In pursuit of fair co-creation
A handy hacky flowchart for hackathon-goers-to-be.
What is a hackathon? Every year, hundreds of these events pop up on weekends across the country. From corporate innovation experiments to chaotic co-creation jams, from competitive coding to cooperative maker events, from protected IP to open license models, there’s a hackathon for everyone’s taste. And yet, despite being labeled under the common "hackathon" name, their goals vary greatly. Since hackathons are used as a means for work precarization and free labor, the ambiguity of expectations brews potential misunderstanding among participants and stakeholders.
During the workshop on fair co-creation (online notes) at #DINAcon18, we discussed time-bounded collaborative events like hackathons common to many technical communities. With the workshops participants we built - in a collaborative manner - a list of attractors and detractors for participation in hackathons. This inspired us to, during #hacknight, start putting it together into a flowchart based on this list.
The flowchart is a playful* way to describe the metadata that we believe should be exposed by every hackathon in order to provide fair conditions to decide attendance. It may help guide potential hackathon participants about whether they should join or not a specific event, help hackathon organizers consider some of the issues at hand, or just amuse or confuse people.
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We will work on refining the design of this and creating a poster edition. Stay tuned!