Re: [Wikimedia-l] Affiliations Committee 2012 Annual Report

2013-05-12 Thread Federico Leva (Nemo)

Bence Damokos, 11/05/2013 15:13:

Yes, to be fair, since the closing of the report, we had made some
progress on this issue (e.g. we've had some user group name templates
pre-approved[1] during a meeting in Milan with Stephen from the legal team
and had clarified the process and responsibilities for names that don't
match those templates for example in the case of thorgs). It remains to be
seen if things do go smoother going forward with these improvements, but
the goodwill is there on each side.


It's a bit weird that the Affiliations Committee is tasked with 
ensuring that the name matches a single person's POV from a talk page.


Nemo

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Craig Franklin
Well, perhaps there was extensive consultation from Phillippe and Gayle if
it had been planned over a long period of time and I just missed it.  If
that's the case, I'm sure that one of them will point it out for us first
thing on Monday morning, at which point I'd have to start removing egg from
my face ;-)

Cheers,
Craig


On 12 May 2013 14:15, Nathan nawr...@gmail.com wrote:

 It's also worth noting this wasn't a last minute decision at all; its
 foreshadowed in a number of comments by Philippe going back to
 seemingly mid-March, and there may be warnings of it earlier. So the
 WMF staff have been discussing this change internally for at least 6
 weeks or so. That's a long time to not think up a better plan for
 rolling it out.

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[Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues

2013-05-12 Thread Achal Prabhala
This is a question that came up on the Wikimedia India list, and I 
suspect the question (and potential solutions) are of interest to 
several others in our community, esp. from places with shorter copyright 
terms than the US.


Cheers,
Achal

 Original Message 
Subject:Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues
Date:   Sun, 12 May 2013 14:51:27 +0530
From:   Achal Prabhala aprabh...@gmail.com
To: Wikimedia India Community list wikimediaindi...@lists.wikimedia.org



Hi Balasankar,

The question you raise is a very important one. The solution, however, 
is not likely to be to host content in India (I don't speak for the 
Wikimedia Foundation, but there are sound legal reasons why all 
Wikimedia content is hosted in the US; mostly liability risk and freedom 
of expression and this is unlikely to change).


The default across Commons and Wikisource, the two projects that host 
the bulk of public domain content (images, videos, sounds, books) in 
Wikimedia, is the US copyright term - it's the only yardstick that 
matters for what qualifies as public domain by virtue of being out of 
copyright. You are absolutely right, however, in that there's a big 
difference btw US copyright terms and those of other countries, for 
instance:


For photographs, while the binding limit (Berne/TRIPs) is 25 years from 
the making of the work, India is life of photographer + 60 years after 
death, and in the US it is life + 70.


For literary works, the binding limit (Berne/ TRIPs) is life + 50 years, 
whereas in India it is life + 60, whereas in the US it is life + 70 or 
120/95 if made on work for hire.


(The binding limit is the WTO mandated term that country members - US 
and India and 150 others - have to follow. As you can see, typically, 
most countries exceed the limit for reasons of their own, which they are 
allowed to do, with the US exceeding in far greater amount than India.)


In short, there can be a difference of between 10 and 40 years between 
the time a work goes into the public domain in a country with shorter 
terms than the US (any number of countries in the non-Anglo-European 
world) and the US. This seriously affects even 'Indian' works (where 
India is the first country of publication) because of the copyright 
protection granted to such works in the US, thus effectively placing 
them under copyright for our purposes within Wikimedia long after 
they've gone in to the public domain in their source country.


The case to consider here is Golan: 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golan_v._Holder


A summary of the US Supreme Court decision in this case is - US law 
trumps international agreements, so the US copyright term holds within 
US territory, and restores copyright protection to any works that have 
gone into the public domain by virtue of a shorter copyright term in 
another country. Because Wikimedia servers are based in the US, Golan 
applies to us.


But your question is an extremely pertinent one, and if we were to find 
unusual solutions to it, they would seem to lie in:


1) Whether hosting on US servers for a global audience makes any 
difference, since we do not serve readers only bound by US law 
(Wikimedia reader numbers bear this out, ie US readership = minority 
percentage of whole) and whether we specifically have anything special 
on the basis of which to mount some kind of strategic litigation on the 
issue of allowing us to exploit the shortest possible route to public 
domain anywhere in the world for all or some of our readers.


2) Whether hosting on US servers but using publicly audited geolocation 
to switch off for readers from IP addresses where the material in 
question is still under copyright is a legally and operationally 
feasible workaround (connected to whether Wikimedia Tech thinks this is 
both doable and worth our while to do)


3) Whether, if all fails and there is no getting around this in any way, 
Commons and Wikisource (if there is sufficient interest in those 
communities) should be interested in looking at a way of allowing 
external links to chapter-managed local sites from the US-served base to 
see the material in question; and if this is something, say, the India 
chapter wants and is willing to do, whether this route poses any legal 
risks.


In any case, I passed around your question to a few friends for comments 
and suggestions - as well as to Geoff Brigham at the Wikimedia 
Foundation, who is not too hopeful for a solution but is very receptive 
to looking into it and getting back to us - and I'll tell you when I 
know something.


Meanwhile, if you have other ways of looking into creative solutions 
around this problem (not at all easy to crack, but the benefits are 
significant) - or if anyone else on this list does - you should.


Cheers,
Achal



On Friday 10 May 2013 10:20 PM, Balasankar Chelamattath wrote:

Hi Srikanth,
I didnt quite understand what you meant by example.
An example for a work which 

[Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Fwd: Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues

2013-05-12 Thread Achal Prabhala
Of relevance here: 
http://www.publicdomainday.org/sites/www.publicdomainday.eu/files/World_copyright-terms.jpg



 Original Message 
Subject:Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues
Date:   Sun, 12 May 2013 14:51:27 +0530
From:   Achal Prabhala aprabh...@gmail.com
To: Wikimedia India Community list wikimediaindi...@lists.wikimedia.org



Hi Balasankar,

The question you raise is a very important one. The solution, however, 
is not likely to be to host content in India (I don't speak for the 
Wikimedia Foundation, but there are sound legal reasons why all 
Wikimedia content is hosted in the US; mostly liability risk and freedom 
of expression and this is unlikely to change).


The default across Commons and Wikisource, the two projects that host 
the bulk of public domain content (images, videos, sounds, books) in 
Wikimedia, is the US copyright term - it's the only yardstick that 
matters for what qualifies as public domain by virtue of being out of 
copyright. You are absolutely right, however, in that there's a big 
difference btw US copyright terms and those of other countries, for 
instance:


For photographs, while the binding limit (Berne/TRIPs) is 25 years from 
the making of the work, India is life of photographer + 60 years after 
death, and in the US it is life + 70.


For literary works, the binding limit (Berne/ TRIPs) is life + 50 years, 
whereas in India it is life + 60, whereas in the US it is life + 70 or 
120/95 if made on work for hire.


(The binding limit is the WTO mandated term that country members - US 
and India and 150 others - have to follow. As you can see, typically, 
most countries exceed the limit for reasons of their own, which they are 
allowed to do, with the US exceeding in far greater amount than India.)


In short, there can be a difference of between 10 and 40 years between 
the time a work goes into the public domain in a country with shorter 
terms than the US (any number of countries in the non-Anglo-European 
world) and the US. This seriously affects even 'Indian' works (where 
India is the first country of publication) because of the copyright 
protection granted to such works in the US, thus effectively placing 
them under copyright for our purposes within Wikimedia long after 
they've gone in to the public domain in their source country.


The case to consider here is Golan: 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golan_v._Holder


A summary of the US Supreme Court decision in this case is - US law 
trumps international agreements, so the US copyright term holds within 
US territory, and restores copyright protection to any works that have 
gone into the public domain by virtue of a shorter copyright term in 
another country. Because Wikimedia servers are based in the US, Golan 
applies to us.


But your question is an extremely pertinent one, and if we were to find 
unusual solutions to it, they would seem to lie in:


1) Whether hosting on US servers for a global audience makes any 
difference, since we do not serve readers only bound by US law 
(Wikimedia reader numbers bear this out, ie US readership = minority 
percentage of whole) and whether we specifically have anything special 
on the basis of which to mount some kind of strategic litigation on the 
issue of allowing us to exploit the shortest possible route to public 
domain anywhere in the world for all or some of our readers.


2) Whether hosting on US servers but using publicly audited geolocation 
to switch off for readers from IP addresses where the material in 
question is still under copyright is a legally and operationally 
feasible workaround (connected to whether Wikimedia Tech thinks this is 
both doable and worth our while to do)


3) Whether, if all fails and there is no getting around this in any way, 
Commons and Wikisource (if there is sufficient interest in those 
communities) should be interested in looking at a way of allowing 
external links to chapter-managed local sites from the US-served base to 
see the material in question; and if this is something, say, the India 
chapter wants and is willing to do, whether this route poses any legal 
risks.


In any case, I passed around your question to a few friends for comments 
and suggestions - as well as to Geoff Brigham at the Wikimedia 
Foundation, who is not too hopeful for a solution but is very receptive 
to looking into it and getting back to us - and I'll tell you when I 
know something.


Meanwhile, if you have other ways of looking into creative solutions 
around this problem (not at all easy to crack, but the benefits are 
significant) - or if anyone else on this list does - you should.


Cheers,
Achal



On Friday 10 May 2013 10:20 PM, Balasankar Chelamattath wrote:

Hi Srikanth,
I didnt quite understand what you meant by example.
An example for a work which is in public domain in India and not in US 
- Works by Changampuzha Krishnapillai ( 

Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Fwd: Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues

2013-05-12 Thread David Cuenca
Hi Achal,

For those cases there is a Wikisource clone called Wikilivres, whose server
is in Canada and it is operated by a Canadian citizen.
http://wikilivres.ca/

It is not very fast, but it serves as storage for such cases since the
Canadian copyright law is quite permissive in that regard (50 years after
author/translator death).
Then you can link the works from the Wikisource author page to the work
page in Wikilivres as some Wikisources do.

