[Wikimedia-l] Re: Movement Charter Drafting Committee elections are now open!

2021-10-20 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Wed, 20 Oct 2021 at 10:10, Dan Garry (Deskana)  wrote:

> You're definitely right about that. SecurePoll is a mess. I was the
> product lead for a project to improve it in 2014, and whilst we did manage
> to make quite a few improvements to the functionality and management, we
> only got a fraction done of what we wanted to, the tool is still sorely
> deficient. There's documentation about the project
> <https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/SecurePoll_2014_Redesign>, if you're
> interested. I'm not surprised that WMF leadership is very reluctant to
> improve it, and if I were in their shoes, I'd be avoiding it, especially
> since none of the people involved in the 2014 project work at the WMF
> anymore.
>
> I think we need to get over the "not invested here"
> <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Not_invented_here> tendency when it comes
> to running elections, and research to see if there's a good third-party
> solution. I suspect we'd actually save money using a third-party solution
> compared to trying to improve SecurePoll. I've not done a competitive
> analysis, so I don't know what sorts of things are available, and maybe
> there aren't any. But, at least, we should look.
>

Or, scope out designing a lightweight tool hosted on Toolforge or similar
infrastructure, that integrates with the wikis and other data sources via
the API, rather than actually being a MediaWiki extension. So many of the
things that SecurePoll does (voter eligibility list generation,
authentication, vote collection and collation, etc.) can be done using API
integrations or data dumps; there's nothing instrinsic to it that requires
it to be a MediaWiki extension, it was only done that way because that's
the way we did everything back when. Developing a tool like that on
Toolforge is so much easier and less complex than developing a MediaWiki
extension. There's so many successful examples of this way of doing things;
pageviews.toolforge.org is a good example.

(Sorry for the follow-up email spam, the thought occurred to me as soon as
I hit send.)

Dan
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[Wikimedia-l] Re: Movement Charter Drafting Committee elections are now open!

2021-10-20 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Mon, 18 Oct 2021 at 12:30, Jan Ainali  wrote:

> I just wanted to note that UI of SecurePoll caused problem in the board
> election too, and that the same excuse was used then "in a short time once".
> Obviously this is a piece of infrastructure that we need in the movement
> and that any team doing one election should not need to fix the software
> for it.
>
> Hence, a specific project, unrelated to any election, should be tasked to
> solve this by the Wikimedia Foundation. And it should start soon to avoid
> us finding ourselves in the same problem when the next election is being
> called.
>

You're definitely right about that. SecurePoll is a mess. I was the product
lead for a project to improve it in 2014, and whilst we did manage to make
quite a few improvements to the functionality and management, we only got a
fraction done of what we wanted to, the tool is still sorely deficient.
There's documentation about the project
, if you're
interested. I'm not surprised that WMF leadership is very reluctant to
improve it, and if I were in their shoes, I'd be avoiding it, especially
since none of the people involved in the 2014 project work at the WMF
anymore.

I think we need to get over the "not invested here"
 tendency when it comes to
running elections, and research to see if there's a good third-party
solution. I suspect we'd actually save money using a third-party solution
compared to trying to improve SecurePoll. I've not done a competitive
analysis, so I don't know what sorts of things are available, and maybe
there aren't any. But, at least, we should look.

Dan
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[Wikimedia-l] Re: 100$ million dollars and still obsolete

2021-10-15 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Fri, 15 Oct 2021 at 11:03, Galder Gonzalez Larrañaga <
galder...@hotmail.com> wrote:

> Thanks Dan for using the Excuse 6: *At this point in the circle, there is
> some volunteer who wants to fix this and raises the tone of the request.
> Then we find the mother of all excuses, the wild card: you are being rude
> and do not assume good faith. Excuse 6.*
>

I guess you've got all the answers then, eh?

I think we're done here.

Dan
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[Wikimedia-l] Re: 100$ million dollars and still obsolete

2021-10-15 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Fri, 15 Oct 2021 at 08:47, Galder Gonzalez Larrañaga <
galder...@hotmail.com> wrote:

> Dear all,
> I don't know if this already has a name, but I'm going to invent one: The
> Great Circle of Excuse. It works like this: we have all realized that
> something needs to be improved, let's say the design of our website. Then,
> WMF gets a group of workers to think about it, and they come up with some
> changes that neither respond to the needs nor are really a change beyond
> certain aesthetic resources.
>

I stopped reading at this point. What you've written here is pretty
insulting. There's a valid point buried under your rhetoric, but you're
exacerbating the problem by being so rude and dismissive.

Dan
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[Wikimedia-l] Re: Welcoming María Sefidari as a Foundation consultant. :)

2021-06-25 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Thu, 24 Jun 2021 at 12:56, Chris Keating 
wrote:

> Thanks for the detailed comments. However, still, this doesn't really help
> that much.
>
> From your email it seems that over several months the WMF has created a
> new role which just happens to be ideal for its outgoing Chair to fill, and
> indeed could scarcely be filled by anyone else because it so closely
> relates to the Board's priorities.
>
> If this is allowed to happen then it raises serious questions about
> whether Board members make decisions about the WMF's priorities in order to
> create consultancy posts for themselves. As it happens I don't believe that
> is what has happened here, but one could be forgiven for drawing that
> conclusion. There is a clear appearance of a conflict of interest. And
> there is a real risk of undermining the credibility of pretty much any
> decision the Board might take in future, if people - the community, donors
> or the media - start to believe that those decisions are being taken
> because Board members will be eased into paid positions to implement them.
>
> No amount of reassurances that conversations happened in a particular
> order can avoid this. The letter and indeed the spirit of the WMF's
> conflict of interest policy may have been followed. But the object of the
> WMF's conflict of interest policy has not been achieved, quite the
> opposite. One can follow a policy and end up making the wrong decision, and
> that's what's happened here.
>

I agree wholeheartedly with Chris's eloquent comments on this situation.
What has happened here is very inappropriate, and deeply troubling.

Dan
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[Wikimedia-l] Re: Welcoming María Sefidari as a Foundation consultant. :)

2021-06-25 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Fri, 25 Jun 2021 at 11:26, Andreas Kolbe  wrote:

> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9FOs9_l33gY=13s
>

That is an unhelpful and incredibly inappropriate response.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Flourishing of the Endowment

2021-05-06 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Fri, 30 Apr 2021 at 15:02, Andreas Kolbe  wrote:

> The Wikimedia Endowment page on Meta[1] actually states very clearly in
> its lead paragraph who benefits from the Endowment. It says,
>
> "The funds may be transferred from Tides either to the Wikimedia
> Foundation or to other charitable organisations selected by the Wikimedia
> Foundation to further the Wikimedia mission."
>
> The Wikimedia Foundation alone controls how the funds are used (limited
> only by whatever UPMIFA or donor-specific constraints apply).
>

The Wikimedia Foundation legally controlling the funds, and the endowment's
purpose being to protect the project moving forwards, are not mutually
exclusive. Legally, yes, the Wikimedia Foundation controls the funds, so
for the page to say otherwise would be misleading. Unless some other entity
can somehow direct Tides to transfer the money, then the page shouldn't say
that.


Including the $100 million endowment, the WMF will now have investments of
> around $200 million (excluding cash and cash equivalents), for an annual
> investment income of over $10 million. That is already enough to run core
> services. Wikimedia posted total expenses of $3.5 million in 2007/2008, a
> year after Wikipedia became a global top-ten website.
>

Well, it's not 2007 anymore. Just because it cost $3.5 million in 2007
doesn't mean it'd cost $3.5 million now. I don't know enough about the
current financial situation, staff, data centre expenditure, hardware, etc.
to state whether $10 million is actually enough to continue to maintain the
infrastructure required for the project. Could you share your breakdown and
financial analysis?



> The problem for me – and many other rank-and-file volunteers – is not the
> idea of an endowment as such, but fundraising messages saying "Wikipedia
> really needs you this Tuesday" to donate money so Wikipedia can "stay
> online", "protect its independence", etc., or "to show the volunteers their
> work matters".
>
> The WMF creates the impression that it struggles to keep Wikipedia up and
> running; people then feel scared or guilty, think Wikipedia is struggling,
> or dying, or will soon put up a paywall;[2] and the WMF does little to
> correct that mistaken impression, even when directly asked about it as in
> Katherine's recent The Daily Show interview[3]. One is left with the
> uncomfortable conclusion that the WMF creates and fails to correct that
> false impression because it benefits financially from it.
>

Indeed, as the endowment grows I would expect our fundraising messaging to
change, from talking about donations being required to maintain the
projects, to instead highlighting the new developments that donations
enable. As mentioned before, I don't know if we're there yet. I look
forward to us getting there.

(I'll ignore your nonsenscial remark about the WMF somehow profiting from
this.)


I disagree, SJ. The Meta page[1] has a blue progress bar showing how much
> money is in the Endowment. To me it is incompatible with the idea of a wiki
> – a website designed to support continuous updates – for such a progress
> bar to be up to a year out of date. It's not what a reasonable reader of
> that page would expect.
>

"People expect wikis to be updated, and information on the endowment is on
a wiki, therefore we should have monthly updates on the endowment" isn't a
very compelling argument. I don't see why the reporting cadence should go
beyond what is typically expected of endowments in the nonprofit space.

If you have a problem with that particular bar on that page on Meta for
some reason, perhaps a disclaimer about the last time it was updated could
be added. That seems like a much simpler solution than drastically
increasing the financial auditing and reporting overhead.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Board Ratification of Universal Code of Conduct

2021-02-22 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
It's so great to see the Universal Code of Conduct come to fruition. As a
movement we were severly lagging behind others in adopting a code of
conduct, and I'm glad to see we've reached parity. This is a step in the
right direction.

Dan

On Tue, 2 Feb 2021 at 11:59, María Sefidari  wrote:

> Hi everyone,
>
> I’m pleased to announce that the Board of Trustees has unanimously
> approved a Universal Code of Conduct for the Wikimedia projects and
> movement.[1]  A Universal Code of Conduct was one of the final
> recommendations of the Movement Strategy 2030 process - a multi-year,
> participatory community effort to define the future of our movement. The
> final Universal Code of Conduct seeks to address disparities in conduct
> policies across our hundreds of projects and communities, by creating a
> binding minimum set of standards for conduct on the Wikimedia projects that
> directly address many of the challenges that contributors face.
>
> The Board is deeply grateful to the communities who have grappled with
> these challenging topics. Over the past six months, communities around the
> world have participated in conversations and consultations to help build
> this code collectively, including local discussions in 19 languages,
> surveys, discussions on Meta, and policy drafting by a committee of
> volunteers and staff. The document presented to us reflects a significant
> investment of time and effort by many of you, and especially by the joint
> staff/volunteer committee who created the base draft after reviewing input
> collected from community outreach efforts. We also appreciate the
> dedication of the Foundation, and its Trust & Safety policy team, in
> getting us to this phase.
>
> This was the first phase of our Universal Code of Conduct - from here, the
> Trust & Safety team will begin consultations on how best to enforce this
> code. In the coming weeks, they will follow-up with more instructions on
> how you can participate in discussions around enforcing the new code. Over
> the next few months, they will be facilitating consultation discussions in
> many local languages, with our affiliates, and on Meta to support a new
> volunteer/staff committee in drafting enforcement pathways. For more
> information on the process, timeline, and how to participate in this next
> phase, please review the Universal Code of Conduct page on Meta.[2]
>
> The Universal Code of Conduct represents an essential step towards our
> vision of a world in which all people can participate in the sum of all
> knowledge. Together, we have built something extraordinary. Today, we
> celebrate this milestone in making our movement a safer space for
> contribution for all.
>
> On behalf of the Board of Trustees,
>
> María Sefidari
> Board Chair
>
> [1] https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Universal_Code_of_Conduct/Draft_review
>
>
> [2] https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Universal_Code_of_Conduct
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF transfers $8.7 million to "Wikimedia Knowledge Equity Fund"

2021-01-02 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Sat, 2 Jan 2021 at 07:46, rupert THURNER 
wrote:

> have a good start into the new year everybody! should not, ideally, the
> legal team of amanda keton be able to tell if fundting something is legal?
> or is this a liability issue, so tides would be liable for misconduct, and
> not a person within wikimedia foundation?
>

Given Tides' core competencies as an organisation, one would expect that
the legal folks there have more experience in handling matters relating to
things like what activities a 501(c)(3) can fund, more knowledge of the
statutes, case law, precedent, etc. I'm sure the Legal team at the WMF
could do this too, but they might have less experience with it than in
other areas of the law, meaning they'd have to start from scratch with lots
of time-consuming research, whereas contracting with an organisation that
specialises in exactly this might be better.

So, I don't think it's quite as simple as whether they can do it or not,
but more about what would be more efficient and comprehensive.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF transfers $8.7 million to "Wikimedia Knowledge Equity Fund"

2020-12-13 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
It seems disingenous to describe it as "secret" given that it was willingly
acknowledged in the the FAQ of the annual financial audit
.
The information provided in the FAQ is somewhat lacking, but these are not
the actions of people trying to sweep it under the rug.

Let us politely ask for more information without being unnecessarily
alarmist.

Dan

On Sun, 13 Dec 2020 at 08:54, Yair Rand  wrote:

> According to the recent Independent Auditors' Report of the WMF [1], at
> some point prior to the end of June 2020, an entity called the "Wikimedia
> Knowledge Equity Fund" was established, and $8.723 million was transferred
> to it by the WMF, in the form of an unconditional grant. The Fund is
> "managed and controlled by Tides Advocacy" (a 501(c)(4) advocacy nonprofit
> previously led by the WMF's current General Counsel/Board Secretary, who
> served as CEO, Board Secretary, and Treasurer there). Given that a Google
> search for "Wikimedia Knowledge Equity Fund" yields zero results prior to
> the release of the report, it is clear that the WMF kept this significant
> move completely secret for over five months, perhaps over a year. The
> Report FAQ additionally emphasizes that the WMF "has no right of return to
> the grant funds provided, with the exception of unexpended funds."
>
> The WMF unilaterally and secretly transferred nearly $9 million of
> movement funds to an outside organization not recognized by the
> Affiliations Committee. No mention of the grant was made in any Board
> resolutions or minutes from the relevant time period. The amount was not
> mentioned in the public annual plan, which set out rather less than this
> amount for the entire grantmaking budget for the year. No application was
> made through any of the various Wikimedia grants processes. No further
> information has been provided on the administration of this new Fund, or on
> the text of the grant agreement.
>
> I am appalled.
>
> -- Yair Rand
>
> [1]
> https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/foundation/f/f7/Wikimedia_Foundation_FY2019-2020_Audit_Report.pdf
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Donations - show the editors you care?

