remember to thank your volunteers and make sure they have a good time.
What should we do?
Be creative! You can organise any kind of DFD event you want. You can find a location / time to have a few meetings to brainstorm / discuss about the DFD event:
- Set your goals like objectives, target audiences, scale, style, theme.
- Event timing (should it be a morning, afternoon, evening or a whole day event? why?)
- Who can be the host?
- what kinds of project will you showcase?
- Will you have exhibits?
- If so, who will supervise the items on display and provide demos or explanations?
- Will you have simple workshops for adults and/or kids?
- If so, what will you have people achieve and who can run those classes (and where)?
- Will you organize video projection?
- Have you considered giving away water, or selling drinks?
- If so, are you authorized to sell those drinks?
Do you plan on having a group Q&A session with experts of your community?
- If so, who will lead the discussion? Who else will be invited?
- Who else can you get involved?
But just to get you started, here are a few ideas some people have had:
You may also set a theme for your event / activity, we have a wiki page for event organizers to share your EventIdeas.
Promoting the event in advance
It is very important to communicate the event to your target audiences, there are a lot of ways just to name a few here:
- Posters and flyers: Download the poster design from here (tbc), put your event details, print them out and post them in selected places two weeks before the event.
- Announcement in different websites, forums and mailing list: e.g. interested groups, colleges and universities.
- Press release: if you have connection with local press of your country / city, approach them, either send them a press release to build awareness of your event before and after the event or host an interview if possible. Otherwise, you can always approach local technology related journalists to do so. You may want to contact them to make them come to the event.
- Social Networking: Identi.ca, Twitter, Facebook, etc.
- Word of mouth: ask around to bring friends, family and co-workers to the event.
Preparing for the day
Below is a basic checklist that should cover most events that you would plan on running:
- Got your volunteers organised?
- Your venue is well prepared? Microphones? Video Projectors? White Screens?
- Are you planning to live stream your event?
- Do you need insurance for your event? (some people can look to larger organisations to help out with this. Ask around.)
- Do you have schwag to hand out? CDs, flyers, balloons? Anything shiny that will give you the chance to engage in discussion.
- Have you liaised with any other DFD event organizers in your region or country? Sometimes this can help with pooling resources and having a stronger all round effort.
- Do you have have decent signs prepared so people can find / recognise your event?
- Do you have signs to tell participants how to tag, twit, etc.?
- Do you have a board to allow participants to write down what they feel about the event?
- Is your event in an easy to find place that is useful to reach out to a broad new audience?
According to experiences, there are a few things you may want to pay attention during the events.
- Documenting the whole event by taking photos or video and share them in different channels, it is suggested to tag the photos to "documentfreedomday".
- Interviewing audiences to get feedback of the event (as sometimes paper surveys may not get the same result).
- Others would be the temperature, ventilation, sound level of the speakers, noise control from different audiences.
After the event
- You may want to gather those materials that can be reused for the next event.
- Of course you have to indulge yourselves with a good meal to talk about the feeling of the event together with the other volunteers, thanking your volunteers is very important as well.
- Post photos, videos and interviews taken during the event in websites and / or blog about it so that we can reach out even more people afterwards.
- Send a press release to different news outlet.
- Send thank you letters and report summary to sponsors, exhibitors, contributors, speakers and supporting organizations.