If you have time, take also a look to the proposed improvements for
Wikisource. Thanks!
https://wikisource.org/wiki/Wikisource_vision_development/Applying_the_WS_values

David  ---User:Micru


On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 5:27 AM, Achal Prabhala aprabh...@gmail.com wrote:

 Of relevance here: http://www.publicdomainday.**
 org/sites/www.publicdomainday.**eu/files/World_copyright-**terms.jpghttp://www.publicdomainday.org/sites/www.publicdomainday.eu/files/World_copyright-terms.jpg



  Original Message 
 Subject:Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright
 Issues
 Date:   Sun, 12 May 2013 14:51:27 +0530
 From:   Achal Prabhala aprabh...@gmail.com
 To: Wikimedia India Community list wikimediaindia-l@lists.**
 wikimedia.org wikimediaindi...@lists.wikimedia.org



 Hi Balasankar,

 The question you raise is a very important one. The solution, however, is
 not likely to be to host content in India (I don't speak for the Wikimedia
 Foundation, but there are sound legal reasons why all Wikimedia content is
 hosted in the US; mostly liability risk and freedom of expression and this
 is unlikely to change).

 The default across Commons and Wikisource, the two projects that host the
 bulk of public domain content (images, videos, sounds, books) in Wikimedia,
 is the US copyright term - it's the only yardstick that matters for what
 qualifies as public domain by virtue of being out of copyright. You are
 absolutely right, however, in that there's a big difference btw US
 copyright terms and those of other countries, for instance:

 For photographs, while the binding limit (Berne/TRIPs) is 25 years from
 the making of the work, India is life of photographer + 60 years after
 death, and in the US it is life + 70.

 For literary works, the binding limit (Berne/ TRIPs) is life + 50 years,
 whereas in India it is life + 60, whereas in the US it is life + 70 or
 120/95 if made on work for hire.

 (The binding limit is the WTO mandated term that country members - US and
 India and 150 others - have to follow. As you can see, typically, most
 countries exceed the limit for reasons of their own, which they are allowed
 to do, with the US exceeding in far greater amount than India.)

 In short, there can be a difference of between 10 and 40 years between the
 time a work goes into the public domain in a country with shorter terms
 than the US (any number of countries in the non-Anglo-European world) and
 the US. This seriously affects even 'Indian' works (where India is the
 first country of publication) because of the copyright protection granted
 to such works in the US, thus effectively placing them under copyright for
 our purposes within Wikimedia long after they've gone in to the public
 domain in their source country.

 The case to consider here is Golan: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/**
 Golan_v._Holder http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golan_v._Holder

 A summary of the US Supreme Court decision in this case is - US law trumps
 international agreements, so the US copyright term holds within US
 territory, and restores copyright protection to any works that have gone
 into the public domain by virtue of a shorter copyright term in another
 country. Because Wikimedia servers are based in the US, Golan applies to us.

 But your question is an extremely pertinent one, and if we were to find
 unusual solutions to it, they would seem to lie in:

 1) Whether hosting on US servers for a global audience makes any
 difference, since we do not serve readers only bound by US law (Wikimedia
 reader numbers bear this out, ie US readership = minority percentage of
 whole) and whether we specifically have anything special on the basis of
 which to mount some kind of strategic litigation on the issue of allowing
 us to exploit the shortest possible route to public domain anywhere in the
 world for all or some of our readers.

 2) Whether hosting on US servers but using publicly audited geolocation to
 switch off for readers from IP addresses where the material in question is
 still under copyright is a legally and operationally feasible workaround
 (connected to whether Wikimedia Tech thinks this is both doable and worth
 our while to do)

 3) Whether, if all fails and there is no getting around this in any way,
 Commons and Wikisource (if there is sufficient interest in those
 communities) should be interested in looking at a way of allowing external
 links to chapter-managed local sites from the US-served base to see the
 material in question; and if this is 

Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Fwd: Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues

2013-05-12 Thread Achal Prabhala

Hi David,

On Sunday 12 May 2013 07:33 PM, David Cuenca wrote:

Hi Achal,

For those cases there is a Wikisource clone called Wikilivres, whose server
is in Canada and it is operated by a Canadian citizen.
http://wikilivres.ca/


Thank you - I've seen it, and think it's great.


It is not very fast, but it serves as storage for such cases since the
Canadian copyright law is quite permissive in that regard (50 years after
author/translator death).
Then you can link the works from the Wikisource author page to the work
page in Wikilivres as some Wikisources do.


So while I'm glad there's a relatively central source for such things, I 
guess there'd be no problem hosting such content on Indian servers, say, 
for work that's gone into the public domain on the basis of Indian 
copyright law. My earlier email (and the originating question) was to 
how to mesh Wikimedia Commons and Wikisource with such work - and 
whether we could. Hence the interest in the law and its workarounds.




If you have time, take also a look to the proposed improvements for
Wikisource. Thanks!
https://wikisource.org/wiki/Wikisource_vision_development/Applying_the_WS_values


This looks great, and I was wondering if the last point on the list 
(working with other entities) also includes finding a way to placehold 
works that have gone out of copyright in other countries, and are hosted 
on, say, Wikilivres. That is, for people who consider themselves to be 
working on Wikisource, and are dealing with such works, is there 
anything you can offer them even if they have to host elsewhere?




David  ---User:Micru


On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 5:27 AM, Achal Prabhala aprabh...@gmail.com wrote:


Of relevance here: http://www.publicdomainday.**
org/sites/www.publicdomainday.**eu/files/World_copyright-**terms.jpghttp://www.publicdomainday.org/sites/www.publicdomainday.eu/files/World_copyright-terms.jpg



 Original Message 
Subject:Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright
Issues
Date:   Sun, 12 May 2013 14:51:27 +0530
From:   Achal Prabhala aprabh...@gmail.com
To: Wikimedia India Community list wikimediaindia-l@lists.**
wikimedia.org wikimediaindi...@lists.wikimedia.org



Hi Balasankar,

The question you raise is a very important one. The solution, however, is
not likely to be to host content in India (I don't speak for the Wikimedia
Foundation, but there are sound legal reasons why all Wikimedia content is
hosted in the US; mostly liability risk and freedom of expression and this
is unlikely to change).

The default across Commons and Wikisource, the two projects that host the
bulk of public domain content (images, videos, sounds, books) in Wikimedia,
is the US copyright term - it's the only yardstick that matters for what
qualifies as public domain by virtue of being out of copyright. You are
absolutely right, however, in that there's a big difference btw US
copyright terms and those of other countries, for instance:

For photographs, while the binding limit (Berne/TRIPs) is 25 years from
the making of the work, India is life of photographer + 60 years after
death, and in the US it is life + 70.

For literary works, the binding limit (Berne/ TRIPs) is life + 50 years,
whereas in India it is life + 60, whereas in the US it is life + 70 or
120/95 if made on work for hire.

(The binding limit is the WTO mandated term that country members - US and
India and 150 others - have to follow. As you can see, typically, most
countries exceed the limit for reasons of their own, which they are allowed
to do, with the US exceeding in far greater amount than India.)

In short, there can be a difference of between 10 and 40 years between the
time a work goes into the public domain in a country with shorter terms
than the US (any number of countries in the non-Anglo-European world) and
the US. This seriously affects even 'Indian' works (where India is the
first country of publication) because of the copyright protection granted
to such works in the US, thus effectively placing them under copyright for
our purposes within Wikimedia long after they've gone in to the public
domain in their source country.

The case to consider here is Golan: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/**
Golan_v._Holder http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golan_v._Holder

A summary of the US Supreme Court decision in this case is - US law trumps
international agreements, so the US copyright term holds within US
territory, and restores copyright protection to any works that have gone
into the public domain by virtue of a shorter copyright term in another
country. Because Wikimedia servers are based in the US, Golan applies to us.

But your question is an extremely pertinent one, and if we were to find
unusual solutions to it, they would seem to lie in:

1) Whether hosting on US servers for a global audience makes any
difference, since we do not serve readers only bound by US law (Wikimedia
reader numbers bear this out, ie US readership = minority percentage 

Re: [Wikimedia-l] Single User Login finalisation: some accounts will be renamed

2013-05-12 Thread James Forrester
All,

As an update, I'm afraid to announce that we will have to delay the process
for some time.

As my previous e-mail states, we had intended to start the final renaming
process in the week commencing 27 May. However, given the scale of the
task, it now is clear that this would interfere with the community
elections for the Wikimedia Foundation's Board, FDC and FDC Ombudsperson,
which start on 1 June.

Voters' accounts would get renamed (and then possibly renamed further at
their request), which would mean that the eligible-voter list would be
out-of-date and need a huge amount of manual work by the Election
Committee. As I'm sure you're all aware, the existing duties of the
Committee are already taxing; adding this to their workload at the last
minute would be highly unfair to them, and to the community who will wish
to vote.

Although the finalisation of the Single User Login system is
important, I cannot
let it disrupt the community's voting. Because of this, I have decided to
delay the renaming and the finalisation of SUL. This will not have an
impact on existing features, though it will mean that non-global users may
be unable to use new tools developed between now and finalisations.

Unfortunately, by the time the election is over, I will be focussed
entirely on the wider roll-out of VisualEditor, which will continue for
some time. I therefore intend to re-start the process in August, following
Wikimania. I will let people know the updated schedule closer to the time.

Sorry for the disruption to everyone's plans. If you have any questions,
please do ask.

​J.
-- 
James D. Forrester
Product Manager, VisualEditor
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.

jforres...@wikimedia.org | @jdforrester
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Florence Devouard

On 5/11/13 8:01 PM, Seb35 wrote:

Thanks a lot for this explanation.

On the other side, wikis not only need content producers (here WMF) but
also curators (wikignomes) who are sorting the pages, deleting and
moving pages, typocorrecting, templating things, helping new users in
formatting texts, etc. (I read some of the Florence’s blogposts :) --
and not being admin restricts a lot the possible actions.


Yeah ! :-)

As a side note, Philippe has apparently restored my admin status (I did 
not ask any special favor) upon the reason that I am on the Advisory Board.


But let me put it this way...

I do not buy the argument offered by Sue that But, my understanding is 
also that occasionally volunteers have overridden decisions made by 
staff on the Wikimedia Foundation wiki.


Sorry Sue... but this is a very poor argument. If there is a problem 
with ONE or TWO editors (was there at least two ?) then the way to go is 
to talk with this editor, not to remove all volunteer administrators who 
have been helping nicely for so many years.


