What’s in the name?

Photo credit: Wikimania 2016 by Jaqen, CC-BY-SA-4.0

Phase 2: Naming Convention

To define an overall naming convention the Snøhetta team had to zoom out and look at Wikimedia as a totality and not as individual players within the movement.

We built an understanding of how different organizations and initiatives within the Wikimedia movement interact and connect to one another and how they connect with the movement.

For us a good naming convention is: 

  • Consistent: Reduces confusion and strengthens the brand as a whole
  • Clear: Short and easy to understand
  • Communicative: Explains what you do

To help guide us in this process we used the concept Interconnection that was created by you and represents the meaning of ‘who we are’ and portrays:

  • Humans and the passionate individuals that have built this movement
  • Diversity and the many parts of the movement
  • An ever evolving mission to set knowledge free.

We next explored the words already existing in the movement. Terms like Wikipedia, Wiki, Free Knowledge or simply the ‘W’ became elements to test in naming conventions.  We generated other terms from Interconnection. These are words that impart collaboration and interreliance: words like Network, Group, Alliance, Organization, Society (and many, many more).

An important criteria for us in this process was securing words that are understandable and adaptable to local languages. But also words that bear the right associations. For instance, the description of Alliance fits well to how the many parts of the movement are connected together, however the associations that quickly come to mind are often political and sometimes even associated with military and war.

The creative process can only take us this far, especially when working with naming we need to involve legal expertise early to guide us in a safe and financially responsible direction. This becomes a dance, where creative thinking and rational solutions go hand in hand

Together we have now created the following 3 naming proposals for community review and feedback. These proposals show how the entire movement is interconnected and respond to the community’s 6 qualities for good movement branding.

*Penguins and Antartica are invented affiliates
*Penguins and Antartica are invented affiliates
*Penguins and Antartica are invented affiliates

Now we are refining the work and welcome input. To provide you feedback on the Naming Proposals please visit the Brand Project meta page for access to the survey and more information. 

We are really looking forward to receiving your feedback and based on that removing, refining and recombining to land on a naming convention that will be an invaluable tool to grow and evolve the movement.