It is perhaps indicative of our growth that just as Sourcefabric's managing director Sava Tatić is announcing the official team headcount as 52, a voice from the back speaks up letting him know that the number is wrong already. "You forgot someone," it says. "Who's that?" replies Sava. "It's me," says the voice. "I'm the new guy."
Since last year's Sourcecamp, our number has nearly doubled in size and this year's annual get-together has seen the new, expanded team decamp to rural Brandenburg for four days of teambuilding, codesprinting and unconferencing ahead of the mysterious new plans known only as 'Sourcefabric 3.0.'
From Asunción to Zagreb, Sourcefabric team members now span the globe, operating from twelve countries and speaking at least 25 languages between them. It's a number that's also borne out in the end-user data Sava presents as part of his opening talk.
The last twelve months have seen over 12,000 Newscoop downloads and nearly 17,000 Airtime downloads from pretty much every country on the planet. But in addition to the 60,000 Vimeo channel video views, 13,000 Soundcloud followers or 2000 forum members, Sava tells us there is real progress being made in an interesting mix of countries worldwide that goes beyond statistics.
Switzerland (epitomised by the sleek new JournalB Newscoop project), Georgia (stay tuned for essential election coverage in October), Turkey and Brazil all now have major Sourcefabric implementations, mostly in the form of large scale Newscoop projects like Brasil 247, whose 55 million page views a month make them the Sourcefabric project with the largest reach.
Collaborations with partners like the Global Editors Network or awards like the Future 12 Innovation award and the Guardian Digital Innovation Award only serve to further help strengthen the networks of independent media that are increasingly turning to open source technology. Long-term partners like El Faro in El Salvador, TagesWoche in Switzerland, or many of our Georgian and Belarussian partners have paved the way for the software development that these days powers a variety of radio stations, newsrooms and publishing houses globally.
Ultimately though, says Sava, we have to be aware of the challenges of "imperial overreach, parochialism and loss of focus." The antidote to these, it seems, is also a successful mantra for many news organisations; think local, act global. In encouraging this vision at all levels of the organisation, Sourcefabric hopes to remain on course to fulfill its mission of supporting quality journalism.
However, it's a mission that needs a new, bigger structure to cope with increasing demand, larger clients and a wider reach. Therefore, Sourcefabric 3.0 is just around the corner; a new shape for the organisation with Development, Business, and Innovation departments headed up by Sava and the other two co-founders Micz and Doug respectively. The next few days in rainy Brandenburg will be all about the details - the teams, software architectures, product offerings and business plans - that underpin the next exciting phase of Sourcefabric's evolution.
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