2020-12-07 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Mon, 7 Dec 2020 at 12:38, Demian  wrote:

> I'm assuming this points to the namespace of the edits, although it's not
> clear. It's unfortunate that Visual Editor can only be used in mainspace, I
> wish that wasn't the case, but to be exact, I was looking to understand why
> only 2.8% (47 out of 1668
> )
> of your mainspace edits since 2016 are made with Visual Editor. To answer
> Dan: I was unaware of the personal account with 189
> 
> /399 
> mainspace visual edits since 2016, which makes the grand total 11.41% (236
> out of 2067) of mainspace edits.
>

At this point, I think looking at the editing environment Seddon used
across his staff and personal edit history has dubious value to furthering
this discussion about fundraising.


> While Visual Editor has its benefits and I also use it on meta with
> similar success rate, for me the dream would be an editor that I can use at
> least 80% of the time, and the ultimate would be 100% like the service
> provided by Dropbox Paper, Google Docs, Coda and Nuclino for example.
>

I think we'd all love that. I certainly would. Making that happen would
probably be a large organisational pivot; I can't find any statistics about
how big the team is that made, say, Google Docs, but I suspect it's larger
than the entire Wikimedia Foundation. This topic would probably have been
better discussed in the movement strategy conversations, as a thread on a
mailing list won't make it happen.


> Therefore my concern is if Visual Editor met your expectations well, what
> was the reason not to use it for 1800+ edits, which includes most major
> edits on meta?
>

I'm sure the Editing team would appreciate your help with conducting
systematic user research. Have you reached out to them?

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Donations - show the editors you care?

2020-12-07 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Mon, 7 Dec 2020 at 05:55, Demian  wrote:

> With these different aspects in mind I wonder why you find the Visual
> Editor a dream to use, given that on average at most 4 in 500 of your
> edits
> 
>  (2
> ,
> 3
> ,
> 4
> ,
> 5
> ,
> search: "visual edit") are made using Visual Editor.
>

The visual editor is designed and optimised for editing articles, not pages
on Meta-Wiki, and definitely not pages in the MediaWiki, CNBanner, and
Template namespaces, which comprise over 50% of Seddon's last 500 edits.
You readily arrive at quite different conclusions if you, for example, look
at how many edits are made using the visual editor in mainspace on the
different Wikipedias, rather than a staff member's account on Meta-Wiki.

Please let us avoid using misleading statistics to make a point.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Moving the technical infrastructure out of the US

2020-09-30 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Wed, 30 Sep 2020 at 09:49, Erik Moeller  wrote:

> I hope that some preliminary contingency plans exist or are being
> developed, and I'm sure that the movement-wide debate will widen if
> the US continues its downward slide into authoritarianism.
>

I agree with Erik. Even under the Obama administration, there were threats
to the existence of the movement, such as SOPA [1] which lead to a blackout
[2]. One can extrapolate from current events that these threats could well
get larger and more frequent, rather than smaller and less frequent, should
someone in the US Government decide to focus their attention on attacking
Wikipedia and free knowledge. It would be prudent to create a contingency
plan which includes an exploration of other options for a location of
operation for the Wikimedia Foundation and/or its servers, with their
advantages and disadvantages. I personally wouldn't necessarily advocate
for making the plan public; that would be ideal, but I'd be comforted
merely to know it exists.

On Tue, 29 Sep 2020 at 23:36, Joseph Seddon  wrote:

> I believe options are going to be explored for sustainability but right now
> legally speaking the US is the best jurisdiction for hosting us now and the
> foreseeable future.
>

I agree with this too. For now, the United States remains the best place
for the organisation to operate out of, and a move should not be actively
considered.

Dan

[1]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stop_Online_Piracy_Act
[2]:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protests_against_SOPA_and_PIPA#Wikimedia_community
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Foundation and affiliates disclosing salaries on job ads & the effect of this on workplace equity

2020-09-12 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Fri, 11 Sep 2020 at 22:23, Michael Peel  wrote:

> This seems to be a restriction against employers asking for someone’s
> salary history, not against including the expected salary range in a job
> advert.


Yes. Apologies, the "undoubtedly not doing this" written in my earlier
email was a bit unclear. Thanks for the clarity.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Foundation and affiliates disclosing salaries on job ads & the effect of this on workplace equity

2020-09-12 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Fri, 11 Sep 2020 at 12:39, Nathan  wrote:

> Shouldn't two candidates for the same position for the same company get
> roughly the same salary, regardless of where they live?
>

I don't know. Maybe.

Within the US, there are markets where decent, experienced software
engineers earn half of what a software engineer in San Francisco would
earn, and they would also probably have a comparable quality of life.
Outside the US, there are markets out there where the going rate
for decent, experienced software engineers is 15 times less than the going
rate for a software engineer in San Francisco. Due to the relative decrease
in purchasing power, the salary that's 15 times lower gives these people a
good quality of life comparable to (or possibly even better than) life in
San Francisco. Is it exploiting them to pay them 15 times less given that
their quality of life is the same, or even higher, than people in San
Francisco? Would it be fair to people in San Francisco, or other locations,
to do this? Should the Wikimedia Foundation pay people in this market 15
times more than they would earn at another company? As Gergő said, would
that be a responsible use of donor funds?

I don't have the answer to these questions. They are very hard questions
where there is no obviously correct answer.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Foundation and affiliates disclosing salaries on job ads & the effect of this on workplace equity

2020-09-11 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
Asking candidates for their current salary is prohibited in San Francisco
as of July 2018 [1] which means that, as a San Francisco based
organisation, the Foundation will undoubtedly not be doing this. To my
knowledge, this wasn't done by the Foundation before either, but we can
confidently state that it won't be done now.

There are some complexities in disclosing salary ranges for the Foundation.
One practice that can be used for encouraging diversity in candidate
applications is to specify that a position is open to candidates with a
wide range of experience and in all locations in the world, in which case
the salary range posted will be so large that it will basically be
meaningless. On the other hand, another good practice for encouraging
diversity is to source internally for senior positions, which opens up more
junior roles that can be sourced externally, in which case a salary range
can be more meaningful and helpful. It's hard to figure out what the right
balance is.

Regardless, more public transparency in salary banding would be good to see.

Dan

[1]:
https://www.shrm.org/resourcesandtools/legal-and-compliance/state-and-local-updates/pages/san-francisco-bans-salary-history-questions.aspx

On Fri, 11 Sep 2020 at 10:44, Chris Keating 
wrote:

> Good morning everyone!
>
> There's a campaign(1) for nonprofits to disclose the salaries, or at least
> salary ranges, on job ads.
>
> An increasing body of evidence(2) shows that practices like not disclosing
> expected pay, and requiring applicants to disclose their current salary, is
> harmful to equity in the workplace.
>
> Not disclosing salaries affects pay levels within the organisation -
> because white men are usually relatively confident in negotiating their
> salaries upwards, so tend to end up with a better deal.
>
> It can also affect the diversity of candidates who apply. Candidates who
> have stronger networks within the industry they're moving into (again, more
> commonly white men with privileged social and educational backgrounds) also
> have clear expectations because they are 'in the know' about industry
> norms, while people who don't, find the lack of salary information a
> barrier to application. (After all, why take the time and effort to apply
> for a job when you have no idea how the likely pay compares to your current
> employment?)
>
> I know practices vary within the movement - I believe the WMF never
> mentions salaries on ads, and I don't know whether the range is disclosed
> to applicants or not - some chapters I know do advertise a salary. However,
> I'd urge all entities within the movement that hire staff to disclose the
> expected salary ranges for posts they are advertising, as part of their
> commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion.
>
> Thanks for reading,
>
> Chris
>
>
>
> (1): https://showthesalary.com/
> (2): e.g. at https://showthesalary.com/resources/
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Institutional memory @ WMF

2020-08-26 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Wed, 26 Aug 2020 at 12:16, Strainu  wrote:

> Thanks for the response Dan!
>
> A rigorous study is IMHO impossible, since we're lacking a rigorous
> definition of the limits between WMF and community.
>

Absolutely agreed.


> OK, but how is this done precisely? Are there written docs? Mentors?
> Is cross-team help common? Or is this kept at the anecdotal level ("oh
> yeah, you should also keep in mind..." )?
>

In my experience, all of the above. What is done exactly depends on the
situation, but all of those things you've listed can and do happen,
depending on the nature and size of the project, the people involved, and
so on. People keep their eye out, through both formal and informal
mechanisms, and help out if they think they can.

I don't want to go into specific details, as I'm doing it purely from
memory and might misremember things, and things might've changed since I
left the WMF two years ago. To be clear, I'm not under any kind of
non-disclosure agreement, I just don't want to be inaccurate.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Institutional memory @ WMF

2020-08-26 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Tue, 25 Aug 2020 at 22:26, Strainu  wrote:

> The pattern I'm seeing is: team gets a big project (in this case UCoC)
> -> team hires -> newbie makes good faith edits that are known to cause
> offense to some members of the community.


This is basically always going to happen when new people are onboarded, or,
indeed, as people make mistakes. By my observations, this happens a lot
less nowadays than it used to. This is anecdotal on my part, but in the
absence of any rigorous study of the frequency with which this occurs, this
thread as a whole is anecdotal. That's not to say it's not valuable to
discuss it, but it's worth bearing that in mind.


> This pattern can be broken
> only if the organization has a process to teach newcomers things that
> seem obvious to old timers ("don't go over community decisions if you
> can avoid it", "don't change content", "try to talk to people before
> doing a major change", "not everyone speaks English", "affiliates are
> not the community" etc.)
>
> My question is: does the WMF has such a process?
>

When people are onboarded a lot of this is explained to them, and people
are encouraged to reach out to those more experienced with the communities.
That people get it wrong occasionally is expected.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Universal Code of Conduct Drafting Committee - Call for participation

2020-07-31 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Fri, 31 Jul 2020 at 15:29, Todd Allen  wrote:

> That was a firm "No" on any Universal Code of Conduct. There shouldn't be a
> "drafting committee" for it, it was disapproved.
>

It's not clear to me what you're referring to here. What is the "that" that
was a "firm no"?

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Paid API?

2020-07-09 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Thu, 9 Jul 2020 at 21:15, Dan Garry (Deskana)  wrote:

> ECR and GKE.
>

Correction: I meant GCR, not GKE.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Paid API?

2020-07-09 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Thu, 9 Jul 2020 at 18:20, Amir Sarabadani  wrote:

> * I find it ethically wrong to use AWS, even if you can't host it in WMF
> for legal reasons, why not another cloud provider.


Which cloud provider would you recommend? Popular alternatives to AWS
include GCP (by Google, who unscrupulously harvest user data and sell it
for profit) and Azure (by Microsoft who arguably owe their position in the
market due to numerous anti-competitive practices for which they have
fought, and lost, numerous lawsuits). In addition to that, there are
numerous other factors to consider, such as cost (we should be responsible
with donor money), and environmental impact of the hosting choice in
question. My point is, there is no objectively correct ethical choice.

There's also numerous other factors to take into account in addition to
ethics. There are different feature sets that each cloud provider offers;
as an example, I recently did a competitive analysis of different
cloud-hosted container registry providers, and was surprised at the large
number of feature differences in each provider, even for something as
relatively straightforward as a container registry, even between ECR and
GKE. Engineering productivity is an important factor too.

From a project management perspective, it seems to me that the most prudent
thing to do is to choose a solution for prototyping rather than spending an
excessive amount of time analysing it. After all, time is money. I would be
concerned by the choice of AWS if this were in any way a permanent choice,
but the docs specifically mention that AWS is being used for ease of
prototyping, and that the long-term solution is presently undetermined.

Dan
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[Wikimedia-l] Status of APG and FDC?

2020-03-10 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
Hi all,

Does anyone know what the status of the APG process and the FDC is? The
documentation on-wiki seems to be out of date:

   - The APG info page [1] says new applications are not being accepted,
   and there's a bunch of errors in the table.
   - The APG page [2] doesn't make reference to the above statement about
   new applications not being accepted.
   - The FDC page [3] says the terms of all of the members expired in
   either 2018 or 2019, and doesn't make any reference to the above either.

Thanks!

Dan

[1]: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Grants:APG/Information
[2]: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Grants:APG
[3]:
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Grants:APG/Funds_Dissemination_Committee
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Movement Strategy: Recommendations and community conversations launching next week

2020-02-03 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Sat, 25 Jan 2020 at 23:49, Pine W  wrote:

> Here are a couple of arguments from WMF in favor of SuperProtect, which was
> implemented to prevent local users from removing MediaViewer.


Superprotect is now over five years old. Superprotect's removal is now over
four years old. It was a mistake, and it was explicitly acknowledged as
such: the then-ED of the WMF said it had "set up a precedent of
mistrust". Almost all of the people involved in it are no longer affiliated
with the Wikimedia Foundation, and in fact, plenty of the staff members at
the Wikimedia Foundation were hired *after* superprotect was removed.

I don't think bringing up superprotect in this discussion is especially
relevant or helpful.

Dan

Source for most of the above: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Superprotect
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Ombuds Commission now accepting nominations for 2020

2019-10-11 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Fri, 11 Oct 2019 at 08:52, Henry Wood  wrote:

> So the Ombudsman Commission is managed by a department that they are
> likely to want to report on?
>

No. The Ombudsman Commission oversees volunteer actions only. Complaints
about staff should be sent directly to the Wikimedia Foundation.

I should note that the Ombudsman Commission page on Meta
 does not explicitly
state what I have said above; I am basing my comment on my past experience
when I was on the Ombudsman Commission.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Wikitech-l] Community Tech: New Format for 2020 Wishlist Survey

2019-10-07 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Sun, 6 Oct 2019 at 05:50, Gerard Meijssen 
wrote:

> The disappointing you show and the grotesque conclusions are imho based
> in a sense of entitlement.


I don't think calling Yuri's conclusions grotesque or saying he is entitled
are particularly productive comments. Let's keep this list discussion calm,
please?