In the past, we used to talk about soft security as opposed to hard 
security. Hard security was about passwords, rights, filters, walls, 
blocking, deleting and such. Soft security was about conversations, peer 
reviews, reversions, recent changes, and other collaborative transparent 
processes.
We have been going on for over 10 years primarily relying on soft 
security. And it did not work so badly in the end. Because for one bad 
person, and one confused, there were swarms of good people.
Is not that sad that staff decided that soft security was no more the 
way to go, and that implementing hard security to prevent problems with 
ONE or TWO people was a better way than relying upon dozen of good 
people and spending a little bit of time discussing with the confused ?


The decision made by staff make it appear that volunteers are more an 
inconvenience than a help.


I can not blame a staff member to feel this way if he had to spent some 
time arguing with a volunteer whilst he had a mandate to do something 
specific and the volunteer was preventing it (whether a good or bad 
idea). It can be very annoying ;)


However, I feel that management and board should have a slightly higher 
view on the matter and should realize how much they actually DO NEED the 
volunteers to BE happy and to FEEL useful and appreciated (See the 
recent discussion related to Wikimedia Hong Kong) and to reflect whether 
the long term outcome of the decision to remove admin rights to 
volunteers on the foundation wiki (and blog if I understood well) is a 
good idea or not.



Alternatively, it might be good to really move as much as possible of 
the Wikimedia Foundation Wiki to meta (where at least, the community is 
in charge of who is admin and who is not).




Flo

PS: however, do note that it is a good idea to remove admin flags from 
users who quit the community entirely.



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Affiliations Committee 2012 Annual Report

2013-05-12 Thread Gregory Varnum
Nemo,

I'm not sure what you mean by a single person's POV.  Are you referring to 
Stephen?

While it is true that WMF Legal did the final writing of some guidelines - a 
few points:
1. They are guidelines - and AffCom has flexibility if it so desires and finds 
necessary.
2. They were written based on feedback from non-AffCom folks on talk pages, 
Milan, and elsewhere - as well as based on input from AffCom.
3. Naming guidelines exist for chapters and other entities - this is nothing 
new.
4. A final summarizing guideline or document being written by one person with 
unique skills, such as legal, is also nothing new, unusual, or implies that 
only their views are represented - that's just not true.

- greg aka varnent


On 12 May, 2013, at 2:04 AM, Federico Leva (Nemo) nemow...@gmail.com wrote:

 Bence Damokos, 11/05/2013 15:13:
 Yes, to be fair, since the closing of the report, we had made some
 progress on this issue (e.g. we've had some user group name templates
 pre-approved[1] during a meeting in Milan with Stephen from the legal team
 and had clarified the process and responsibilities for names that don't
 match those templates for example in the case of thorgs). It remains to be
 seen if things do go smoother going forward with these improvements, but
 the goodwill is there on each side.
 
 It's a bit weird that the Affiliations Committee is tasked with ensuring 
 that the name matches a single person's POV from a talk page.
 
 Nemo
 
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Single User Login finalisation: some accounts will be renamed

2013-05-12 Thread James Forrester
On 12 May 2013 10:40, Federico Leva (Nemo) nemow...@gmail.com wrote:

 James Forrester, 12/05/2013 19:20:

  Sorry for the disruption to everyone's plans. If you have any questions,
 please do ask.


 Will you still make the lists and send out the notifications so that
 people can start planning?


Yes.

J.
-- 
James D. Forrester
jdforres...@gmail.com
[[Wikipedia:User:Jdforrester|James F.]] (speaking purely in a personal
capacity)
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] movement blog, not WMF blog, was: Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Florence Devouard

On 5/11/13 10:03 PM, Yaroslav M. Blanter wrote:

On 11.05.2013 21:26, David Gerard wrote:

On 11 May 2013 19:45, rupert THURNER rupert.thur...@gmail.com wrote:


i would have expected a movement blog behind this URL, appropriate
to the usage of the domain, but i am not sure if i am completely
misreading this?



Comcom has been actively seeking more contributions from people other
than Foundation staff. Most chapters have their own blog, but posts
from them for the Wikimedia blog are in practice heartily welcomed.
(Particularly in multiple languages.) There's even posts about
projects other than Wikipedia or Commons ;-) Matthew Roth can probably
clarify (cc'd).


- d.



At this point I am lost. Comcom is made of the representative of
chapters, right? (I just happen to know this because the representatives
of the Russian chapter there have hmm... complicated relations with the
communities of Russian language projects). Is the blog then the business
of WMF and chapters?

Cheers
Yaroslav

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The blog and comcom are actually quite separated.

The blog appears to be primarly Wikimedia Foundation blog, but they love 
invited posts that feeds the stream.


Comcom is made of many different types of people. Staff and volunteers. 
WMF and chapters. Affiliated or non affiliated.


Flo


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Thehelpfulone
On 12 May 2013 18:47, Florence Devouard anthe...@yahoo.com wrote:

 Alternatively, it might be good to really move as much as possible of the
 Wikimedia Foundation Wiki to meta (where at least, the community is in
 charge of who is admin and who is not).


Mostly in charge, there are a few exceptions where adminship has been
granted by WMF staff for their work without going through any formal
community procedures:
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Meta:Administrators#Temporary_adminship_or_adminship_by_decree
.

-- 
Thehelpfulone
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Thehelpfulone
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Florence Devouard

On 5/12/13 8:13 PM, David Gerard wrote:

On 12 May 2013 18:47, Florence Devouard anthe...@yahoo.com wrote:


Alternatively, it might be good to really move as much as possible of the
Wikimedia Foundation Wiki to meta (where at least, the community is in
charge of who is admin and who is not).



This is a good idea anyway.

Having the WMF wiki become a staff-controlled operation is not an
outlandish or terrible idea - it's the official site of the nonprofit
itself, after all. But this was not a good way to do it.

That said, there are projects who do much worse. Here's GNOME's
attempt to win the XFree86 Memorial Award for Community Management for
2013: https://bugzilla.gnome.org/show_bug.cgi?id=698544


- d.


:) Yeah, pretty bad.

The main reason I would consider WMF wiki SHOULD NOT be an entirely 
staff-controlled and operated site is the fact we originally wanted it 
to be at least in part multilingual.


Current staff does not seem to be very interested in that original wish.

Some requests for translation are sometimes made but lot's of outdated 
content is still over there. Sometimes, it does not matter too much. 
Other times, it is quite unfortunate. Check out for example

http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Privacy_policy

Important ? yes
Should be translated ? I would say yes, as much as possible
Should old versions stick there ? I would say vehemently no, should not

Still, many languages still display the old version.
The staff will hide itself behind the fact that only the English 
version matters. Which is why Dutch is still the old version: 
http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Privacybeleid

Is that good ? No, I would say it is not serious.

Who can help clean that up ?
Well... if not the volunteers, then it would have to be the staff job. 
Except I doubt the staff would consider that to be part of its job. If 
only because staff does not speak 300 languages.


What's the best way to motivate volunteers to help with translation and 
update of non-English content ? I am not sure, but probably not in 
removing their admin bit as if they were dangerous people. Right now, I 
would go as far as saying that WMF on the contrary should look out for 
more people to help clean up ;)


How does that happen right now ? Well, volunteers do ask on meta to get 
an account for WMF wiki. Where ? Here: 
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Request_for_an_account_on_the_Foundation_wiki


And guess who is taking care of giving them access ?
A volunteer who has the technical means to create them accounts.
Oh wait... not any more. Ah, hum. Well, I take it a staff member will do 
that in the future :)


---

Alternatively, the staff, with the official support of their management 
and the board can decide that the Foundation wiki should not try any 
more to be translated in other languages and should stick to what it 
actually is: a US-based non profit company.


Translations may be non-official... and on meta.

---

The multilingualism we hoped so dearly has always been an issue. It is 
poorly dealt with on the Wikimedia Foundation blog. Poorly dealt with on 
the Foundation Wiki. Poorly dealt with on OTRS.


:(

Florence


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Florence Devouard

On 5/12/13 8:26 PM, Thehelpfulone wrote:

On 12 May 2013 18:47, Florence Devouard anthe...@yahoo.com wrote:


Alternatively, it might be good to really move as much as possible of the
Wikimedia Foundation Wiki to meta (where at least, the community is in
charge of who is admin and who is not).



Mostly in charge, there are a few exceptions where adminship has been
granted by WMF staff for their work without going through any formal
community procedures:
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Meta:Administrators#Temporary_adminship_or_adminship_by_decree




I do not see that as a really problematic issue. Unfortunate, but not 
really problematic. As long as the appointed admin behave within 
community rules and does good, there is only damage to our pride and 
disrespect to the rules. But ... results over rules. Result is what 
matters. Rules is only a way to get there.


A serious problem would be
* IF the staff was the one deciding who is admin generally
* IF the staff was boldly removing admin access to volunteers



Still, if you want to be a bit pointy, you should probably mention that 
it is unclear why 
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Special:Contributions/Smazeland still 
needs to be an admin


Flo



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Thehelpfulone
On 12 May 2013 19:44, Florence Devouard anthe...@yahoo.com wrote:

 :) Yeah, pretty bad.

 The main reason I would consider WMF wiki SHOULD NOT be an entirely
 staff-controlled and operated site is the fact we originally wanted it to
 be at least in part multilingual.

 Current staff does not seem to be very interested in that original wish.

 Some requests for translation are sometimes made but lot's of outdated
 content is still over there. Sometimes, it does not matter too much. Other
 times, it is quite unfortunate. Check out for example
 http://wikimediafoundation.**org/wiki/Privacy_policyhttp://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Privacy_policy

 Important ? yes
 Should be translated ? I would say yes, as much as possible
 Should old versions stick there ? I would say vehemently no, should not

 Still, many languages still display the old version.
 The staff will hide itself behind the fact that only the English version
 matters. Which is why Dutch is still the old version:
 http://wikimediafoundation.**org/wiki/Privacybeleidhttp://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Privacybeleid
 Is that good ? No, I would say it is not serious.

 Who can help clean that up ?
 Well... if not the volunteers, then it would have to be the staff job.
 Except I doubt the staff would consider that to be part of its job. If only
 because staff does not speak 300 languages.

