[bksvol-discuss] Re: Creating a Process for Creating Guidelines

  • From: "E." <thoth93@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 09 Jun 2009 18:38:40 -0400

I too wish to shape guidelines. If I have to get onto another list to do it I will do so.


At 05:25 PM 6/9/2009, you wrote:
Hi Pavi,

    May I please be included in helping to shape guidelines?


From: bksvol-discuss-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:bksvol-discuss-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Pavi Mehta
Sent: Tuesday, June 09, 2009 1:26 PM
To: bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Cc: carrie.k@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [bksvol-discuss] Creating a Process for Creating Guidelines

Hi All,

As you know the recent guidelines that went out on Page Numbering have generated some understandable concern and confusion among the volunteers. Some of you have written in to staff with detailed emails articulating those areas of concern and where the guidelines appear more inconvenient than helpful. Others have expressed their opinions on the list. Carrie and I have had several discussions recently on how best to address these concerns and modify the guidelines so that they serve as a tool and not a hindrance. As hands-on volunteers all of your input is valuable and we want the guidelines to reflect the best practices and collective wisdom of the volunteer community.

Regarding page numbers Carrie will send out a note shortly to clarify some of the areas of confusion and concern and explain how the guidelines for this will be implemented. Bottom line is that we do understand the wide variety of challenges volunteers face with including page numbers in books, and we?re glad to have had your feedback. We intend hereon for this guideline to be implemented with a large degree of flexibility ? and will be rewriting the guidelines to clearly reflect the difference between page number requirements for educational books and other submissions.

Moving forward though, for us one of the overarching questions that the Page Number issue brings up is:

What is the most efficient and effective way for Bookshare to do the following:

1.       Identify volunteer areas that need guidelines

2. Draft guidelines and have them reviewed by a small pool of volunteers(in a sort of beta phase)

3. Finalize and share these guidelines among the greater volunteer community

Ideally, Carrie and I feel that volunteers should have a leading and more transparent role to play in steps 1 and 2 above.

Here is a suggested approach, that it would be great to get your input on:

1. Form a self-selected team of ?Bookshare Guideline Shapers? (we can think of a better name down the line- smile). The Guideline Shapers are Bookshare volunteers who step forward to help identify, draft and sound out missing guidelines. Even if something is brought to staff attention regarding a missing guideline, we would turn it over initially to this group with our suggestions if any.

2. The Guideline Shapers would decide on areas that need guidelines, work on an initial draft of these guidelines and then send them over to Carrie/me for review from the Bookshare staff perspective. The Guideline Shapers would go over any edits from us and come up with a revised guideline. They would then solicit feedback on the guideline from the volunteer list before making any final tweaks to it.

3. Once the guideline has been finalized, I will incorporate it in the Volunteer Manual, and ensure that it is announced on the volunteer blog as well as on the volunteer discussion list. (We will create a separate section of the manual for Updates to the Manual so that it is easy for people to keep up with the changes).

Participation from the volunteer community while shaping policy, we feel is key and we think this approach could be a really invigorating way of facilitating the creation of useful guidelines from the inside-out. Of course we would be more than glad to help with the logistics of setting up a group alias and other etcs for Guideline Shapers, and to provide assistance wherever we can. We would love your feedback on this approach as well as to know if any of you are interested in being part of such a team.

Warm regards,

Pavi & Carrie

Pavi Mehta

Volunteer Coordinator, Bookshare


480 S. California Ave., Suite 201

Palo Alto, CA 94306-1609 USA

Phone:  +1 650 644-3459



The Benetech Initiative - Technology Serving Humanity

A Nonprofit Organization

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