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Introducing Wikimedia Space: A space for movement news and conversations

2019-06-26 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Wed 26 Jun 2019 at 00:58, Amir Sarabadani  wrote:

> I have no comment on Wikimedia Space. IMHO it's too soon to criticize it
> but I want to point out to a pattern that I have been seeing in the past
> couple of months by several people in this very mailing list.
>
> You have been repeating the word "WMF" (four time, for four different
> purposes) and treating it as a big monolith which is far from truth, WMF
> consists of different teams with different focuses, priorities, goals, and
> processes.
>
> This type of comments also increases the tension by promoting concept of
> "volunteer vs. WMF". It's not a war, we have the same mission. Stop
> criticizing a huge organization devoted to support volunteers (which you
> can't deny all of its good deeds, like keeping servers the world-class
> website running while being horribly understaffed, we have only 1% of
> Google's staff) because you disagree with this project or that program.
>
> Criticize projects, criticize actions (which can be valid), but don't be
> like "here we go again, WMF".


Largest possible +1 to this. Thanks Amir.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF commitment for a Wikimedia projects archive

2019-05-07 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Tue 7 May 2019 at 11:04, Fæ  wrote:

> I am sure this Wikimedia wide community run list is a perfectly good place
> to check whether the WMF has any commitment to long term public archives,
> or not.
>
> Thanks for your advice as to where to go, but the strategy process groups
> are undoubtedly a worse place to ask this question and expect a verifiable
> answer.


I see! Then I will defer to your clear expertise in getting definitive
answers. I look forward to seeing the outcome!

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF commitment for a Wikimedia projects archive

2019-05-07 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
I think the correct venue to ask for such a large, cross-cutting, strategic
commitment would be with the strategy process working groups, and not this
mailing list. Did you try engaging with them?

Dan

On Tue, 7 May 2019 at 09:35, Fæ  wrote:

> With all of the strategy discussions still on-going, it would be good
> to know where the long term public archive of our Wikimedia projects
> sits within it.
>
> As has been mentioned on this list previously, when volunteers donate
> to the Internet Archive, there is some comfort that their efforts in
> helping preserve public domain media will be accessible and archived
> for 100 years.
>
> I have been unable to work out what the Wikimedia Foundations
> commitment is to maintaining a publicly accessible project archive. I
> may be wrong and would love to have someone post a link that puts me
> right, but based on past discussions, I suspect that if a project gets
> closed or mothballed, there is no specific commitment to fund public
> access to any archives. The WMF may be unable to match the 100 year
> commitment that the Internet Archive plans for, but it would be jolly
> nice to have a commitment to something and have that promoted in the
> long term strategy.
>
> The best example I can think of is Wikimedia Commons as this is a
> significant size, so committing to maintaining a 10 or 20 year archive
> (not just an operational backup) is not an insignificant thing to find
> publicly accessible server space for or earmark a specific budget for.
>
> Thanks,
> Fae
> --
> fae...@gmail.com https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Supporting Wikinews [was: Reviewing our brand system for our 2030 goals]

2019-04-17 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Wed, 17 Apr 2019 at 15:41, Yaroslav Blanter  wrote:

> Indeed, I am not a fan of Wikinews and I do not particularly see the
> project as in any way successful. However, if the project is shut down
> against the will of the community (I now mean the Wikinews community, or
> perhaps even specifically the English Wikinews community), I will ask
> myself  whether Wikivoyage (I am active in the Russian Wikivoyage, where we
> have a couple of dozen active users) could also be shut down one day
> against the will of the community, just because we are not successful
> competing with the brands like Lonely Planet, DK, or Michelin, for example.
>

I've not seen any proposals involving shutting down projects without
community involvement, so hopefully you shouldn't need to worry about this.

Dan
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[Wikimedia-l] Supporting Wikinews [was: Reviewing our brand system for our 2030 goals]

2019-04-16 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
Splitting off the Wikinews discussion from the branding discussion...

On Tue, 16 Apr 2019 at 07:52, Jennifer Pryor-Summers <
jennifer.pryorsumm...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Compared to Wikitribune it is!  But more importantly, if Wikinews is not
> thriving, then why not?  Does it lack resources?  What could or should the
> WMF do to revive it?


In my opinion, nothing. Wikinews was a nice idea, but it didn't work out,
and I don't think the Wikimedia Foundation investing resources into trying
to bring it back to life is really worth it. In fact, I think the Wikimedia
Foundation isn't the right group to try to breathe new life into the
project anyway—we, as a volunteer community, could invest our time in
bringing new content into it. That doesn't happen though. Why is that? For
me, I'm voting with my actions rather than my words—it's because it just
isn't important enough compared to other things. It's okay to think that.

Also, I'd prefer to see the Wikimedia Foundation trying to do fewer things
but do them better rather than taking more on; I think the annual plan
reflects that it is trying to do so.


> Perhaps some of the money spent on rebranding would
> be better spent on the  projects that are not doing so well as the big
> Wikipedias -- or perhaps the WMF should cut its losses and close them down,
> on the principle of reinforcing success instead.
>

I suspect that significantly less money is being spent on this rebranding
effort than people might think. A short engagement with an external
consultant, and some staff time to think about it and publish some pages to
solicit comment, is a relatively small investment compared to what it might
take to bootstrap improvements to breathe life into a mostly dead project.
I don't think it's really helpful to guess about the cost of things... yes,
I broke my own rule right at the start of this paragraph. ;-)

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] branding is bikeshedding, how about CTO criteria or working group lists instead?

2019-04-16 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Mon, 15 Apr 2019 at 21:09, James Salsman  wrote:

> I withdraw any opinions and suggestions about the branding discussion,
> and don't intend to continue participating in it. Instead, I would
> like to have a more substantive discussion:
>
> (1) I ask that the CTO search team please publish their search and
> requirement criteria, including the CTO job description and any and
> all goals for the CTO position whether in current planning documents
> or unpublished drafts of planning materials.
>

Much of this is contained the job description
,
which is posted publicly on the Wikimedia Foundation website
.

Is there something specific you think is missing?

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] branding is bikeshedding, how about CTO criteria or working group lists instead?

2019-04-16 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Tue, 16 Apr 2019 at 10:14, Gerard Meijssen 
wrote:

> Hoi,
> Thank you for your sense of superiority..


It's not helpful to sarcastically "thank" someone like this. I don't find
Chris to have had a sense of superiority in his email, but even if he had,
this is not the correct way to address it.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimedia has been accepted as a mentor organization in GSoC 2019!

2019-02-28 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
As Srishti says, community wishlist items tend to be very under-defined,
with open-ended and ambiguous deliverables, and exist in complex spaces.
These things are okay because the people handling them are professionals
who are trained specifically to distill open-ended projects into specific
deliverables, and because the contract with community wishlist items is
specifically *not* that the items will be done, but that the items will be
evaluated and responded to.

On the other hand, projects like GSoC are aimed at training and mentoring
people new to software development on best practices, coding paradigms, and
so on. The students need very well-defined, specific projects in order to
succeed, and wishlist items tend not to have these characteristics. Simply
funnelling wishlist items directly into GSoC would set up the participants
for failure.

So, some kind of refinement of the wishlist items is needed. Now, it
*is* possible
to distill certain wishlist items down into small, byte-sized, well-defined
GSoC projects, for sure. But that will take time, user research,
resourcing, etc. I think that's worth doing, but it is a resourcing
question, and we need to ask the question of what other work the product
folks will drop in order to make that happen.

Dan

On Wed, 27 Feb 2019 at 03:01, James Heilman  wrote:

> We have a lot of amazing potential projects that just missed the selection
> criteria for the community wish list in 2019
>
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Community_Wishlist_Survey_2019/Results
>
> Would some of these quality as projects?
>
> James
>
> On Tue, Feb 26, 2019 at 2:11 PM Srishti Sethi 
> wrote:
>
> > Hello everyone,
> >
> > Wikimedia has been accepted as a mentor organization in the Google Summer
> > of Code 2019 with 207 open source projects
> > 
> > :)
> > And, application period for Outreachy Round 18 started last week.
> >
> > We have listed a few ideas for projects for both programs on MediaWiki
> and
> > we are looking for more. Unlike Google Summer of Code, Outreachy is open
> to
> > non-students and non-coders and projects could be around documentation,
> > design, translation research, outreach, etc. View current list of ideas:
> >
> > https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Google_Summer_of_Code/2019
> >
> > https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Outreachy/Round_18
> >
> > Both these programs have a similar timeline for the summer round.
> Accepted
> > candidates will work with mentors from May to August 2019. If you are
> > interested in mentoring a project, create a task on Phabricator and tag
> it
> > with #outreach-programs-projects and #Google-Summer-of-Code (2019) or
> > #Outreachy (Round 18). You can also choose to mentor for projects already
> > on outreach-programs-projects
> > 
> > workboard. Remember, every project must have two mentors.
> >
> > Some helpful resources for you:
> > * Learn more about the roles and responsibilities of a mentor:
> > https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Google_Summer_of_Code/Mentors
> > https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Outreachy/Mentors
> >
> > * View full program timeline:
> > https://developers.google.com/open-source/gsoc/timeline
> > https://www.outreachy.org/apply/project-selection/
> >
> > Looking forward to your participation! :)
> >
> > Cheers,
> >
> > Srishti, Derick and Pratyush (Wikimedia org admins)
> >
> >
> > *Srishti Sethi*
> > Developer Advocate
> > Wikimedia Foundation 
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Strategic planning for conferences

2019-01-31 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
It may be helpful if you repeat the specific question you're asking. Right
now from your email I don't know what your question is other than asking
what the "strategy for conferences" is, which is so open and vague as to be
basically unanswerable. I think you have perhaps made your question clearer
in the past, but staff are quite frequently buried in so many emails that
more difficult to answer emails tend to languish. The easier you make it to
get an answer, the more likely you are to get one.

Dan

On Wed, 30 Jan 2019 at 23:37, Pine W  wrote:

> Hi Alex,
>
> I hope that you are doing well. I originally started this email thread on
> Wikimedia-l near the end of September 2018, and four months have passed. I
> am still hoping to hear an update about WMF's strategy for conferences. I
> am trying to be patient and considerate, but I think that you may
> understand that I have difficulty with the length of the delay here. It
> seems to me that questions like this should not take WMF four months to
> answer, and that no one should need to send repeated requests for
> information like this. Once in awhile someone might be on vacation or an
> email might get stuck in a draft folder so one additional reminder or
> request might be necessary, but I think that the situation with this email
> thread should not ever happen. In addition to my original questions
> regarding conference strategy, I would like to know what has caused the
> lengthy delay and the lack of responsiveness from WMF. I am trying to be
> patient, but there is a problem here.
>
> Thanks,
>
> Pine
> ( https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Pine )
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Survey about the Foundation's Mission

2019-01-16 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
James,

As is fairly typical with your proposals, most of the proposals in the
survey (free healthcare, universal basic income, etc.) have very little to
do with the Foundation's mission. If you're going to do a survey, I suggest
actually connecting it to the Foundation's mission, although sadly it seems
that suggestions like this fall on deaf ears.

Dan

On Wed, 16 Jan 2019 at 02:21, James Salsman  wrote:

> Happy 18th birthday to Wikipedia!
>
> What does it mean for the Wikimedia Foundation to empower
> contributors? Please share your opinion of what the Wikimedia
> Foundation's mission statement means when it describes empowering
> people to collect and develop educational content:
>
> http://bit.ly/wikimission
>
> The survey results are summarized after form submission.
>
> Best regards,
> Jim Salsman
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Update and feedback results from the Wikimedia's chairpersons retreat

2019-01-03 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Sun, 30 Dec 2018 at 03:39, Pine W  wrote:

> I am wondering whether, for the purposes of (1) increasing the cost
> effectiveness of travel expenses, (2) reducing the negative environmental
> effects from travel, and (3) increasing the number of chairpersons who
> participate, if future meetings could be scheduled immediately before or
> after Wikimania or the Wikimedia (WMF + Affiliates) Summit.


This is already being done to a large extent. For example, lots of team
offsites are scheduled to run either before or after the annual all staff
meeting, hackathons, Wikimania, etc, which wasn't really the case a few
years back. The effects of this policy can be seen in the annual financial
statements—in FY2013/14 and FY2017/8 the amount spent on travel and
conferences was almost exactly the same [1] in spite of the Foundation
having grown by around 100 staff [2].

As to whether more bundling of meetings with other meetings should be done,
I find it to be a mixed bag. On the one hand, travel spending is reduced,
and it's more likely that people can attend meetings due to bundling things
together. On the other hand, the effectiveness of the meetings is reduced;
conferences like Wikimania are exhausting enough without having to do
important meetings that require a lot of concentration either before or
afterwards. Whether that trade-off is worth it or not depends on the
situation. It's certainly not as clear cut as you make it out to be here.

With regards to environmental impact, I always recommend the "green stuff"
thread
.

Dan

[1]: Source: Wikimedia Foundation financial reports
. In FY2013/14
there was a total of $1,965,854 spent on travel and conferences, and in
FY2017/18 the same spending was $1,954,772. Travel spending fluctuated up
by around 17% in the years between these, but it went back down afterwards.
Travel spending has remained basically the same despite significant growth
of the organisation, demonstrating the effectiveness of policy changes on
decreasing travel spending.

[2]: Source: my memory. An exact figure could probably be figured out by
looking at the history of the staff and contractors page on
foundation.wikimedia.org.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Mobile fundraising ads

2018-12-10 Thread Dan Garry (Deskana)
On Wed, 5 Dec 2018 at 11:44, vermont--- via Wikimedia-l <
wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org> wrote:

> Entering Wikipedia while not logged in, from both a PC and mobile device,
> lead to an insane amount of large, bright red banners asking for donations.
> Statistics may show that this sort of advertising gains the most clicks
> and donations. That should not be the only metric by which donation
> requests are decided.
>
> We are losing readers because of this.
>

Whilst there are certainly anecdotes to this effect, there's no evidence at
present that we're losing any more readers than normal. For example, page
views to the Simple English Wikipedia

(I chose this wiki because you linked to it in your email) are relatively
stable. Now, eyeballing page view graphs like I did is not really
scientific, but it gives a better indication than relying on isolated
comments.

Criticism of the fundraising banners (and there is plenty of it) will be
better received by the Fundraising team if we all stick to the facts, and
avoid extrapolation and hyperbole.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Using non-free elements vs our values (Apple Maps vs Wikipedia iOS app)

2017-03-21 Thread Dan Garry
On 21 March 2017 at 18:02, Strainu <strain...@gmail.com> wrote:

> 2017-03-21 18:17 GMT+02:00 Dan Garry <dga...@wikimedia.org>:
> > On 21 March 2017 at 14:34, Gerard Meijssen <gerard.meijs...@gmail.com>
> > wrote:
> >>
> >> Technical considerations are imho less relevant. What trumps it is
> >> functionality.
> >
> >
> > Technical considerations are very relevant if one is doing something
> > technical, for example developing an iOS app or a maps tile service.
>
>
> I wholeheartedly disagree. OSS projects often forget that the customer
> should come first, mostly because of lack of funding. But since WMF's
> software development is a secondary activity (and a very well funded
> one IMO), it should not make the same mistake. Spreading free
> knowledge must come first, technical considerations second.
>

Please do not twist my words. I said technical considerations are relevant,
not that customer needs do not come first. If something is incredibly
difficult to do, that is factored in to prioritisation, alongside the size
of the audience and expected impact. That is very basic product management.