 What's the best way to motivate volunteers to help with translation and
 update of non-English content ? I am not sure, but probably not in removing
 their admin bit as if they were dangerous people. Right now, I would go as
 far as saying that WMF on the contrary should look out for more people to
 help clean up ;)

 How does that happen right now ? Well, volunteers do ask on meta to get an
 account for WMF wiki. Where ? Here: http://meta.wikimedia.org/**
 wiki/Request_for_an_account_**on_the_Foundation_wikihttp://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Request_for_an_account_on_the_Foundation_wiki

 And guess who is taking care of giving them access ?
 A volunteer who has the technical means to create them accounts.
 Oh wait... not any more. Ah, hum. Well, I take it a staff member will do
 that in the future :)

 ---

 Alternatively, the staff, with the official support of their management
 and the board can decide that the Foundation wiki should not try any more
 to be translated in other languages and should stick to what it actually
 is: a US-based non profit company.

 Translations may be non-official... and on meta.

 ---

 The multilingualism we hoped so dearly has always been an issue. It is
 poorly dealt with on the Wikimedia Foundation blog. Poorly dealt with on
 the Foundation Wiki. Poorly dealt with on OTRS.

 :(


For what it's worth, I did try to get some re-translation organised in
early February: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Translation_requests/WMF and
asked communications staff at the WMF for their input. To be fair to them
they did say that they'd look into it and get back to me but I think they
might have been swamped with other things so it was forgotten.
-- 
Thehelpfulone
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Thehelpfulone
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Federico Leva (Nemo)

Thehelpfulone, 12/05/2013 20:58:

For what it's worth, I did try to get some re-translation organised in
early February: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Translation_requests/WMF and
asked communications staff at the WMF for their input. To be fair to them
they did say that they'd look into it and get back to me but I think they
might have been swamped with other things so it was forgotten.


I don't think staff has ever touched translation on WMF wiki, it's 
always been done by the almighty heroes Cbrown1023, Aphaia, Az1568 with 
their gazillion edits and a few others. It's unfair to think they'd have 
something to say.
Meta has the Translate extension, the translators and the community. At 
this point it's clear that foundationwiki is going to rot, we should 
just set up all the policies and important documents on Meta for 
translation and start the work again; we've been stuck for too many 
years now. Eventually, the links will go where the value is and nobody 
will care about the wasteland at foundationwiki.


Nemo

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Yaroslav M. Blanter

On 12.05.2013 20:44, Florence Devouard wrote:


The multilingualism we hoped so dearly has always been an issue. It
is poorly dealt with on the Wikimedia Foundation blog. Poorly dealt
with on the Foundation Wiki. Poorly dealt with on OTRS.

:(

Florence



If someone approaches me and asks to write a blog post about the 
Russian Wikivoyage (where I happen to be an admin) I could do it in two 
or three languages. (I certainly can survive if nobody does).


On the other hand if I only write it in Russian - would it be such a 
good idea? From what I know, the number of Russian Wikimedians who read 
the blog on a regular basis is measured by a single digit.


Cheers
Yaroslav

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Florence Devouard

On 5/12/13 9:28 PM, Yaroslav M. Blanter wrote:

On 12.05.2013 20:44, Florence Devouard wrote:


The multilingualism we hoped so dearly has always been an issue. It
is poorly dealt with on the Wikimedia Foundation blog. Poorly dealt
with on the Foundation Wiki. Poorly dealt with on OTRS.

:(

Florence



If someone approaches me and asks to write a blog post about the Russian
Wikivoyage (where I happen to be an admin) I could do it in two or three
languages. (I certainly can survive if nobody does).

On the other hand if I only write it in Russian - would it be such a
good idea? From what I know, the number of Russian Wikimedians who read
the blog on a regular basis is measured by a single digit.

Cheers
Yaroslav


Fortunately, we know that numbers is not always what matters ;)

Flo



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Fwd: Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues (David Cuenca)

2013-05-12 Thread Geoff Brigham
As Achal pointed out, we will put resources into researching this issue in
depth and hopefully finding a solution that may work.  It will probably
take a month or two to ensure we are looking at all possibilities to see if
this is possible.  If you have any great ideas, please feel free to send
them to me, and I will ensure our team will consider them fully.

This will be an interesting project, and I greatly appreciate everyone's
interest in finding a lawful solution that ensures the distribution of all
materials in the public domain.

Geoff
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Philippe Beaudette
That is correct. Because despite your attempts to turn me into the
decision making authority here, I wasn't. You don't need to talk to
the worker bee who executed, you want to talk to the person who made
the decision. That's not me. And she is traveling.

And also, you know, I'm working brutal hours right now and yeah, I
wanted to try to not be posting this weekend. I had to deal with my
mistake in not removing Phoebes rights at the same time and I had to
deal with an elections thing. But was I anxious to come wading into a
situation where - despite you clearly being told that I wasn't a
decision maker - you continue to (for whatever reason) advance the
asinine position that someone must be pulling gayles strings and
therefore it must be me because I am evil?  No, you know, MZ, I didn't
come skipping gleefully to that conversation.

Let me be clear: I respect the work that you do. But I have zero time
for your distortions of the situation when you've been told that it
wasn't my decision.

You want an explanation?  I'm sure that Gayle will offer one. But for
the umpteenth time, I was the person pushing the button because
someone had to be. So lets leave my motivations out of this okay?  I'm
spending hundreds of hours per month fighting to support the volunteer
community here and your assignations to the contrary are insulting.

PB

—
Philippe Beaudette
Director, Community Advocacy
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc



On May 12, 2013, at 10:06 AM, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:

 Philippe has had time to go back and remove Phoebe's user rights and
 Philippe has had time to post to this mailing list about the upcoming
 Wikimedia elections, but he has chosen not to participate in this thread
 at all about his actions.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread MZMcBride
Philippe Beaudette wrote:
You want an explanation?  I'm sure that Gayle will offer one. But for
the umpteenth time, I was the person pushing the button because
someone had to be.

Why did you feel compelled to act here when it wasn't your decision? Was
there something preventing Gayle from doing this herself?

It's pretty strange to involve yourself in this decision (that wasn't
yours) and then turn around and say well why are you pointing at me?!
You were raised in a wiki culture, just as I was, where an individual is
responsible for the actions of his or her account. You obviously felt an
obligation to act here. What remains unclear is why.

MZMcBride



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Federico Leva (Nemo)

MZMcBride, 12/05/2013 22:45:

Why did you feel compelled to act here when it wasn't your decision? Was
there something preventing Gayle from doing this herself?


Be honest, if Gayle had done this herself you would have said that maybe 
she hadn't read the documentation on Special:UserRights carefully and it 
was a mistake. :)




It's pretty strange to involve yourself in this decision (that wasn't
yours) and then turn around and say well why are you pointing at me?!
You were raised in a wiki culture, just as I was, where an individual is
responsible for the actions of his or her account. You obviously felt an
obligation to act here. What remains unclear is why.


To me it's very clear, nobody wanted to take responsibility or blame for 
the decision(*) so they let someone who's going out of town take the 
blame, someone in another department press the button, and the top 
management cover everything with flimsy rhetoric. Next time they could 
do better, the act could be executed before a longer holiday or be 
spread across more departments (a third person to send the notification 
emails, or a deflag squad of 14 staffers as with fusillading). But no 
worries, the WMF is still a young org and is learning.


Nemo

(*) Which may have been discussed for several weeks, as Nathan pointed out.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Florence Devouard

On 5/12/13 10:45 PM, MZMcBride wrote:

Philippe Beaudette wrote:

You want an explanation?  I'm sure that Gayle will offer one. But for
the umpteenth time, I was the person pushing the button because
someone had to be.


Why did you feel compelled to act here when it wasn't your decision? Was
there something preventing Gayle from doing this herself?

It's pretty strange to involve yourself in this decision (that wasn't
yours) and then turn around and say well why are you pointing at me?!
You were raised in a wiki culture, just as I was, where an individual is
responsible for the actions of his or her account. You obviously felt an
obligation to act here. What remains unclear is why.

MZMcBride


Why = contractual agreement with his employer. He may have been raised 
in the wiki culture, he has obligations as staff.


Give Philippe a break MZMcBride. You are obviously unhappy and there are 
reasons for that; But giving Philippe the bad ride is not the way to go. 
Take a break, drink a tea, grab chocolate, watch a movie, have a walk. 
Anything. It is Sunday anyway.


Flo




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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Craig Franklin
Thanks for clarifying this Phillippe.

I must say that I think this discussion is becoming unpleasantly personal
(and my initial email on the topic probably didn't help there, I concede).
 How about we stop pointing fingers at each other and conduct an honest and
transparent appraisal of what has happened with a view to learning lessons
from it so that it doesn't happen again.  I also have to point out that
while it's not ideal at all that this happened late on a Friday afternoon
when everyone was leaving the office, nor is it reasonable to expect paid
staff to snap to and respond on the weekends during their personal time.
 The damage has been done now, and it's not so urgent an issue that it
can't wait until Monday for a response.

Cheers,
Craig


On 13 May 2013 06:23, Philippe Beaudette pbeaude...@wikimedia.org wrote:

 That is correct. Because despite your attempts to turn me into the
 decision making authority here, I wasn't. You don't need to talk to
 the worker bee who executed, you want to talk to the person who made
 the decision. That's not me. And she is traveling.

 And also, you know, I'm working brutal hours right now and yeah, I
 wanted to try to not be posting this weekend. I had to deal with my
 mistake in not removing Phoebes rights at the same time and I had to
 deal with an elections thing. But was I anxious to come wading into a
 situation where - despite you clearly being told that I wasn't a
 decision maker - you continue to (for whatever reason) advance the
 asinine position that someone must be pulling gayles strings and
 therefore it must be me because I am evil?  No, you know, MZ, I didn't
 come skipping gleefully to that conversation.

 Let me be clear: I respect the work that you do. But I have zero time
 for your distortions of the situation when you've been told that it
 wasn't my decision.

 You want an explanation?  I'm sure that Gayle will offer one. But for
 the umpteenth time, I was the person pushing the button because
 someone had to be. So lets leave my motivations out of this okay?  I'm
 spending hundreds of hours per month fighting to support the volunteer
 community here and your assignations to the contrary are insulting.

 PB

 —
 Philippe Beaudette
 Director, Community Advocacy
 Wikimedia Foundation, Inc



 On May 12, 2013, at 10:06 AM, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:

  Philippe has had time to go back and remove Phoebe's user rights and
  Philippe has had time to post to this mailing list about the upcoming
  Wikimedia elections, but he has chosen not to participate in this thread
  at all about his actions.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Marc A. Pelletier
On 05/12/2013 04:42 PM, Federico Leva (Nemo) wrote:
 The most he could ask from you is a comment on how frequently you have
 to be the one pushing the button against the community.

Again with this meme!

Against the community.

*NOBODY* works against the community.  Sometimes, we do things that
displease part, or most of the community.  Sometimes, there are
mistakes, flubbed judgment calls, and boneheaded gaffes.  By accident,
confusion or miscommunication, the community might have been harmed.
Occasionally, even, someone acts like a human and does something in
anger or stupidity that was clearly wrong in retrospect.

But Against the community means seeing the community as an adversary,
and acting to undermine or harm it.  The very *attitude* necessary to
say this is what causes those problems, trying to paint Us vs. Them on
what should be collaboration.

If you think Philippe - or through him Gayle - did what they did
against the community, then you have already have abandoned any
pretense of good faith towards the foundation and towards them
personally.  Unless you can back your assertions of malice, please take
them elsewhere.

/rant

-- Marc


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Tim Starling
On 12/05/13 02:48, Sue Gardner wrote:
 The staff working on the
 Wikimedia Foundation wiki have jobs they've got to get done, in support of
 the entire movement. If they spend days or weeks needing to persuade a
 single community member of the merits of something they want to do on the
 Foundation wiki, or if they need to modify their plans extensively to
 accommodate the opinions of a single community member, that reduces the
 amount of time available for them to do the rest of their work. Which, I
 repeat, is in the service of the movement overall.

So it was a response to a particular conflict?

 My understanding is that the Wikimedia Foundation staff who work on
 the Foundation wiki have been grateful (and are grateful) for the help
 they've gotten from community members in maintaining the Foundation wiki,
 and that we hope they'll continue to help us.

Let's hope so. But in my experience, stripping titles such as
administrator from volunteers is an excellent way to get them to
leave. It's not really about the technical privileges, these titles
are a recognition of good work done, and a symbol of trust, and are
one of the few rewards we give to volunteers. Stripping privileges
from a volunteer is upsetting, and undermines their core motivation
for contributing.

So I can appreciate that the conflict needed to be resolved, but I
have to wonder whether this was the best way to go about it.

-- Tim Starling


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Fwd: Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues

2013-05-12 Thread David Cuenca
On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 10:57 AM, Achal Prabhala aprabh...@gmail.comwrote:

 This looks great, and I was wondering if the last point on the list
 (working with other entities) also includes finding a way to placehold
 works that have gone out of copyright in other countries, and are hosted
 on, say, Wikilivres. That is, for people who consider themselves to be
 working on Wikisource, and are dealing with such works, is there anything
 you can offer them even if they have to host elsewhere?


 It might be possible, but it won't be easy, because not only the scans
have to be in an external server, also the transcribed text.
For that reason I think it is easier just to link to Wikilivres for the
needed works.
In any case if you find a different way to make it work, please let me know.

Cheers,
David
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Gayle Karen Young
Hello folks,

So... I caught bits of this while I was on layover between plane flights,
so I've had time to have the multiple reactions that one has (nothing like
an 11-hour flight to think about a situation). I've had time to feel
defensive, insulted, opened, humbled, curious, thoughtful, regretful,
optimistic...

This is an earnest “I'm sorry, I'll do better” and I don't perfectly know
what that looks like yet, because I (and I suspect like you) go from day to
day within in a complex life trying to do the best I can. I'll respond more
later, as I've got some scheduled time a way and like all human beings I
need it, but will circle back when I return to work next Monday.

I was thinking that I would be a very different person if I never made
mistakes. :) In fact, contemplation of that is rather funny if any of you
know me or the circumstances of my life. I could have done the process
differently.

I DO sometimes forget we're all on the same side. That's a darned shame. I
do it sometimes because part of my job is to deal with how beleaguered some
members (not all – I'm trying to find my way back to nuance and ask you to
too) because sometimes they ask me for help, because I deal every day with
burnout and chaos and challenging interpersonal dynamics, and I see some of
the downright abusive messages that no person (staff or admin or user or
each and any one of you reading this) should be subject to while pursuing
work they love. (I also get to see some of the grateful messages, the way
we support one another, not just tear people down. That part is /awesome/.)

I find our staff and volunteers that I've worked with remarkable - people
who I'm ridiculously grateful to work with and for.  And I have no doubt
that some of you have experienced staff (myself included) in ways I'm blind
to, and I think there's room for all of us to get better. But I wish people
could see how, even though it's our job, it can be sometimes just
exhausting to try to please so many different voices. Some of you may think
that the Foundation doesn't think about the community – and I think we
sometimes listen so much that it's a little crazy because, as has been
explained to us, the community is not one voice, not one thing, not one
person. It's a vast, beautiful, sometimes conflicted, sometimes coordinated
people working on this enormous shared endeavor. So it's not that community
is not worth listening to, but how and where and to what pieces, and how do
we get better at it and how do we amplify the constructive voices and not
let deconstructive voices (both within the Foundation and without) tear us
down because this work is hard. All our work is hard. I do appreciate the
volunteers who have stepped and kept things going when I was personally at
capacity.

When I read that I need to remember just who pays my salary, I think a
whole bunch of things (and have the various reactions I have, where both
assume good faith that someone means that and I also look at the
possibility that it was meant to be insulting and provoking). And at the
end of the day, millions of people do and hundreds of thousands of editors
help make that happen. I don't forget that. I do think that I am called to
this role because on my best days, it uses me well – it uses my skills and
knowledge and abilities in ways that I hope are good for the world. I am
not anyone's servant (except perhaps for this cause), and I am deeply
listening.

So sometimes I forget we're on the same side, and thank you for reminding
me. Thank you for the temperate voices, the ones who present a point of
view I hadn't considered. As you can likely imagine, I hear more that way.
Most people do.

Someone mentioned that it's easier to lay good ground than to fix something
in retrospect, and that most certainly is very, very true. :) (I really
dislike that other people had to answer for me while I was out of
commission - and my own fault for doing something on my to-do list the
Friday before leaving town. Totally get that.)

So...listening, thinking... also tired, but optimistic, and I hope and want
to keep doing better. This definitely feels like a bit of trial by fire.

Warmest regards,

Gayle



-- 
Gayle Karen K. Young
Chief Talent and Culture Officer
Wikimedia Foundation
415.310.8416
www.wikimediafoundation.org
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Alex Zariv
On Sat, May 11, 2013 at 3:44 PM, Casey Brown li...@caseybrown.org wrote:

 On Sat, May 11, 2013 at 7:15 AM, K. Peachey p858sn...@gmail.com wrote:
  This is the email that got sent out to everyone,

 For what it's worth, this didn't get sent out to everyone. I was a
 bureaucrat and administrator, and have the most edits on that wiki
 (afaik?), and wasn't notified. Like Huib, I was also in the batch of
 blog moderator removals and wasn't notified about that either.

 I'm not very active anymore, so it's not really a huge deal, but it's
 still bad form to have not gotten any kind of notification at all.


I'm going to have to agree with Casey on this. I
also received absolutely zero notification or warning as a longtime
bureaucrat and administrator that my rights were to be removed on WMF wiki
or the foundation's blog.

We should have been reached out to directly and have been informed of this
decision. Even if there was little about it that we could change.

Alex
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[Wikimedia-l] Moving forward: a proposal (Re: Community/WMF)

2013-05-12 Thread FT2
I've started a new thread to step back from the long thread, and look
forward towards something that I think we need - or might want - to do.

This is not at all the first time of clumsy handling, or conflicting
actions and perceptions, leading to tensions and drama between the editing
community and foundation. There are some common themes.

As noted by Sue and others, WMF and the community may have different
low-level priorities and motivators. They have a different structure and
legal context. There are different scales and kinds of consequences
possible. Even when contemplating the same issue, the processes and input
of both may be equally valid but diverge a lot. Last, even when a WMF
matter is valid or chosen diligently, the communication aspects of
transparency, consultation, and mutual respect can be missing, and it may
be perceived as very or grossly inappropriate or a breach of unspoken
etiquette.

*This has added heat and fuel to many incidents over many years. Not just
one or a few matters. It benefits nobody that we give no guidance to reduce
or (if able) avoid these confrontations in future, and no one part of the
wider Community can draft such guidance in isolation.  *I think it's time
we addressed it head on.

I would like to call on WMF and the Community (in its broadest sense) to
set out terms, and organize, a formal consultation, to answer these
questions:


   1. *What expectations and needs do the Volunteer Community, Chapters,
   and WMF, have of each other?*

   2. *What guidance and guidelines can we agree upon*, that can be given
   to new staff at WMF/Chapters, or referenced by anyone in the Movement, to
   understand how to recognize and deal with situations that may impinge on
   other parts of the Movement?

   3. *In particular, what best practices or necessities can be outlined
   for someone* wishing to broach, consult, and progress an proposal or
   action that may be seen as unexpected by a subset of the Movement, and,
   if there must for operational/legal purposes be a done deal, how do we
   collectively concur these (hopefully uncommon) cases should be approved,
   handled, and discussed/communicated?


I would like the outcome to be a *living document*, like any other major
policy, that can be used to *understand how to reduce friction*, and *best
practices and understandings of viewpoints, within different parts of our
Movement*, and thereby ensuring everyone involved is more aware of these
aspects and of best practices in working with other areas and subgroups
in our Community.

I'd note that policies often contain nuances and don't always imply a
single fixed answer exists. Their aim is to reduce the areas of discord,
even if it can't be eliminated, by outlining what is mandatory, or
preferred, or good practice, or unacceptable, or may be important to know.
I see the result as being a policy of that kind.

I'd note also that although mainly considering WMF and the volunteer
community, it's worth addressing broadly, because other movement
subgroups can also have internal decisions capable of this kind of
problem. For example, and in principle, OTRS administrators might one day
make a unilateral decision to limit or alter some aspect of how OTRS and
its team operates, a chapter might make a clumsy or ill-conceived choice
affecting WMF or editorial aspects in a given country, or a
computer/data/system administrator may make a decision about computer
matters, as well. There may be useful guidance applicable to others in the
movement.


FT2
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Tomasz W. Kozlowski

Gayle Karen Young wrote:


Hello folks,


[...]


Gayle


So what did you want to say? I haven't been able to find any answers to 
any questions that have been asked by so many people in this thread.