Sadly, as is typical with this mailing list, we've now delved into a world
of hypotheticals, idealisms, and misrepresentations. It would not be a
productive use of time (and, indeed, donor money) for me to participate
further in this thread.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Using non-free elements vs our values (Apple Maps vs Wikipedia iOS app)

2017-03-21 Thread Dan Garry
On 21 March 2017 at 14:32, John <phoenixoverr...@gmail.com> wrote:

> This reminds me of en wiki's non-free policy.
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Non-free_content_criteria#1
> highlights the point fairly clearly Usage of non-free materials is often
> easier and higher quality than using the free equivalent . However
> Wikimedia's mission and goal's are to support and promote free content, yes
> you will need to jump thru a few more hoops and adds a little more work.
> But without those driving factors we will often see the free options wither
> and fail.


In general I do not think attempting to apply English Wikipedia policies to
product development is particularly meaningful, given that writing an
online encyclopaedia is very different from developing software.
Regardless, I do not think there is anyone opposed to this ideological
statement, but as I have explained in my email, ideology and reality
sometimes come in to conflict.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Using non-free elements vs our values (Apple Maps vs Wikipedia iOS app)

2017-03-21 Thread Dan Garry
On 21 March 2017 at 14:34, Gerard Meijssen <gerard.meijs...@gmail.com>
wrote:
>
> Technical considerations are imho less relevant. What trumps it is
> functionality.


Technical considerations are very relevant if one is doing something
technical, for example developing an iOS app or a maps tile service.


> Our maps have to be good everywhere and as far as I know OSM
> is superior in places where there is profit to be made from maps.


If you choose to ignore the technical difficulties and half of my earlier
email, then yes, that may be true.


> Current maps world wide and historical maps are what we need. How would you
> use the Apple maps for a map of the Ottoman empire?
>

Given that our maps service does not support this, and will not any time
soon, this is very off-topic.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Using non-free elements vs our values (Apple Maps vs Wikipedia iOS app)

2017-03-21 Thread Dan Garry
e our privacy policy[2] and was reviewed by
> > Wikimedia Foundation's Legal department before entering beta. The App’s
> > access to the users’ geolocation to recommend nearby articles, with the
> > users’ explicit consent, is already part of both apps. The new feature
> > merely adds a different way to visually view nearby articles - the user
> > must, as before, still provide explicit consent for the App to access
> their
> > geolocation. Users can always turn on or off the provision of their
> > geolocation via their iPhone location settings.
> >
> > The feature also makes requests to Apple’s map tile servers for display
> on
> > the App. These tiles may or may not be near the actual location of the
> > user. It doesn’t involve sending Apple the articles you read or anything
> > about your Wikipedia usage. Apple has public statements and documentation
> > to explain[3] how their maps service preserves privacy by using a
> > randomized and frequently changing device ID to request the maps, by not
> > tracking users over time, and by not  building map usage profiles of
> users.
> > Overall, Apple’s data collection practices are governed by their privacy
> > policy [4], which  users must agree to order to use their iPhones.
> >
> > We plan to further expand the explanation in the FAQ/privacy section of
> the
> > https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Apps/Team/iOS/Maps_service page
> > in
> > the next day or so.
> >
> > 3. As stated by others on this thread, the issue at hand is the
> feasibility
> > and usability of a libre maps tile server, and impacts on users and how
> it
> > reflects (or doesn’t) the values of Wikimedians. The rest of the work on
> > this feature (such as the time spent on search, visually clustering items
> > on the map, a list view of nearby landmarks, and the Wikipedia article
> > pins) will be applicable, independent of the map provider. In fact, I’d
> > estimate the engineer doing the work spent more time on hacking to try to
> > make a combination of MapBox and Wikimedia tiles work, than he did/will
> on
> > integrating/removing Apple maps.
> >
> > 4. This feature was announced on the Wikimedia Blog[5], described in an
> > initial MediaWiki.org page[6], all work was documented and tracked on
> > Phabricator (including an initial tech investigation, the request to
> remove
> > Apple Maps during development, and the overall feature[7]) and then the
> > decision to push into beta with Apple Maps further documented on
> > MediaWiki.org[8].
> >
> > In conclusion, I would like to thank you for the feedback and the
> > opportunity to engage in a civil discussion about these important issues.
> > Again, if you are interested in the next steps, I’d invite you to
> subscribe
> > and comment on the phab ticket https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T157763
> > or
> > the MediaWiki.org page.
> >
> > [1] Design specification: https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T130889
> > [2]
> > https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Apps/Team/iOS/
> Maps_service#Privacy
> > [3] https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT203033,
> > https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT207056,
> > http://www.apple.com/privacy/approach-to-privacy/
> > [4] http://www.apple.com/privacy/privacy-policy/
> > [5] https://blog.wikimedia.org/2016/06/17/wikipedia-mobile/
> > [6] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Apps/Team/iOS/Nearby
> > [7] https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/tag/ios-app-feature-places/
> > [8] https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Apps/Team/iOS/Maps_service
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Announcing the Hardware donation program

2017-03-17 Thread Dan Garry
On 17 March 2017 at 05:32, Gergő Tisza <gti...@gmail.com> wrote:

> This is one of those cool ideas which seem really obvious, but only in
> hindsight. Thanks!


Agreed. Thanks to Asaf and all involved in making this happen.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Positions open for strategy coordinator contractors.

2017-01-31 Thread Dan Garry
On 31 January 2017 at 07:08, Tomasz Ganicz <polime...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Just simple technical question. In the application form there is one tricky
> question:
>
> "Are you legally authorized to work in the United States"
>
> I guess vast majority of potential candidates are not legally authorized to
> work in US as they are citizens of countries which need a special
> work-permit to be legally employed in US.  Does it mean they cannot apply
> for this position or that WMF is able to organize  a work-permit for such
> persons?
>

The work authorisation question is a standard one included in job postings,
irrespective of work location. I would assume there are no issues with
candidates based outside the United States applying, especially since all
the new positions are advertised as "San Francisco, CA or Remote".

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimedia Deutschland: Abraham Taherivand appointed permanent Executive Director

2017-01-30 Thread Dan Garry
More excellent news from WMDE! Congratulations again, Abraham. :-)

Dan

On 30 January 2017 at 07:57, Tim Moritz Hector <
tim-moritz.hec...@wikimedia.de> wrote:

> Dear Wikimedians,
>
> It is our great pleasure to announce that during last weekend’s Board
> retreat, we voted to appoint Abraham Taherivand as Executive Director of
> Wikimedia Deutschland with immediate effect.
>
> Abraham has joined Wikimedia Deutschland in 2012, has been the director of
> our Software Development department, and interim ED in the past two months.
> In all his roles he has shown vast experience and qualifications as well as
> the much needed, deep commitment for Free Knowledge. We are convinced that
> Abraham is the right person at the right time for Wikimedia Deutschland and
> have great confidence that the management of the office is in good hands
> with him. Abraham will continue to lead the Software Development department
> on an interim basis until we have been able to fill this position with a
> new permanent director.
>
> Together with Abraham, WMDE staff, our members and communities as well as
> other interested parties, the board will analyse and – where applicable –
> revise the composition of leadership and decision making structures at WMDE
> in 2017. Kurt Jansson, Sebastian Moleski and myself will be steering this
> process and are available for your questions and feedback via email (
> praesid...@wikimedia.de).
>
> We wish Abraham the very best in this role, and the Board looks forward to
> continuing to work with him. Please join us in congratulating Abraham!
>
> For the Supervisory Board
> Tim Moritz Hector
> Chair
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] stranded travelers offered asylum in Canada

2017-01-29 Thread Dan Garry
On 29 January 2017 at 16:09, James Salsman <jsals...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I was told that several Wikimedia Foundation employees have been asked
> to refrain from travel, including at least one who is away from their
> family. If I am mistaken, I apologize.


That does not change the fact that your post is off-topic for this list.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Are inline donor banners something we view as acceptable?

2016-12-08 Thread Dan Garry
On 8 Dec 2016 3:50 p.m., "Comet styles"  wrote:

Spamming to ask for donations so that they don't spam again until
December 2017 (Y)


There's plenty of room for constructive criticism, but this is not it. Your
weaken your point by resorting to attacks. Please be more constructive in
your posts.

Dan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Personal Update

2016-11-02 Thread Dan Garry
The mere potential that a conflict of interest may arise in the future is
not necessarily a reason to resign from the board. This is why we have
legal counsel such as Stephen and Michelle to determine whether such
conflicts are serious enough to be inappropriate. We should all be
satisfied with their opinions that this situation is fine in light of their
reputation, experience, and credentials; I know I am.

Minor conflicts of interest sometimes arise. That is normal, and as Kelly
said, such conflicts can be managed. For example, when it happens, the
relevant party can do things like recusing themselves from that discussion
and stepping out of the room until the discussion is complete. This is
standard procedure adopted by boards of other organisations, and also in
parts of our movement such as the Arbitration Committees or Funds
Dissemination Committee.

Additionally, I am disturbed by the recent trend of seemingly all threads
involving members of the Board of Trustees inevitably having someone asking
a trustee to resign. I hope this absurdity does not continue.

Dan

On 2 November 2016 at 22:34, Rogol Domedonfors <domedonf...@gmail.com>
wrote:

> Congratuations to Kelly Battles on her new job at Quora.  I believe I'm
> correct in saying that this is a company whose business is to make a profit
> by pursuing its "mission is to share and grow the world’s knowledge".
> Surely that means that in general the more and better the Wikimedia
> projects pursue their mission, the more they will undercut Quora's
> business?  In particular, would not the Knowledge Engine, at least as
> originally conceived, be very much in direct competition with Quora's
> question-and-answer model?  It seems to me that Kelly's duty to her new
> employer is likely to come very clearly into conflict with her duty to the
> Foundation, and while it is posible that this can be managed, will it not
> seriously diminish her ability to work with the Board on the strategic
> thinking they are just about to start?  I hestiate to suggest that Kelly's
> best course of action is to step down from the Board but I do believe it
> needs serious consideration by herself and her fellow Trustees -- it is not
> clear whether it is better for the Board to have another vacancy, or a
> Trustee who is unable to engage in the strategy-setting which is so bady
> needed.  Indeed, with two vacancies already, and no clear indication of
> when or how they will be filled, I suggest that the Board is in a rather
> awkward position now.
>
> "Rogol"
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Please take part in the Flow satisfaction survey

2016-09-07 Thread Dan Garry
On 6 September 2016 at 11:32, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com> wrote:

> There have been many questions asked in various venues over the last year
> about whether Flow is alive or dead, and what its future looks like. James,
> perhaps you could take a moment to address that fundamental question?
>

I believe James answered you in his email:

"We in the Collaboration Team have currently paused major development of
Flow. We continue to maintain it, fixing urgent bugs and adding minor
features, but we're not planning to put large-scale efforts into improving
it further in the current fiscal year (until June 2017)... This survey will
help us to prioritise future development of Flow."

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Google returning outdated text snippet

2016-08-08 Thread Dan Garry
Hello!

Wes has reached out to Google so that we can talk to them about the general
issue of out-of-date search results and snippets.

In the mean time, Risker is correct. Google crawls our sites at its own
pace, so we don't control anything directly. Reaching out to them is the
easiest and quickest way to get these kinds of issues fixed; in my personal
experience doing this, they're pretty fast at fixing these kinds of issues.

Thanks,
Dan

On 7 August 2016 at 17:34, Risker <risker...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Actually, the best way to get this addressed is to email Google. Best to
> use the search result that you have concerns about, then go to the bottom
> of the page, click "Send Feedback" and complete the form.
>
> This is not, at its root, a Wikipedia problem.  Google has bots scanning
> our articles on a near-constant basis, as well, but they don't scan
> everything in real time.  I have seen very good results using this process,
> often within the hour.
>
> Risker
>
> On 7 August 2016 at 20:24, Pine W <wiki.p...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > Hi Pax,
> >
> > I believe that WMF Discovery is the team that is best suited to address
> > matters like this, so I am forwarding your email to the Discovery mailing
> > list.
> >
> > Pine
> >
> > On Aug 7, 2016 16:46, "Pax Ahimsa Gethen" <list-wikime...@funcrunch.org>
> > wrote:
> >
> > > In a recent thread about improving search, I posted a comment about a
> > > possible hazard of relying on Google to search Wikipedia.[1] I
> explained
> > > that Google had been displaying a text snippet from an outdated,
> > disruptive
> > > revision of the Gender page.[2] Well, that error has now resurfaced,
> and
> > at
> > > an editor's suggestion I posted to the Village Pump about it.[3] The
> > > initial response at VP was essentially "not our problem; go away" which
> > was
> > > not exactly encouraging.
> > >
> > > I'm sorry but if a major search engine is erroneously telling people
> that
> > > Wikipedia is stating " There are only 2 genders. Male and Female", that
> > is
> > > a cause of concern for me, and I want to know if or how this problem
> can
> > be
> > > fixed. As I explained on the talk page and in the Village Pump,
> Google's
> > > cache of the actual page is up to date; it's just the snippet that is
> > wrong.
> > >
> > > - Pax
> > >
> > > [1] https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2016-July/
> > > 084890.html
> > >
> > > [2] https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Gender=722247975
> > >
> > > [3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_(techni
> > > cal)#Google_returning_outdated_text_snippet_for_Gender_page
> > >
> > > --
> > > Pax Ahimsa Gethen | http://funcrunch.org
> > >
> > >
> > > ___
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] An example where search could be improved

2016-07-28 Thread Dan Garry
Hey Jimmy,

Thanks for the report. This problem is one that we've been aware of in
Discovery for quite some time. It actually serves as a good example of a
typical problem that we face in improving search: we know there's an issue
with a small subset of searches, and could fix this problem easily with a
hack, but that hack would make as many searches worse as it makes better.
Meanwhile, better solutions take much more time.

But, I have good news! This quarter one of Discovery's goals [1] is to work
on a proper solution to this very problem. We previously studied the
problem in detail [2].  Now, following on from our upgrade of Elasticsearch
last quarter, we're hoping that switching us over to BM25 [3] will fix many
of these relevance issues, and we're investigating that more right now.
Stay tuned!