-- Tomasz

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Moving forward: a proposal (Re: Community/WMF)

2013-05-12 Thread FT2
Afterthought x 3:

   - WMF and its staff should probably have an explicit understanding that
   they often need to bend for community approaches and collaboration, and
   expectations (rather than the other way round).

   *Rationale: -* WMF needs to ensure that staff know good ways to work
   with the community.  It's not symmetrical:  a legal body can have
   meetings and executive decisions, and everyone understands how they work
   and their meaning. But the community doesn't have that kind of process and
   resists being shoehorned if its own (inchoate) ways are not respected.
   Community expectations probably include transparency, deliberation, and
   expectation management, ie no (unpleasant+sudden) surprises. Most people
   know this but somehow it failed here.  That was avoidable. Community
   expectations are nowhere summarized, nor how to meet them, nor what we *
   collectively* feel should happen when faced with a WMF decision that
   someone feels must be done. If it can be perceived as lapsed or breached
   this easily *despite* staff awareness, then we need to set it out, not
   assume it, for all our good.

   - The community needs to appreciate that WMF sometimes has to make these
   decisions. A mature appreciation of WMF role and position would include
   agreement if possible that the need can arise, which kinds of issues might
   appropriately need a unilateral decision, and how it should take place. We
   should agree some kind of reliable guidance however short to say what WMF
   staff can do or might be expected to have tried doing, and what's needed in
   communication or action to minimize any discord.

   - Last, even if there had been transparency and consultation in the
   recent matter, there is still a sense by some volunteers that the done
   deal element was in its own right, inappropriate or inept. So transparency
   and consultation alone may not be all that's needed. What else is needed
   probably ought to be worked out on Meta so it isn't just limited to list
   subscribers.


FT2
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Theo10011
On Mon, May 13, 2013 at 5:34 AM, Tomasz W. Kozlowski tom...@twkozlowski.net
 wrote:


 So what did you want to say? I haven't been able to find any answers to
 any questions that have been asked by so many people in this thread.


Try and be a bit nicer please. Gayle is still relatively new and this level
of scrutiny might be jarring for someone. I'm not sure what the expectation
was here, it wasn't going to be a grand plan or a hidden explanation for
this action. Sue and Erik gave their versions, so as far as explanations
go, if Philippe said he was the button pusher, Gayle could have argued she
was merely the one who authorized the button pushing. I kind of like that
she didn't take that route.

I don't think there's anywhere else to go from here. I suppose now it comes
down to futile arguments over levels of culpability. At the most, there was
malicious intent against Mz, where his removal alone was the eventual goal,
and a policy had to be erected or modified to facilitate that. The rest
might have been an amalgamation of inactive users and bystanders who got
caught on either side of it. It's sad if it had to come down to that.
Admins like THO and Mz, are godsend.

At the very least, this was handled poorly. I don't think anyone including
the executives would disagree with that one. Perhaps a courtesy note - a
thank you, a warning, some time in between - would have made the world of a
difference. Maybe the problem itself instead of the person could have been
isolated, and talked out. I still have a sneaking suspicion that Gayle
didn't realize what she was getting into.

I also think that people reading this are missing a lot of the context and
history here. Before the removal of his rights, Mz made ~2000 edits on that
wiki this year. A lot of them are tedious edits which no one really does
from the foundation's side. I think he's been working on his Manana list
since 2009[1] for that wiki.

For those that might not know him, even a cursory look at Mz's meta or
en.wp talk page would reveal that his time is valued as it is in other
places. It's filled with people asking for help with bots, db queries,
Mediawiki, small hacks and what not, he can certainly do a heck of a lot
more than an average technically-inept editor like me can. Mz also has his
own charm, and for the people who know him, love him for it. A few staff
members though, do seem immune to that exposure and do tend to lock horns
occasionally.

The two years that I have known Philippe and Mz (and strangely both were
among the first people I interacted with), they have had more than a few
contentious moments. Philippe might have a tendency to be a bit more prone
to control (IMO). I have also seen him discuss issues about staff rights,
and who has access where for a long while. It wouldn't be surprising to
learn that this removal, and policy change was in the offing. Perhaps, the
issue got exacerbated with Zack and Erik's concerns (something about HTML
insertions?) about the fundraising infrastructure residing on WMF wiki, who
knows.

Regards
Theo

[1]http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Wikimedia:Ma%C3%B1ana
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Russavia
On Mon, May 13, 2013 at 7:58 AM, Gayle Karen Young gyo...@wikimedia.org wrote:
 This definitely feels like a bit of trial by fire.

True dat. Now that you have received your initiation, there's nothing
left to say but WELCOME TO WIKIPEDIA :)

Cheers,

Russavia

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Philippe Beaudette
So, I took Florence's excellent advice and went for a walk (beautiful day
in SF, by the way - absolutely perfect).

And I reflected on what I've seen since flipping the switch on things
last Friday.  Here's where I stand, and I haven't discussed this with
anyone else at WMF, including Gayle.

At the expense of sounding trite, I think I can safely say Mistakes were
made.  Gayle was trying to solve a real problem, and she got a lot of
advice on how to do that.  But the principle role of a staff member in a
role such as mine is to advise, I think, and I'm afraid that I didn't
offer good advice in this case.  I don't think I gave bad advice - rather,
I didn't give as good of advice as I could have.  What our leadership
should be able to expect from staff is that we look at things from a
different perspective, and I think I failed to get as far out of my own
head and into other peoples' to offer that varying perspective.  So when I
say that mistakes were made, I include my role in that, through commission
or omission, and I sincerely apologize for that.

With that said: I'm afraid we're headed toward a precipice.  What I'm
seeing scares me.  I see less and less good faith being offered toward the
WMF.  One of the arguments that doesn't work for me is seven years ago the
WMF didn't make these mistakes - because seven years ago the WMF was
paralyzed from lack of strategy and direction.  All of that has changed and
the WMF is out and aggressively trying things to arrest the editor decline
and improve the user experience.  And yet, when our talented engineers try
a data-driven tactic for something that needs to change, they're lambasted
for forgetting the existing community.  And yet everyone here knows that if
we don't change some things, things will get very very ugly, very very
quickly.

One of the things that must continue to change is the tone on the wikis,
and the tone (in IRC and by email) between staff and volunteers.  I know
that volunteers are individual and - in addition to several frankly abusive
emails I've received this weekend, I've also received absolutely wonderful
support from volunteers who reached out to make me smile, laugh, or just
remind me why I love this community.  But the abusive ones absolutely
*must*stop.  I have never once, in my entire time at WMF, sent an
email that
approaches the level of things that I see WMF staff subjected to routinely,
and I have to counsel over and over that it's okay, they don't speak for
the community, but I see the community tacitly support that behavior (or
fail to condemn it), and it's hard to say with a straight face that the
people sending abusive mail or making abusive statements in IRC don't speak
for the community.

So my challenge and my promise:  I promise to reflect on the experiences of
this weekend and figure out how I could have offered Gayle better advice,
given the circumstances, and given the fact that there are some things that
are not public about the decision, and unfortunately they can't be.  My
challenge to the community:  think about the tone of what you see happening
around you.  And if you wouldn't want to see your grandmother asked a
question like that, and if it would make you feel defensive to see her
questioned in that tone, then step in and make it clear that the tone is
unacceptable.  Staff members are people too.  How about finding one that
has done something you appreciate (come on, there must be ONE) and tell
them so?  You'd be shocked how much gratitude they'll feel, because you may
be the first community member EVER to tell them that.

Best,
pb



___
Philippe Beaudette
Director, Community Advocacy
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.

415-839-6885, x 6643

phili...@wikimedia.org


On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 5:46 PM, Russavia russavia.wikipe...@gmail.comwrote:

 On Mon, May 13, 2013 at 7:58 AM, Gayle Karen Young gyo...@wikimedia.org
 wrote:
  This definitely feels like a bit of trial by fire.

 True dat. Now that you have received your initiation, there's nothing
 left to say but WELCOME TO WIKIPEDIA :)

 Cheers,

 Russavia

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] UK.Gov passes Instagram Act

2013-05-12 Thread Nikolas Becker
Hi everyone!

I am sorry for replying to this week-old thread, but I just read it and
wanted to take the chance adding a short hint:

There is a (relatively new) Wikimedia working group on EU policy [1] with
an explicit task force for the orphan works issue:

http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/EU_policy/Orphan_Works

It seems like some of you are interested in this topic, so maybe you would
like to join them.
The working group also set up a letterbox where you can drop any
news/link/whatever that you consider relevant:
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/EU_policy/Letterbox

Best
Nikolas

[1] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/EU_policy




2013/5/7 Tom Morris t...@tommorris.org

 There's also this:

 http://www.create.ac.uk/blog/2013/05/06/orphans-much-ado-about-what/

 --
 Tom Morris
 http://tommorris.org/


 On Saturday, 4 May 2013 at 16:32, Luis Villa wrote:

  On Thu, May 2, 2013 at 1:03 AM, Tomasz Ganicz polime...@gmail.com(mailto:
 polime...@gmail.com) wrote:
  
   2013/5/2 David Gerard dger...@gmail.com (mailto:dger...@gmail.com):
On 2 May 2013 04:06, shi zhao shiz...@gmail.com (mailto:
 shiz...@gmail.com) wrote:
   
 see http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/04/29/err_act_landgrab/
   
   
As usual, Orlowski is trolling for clicks. Here's the actual text:
   
   
 http://niaccurshi.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/orphan-works-enterprise-and-regulatory.html
  
   And The Economist POV:
  
   http://www.economist.com/blogs/babbage/2013/05/orphan-works
 
  Another, more considered, piece, from Andres Guadamuz:
 
 
 http://www.technollama.co.uk/has-the-uk-abolished-copyright-analysis-of-new-orphan-work-legislation
 
 
  --
  Luis Villa
  Deputy General Counsel
  Wikimedia Foundation
  415.839.6885 ext. 6810
 
  NOTICE: This message may be confidential or legally privileged. If you
  have received it by accident, please delete it and let us know about
  the mistake. As an attorney for the Wikimedia Foundation, for
  legal/ethical reasons I cannot give legal advice to, or serve as a
  lawyer for, community members, volunteers, or staff members in their
  personal capacity.
 
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-- 
Nikolas Becker

Supervisory Board
Wikimedia Deutschland

Tel.: +49 (0)151 122 500 63

-
Wikimedia Deutschland e. V.
Obentrautstr. 72
10963 Berlin

Tel.: +49 (0)30-219 158 26-0
www.wikimedia.de
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Fwd: Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues (David Cuenca)

2013-05-12 Thread Theo10011
On Mon, May 13, 2013 at 1:46 AM, Geoff Brigham gbrig...@wikimedia.orgwrote:

 As Achal pointed out, we will put resources into researching this issue in
 depth and hopefully finding a solution that may work.  It will probably
 take a month or two to ensure we are looking at all possibilities to see if
 this is possible.  If you have any great ideas, please feel free to send
 them to me, and I will ensure our team will consider them fully.

 This will be an interesting project, and I greatly appreciate everyone's
 interest in finding a lawful solution that ensures the distribution of all
 materials in the public domain.


Well, this was interesting to note. In stark contrast to the other thread,
this email was disappointing for the wrong reasons, maybe it's for me
alone. It took about 70 emails and 3 threads, and 2 days of waiting to get
a reply from the concerned staff members, but I believe Achal forwarded
this to Wikimedia-l less than 12 hours before you responded on a Sunday and
agreed to devote a month's resources to it. I don't think more than 2-3
people responded to the issue either on this list or the Indian one. I
guess that's the sole difference of the position he occupies, speaking of
which, the advisory board appointments seem indefinite, and the list
doesn't seem to have been updated - for the past 2 years I have only seen
Achal identify himself as that. As far as I know Mr. Prabhala has not even
logged in to an existing wikisource project, or uploaded anything on
commons beyond anything relevant to the last grant.

I ask because this issue was brought up a couple of years ago on the same
list[1] and received a lot more attention locally than this time.
Completely regardless of the issue itself, I know of several individuals,
and committees waiting for answers from the legal department, and actually
expect to wait weeks. I barely see you respond directly on a list these
days, and you are agreeing to devote a month's resources at his behest
alone so quickly.

Glad to be reminded how somethings change and somethings stay the same. And
speaking for me alone, it's disappointing to note the difference in tone
above vs. the one being employed on the other thread.

-Theo

[1]
http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimediaindia-l/2011-August/004080.html
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Everton Zanella Alvarenga
Hi Philippe,

your message just reminds me a recent message I sent here and a
general feeling about sometimes the wiki community only stressing the
negative aspects and mistakes we all do (contractors, staff,
volunteers etc.)

* Highlight the positive aspects and multicultural comparisons
http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2013-April/125361.html

I must tell it can also be difficult for the community to realise the
amount of work done by WMF professionals (and it is really difficult
to share this), summed up with this environment of distrust makes the
situation be like we are seeing here in this most recent wikidrama,
that can be solved with some patience and, as you are doing here,
messages after a little walk away from the computer no thursty to be
the last voice. :)

It is curious this agressive nature of the momevement seems also to
happen in soem other local communities - at least is what I see at the
Portuguese Wikipedia and some volunteers more involved with offline
activities (no visual editor or similar initiatives will solve that
;).

My best wishes for this particular case and I hope you and other
colleagues will be treated with respect. I know how hard it is after
working hard and beeing kicked in the ass all the time, sometimes by
the very same people, who work hard as volunteers, but put themselves
as gods because of that. (and hey, it is even harder when you also
worked for years as a volunteer)

Tom

On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 10:03 PM, Philippe Beaudette
phili...@wikimedia.org wrote:

 So, I took Florence's excellent advice and went for a walk (beautiful day
 in SF, by the way - absolutely perfect).

 And I reflected on what I've seen since flipping the switch on things
 last Friday.  Here's where I stand, and I haven't discussed this with
 anyone else at WMF, including Gayle.

 At the expense of sounding trite, I think I can safely say Mistakes were
 made.  Gayle was trying to solve a real problem, and she got a lot of
 advice on how to do that.  But the principle role of a staff member in a
 role such as mine is to advise, I think, and I'm afraid that I didn't
 offer good advice in this case.  I don't think I gave bad advice - rather,
 I didn't give as good of advice as I could have.  What our leadership
 should be able to expect from staff is that we look at things from a
 different perspective, and I think I failed to get as far out of my own
 head and into other peoples' to offer that varying perspective.  So when I
 say that mistakes were made, I include my role in that, through commission
 or omission, and I sincerely apologize for that.

 With that said: I'm afraid we're headed toward a precipice.  What I'm
 seeing scares me.  I see less and less good faith being offered toward the
 WMF.  One of the arguments that doesn't work for me is seven years ago the
 WMF didn't make these mistakes - because seven years ago the WMF was
 paralyzed from lack of strategy and direction.  All of that has changed and
 the WMF is out and aggressively trying things to arrest the editor decline
 and improve the user experience.  And yet, when our talented engineers try
 a data-driven tactic for something that needs to change, they're lambasted
 for forgetting the existing community.  And yet everyone here knows that if
 we don't change some things, things will get very very ugly, very very
 quickly.

 One of the things that must continue to change is the tone on the wikis,
 and the tone (in IRC and by email) between staff and volunteers.  I know
 that volunteers are individual and - in addition to several frankly abusive
 emails I've received this weekend, I've also received absolutely wonderful
 support from volunteers who reached out to make me smile, laugh, or just
 remind me why I love this community.  But the abusive ones absolutely
 *must*stop.  I have never once, in my entire time at WMF, sent an
 email that
 approaches the level of things that I see WMF staff subjected to routinely,
 and I have to counsel over and over that it's okay, they don't speak for
 the community, but I see the community tacitly support that behavior (or
 fail to condemn it), and it's hard to say with a straight face that the
 people sending abusive mail or making abusive statements in IRC don't speak
 for the community.

 So my challenge and my promise:  I promise to reflect on the experiences of
 this weekend and figure out how I could have offered Gayle better advice,
 given the circumstances, and given the fact that there are some things that
 are not public about the decision, and unfortunately they can't be.  My
 challenge to the community:  think about the tone of what you see happening
 around you.  And if you wouldn't want to see your grandmother asked a
 question like that, and if it would make you feel defensive to see her
 questioned in that tone, then step in and make it clear that the tone is
 unacceptable.  Staff members are people too.  How about finding one that
 has done something you 

[Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Fwd: Fwd: Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia Servers and Copyright Issues (David Cuenca)

2013-05-12 Thread Geoff Brigham
*

Hi Theo,

Thank you for your email.  I'm truly sorry that you feel this way.  I have
been thinking for some time about the issue of finding alternative
solutions to Golan-type issues, and frankly I have not been too optimistic
in the past.  I think it is an important issue to our mission, however, and
I would like to take a closer look to make sure there is not a better
solution out there.  Achal did contact me about it.   Although I have
tremendous respect for Achal, his contact was not the reason for my desire
to look into this further with the community.  As General Counsel, I tend
to exercise my own independent judgment.  I have received a number of
inquiries and I am aware of the past discussions, and, to be honest, the
issue has been bugging me for some time: I’m not at all sure there is a
solution but I would like to look more closely, especially given the
ongoing community concern and available resources the coming month.  If you
- or any other community member - had contacted me directly, that, in
addition to the community discussions, would have been important to me as
well.  If the community feels this is a bad use of my resources, I am more
than willing to reconsider, but I don’t believe that is what people are
saying.

It is true that I do not post substantive statements on wikimedia-l
anymore.  I focus on my team leaving more detailed and comprehensive
responses on wikilegal [1], our legal blogs [2], or on the wikis [3].  From
my point of view, these venues allow for a more comprehensive development
of sometimes difficult legal issues, serve as a more permanent source for
future reference and cross-links, and allow for greater community
participation on the issue at hand.  I do try to announce and cross-link to
important legal postings via announce-l and wikimedia-l.

I was surprised to hear that individuals and committees are waiting weeks
for responses from Legal.   We try to be as responsive as possible.
 Sometimes people ask tough questions, and it takes time for us to figure
out the issue with the individual or committee at issue.  But we stay in
close contact with those people, often sharing our thinking or drafts and
incorporating their feedback.  With AffCom, for example, we have been quite
interactive as we try to figure out the naming issue and other legal
issues.  Sometimes the discussion takes longer than we all would like, but
our practice, I believe, is to stay responsive and interactive as we work
out the solutions with our community members.

If you want to discuss with me offline or on the telephone, I will be more
than happy to do so (as I would with anybody in our community).

Take care,

Geoff

[1] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikilegal

[2] http://blog.wikimedia.org/c/legal/
[3] See, e.g.,
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Wikimedia_Thematic_Organizations#Thoughts_regarding_the_naming_of_thematic_organizations
*


-- Forwarded message --
From: Theo10011 de10...@gmail.com
Date: Sun, May 12, 2013 at 6:42 PM
Subject: Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Fwd: Re: [Wikimediaindia-l] Wikimedia
Servers and Copyright Issues (David Cuenca)
To: Wikimedia Mailing List wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org


On Mon, May 13, 2013 at 1:46 AM, Geoff Brigham gbrig...@wikimedia.org
wrote:


 As Achal pointed out, we will put resources into researching this issue in
 depth and hopefully finding a solution that may work.  It will probably
 take a month or two to ensure we are looking at all possibilities to see
if
 this is possible.  If you have any great ideas, please feel free to send
 them to me, and I will ensure our team will consider them fully.

 This will be an interesting project, and I greatly appreciate everyone's
 interest in finding a lawful solution that ensures the distribution of all
 materials in the public domain.


Well, this was interesting to note. In stark contrast to the other thread,
this email was disappointing for the wrong reasons, maybe it's for me
alone. It took about 70 emails and 3 threads, and 2 days of waiting to get
a reply from the concerned staff members, but I believe Achal forwarded
this to Wikimedia-l less than 12 hours before you responded on a Sunday and
agreed to devote a month's resources to it. I don't think more than 2-3
people responded to the issue either on this list or the Indian one. I
guess that's the sole difference of the position he occupies, speaking of
which, the advisory board appointments seem indefinite, and the list
doesn't seem to have been updated - for the past 2 years I have only seen
Achal identify himself as that. As far as I know Mr. Prabhala has not even
logged in to an existing wikisource project, or uploaded anything on
commons beyond anything relevant to the last grant.