Thanks,
Dan

[1]:
https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Engineering/2016-17_Q1_Goals#Discovery
[2]: https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T125083
[2]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Okapi_BM25

On 28 Jul 2016 5:09 a.m., "Jimmy Wales"  wrote:

> First, some context:
>
> I was in Philadelphia for the Democratic National Convention earlier
> this week, where I had been invited to speak (in a small side event)
> about connectivity and global development.  I spoke about our work in
> the languages of the developing world, and made a point to say that bad
> laws in the developed world which might hurt our work can be damaging
> for the development of the Internet in the rest of the world and urged
> lawmakers to not just think of various Internet legal questions as being
> "Silicon Valley versus Hollywood" but to understand that they impact how
> our volunteer community and many other ordinary people online.
>
> Second, the story:
>
> The main conference was held in the [[Wells Fargo Center
> (Philadelphia)]], an indoor arena where basketball and hockey teams play
> normally.
>
> A journalist friend said to me that he "finally found something that
> Wikipedia doesn't have" and he was surprised.  What was that, I said?
> "The history of Wells Fargo".  What?!!  Really?!! That seemed impossible
> to me.  He said we have an article about Wells Fargo that seems to be
> mostly about the contemporary bank, and when you search for Wells Fargo
> history there's also an article about the Wells Fargo History Museum.
>
> I popped on my phone and used my own personal preferred method of
> finding things in Wikipedia: Google.  I typed in "Wells Fargo history"
> and sure enough, the first two links are history pages from their
> official websites and the third link is Wikipedia - a normal state of
> affairs.  He started to apologize for raising a false alarm
>
> I asked him for more details on exactly how he searched, and explained
> that I regard it to be very sad if some volunteers spend hundreds of
> hours working on an article, painstakingly going over tons of details in
> an effort to get it right, and then someone couldn't find it.
>
> Here's what he did - and I replicated the steps and all was clear.
>
> Go to http://www.wikipedia.org/
>
> Make sure the dropdown in the search box is set to 'EN' - which it would
> have been for him.
>
> Start typing 'Wells Fargo history' and watch as the dropdown selections
> narrow.  You'll have the experience that he had - you'll see the bank
> article prominently featured and then various buildings (they have a
> habit of sponsoring sports arenas in various US cities) and finally as
> you start typing history it focuses in on the History Museum.
>
> If you don't choose any of those, then hit enter, you'll get to the
> search results page.  This is the one with a huge box of options at the
> top (which will be confusing and frightening to people who aren't
> already wikipedians) and then by my count the desired article is 13th on
> the page: [[History of Wells Fargo]].
>
> Now, I strongly suspect this could be fixed by making a redirect from
> [[Wells Fargo history]] to [[History of Wells Fargo]].
>
> Or a more serious fix could be had if the search engine understood that
> very very often in English [[X of Y]] can be written [[Y X]].  ([[List
> of French monarchs]] becomes [[French monarchs list]], see:
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Search?search=french+monarchs+list
> where the desired article is in 10th place.
>
> But my point is not to argue for any specific fix.  My point is to
> illustrate that there is a real problem with search, that it is
> impacting users, and that we should invest in fixing it.
>
> --Jimbo
>
>
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Board structure (Was: New Elections Committee)

2016-07-27 Thread Dan Garry
Hey Pine,

On 27 July 2016 at 08:25, Pine W <wiki.p...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> I'm not sure that I agree with you. The Board and Lila ignored some
> inquiries that I made on Meta. Discussions on this mailing list seem to
> attract at least as much good-faith participation as discussions on Meta. I
> would suggest that inquiries could be made in either venue, and the Board
> can simply acknowledge and collect them for action during the governance
> review.


If I'm understanding, you're saying that you've previously left questions
on Meta which ended up going unanswered, and therefore you'd prefer to ask
questions on this mailing list to increase your chances of a response.

Increasing the number of open channels of communication also increases the
burden of monitoring those channels to ensure that nothing goes missing.
Therefore, trying to engage in two places will likely increase the chance
of something going missing, rather than decreasing. This is likely why
Nataliia has asked that feedback be given in a single location, so that she
can be sure that she can see any feedback or questions that are given. I
would encourage you to try engaging on Meta, as Nataliia suggests, rather
than here, to reduce the chances that something goes missing or ignored.

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Offline medical app

2016-07-20 Thread Dan Garry
On 20 July 2016 at 11:10, James Heilman <jmh...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Yes we have apks for the app. Am working with an organization called
> "health information for all" to promote distribution. Am also hoping to see
> organic spread. Realize that google play is blocked in China but many are
> also using anonymizers to get around that. This was developed in
> collaboration with Wikimedians in Taiwan who are also helping with
> distribution. Appreciate your advice / help though on other mechanisms.


Excellent! It sounds like you've got it handled. :-)

Come to think of it, you might also consider looking at contacting Legal to
use the Wikipedia trademarks in the app. That might increase the app's
visibility and branding, and drive more downloads. This was done with
the Wikimedia
Commons
<https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=fr.free.nrw.commons=en> app
which is presently 100% volunteer supported. There's a form you can fill in
<https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Special:Contact/requestlicense>, or you
can email tradema...@wikimedia.org.

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Offline medical app

2016-07-20 Thread Dan Garry
James,

This is great! Thanks for sharing. The Wikipedia app for Android sees quite
a lot of usage both in China and in the Chinese diaspora, so choosing the
Chinese language for your second release is wise and will probably allow
you to reach a broad user base.

How are you planning on getting the app distributed in China? Google Play
is frequently inaccessible in China; in fact, we didn't realise China was a
big market for us until we analysed our own EventLogging data rather than
just looking at the statistics in Google Play. In China, distribution often
relies on people uploading APKs to third-party sites. The Wikipedia app is
big enough that users take care of that for us, but for this that might not
be the case. Do you have any plans to investigate that?

Thanks,
Dan





On 20 July 2016 at 09:01, James Heilman <jmh...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Hey All
>
> Today we launched a second language of our offline medical app (Chinese).
> It can be downloaded from google play here
> <
> https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.kiwix.kiwixcustomwikimedzh
> >
> .
>
> The English version
> <
> https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.kiwix.kiwixcustomwikimed
> >
> has now been downloaded more than 15k times with about 80% of downloads
> being from the developing world. The app currently only works for android.
> We hope to come out with further language versions soon. Email me if you
> are interested in getting involved.
>
>
> https://docs.google.com/document/d/1-JeTxBPmfeA_4CONBOguQCXYbJOgmi-Aj3yFpn6ar5w/
>
> Best
> --
> James Heilman
> MD, CCFP-EM, Wikipedian
>
> The Wikipedia Open Textbook of Medicine
> www.opentextbookofmedicine.com
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [discovery] Fwd: Improving search (sort of)

2016-07-15 Thread Dan Garry
On 15 July 2016 at 08:44, James Heilman <jmh...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Thanks for the in depth discussion. So if the terms people are using that
> result in "zero search results" are typically gibberish why do we care if
> 30% of our searches result in "zero search results"? A big deal was made
> about this a while ago.
>

Good question! I originally used to say that it was my aspiration that
users should never get zero results when searching Wikipedia. As a result
of Trey's analysis, I don't say that any more. ;-) There are many
legitimate cases where users should get zero results. However, there are
still tons of examples of where giving users zero results is incorrect;
"jurrasic world" was a prominent example of that.

It's still not quite right to say that *all* the terms that people use to
get zero results are gibberish. There is an extremely long tail
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_tail> of zero results queries that
aren't gibberish, it's just that the top 100 are dominated by gibberish.
This would mean we'd have to release many, many more than the top 100,
which significantly increases the risk of releasing personal information.


> If one was just to look at those search terms that more than 100 IPs
> searched for would that not remove the concerns about anonymity? One could
> also limit the length of the searches displaced to 50 characters. And just
> provide the first 100 with an initial human review to make sure we are not
> miss anything.
>

The problem with this is that there are still no guarantees. What if you
saw the search query "DF198671E"? You might not think anything of it, but I
would recognise it as an example of a national insurance number
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Insurance_number>, the British
equivalent of a social security number [1]. There's always going to be the
potential that we accidentally release something sensitive when we release
arbitrary user input, even if it's manually examined by humans.

So, in summary:

   - The top 100 zero results queries are dominated by gibberish.
   - There's a long tail of zero results queries, meaning we'd have to
   reduce many more than the top 100.
   - Manually examining the top zero results queries is not a foolproof way
   of eliminating personal data since it's arbitrary user input.

I'm happy to answer any questions. :-)

Thanks,
Dan

[1]: Don't panic, this example national insurance number is actually
invalid. ;-)

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] wikinews has a NPOV policy derived from wikipedia, mamamia ...

2016-04-22 Thread Dan Garry
On 22 April 2016 at 12:42, rupert THURNER <rupert.thur...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> i asked on the facebook group wikipeda weekly if joe/ed could publish
> an upcoming blog post on wikinews. joe sutherland mentioned ".. I
> simply cannot get my head around its attitude to news coverage". which
> i find frightening. an editor for 10 years, tens of thousands
> contributions, thousands of pages created, degree in journalism,
> dissertation about news on wikipedia, administrator.[1]
>
> jimmy, as wikinews refers an old mail of you from 2003 as the holy
> grail of NPOV, could you please clarify once and for all that your
> NPOV statemant you sent to wikien-l was valid for wikipedia. and not
> for wikisource, wikiquote, wikinews. best on the wikinews talk page
> concerning NPOV [2][4]. i understand of course that certain publishing
> standards might apply - but NPOV, and "sourced" in the sense of
> published somewhere else cannot be amongst them [3].
>

A discussion about whether the Communications Team should do blog posts on
Wikinews instead of the Wikimedia Blog seems quite off-topic for this very
general mailing list. Why don't you try contacting the Communications Team?


> just as a note, i hate that the blog [5] opens 20 times slower than
> wikinews on my mobile phone, that it is not in different languages,
> that i do not have the "usual mediawiki features". i hate that
> signpost [7] cannot be read on mobiles because of formatting. i hate
> the glam newsletter [6] for the same reason, despite beeig again on a
> different wiki, no "read in different languages". which is the main
> reason i write this mail ... and asked joe why not using wikinews. and
> i hate that wikinews does not use mediawiki features to properly
> classify what quality an article has, e.g. "blog", "npov", etc.
>

If you have criticism to give, then using strong language such as "hate" in
every single sentence will likely cause people to tune out. This means you
are unlikely to achieve anything. Almost everyone here is open to
constructive criticism, but this message is quite far away from
that. Please be respectful of your fellow Wikimedians, and try to restate
your criticism more constructively and neutrally.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] What can we learn

2016-04-11 Thread Dan Garry
On 11 April 2016 at 13:29, Chris Keating <chriskeatingw...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > I discussed with Jan-Bart, then chair, what is and what is not
> appropriate to
> > pursue as a member of the Board. I understood and followed his advice,
> but
> > it was frustrating. It was infuriatingly limiting.
> >
>
> E.g. any comment Denny made on Phabricator now being read in the light that
> he was a board member.
>

I've found this frustrating myself, at times. For example, I've avoided
commenting in my volunteer capacity on VisualEditor and Flow
related-threads because of how it may be perceived to have staff commenting
on such topics, in spite of the fact that I have never worked on
VisualEditor or Flow in my time at the Wikimedia Foundation.

I don't know what the best course of action to resolve these issues is, but
I am interested in such discussions.

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons search display results

2016-03-31 Thread Dan Garry
On 30 March 2016 at 17:10, Gnangarra <gnanga...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Already possible to get a grid of images in commons
>
> Start in Category:Lichens
> https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Lichens
> then use the FastCCI tool https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Help:FastCCI
>
> It returns
>
> https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Lichens?fastcci=%7B%22c1%22%3A9839830%2C%22d1%22%3A15%2C%22s%22%3A200%2C%22a%22%3A%22list%22%7D


This is great! Wouldn't it be wonderful if our default search experience
could be a bit like that, too? :-)

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikiwand

2016-03-31 Thread Dan Garry
On 31 March 2016 at 10:27, Anders Wennersten <m...@anderswennersten.se>
wrote:
>
> Besides the interface as such, where several have given, for me,
> interesting feedback, I wonder over the funding banner.
>
> Would not a widespread use of Wikiwand mean that readers no longer get the
> "begging" banner. And would that not mean a risk of decreasing funding?


My responsibility is product development; I leave such questions to
the Advancement
Department
<https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Staff_and_contractors#Advancement>, as
their responsibility.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikiwand

2016-03-31 Thread Dan Garry
On 30 March 2016 at 23:39, Anders Wennersten <m...@anderswennersten.se>
wrote:

> What is WMFs position on Wikiwand [1]?
>

There is no "official WMF position" on Wikiwand. The Wikimedia Foundation
is quite a diverse collection of individuals with a range of different
opinions. :-)

Personally, I like Wikiwand. I think there's some things they do really
well, like their table of contents on desktop, and some things that they
could improve, like the clutter of the interface on mobile devices. The
performance of their website used to be incredibly poor, so much so that it
took over a minute to load on my iPhone 4. They seem to have made quite
some strides in that area though, because I don't have this problem at all
on my Nexus 5.

I've tried contacting them a few times to share knowledge and see how we
could collaborate, but I never received any response from them.

I hope they keep improving their interface. I think it's a worthwhile
project.

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons search display results

2016-03-30 Thread Dan Garry
On 30 March 2016 at 13:19, Gerard Meijssen <gerard.meijs...@gmail.com>
wrote:

> Hoi,
> Hoe does this fit in with the plan to use structured data for Commons? As I
> understand it, the plan is to use tags for pictures, this will make what
> pictures depict findable in any language with the appropriate labels.
>

The Search Team doesn't know the details yet. But, the more structured data
there is about files, the easier time we'll have building compelling
experiences that return relevant results. That's why we noted the
structured data for Commons project as a dependency
<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Discovery/FDC_Proposal#Dependencies>
in the narrative document. I doubt we'd be able to do anything other than
trivial improvements to media search without having structured data about
the files in place.

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons search display results

2016-03-30 Thread Dan Garry
Hello Micru!

Responses in-line.

On 30 March 2016 at 10:33, David Cuenca Tudela <dacu...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I was looking for some lichen images on Commons and I was wondering how can
> I show a grid of images. I tried several options but nothing, I think that
> there was some hack to make the search results look more like Google
> images, or maybe I am wrong?
>

I assume you're looking for something like this
<https://i.imgur.com/QWQgJmK.png>? That screenshot was taken the dialogue
used to instead media in VisualEditor. Unfortunately, the search interface
in MediaWiki does not offer this functionality right now.

This screenshot also happens to illustrate another common problem with
media search; you probably weren't looking for the Basilica of Our Lady of
Licheń <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basilica_of_Our_Lady_of_Liche%C5%84> in
the village of Licheń Stary
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liche%C5%84_Stary> in Poland, but there it
is anyway!


> Is this part of the Discovery team work?
>

Yes, improving the experience of the search page on-wiki is within the
scope of the Search Team in the Discovery Department. However, the team is
not actively working on this right now. Improving media search in
particular is presently on the roadmap for FY 2016-17
<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Discovery/FDC_Proposal#Strategic:_Focus_area_1>
(July 2016 - June 2017) as a strategic focus area.

Hope this helps.

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] any open search engine for web project starting

2016-03-29 Thread Dan Garry
On 29 March 2016 at 13:36, Dan Garry <dga...@wikimedia.org> wrote:
>
> Yes, if users are interested. This is an incredibly early idea that is not
> fully fleshed out; we don't know how we would achieve something like this
> right now. A naïve example of how we could do something like this is by
> boosting the score of certain search results based on the presence of
> templates on the page. The reality would likely be something significantly
> more complex than this.
>

A detail I forgot to mention here is that this example is not hypothetical.
I was referring to boost-templates
<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Help:CirrusSearch#boost-templates:>, which
one can already use in CirrusSearch. This work predates the Discovery
Department. So, in that sense, public curation of relevance already exists
in some sense. My point was that building on this is not something we're
working on right now.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] any open search engine for web project starting

2016-03-29 Thread Dan Garry
On 28 March 2016 at 17:48, Andreas Kolbe <jayen...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> I understand you are currently only working on internal search,
> representing stage 1 of this project. But does the long-term vision of the
> subsequent stages still include things like –
>
> 1. incorporation of non-Wikimedia sources in search results,
>

Potentially. However, it's a vague idea, and we've got a long way to go
before this could be seriously considered, so we're not actively working on
it. Right now we have a lot of information even within Wikimedia sites
which is surfaced poorly; surfacing such information is an important part
of Discovery's narrative for FY2016-17
<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Discovery/FDC_Proposal> (July
2016 - June 2017). I intend for Discovery to work on improving that problem
first.


> 2. an open source knowledge engine like IBM's Watson (i.e. an answer engine
> based on structured data),
>

https://askplatyp.us/ does a pretty good job of this already, and it's
backed by Wikidata. If you want to learn more, you can read the blog post
on wikimedia.de
<https://blog.wikimedia.de/2015/02/23/platypus-a-speaking-interface-for-wikidata/>
and
check out the website of the creators <https://projetpp.github.io/>.

In the long term, I could see something like this being incorporated into
search on our sites if it's good enough. Like the above, it's also a long
way off, and we're not actively working on these efforts.


> 3. an open source search engine,
>

Clearly yes, because we're actively building a search engine for Wikipedia
and our work is open source. If you actually mean "a general purpose web
search engine", then this question is already in the FAQ
<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Discovery/FAQ#Are_you_building_a_search_engine_to_compete_with_Google.3F>
which you referenced, and the answer is no. I presently don't see how
Discovery could offer something worthwhile to users here, especially with
projects like Common Search already working on the problem.


> 4. public curation of relevance (i.e. volunteer-based search results
> ranking)?


Yes, if users are interested. This is an incredibly early idea that is not
fully fleshed out; we don't know how we would achieve something like this
right now. A naïve example of how we could do something like this is by
boosting the score of certain search results based on the presence of
templates on the page. The reality would likely be something significantly
more complex than this.

So, in short, many things are potentially on the table, but they're early
ideas which are not actively being explored, and in exploring them we may
decide not to do them. Sorry if that's not definitive enough of a
statement, but roadmaps are intentionally not set in stone so as to be
flexible and iterative.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] any open search engine for web project starting

2016-03-28 Thread Dan Garry
A few of us from Discovery (myself, Tomasz Finc, Erik Bernhardson, and some
others too) had the opportunity to meet Sylvain recently when he was in San
Francisco. We chatted about touch points between Discovery and Common
Search.

One important thing I personally learnt from chatting to Sylvain is that
the challenges are *very* different for building an in-site search (like
Discovery) and building a web search (like Common Search). Data that's
critically important for one may be close to irrelevant for the other.
Scaling issues for one may not even exist for the other. We did identify a
few areas where Common Search may be creating datasets that would be useful
for us in Discovery; Sylvain said he'd be in touch with us if that happens.

We're going to keep in touch and see if we can help each other out in the
future.

Thanks,
Dan

On 18 March 2016 at 22:15, Erik Moeller <eloque...@gmail.com> wrote:

> 2016-03-18 21:44 GMT-07:00 SarahSV <sarahsv.w...@gmail.com>:
> > On Fri, Mar 18, 2016 at 5:17 PM, carl hansen <carlhansen1...@gmail.com>
> > wrote:
> >
> >> https://about.commonsearch.org/
> >>
> >> "We are building a nonprofit search engine for the Web"
> >>
> >> Sounds alot like Knowledge Engine, if there were such a thing.
> >> Any overlap with wikimedia projects?
>
> > Thanks for the link, Carl. Erik and Lydia are advisors, so perhaps they
> > could say a bit more about it.
>
> Sylvain has been working on this stuff for a while, blissfully
> ignorant of Wikimedia's discussions of search engines, rocketships and
> so on. He reached out to me shortly before the public announcement and
> we've talked a bit about governance, community & funding models. I've
> agreed to provide some continued advice along the way but have not
> otherwise been involved.
>
> He recently posted on wikitech-l asking for suggestions how
> Wikipedia/Wikidata could be integrated:
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikitech-l/2016-March/084984.html
>
> There's a lot of heavy lifting still until Common Search can become a
> viable project even for narrowly defined purposes but I think it's a
> very worthwhile effort. It also is -- I think correctly -- based on
> the largest pre-existing open effort to index the web, the Common
> Crawl. This could lead to a mutually beneficial relationship between
> Common Search and Common Crawl. From a Wikimedia perspective, it might
> develop into an opportunity to jointly showcase some of the amazing
> stuff that Wikidata can already do.
>
> Erik
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF non-disclosure agreements and non-disparagement clauses

2016-03-14 Thread Dan Garry
On 14 March 2016 at 09:40, Risker <risker...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I think it is probably best that human resources issues (including the
> reasons for people leaving the organization) are not included in this list,
> unless expressly disclosed by the individuals.
>

And, in particular, wild speculation on said topics. Let's keep our
discussions here grounded in fact, not speculation.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikipedia.org portal page update!

2016-03-11 Thread Dan Garry
On 11 March 2016 at 16:09, Samuel Klein <meta...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Perhaps you could do this w two queries, one to a composite index that is
> only updated weekly.
>

Indeed, there are mechanisms that can make cross-wiki searching more
feasible. In fact, one mechanism we are in the very early stages of
exploring is merging all the projects in a given language into a single
index, so that one could search *all* projects in a language, rather than
just a single project in a given language. I have no timeline here; as I
said, we're in the very early stages, and of course we have other work on
the go at the same time.


> > Additionally, it would likely return you a bunch of really irrelevant
> results,
>
> Make this opt-in, add a different background color for results from the
> all-language index, & divide their search-relevance by a
> language-prominence factor...
>

I plan to worry more about the user experience implications that I
mentioned once we're a bit closer to solving the technical feasibility
questions. As you've shown, these are definitely solvable problems, but I
don't want to put the cart before the horse, as it were. :-)

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikipedia.org portal page update!

2016-03-11 Thread Dan Garry
On 11 March 2016 at 14:22, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Thank you to the Discovery team -- it seems to me that your work has been
> largely overshadowed by political concerns in recent months (which may have
> been necessary, but not pleasant).
>
> I'm delighted to see working and useful software emerge, in spite of the
> challenging environment that has existed around your work. I'm delighted to
> see your substantive engagement (e.g., Dan and Adam, above) with feedback
> about the implementation.
>
> Kudos!
> -Pete


Thanks, Pete. In this area, I want to direct the praise to Chris Koerner
and Keegan Peterzell who have helped Discovery immensely with community
engagement, community feedback, and announcements of our work.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikipedia.org portal page update!

2016-03-11 Thread Dan Garry
On 11 March 2016 at 10:52, ViswaPrabha (വിശ്വപ്രഭ) <vp2...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Failed my dream :(
>
> Any string in any language in any wikipedia project. How far is my dream?
>

I share your dream! :-)

Unfortunately, the dream is quite far away from reality. Querying every
search index would put a big performance strain on the search servers.
Additionally, it would likely return you a bunch of really irrelevant
results, so there's a lot of user experience implications that would need
to be figured out as well. Discovery is not actively working on this at
present.

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikipedia.org portal page update!

2016-03-11 Thread Dan Garry
On 11 March 2016 at 11:35, Adam Baso <ab...@wikimedia.org> wrote:

> Hi there - speaking to one thing I'm familiar with, with respect to image
> selection, we believe https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T124225 should
> address fair use ("non-free") images, although page reparses will happen
> gradually (pages are cached for up to 30 days or so).
>

Indeed. I manually triggered a reparse on a page which I knew had a
non-free page image (by adding a space
<https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mario=prev=709579986>
to a part of the page where it didn't affect the layout), and the page
image was recalculated and is now a free image. Working as intended! :-)

In reply to Geni's query, it is important to point out, however, that
the English
Wikipedia guidelines on non-free content
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Non-free_content> includes a list
of exemptions
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Non-free_content#Exemptions> which
explicitly allows non-free content to be surfaced in search results without
accompanying fair use rationales. Additionally, English Wikipedia policy is
not applicable on a global page such as wikipedia.org. Therefore, the
portal was never actually in violation of any policy. Regardless, as Adam
noted, for other reasons where this policy *did* apply, T124225
<https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T124225> was enacted which prevents
non-free images from appearing as thumbnails in search results.

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] What it means to be a high-tech organization

2016-02-28 Thread Dan Garry
On 28 February 2016 at 13:07, Andreas Kolbe <jayen...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> What originally triggered my curiosity was this: I noticed a couple of
> weeks ago that the Kindle offered a Wikipedia look-up function. I couldn't
> recall -- and cannot find -- any corresponding WMF announcement. So, how
> did this happen?
>

Amazon is using our APIs and/or dumps. There's little to add to Brion's
explanation of how this works, so I'd suggest you re-read it.


> "In side project work, the team spent time on API continuation queries,
> Android IP editing notices, Amazon Kindle and other non-Google Play
> distribution, and Google Play reviews (now that the Android launch dust has
> settled, mobile apps product management will be triaging the reviews)."
>
> https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Engineering/Report/2014/July


To the best of my knowledge, that refers to exactly what Brion suggested it
might, specifically working on the Android app so that it's compatible with
more platforms. It has nothing to do with the Wikipedia lookup
functionality on the Kindle.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] What it means to be a high-tech organization

2016-02-28 Thread Dan Garry
On 28 February 2016 at 07:31, Yaroslav M. Blanter <pute...@mccme.ru> wrote:
>
> The relocation does not have to happen overnight. It can easily take
> several years (which is likely longer than the average time a WMF employee
> spends in the organization). But I think discussing this as a strategical
> direction would be beneficial for the movement. The topic was raised
> several times in the past, and I did not get the impression that there was
> any willingness to discuss it from the Board / WMF. (I might be wrong
> though, and pointing out to such discussions will be appreciated).
>

Considering relocation of the office (or, indeed, considering whether we
even need a centralised office at all) is a topic of debate amongst staff.
Lots of staff have opinions, some stronger than others. I imagine this
debate will ultimately inform whomever decides whether we should relocate
or not.

As an aside, this is an example of why I find statements like "the WMF has
no willingness to discuss X" to be problematic; like the larger Wikimedia
community, the Wikimedia Foundation is a collective of individuals with a
broad range of opinions. Statements like "WMF thinks X" or "Community
thinks Y" are almost always trivially false. I find it better to be
specific. :-)

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] What kind of ED would you like to see?

2016-02-26 Thread Dan Garry
On 26 February 2016 at 16:57, Leigh Thelmadatter <osama...@hotmail.com>
wrote:

> Should only the staff have a say in this vision?  Almost all, if not all,
> of this talk is about what the staff wants.
>

You are correct that non-staff should have a say in the vision, of course.
It affects everyone in the movement, as well as our readers.

However, as the staff have been and will be more directly involved with the
Executive Director on a day-to-day level, it seems sensible to consider
such viewpoints carefully.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] I am going to San Francisco

2016-02-26 Thread Dan Garry
On 26 February 2016 at 17:15, Brion Vibber <bvib...@wikimedia.org> wrote:
>
> * There is also a big need for private conversations, which means many/most
> of these talks won't be recorded and definitely would not be made public in
> detail. Many won't feel comfortable in a recorded conversation. Many still
> won't feel comfortable in a large group that's not recorded. Many still
> won't feel comfortable in a small group conversation. And others still
> won't feel comfortable opening up in a 1:1 private conversation with
> someone in a power position at their employer.
>

Well said. It's crucial to foster an environment in which anyone and
everyone can raise their concerns in a space that they are comfortable
with, in order to make sure people's voices are heard.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Superprotect is gone

2015-11-05 Thread Dan Garry
On 5 November 2015 at 10:14, Laurentius <laurentius.w...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Just to understand, is it still present in MediaWiki but not active on
> Wikimedia sites or it not in the MediaWiki code anymore?
>

There was a patch merged which removed the protection level completely:
https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/c/251286/

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimedia Foundation quarterly reviews for April-June 2015

2015-07-19 Thread Dan Garry
On 19 July 2015 at 15:42, Pine W wiki.p...@gmail.com wrote:

 11. I like the overall QR format, the notes on Meta, and their
 consolidation in to the format presented here. This makes it relatively
 easy to understand what's happening inside of WMF. The evolution of the QR
 process is very nice to see. I know that this causes some stress for people
 who are presenting their projects, but overall I think the organization is
 healthier for having these reviews, and the transparency is especially
 welcome.


I can only speak for my own experience, but you may be pleased to hear that
the new quarterly review process has actually made things significantly*
less* stressful for me!

Previously expectations around what should be included were unclear, so
preparing for the review was a week-long affair of compiling all of the
events of the quarter and all plans for next quarter into a single slide
deck, normally of over 50 slides.