I ask because this issue was brought up a couple of years ago on the same
list[1] and received a lot more attention locally than this time.
Completely regardless of the issue itself, I know of several individuals,
and committees waiting for answers 

Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Casey Brown
On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 8:28 PM, Theo10011 de10...@gmail.com wrote:
 Try and be a bit nicer please. Gayle is still relatively new and this level
 of scrutiny might be jarring for someone.

Comments like these have always bothered me.

Gayle isn't some random secretary or new run-of-the-mill employee. She
is a C-level staff member who has been here for more than a year and
made a policy decision that people have feedback on. While the
feedback may not have come in the nicest form, it is still valid and
we can't just ignore it because it wasn't nice enough. As a high
level staff member in charge of your own department, you need to deal
with it -- this is one thing that comes with the job, unfortunately.
It's an insult to Gayle to assume that she will not be able to handle
criticism or answer people's responses. A C-level staff member needs
to be able to handle this scrutiny, even high level scrutiny, when
they were the one that made the call, and I'm sure she's more than
capable of doing that.

[Note that I'm speaking generally -- I personally think Gayle can
handle criticism and she seems very nice. She also probably had no
idea this would create dramz. My comment is directed towards the
general omg think of the staff member! response to criticism that is
systemic in our movement.]

On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 9:03 PM, Philippe Beaudette
phili...@wikimedia.org wrote:
 With that said: I'm afraid we're headed toward a precipice.  What I'm
 seeing scares me.  I see less and less good faith being offered toward the
 WMF.

This is something that bothers me too.

The situation is always framed as poor WMF. Yes, it is true that bad
faith is assumed on both sides, but I don't really think the community
(including the chapters) is the only one doing that. A lot of the
reason the community responds with such little faith or with such
outrage at the actions of the Wikimedia Foundation is because they do
not afford them any good faith either -- the community is simply
acting on the defensive. Many decisions are just handed out, are
half-baked, or are handled behind closed doors, so people have no idea
how to respond and feel no ownership.

If people have no control over a situation, the only way to respond is
to point fingers and complain. We all work on things together -- there
aren't many areas that are exclusively community or WMF. If you don't
let the community do anything to fix a problem or constructively
contribute to bettering the situation, you're going to find yourself
stuck with a lot of bad faith and complaining.

Take the WMFwiki policy decision for example -- was it really
necessary to discuss everything behind closed doors? Did the action
need to be taken two hours before the work week ended and before the
decision maker would be out of reach? We're always painting the
Wikimedia Foundation as the victim, but we're forgetting that they
definitely have their share of the blame. I realize that we're all
human, but, at the end of the day, the Foundation *should* be held to
a higher standard -- they are being paid to learn from their mistakes,
get things done correctly, and handle criticism. If something is going
to be controversial, it should not be done on a Friday before work
ends and then say no one can respond until Monday when someone
critiques it.

[Again: I'm speaking more generally. I don't personally care that much
about the WMFwiki issue, since I'm not active much anymore.]

We definitely have an agency issue here. The volunteers and the
community should not be viewed as a lone aggressor -- they're who
the Foundation ultimately report to: Staff = ED = Board =
Community. The readers and donors are clear stakeholders, but the
community is at the top of the pyramid. The Foundation is not
completely innocent, but when things go wrong, we can't just call the
community out for complaining and then ignore the reason for that
complaint.

--
Casey Brown (Cbrown1023)
caseybrown.org

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread Federico Leva (Nemo)

Casey Brown, 13/05/2013 07:05:

[...] [Note that I'm speaking generally -- I personally think Gayle can
handle criticism and she seems very nice. She also probably had no
idea this would create dramz. My comment is directed towards the
general omg think of the staff member! response to criticism that is
systemic in our movement.]


Still, omg think of the staff member! seems to be the point Gayle and 
Philippe make on this thread. If history teaches something, I guess the 
board will soon approve a resolution to request the development of a 
Personal Communitymember Filter to AT LAST hide all that offensive 
content in our community. MediaWiki-mailman integration offers some 
challenges, but our commitment to openness will swiftly help, shutting 
down more mailing lists in favour of wiki discussions.


Nemo

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread James Alexander
*

I'm just going to top post here because responding to you in line won't be
helpful to anybody.The staff ARE held to a higher standard, they are held
to a higher standard day in and day out. If you don't think they are then
you're blind. They get attacked at a level that is NOTHING compared to what
they do or dish out NOTHING. They hold back because they're staff and they
should hold back.

Can the foundation get better? Of course it can, is every single thing
Philippe said still true? Yes, in fact I'd probably be harsher about it.
I'm sometimes embarrassed to be from the community when I read the mailing
list and, less often, on wiki. Even I have to sit down on my hands, calm
down, have a cup of tea and then go on damage control explaining to other
staff members that we need to get better but that the community isn't
nearly as bad as it seems sometimes. I have to remind myself that I'm not
lying when I tell them that it isn't the entire community yelling at them,
just a dozen or two on a mailing list and that they don't represent
everyone. There is no doubt that the Foundation can get better in many
areas, but I will 100% stand by my statement that the way that some
portions of the community (that tend to congregate on the mailing lists and
certain areas on wiki)  is embarrassing and insane. Given some of the
statements that are made I'm not actually sure staff SHOULD respond to
those people, yet they still do in the end because they're staff, and
they're held to a higher standard.

Is it true that some of this is 'the wiki way' and they should 'get used to
it' because 'that's how we treat ourselves'? I'd say that 99%+ of the wiki
isn't anywhere near as bad though I sadly admit that some of it is though
most realize that's bad. The lack of civility on wiki has been a long
running problem we have all known about, yet for some reason some people
have decided that targeting the staff is fair game.

In the US, and most countries I know, employers have a legal obligation to
ensure a healthy working environment both physical and emotional. The
working environment for our staff is NOT always emotionally healthy.
*
*
*
*James*
*

On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 10:05 PM, Casey Brown li...@caseybrown.org wrote:

 On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 8:28 PM, Theo10011 de10...@gmail.com wrote:
  Try and be a bit nicer please. Gayle is still relatively new and this
 level
  of scrutiny might be jarring for someone.

 Comments like these have always bothered me.

 Gayle isn't some random secretary or new run-of-the-mill employee. She
 is a C-level staff member who has been here for more than a year and
 made a policy decision that people have feedback on. While the
 feedback may not have come in the nicest form, it is still valid and
 we can't just ignore it because it wasn't nice enough. As a high
 level staff member in charge of your own department, you need to deal
 with it -- this is one thing that comes with the job, unfortunately.
 It's an insult to Gayle to assume that she will not be able to handle
 criticism or answer people's responses. A C-level staff member needs
 to be able to handle this scrutiny, even high level scrutiny, when
 they were the one that made the call, and I'm sure she's more than
 capable of doing that.

 [Note that I'm speaking generally -- I personally think Gayle can
 handle criticism and she seems very nice. She also probably had no
 idea this would create dramz. My comment is directed towards the
 general omg think of the staff member! response to criticism that is
 systemic in our movement.]

 On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 9:03 PM, Philippe Beaudette
 phili...@wikimedia.org wrote:
  With that said: I'm afraid we're headed toward a precipice.  What I'm
  seeing scares me.  I see less and less good faith being offered toward
 the
  WMF.

 This is something that bothers me too.

 The situation is always framed as poor WMF. Yes, it is true that bad
 faith is assumed on both sides, but I don't really think the community
 (including the chapters) is the only one doing that. A lot of the
 reason the community responds with such little faith or with such
 outrage at the actions of the Wikimedia Foundation is because they do
 not afford them any good faith either -- the community is simply
 acting on the defensive. Many decisions are just handed out, are
 half-baked, or are handled behind closed doors, so people have no idea
 how to respond and feel no ownership.

 If people have no control over a situation, the only way to respond is
 to point fingers and complain. We all work on things together -- there
 aren't many areas that are exclusively community or WMF. If you don't
 let the community do anything to fix a problem or constructively
 contribute to bettering the situation, you're going to find yourself
 stuck with a lot of bad faith and complaining.

 Take the WMFwiki policy decision for example -- was it really
 necessary to discuss everything behind closed doors? Did the action
 need to be taken two hours 

Re: [Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

2013-05-12 Thread phoebe ayers
On Sun, May 12, 2013 at 10:32 PM, Federico Leva (Nemo)
nemow...@gmail.comwrote:

 Casey Brown, 13/05/2013 07:05:

 [...] [Note that I'm speaking generally -- I personally think Gayle can

 handle criticism and she seems very nice. She also probably had no
 idea this would create dramz. My comment is directed towards the
 general omg think of the staff member! response to criticism that is
 systemic in our movement.]


 Still, omg think of the staff member! seems to be the point Gayle and
 Philippe make on this thread. If history teaches something, I guess the
 board will soon approve a resolution to request the development of a
 Personal Communitymember Filter to AT LAST hide all that offensive content
 in our community. MediaWiki-mailman integration offers some challenges, but
 our commitment to openness will swiftly help, shutting down more mailing
 lists in favour of wiki discussions.

 Nemo


Au contraire, I feel we should all earn some kind of barnstar just for
participating in this discussion/situation. You know, it's kind of the
ultimate Wikimedian tempest: arguing over who gets to add users and delete
pages on what is quite possibly the world's most boring wiki[1]...

It's also a quintessentially Wikimedian debate because there's all this
subtext -- assumed but not articulated -- that isn't minor at all: about
community ownership versus corporate control, about who has authority to
make decisions in what sphere, about the role volunteers play in the
organization, over what personal reputation means on the projects, over
what admin rights mean, what kind of work environment the staff have, etc..
I'm gonna take a stab in the dark here and guess that Gayle wasn't
intending to start a debate on all these big important topics, or even
perhaps to comment on them at all. I'm also gonna say from experience that
it's often damn hard to wade into these waters and take an action *without*
touching off a debate on all these subjects. As someone said upthread, the
golden rule does help, as does practice working with the wiki way, and
knowing all the personal ins and outs of Wikimedia and our arcane culture.
But *even that* doesn't always save someone from making an unpopular
decision, or from screwing up or not thinking through all the ways they
might be wading into a minefield -- and that goes for all of us, staff,
board,  community alike. Hey, ask me how I know.

Sheesh, being part of the world's biggest collaborative project is hard
sometimes.

-- phoebe


1. I exempt, of course, the internal wiki at my workplace, which has won
the crown many years running.
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