In contrast, the new process is simple and straightforward. The
standardisation of the template lets everyone know what to expect, and
makes the slide decks significantly more useful to those that didn't
participate directly in the review.

Terry and his team deserve immense praise for how they've evolved this
process to be lightweight and useful. Thank you!

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Geohack

2015-07-19 Thread Dan Garry
Hello Nouill!

Thanks for reaching out!

With the tools that are on Tool Labs, the responsibility for maintenance is
on the person who wrote the tool and put it on Tool Labs. For that, you can
look at https://tools.wmflabs.org/. In this case, you can see that the
people that wrote that tool are Magnus Manske and Kolossos. In the first
instance, those would be the best people to reach out to with questions
about it. There is a Labs Team
https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Staff_and_contractors#Labs at the
Wikimedia Foundation, but their responsibility is maintaining the labs
infrastructure.

In the case of maps, the Discovery Department currently has a Maps Team
https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Staff_and_contractors#Maps which is
working on maps-related tasks. Our goal
https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Engineering/2015-16_Q1_Goals#Maps_.26_Geo
is
to, by the end of September, deploy a new tile service to production which
will be more robust and reliable than the existing services like GeoHack
which are deployed to Labs. This will allow volunteer developers, like
those that built GeoHack, to build more stable and appealing features. The
Discovery Department has no plans to maintain GeoHack ourselves.

Hopefully this answers your query. Let me know if you have any further
questions.

Thanks,
Dan

On 19 July 2015 at 07:26, Nou Nouill nounou...@gmail.com wrote:

 Hi !

 So today Geohack don't work few hours, once gain. It has been many times
 that Geohack is down these last months (and years). The previous issue was
 linked with the Tools labs problems (but not today, Tools Labs was
 working).

 In addition to that maintenance problem, I don't see Geohack evolve those
 last years. The tool have a old design. It has different configurations for
 each language, so when a user do translation, he has to adapt to each
 configuration.
 Moreover, in plenty of language, Geohack have long lists of hundred links,
 with lot of useless links, because languages communities want to describe
 exhaustively web mappings service. So the presentation of Geohack is often
 very weighed down.

 For me, Geohack is the more useful tools on Tools Labs with a massive
 visibility for the viewers (each coordinate on WM use Geohack and there are
 several hundred thousands coordinates). Geohack is also use by contributors
 (when I translate a article with a coordinate, It's usually more practice
 to check coordinate in Geohack).

 So, I want to ask if the Foundation have a plan to improve Geohack ? I have
 the impression when I see https://tools.wmflabs.org that Geohack was
 mainly
 maintain by volunteer, but for me Geohack is a core item of the Wikimedia
 sphere. So I don't understand that situation since few years. I hope it's
 the place to do this comment.

 Nouill.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] 400 days of lila tretikov and 60 million dollars spent - where is mobile editing?

2015-06-28 Thread Dan Garry
Hi Rupert,

I was the product owner
https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Reading/Web/Team/Roles_and_responsibilities#Product_owner
for the Wikipedia app from before it launch until April last year, so I can
answer your question. Editing is supported on the native mobile apps, and
has been since their launch last year (June 2014 for Android, July 2014 for
iOS). The reason it did not work for you in this case is because of a
formatting error in the wikitext of that specific page. I fixed the problem
in the wikitext
https://de.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikipedia:Offener_Brief_an_die_Mitglieder_des_Europ%C3%A4ischen_Parlaments_zur_Erhaltung_der_Panoramafreiheitdiff=143559219oldid=143559146,
and successfully added my signature as a test
https://de.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikipedia:Offener_Brief_an_die_Mitglieder_des_Europ%C3%A4ischen_Parlaments_zur_Erhaltung_der_Panoramafreiheitdiff=prevoldid=143559243
(which
I then reverted since I don't want to interfere in the discussion). You
should be able to add your signature now. (I skipped over the exact details
of what the issue was, let me know if you want hear them)

As an aside, I would note that the way you communicated this question was
suboptimal and unnecessarily combative. The title of your email is
provocative, and makes unnecessary, exaggerated, and incorrect
implications. It would be nice if you avoided doing this in the future, as
people will be more willing to involve themselves in a discussion if they
do not feel like they are being attacked.

Thanks,
Dan

On 28 June 2015 at 03:44, rupert THURNER rupert.thur...@gmail.com wrote:

 hi,

 now we are approaching 400 days of lila tretikov at the helm of the
 wikimedia foundation, and 60 million us dollars spent, i was not able
 to sign a simple wikipedia page via the mobile app. i think something
 is going seriously wrong here :(

 what was the use case? the european union wants to harmonize the
 freedom of panorama:
 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_of_panorama#European_Union. the
 german wikipedia had a wikipedia banner to sign a petition, and also
 wrote mails about it. which i thought is a nice idea. i am reading
 mails on the phone following links to wikipedia, i tried it this time
 as well, and i was not able to accomplish the most simple task of
 contribution - to add my signature at the bottom of a list. earlier in
 the year i already tried to add a link and i could not do it - but i
 admit that is a much more difficult task in the mobile app.

 the german links:
 * sign here:
 https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Offener_Brief_an_die_Mitglieder_des_Europ%C3%A4ischen_Parlaments_zur_Erhaltung_der_Panoramafreiheit
 *
 https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Initiative_f%C3%BCr_die_Panoramafreiheit

 just as a side note, up to know this page collected close to 4'000
 signatures.

 best,
 rupert

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] 400 days of lila tretikov and 60 million dollars spent - where is mobile editing?

2015-06-28 Thread Dan Garry
On 28 June 2015 at 12:44, Dan Garry dga...@wikimedia.org wrote:

 I was the product owner
 https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Reading/Web/Team/Roles_and_responsibilities#Product_owner
 for the Wikipedia app from before it launch until April last year,


Correction: this was meant to read until April *this* year.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] CAPTCHA issues discouraging new editors

2015-06-18 Thread Dan Garry
Previous discussions on this topic:
https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikitech-l/2014-November/079318.html

Dan

On 18 June 2015 at 07:22, Andy Mabbett a...@pigsonthewing.org.uk wrote:

 [I'm posting this here because although the experiences described
 relate to en.WP, I'm sure it applies to other projects as well]


 I have trained over 100 people to edit Wikipedia this year; in around
 a dozen different sessions.

 Not a single session has occurred, when someone has not had a problem
 with our CAPTCHA interface. Often, several editors in a single sesison
 are confused.

 A user saves an edit, and the system responds with the requirement for
 them to complete a CAPTCHA .

 Sometimes, they do not realise what has happened (the paragraphs
 beginning with the words Your edit includes new external links...
 seem insufficiently prominent), or they do not understand what is
 being asked of them (what words are they being asked to retype?), or
 they do not see the very small box where they are supposed to enter
 the CAPTCHA (on my screen, in Firefox and signed out, it is
 pre-populated with Enter the words yc, where the c is half of a
 letter o).

 Naturally I am then able to assist them, but a user editing alone may
 simply abandon the task in frustration.

 I urge each of you to try this, by editing while logged out

 I suggest the WMF conduct some urgent usability tests around this
 feature, and either redesign or remove it.

 --
 Andy Mabbett
 @pigsonthewing
 http://pigsonthewing.org.uk

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimedia Commons mobile app

2015-05-16 Thread Dan Garry
Hi Ivan,

There are no plans right now to resume work on the Commons app. You can see
the rationale in the thread on this last month:
https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/mobile-l/2015-April/008970.html

Dan

2015-05-16 3:45 GMT-07:00 Ivan Martínez gala...@gmail.com:

 Hi,
 There is some update about Wikimedia Commons mobile app or it is planned to
 do something about it?
 Thanks,

 --
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 *Wikimanía 2015 Chief CoordinatorUser:ProtoplasmaKid
 @protoplasmakidhttp://wikimania2015.wikimedia.org
 http://wikimania2015.wikimedia.org*

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimedia Commons mobile app

2015-05-16 Thread Dan Garry
This post from the thread last month might shed some light on the problems
with mobile uploads:
https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/mobile-l/2015-April/008986.html

The short answer is that the teams that were Mobile Apps and Mobile Web are
now part of the broader Readership Department, so won't be working on
anything related to mobile uploads. There is a Multimedia Team
https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Staff_and_contractors#Multimedia in
the Editing Department. I'd suggest speaking to them about it.

The longer answer is that I think campaign proposals should be holistic. If
the campaign wants to make mobile uploads a priority, then the campaign
should not rely on some other subunit of the movement doing a total change
in priorities to accommodate that. That's just not very realistic.

A simple little app, managed by the organisers of the campaign, to upload
images for a specific campaign seems like a much better approach to this
problem. Image uploading functionality is available over our APIs, which
are open and well documented, so it's perfectly doable. You'll have a
pretty easy time finding app developers looking for work; the number of
people in the world who develop apps is much, much higher than the number
of people who develop MediaWiki extensions. It needn't be a mobile app
either; one could easily make a little web app that uses the API that's
hosted in Labs if you prefer. You could budget for app development that in
whatever budgeting requests you make to support the campaign, then you're
the one that's in total control of it. This is *exactly* why we make our
APIs totally open, so that people can do this kind of thing!

That said, these are just my opinions as a person who leads product
development teams at the Wikimedia Foundation. I am not an authority on how
the grantmaking system works or should work. :-)

Dan

On 16 May 2015 at 09:43, Lodewijk lodew...@effeietsanders.org wrote:

 Hi Fsn,

 not wanting to second guess or anything, but will the functionality (being
 able to upload something easily from mobile, especially using campaign
 infrastructures - and ideally connectable with other tools so that photo
 competitions can use it) become available in another way?

 Best,
 Lodewijk

 On Sat, May 16, 2015 at 6:37 PM, Dan Garry dga...@wikimedia.org wrote:

  Hi Ivan,
 
  There are no plans right now to resume work on the Commons app. You can
 see
  the rationale in the thread on this last month:
  https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/mobile-l/2015-April/008970.html
 
  Dan
 
  2015-05-16 3:45 GMT-07:00 Ivan Martínez gala...@gmail.com:
 
   Hi,
   There is some update about Wikimedia Commons mobile app or it is
 planned
  to
   do something about it?
   Thanks,
  
   --
   *Iván Martínez*
  
  
  
   *Wikimanía 2015 Chief CoordinatorUser:ProtoplasmaKid
   @protoplasmakidhttp://wikimania2015.wikimedia.org
   http://wikimania2015.wikimedia.org*
  
   Hemos creado la más grande colección de conocimiento compartido. Ayuda
 a
   proteger a Wikipedia, dona ahora:
   https://donate.wikimedia.org
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Foundation-l] Single login - decision 2004

2015-04-22 Thread Dan Garry
Nice work, Kunal and Keegan. :-)

Dan

On 21 April 2015 at 23:34, Keegan Peterzell kpeterz...@wikimedia.org
wrote:

 On Nov 11, 2004, at 03:27:00 UTC , Erik Moeller erik_moel...@gmx.de
 wrote
 [1]:

  Hi,
  there's been some movement forward on the Single User Login (SUL) issue.
 I
 
  ask the Board to review this mail carefully as this has significant long-
  term implications and we need Board input to go ahead. I also ask other
  developers to correct me if I misrepresent anything.
  There are currently three competing strategies. Before I describe these
  strategies, let me point out that one important consideration for any
  system is scalability. That is, single login will be used on all existing
  and future Wikimedia projects, and potentially even on non-Wikimedia
 sites
 
  which we allow to participate in our system.
  The three strategies are:
  1) GLOBAL NAMESPACE, IMMEDIATE CONFLICT RESOLUTION
  We try to move towards a single global user namespace for all Wikimedia
  wikis. If a name is already taken in the global namespace, you have to
  find one which isn't.
  For the migration, any names which clearly belong to the same user are
  combined into one. If passwords and email addresses are different, the
  user can manually link together any accounts which belong to him by
  providing the passwords.
  For cases of true name conflicts between the existing wikis, there is a
  resolution phase, where factors like seniority, use on multiple wikis vs.
  a single one, etc., are weighed in - the loser has to choose a new
  account name.
  After the manual resolution phase, any remaining accounts are converted
 to
 
  the new system automatically by making them unique, e.g. by adding a
  number to the username. The transition is now complete. The old system no
  longer exists.

 ---

  1) is very complex, and we may not find someone willing to deal with the
  name conflict resolution issue and take the blame from annoyed users at
  the same time. Naming conflicts will always be an issue in this scheme,
 as
 
  e.g. all common first names will be taken, and any small wiki hooking up
  with our SUL system would feel this impact. People can mutate these
  usernames relatively easily to make them unique - Erik333 - and the
 system
 
  can offer such mutations, but it's still a bit annoying.


 This is now complete [2]. That wasn't too bad.

 1.
 https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2004-November/061327.html
 2.
 https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2015-April/077576.html

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Copyright status of the mobile application button icons?

2015-04-18 Thread Dan Garry
I doubt this logo crosses the originality threshold. The logo is probably
public domain. That said, it's definitely a trademark of the Wikimedia
Foundation, and should be marked as such.

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer. :-)

Dan

On 18 April 2015 at 08:42, Aleksey Bilogur aleksey.bilo...@gmail.com
wrote:

 Hello, what is the copyright status of the application icon for Wikipedia
 mobile applications? This one, specifically, as far as I can tell:

 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:WikipediaMobileAppLogo.png

 The copyright information lists it as being fair use, but that seems
 strange to me; is this actually correct?

 Apologies for not sending this to mobile-l, my message there was
 auto-bounced and I don't want to go through the subscription process just
 to send one email.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Copyright status of the mobile application button icons?

2015-04-18 Thread Dan Garry
On 18 April 2015 at 11:32, Aleksey Bilogur aleksey.bilo...@gmail.com
wrote:

 I want to use it to illustrate something I'm building in the Wikipedia
 domain on the en-wiki, so I'd like to know this for sure. Who's a good
 person to ask; or, will they come here instead? :)

 I thought that WMF logos can be used freely within the projects, however
 that's arranged legally, and thought it was strange that this would be an
 exception.


You can use Wikimedia trademarks on a Wikimedia site without asking anyone.
See here:
https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Trademark_policy#trademark-allowed

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Copyright status of the mobile application button icons?

2015-04-18 Thread Dan Garry
On 18 April 2015 at 13:27, Ricordisamoa ricordisa...@openmailbox.org
wrote:

 IANAL, but I know for sure that trademark status and copyright status are
 different things. And this thread is definitely asking for the latter...


Well, I've given the answer to both questions now. Is there some other
question you need help with?

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Copyright status of the mobile application button icons?

2015-04-18 Thread Dan Garry
Happy to help. :-)

Dan

On 18 April 2015 at 13:56, Aleksey Bilogur aleksey.bilo...@gmail.com
wrote:

 Thanks for the help, all.

 On Sat, Apr 18, 2015 at 4:47 PM, Dan Garry dga...@wikimedia.org wrote:

  On 18 April 2015 at 13:27, Ricordisamoa ricordisa...@openmailbox.org
  wrote:
  
   IANAL, but I know for sure that trademark status and copyright status
 are
   different things. And this thread is definitely asking for the
 latter...
 
 
  Well, I've given the answer to both questions now. Is there some other
  question you need help with?
 
  Dan
 
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] How to find the Wikimedia Commons Android App form Google Play? (Mohammed BAchounda)

2015-04-16 Thread Dan Garry
On 16 April 2015 at 10:03, Aleksey Bilogur aleksey.bilo...@gmail.com
wrote:

 Just to be sure, I don't have any ill will against Yuvi, I'm just highly
 surprised that the staff problem is apparently bad enough that the mobile
 team is killing their own secondaries, even though mobile is one of the WMF
 ' S developmental foci.


When the Commons app was sunset, we had three mobile apps developers, one
for iOS and two for Android. If we decided to make the Commons app a
priority, it would've effectively halted development of the Wikipedia app.

Given that the Commons app had around 300 monthly active users, compared to
the Wikipedia app's 9,000,000 monthly active users, the decision to sunset
the Commons app was not a hard one. We were focussing our efforts on the
area that had the largest impact.

Revisiting that decision in the future is always a possibility. But, to be
clear, right now there are no plans to resume development of the Commons
app.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF office location and remodel

2015-04-08 Thread Dan Garry
The Android app is now a featured app in Google Play. This means Google has
recognised our design of the app to be amongst the best. This has led to
the app being downloaded and used more, therefore supporting our
organisation's goal to share knowledge. A massive part of why that happened
is because myself and the app's primary designer were able to attend a
conference Google had on material design, and relay that to our team. The
conference was in San Francisco, so cost us nothing to attend.

My point is that these kinds of opportunities crop up a lot in San
Francisco, and lead to measurable and demonstrable increases in the user
value of the products we create. It's not like San Francisco is simply an
expensive place with no benefits; if we were not in San Francisco,
these opportunities would either not exist or would start costing us money
(because we'd have to fly staff to San Francisco to take part in them).

All of us, myself included, are just guessing about all of this since we
don't have all the facts and data. I have complete faith in the
organisation's executive leadership to weigh that data and make an
appropriate decision.

Dan


On Tuesday, April 7, 2015, Pine W wiki.p...@gmail.com wrote:

 Hi Garfield,

 I'm asking this on Wikimedia-l because a number of Wikimedians have noted
 the expensiveness of the San Francisco area including its high cost of
 living for staff, employer competition for engineering talent, and
 associated high salaries for WMF employees.

 I see on

 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/foundation/8/8a/RFP_for_Real_Estate_Services.pdf
 that WMF is considering relocating its offices when its current main office
 lease expires.

 Questions:

 What happens to the remodel expenses that WMF is paying for at its current
 location? If WMF vacates the premesis, will it be compensated for the
 remodel by the building owner?

 I hope that WMF is contemplating fully exiting the San Francisco market
 area in order to economize, get better value for our donors' funds, have
 less competition for talent, and lower costs of living for staff. Is this
 being considered?

 Thanks very much,

 Pine
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] SUL finalization update (no, for real this time)

2015-03-17 Thread Dan Garry
On 17 March 2015 at 21:54, John Mark Vandenberg jay...@gmail.com wrote:

 The message includes instructions to rename an account, but what
 happens if a user unifies all accounts having the same name now, after
 this announcement.  I've heard someone say that their account is still
 listed on 'Special:UsersWhoWillBeRenamed' after they unified their
 accounts.  Will their newly SUL'ed accounts be messed up in the April
 SUL finalisation?


As far as I know, that list is only updated periodically.

Either way, when the SUL finalisation begins, if you own a global account
then you'll get to keep it irrespective of whether you still appear on that
list or not.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Board of Trustee elections

2014-10-05 Thread Dan Garry
On 5 October 2014 10:00, Pine W wiki.p...@gmail.com wrote:

 How are we doing on SUL finalization anyway? If I remember correctly the
 lead on this is Dan so I'm pinging him.

Hey Pine,

Progress is pretty good. As noted in Erik's presentation at Monthly Metrics
last Thursday, we're wrapping up the necessary engineering work and
starting to figure out a date that makes sense to perform the finalisation.
The engineering work is mostly feature complete (with the notable exception
of one half of one of the initiatives, which is half finished). The work
still needs rigorous testing, which I can arrange by getting everything
deployed to testwiki once we're finished developing it all.

We're not quite at where I had hoped we would be (I'd hoped the engineering
work would be totally featured complete), which was noted by Erik colouring
the SUL box yellow rather than green during Metrics. That said, the
progress we've made towards the SUL finalisation this quarter has been more
than the progress in all previous quarters combined... at least, while I've
been at the WMF. So I'm pretty pleased.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Board of Trustee elections

2014-10-05 Thread Dan Garry
On 5 October 2014 22:08, Pine W wiki.p...@gmail.com wrote:

 Thanks Dan. Can you share an approximate completion date?

Not at this stage, I'm afraid. I will only give a date when I can say with
some confidence that we can meet it, and there are too many free variables
for me to be able to say that right now.

What I can say with confidence is that the SUL finalisation will not happen
in 2014. :-)

 (What is with half of the WMF staff responding to routine emails on
 weekends? All you workaholics and overachievers...)  :)

The weekend is when we're free from all the meetings and we actually get to
focus on our work. ;-)

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Board of Trustee elections

2014-10-05 Thread Dan Garry
Just to reiterate, the engineering work is almost done. We do plan to begin
the community engagement and announcements in 2014, but it's going to take
a while to make sure everyone's contacted and to give them time to digest
the announcement and act accordingly.

As we're almost done with the engineering work it's not really a matter of
engineering resources anymore (which is why SUL no longer features in the
engineering top 5 priorities in Q2), it's just about making sure we do the
communications right, and that takes time.

Dan

On 5 October 2014 22:19, Dan Garry dga...@wikimedia.org wrote:

 On 5 October 2014 22:08, Pine W wiki.p...@gmail.com wrote:

 Thanks Dan. Can you share an approximate completion date?

 Not at this stage, I'm afraid. I will only give a date when I can say with
 some confidence that we can meet it, and there are too many free variables
 for me to be able to say that right now.

 What I can say with confidence is that the SUL finalisation will not
 happen in 2014. :-)

 (What is with half of the WMF staff responding to routine emails on
 weekends? All you workaholics and overachievers...)  :)

 The weekend is when we're free from all the meetings and we actually get
 to focus on our work. ;-)

 Dan

 --
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 Associate Product Manager, Mobile Apps
 Wikimedia Foundation




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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Feedback with Android on Commons

2014-09-08 Thread Dan Garry
Thanks to all in this thread for raising these issues.

A discussion about sunsetting the Commons Android app is ongoing on
mobile-l right now. I would encourage anyone who's interested to subscribe
and comment.

Thanks,
Dan

On 8 September 2014 18:30, Erik Moeller e...@wikimedia.org wrote:

 Yann,

 The Commons app would need lots of love to continue to be worth advertising
 as a mainline app. It's not been updated since October, and code rot sets
 in after a while (I can easily reproduce crashes when logging in with an
 account  that has pre-existing uploads, which it tries to display for
 convenience but quickly chokes on). With the small app team we have, our
 focus is mainly on the official Wikipedia apps right now, which are already
 quite solid and receiving very positive reviews, esp. the Android app. [1]
 The team is discussing whether the Commons app should be sunset (which
 would still leave open the option of community maintainership) based on the
 numbers, and will be posting an update later this week.

 Erik

 [1] https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.wikipedia

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Feedback with Android on Commons

2014-09-08 Thread Dan Garry
John,

Responses in-line.

On 8 September 2014 18:41, John Mark Vandenberg jay...@gmail.com wrote:

 The Wikipedia app description includes Share: Use your existing
 social networking apps to share in the sum of all human knowledge.


This refers to the Share functionality which is in the overflow menu.
That's kind of functionality is built-in to Android and is super easy to
implement.


 Does it support uploading media to Commons?


No. It's in our longer-term plans for the Wikipedia app to do so, but that
feature is not planned for any time soon.


 Does it fix the problems with the official Commons app?


No, but it's not intended to right now, per the above.

If so, can they share a library which would allow the Commons app to
 be more of a specialised front-end to the same functionality that the
 WMF mobile apps team are developing for Wikipedia?


All of our code is open source and freely licensed, so anything that we're
using is already publicly available and free to use and could be adapted to
the Commons app.

Thanks,
Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Feedback with Android on Commons

2014-09-08 Thread Dan Garry
On Monday, 8 September 2014, John Mark Vandenberg jay...@gmail.com wrote:

 Hi Dam, thanks for your responses.  If the Wikipedia app doesnt have
 Commons upload capabilities, what is the viable replacement app for
 Commons uploading?


As I'm sure you're aware, if we were to sunset the Commons app then there
wouldn't be a replacement.

I would suggest reading mobile-l to see the rationale behind the proposal.
I won't repeat it here to avoid duplication of the conversation.

Thanks,
Dan


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] To Flow or not to Flow - it does not flow

2014-09-06 Thread Dan Garry
On 6 September 2014 15:33, Erik Moeller e...@wikimedia.org wrote:

 Flow doesn't automatically update template output -- it retains the
 output as it was when the user posted the comment. We can argue
 whether that's good or bad behavior, but it's worth doing so in the
 context of real examples. When would this cause problems?


I noticed this a few months ago and I think that in almost every case it's
not actually a problem. Many common talk pages templates are meant to be
substituted – in fact, some even spit out an error if you don't substitute
them! – so in most cases there's no substantial difference between
substitution and the way Flow currently does it; in both systems, using a
template generates a snapshot of the template at the time the post was made.

There is one notable exception to the above, which is talk page header
templates. One expects updates to a template used as a talk page header to
update every page the template is currently transcluded on, which is not
happening presently. {{talk header}} is currently transcluded on over
250,000 pages, so were these all Flow pages it would be excessively
laborious to edit all of those headers to force a reparsing of the template
were it updated. So this functionality, or something similar, should
probably be included in the Flow MVP [1] if it's deployed on a larger
scale. I think it's fine for now.

I expect that the reason most people find this so frustrating is not
because it results in any problems in and of itself, but because it
represents an inconsistency in the way that templates are handled in Flow
compared to how they're handled everywhere else, and therefore results in
Flow not behaving as an experienced user would expect. As I talked about
above though, the actual severity of that inconsistency is minor bordering
on trivial [2] in most cases.

Dan

[1]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minimum_viable_product
[2]: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Bugzilla/Fields#Severity

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Next steps regarding WMF-community disputes about deployments

2014-08-24 Thread Dan Garry
That sounds like a bug to me. Have you filed a bug in Bugzilla to be sure
that the Mobile Web team is aware?

Dan


On 24 August 2014 21:13, Todd Allen toddmal...@gmail.com wrote:

 I've found one very recently, actually, or at least if there is an opt-out
 it's very opaque.

 I use the desktop interface on my mobile. I've no intention of ever
 changing that. There used to be an option that permanently disabled mobile
 interface for a given browser (I presume via a persistent cookie, as it
 worked even when I wasn't logged in), but now I have to switch back to
 desktop every day or so. There are several requests at

 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Help_talk:Mobile_access#Turn_mobile_access_off
 for a way to disable the mobile interface, but no answers as to how to do
 that or if that's even supported anymore.

 I'm sure I could hack around it by changing useragents or the like, but I
 shouldn't -have- to use some hacky solution to it. If I don't ever want to
 use the mobile interface, provide a way for me to say that and leave the
 change permanent (at least until I decide otherwise).

 So either I'm missing something (and I'm not the only one), or yeah, you
 missed one.

 Todd


 On Sun, Aug 24, 2014 at 10:07 PM, Marc A. Pelletier m...@uberbox.org
 wrote:

  On 08/24/2014 11:19 PM, Pine W wrote:
   I have
   heard people say don't force an interface change on me that I don't
  think
   is an improvement.
 
  I do not recall a recent interface change deployment that wasn't
  accompanied with, at the very least, some method of opting out.  Did I
  miss one?
 
  -- Marc
 
 
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Next steps regarding WMF-community disputes about deployments

2014-08-24 Thread Dan Garry
On 24 August 2014 21:36, Todd Allen toddmal...@gmail.com wrote:

 Filed as 69967 on Bugzilla.


Great, thanks! I suspect this is a problem with MobileFrontend, so I've
moved the bug into that product so that people will see it. I'll keep my
eye on the bug, either way.

I'm glad you clarified that; to be quite
 honest, the timing here (starting about a couple weeks ago) looked to me to
 be yet another You'll use it and you'll LIKE IT!, especially given the
 lack of response at the documentation page. Sorry if I jumped to a
 conclusion.


The Mobile Apps team typically receives messages from volunteers through
the Village Pumps (in which case the Community Liaisons know to ping me) or
by email directly into mobile-l. I personally never would've thought to
check that talk page for comments and questions. I suspect the same is true
of the Mobile Web team.

I'll update the header on that talk page to point to [[WP:VPT]] so that
people leave their comments in the right place.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Superprotect user right, Coming to a wiki near you

2014-08-15 Thread Dan Garry
On 15 August 2014 06:08, Todd Allen toddmal...@gmail.com wrote:

 Developing for mobile is nice and should continue, but desktop is far from
 dead. I don't even try to edit from mobile; I want my real keyboard and
 monitor, not the crappy on screen one and 3 display.


This is a false dilemma. The WMF does not have any plans to stop developing
desktop features. On the contrary, the VisualEditor team recently changed
scope to be the Editing team in part so that the scope of their team also
included maintaining the wikitext editor on desktop.

Dan

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] @WikipediaZero Twitter account

2014-08-13 Thread Dan Garry
I could be mistaken, but I think Tomasz is the owner. CCing him.

Dan


On 13 August 2014 11:19, Andy Mabbett a...@pigsonthewing.org.uk wrote:

 Who owns the @WikipediaZero Twitter account? It's only ever had one
 post, and that seems a missed opportunity.

 --
 Andy Mabbett
 @pigsonthewing
 http://pigsonthewing.org.uk

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