[Wikimedia-l] RFC on wikimedia-l posting limits

2017-08-22 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Hi list members,

The list admins (hereafter 'we', being Austin, Asaf, Shani and I, your
humble narrator) regularly receive complaints about the frequent
posters on this list, as well as about the unpleasant atmosphere some
posters (some of them frequent) create.

It is natural that frequent posters will say specific things that more
frequently annoy other list members, but often the complaints are due
to the volume of messages rather than the content of the messages.

We are floating some suggestions aimed specifically at reducing the
volume, hopefully motivating frequent posters to self-moderate more,
but these proposed limits are actually intending to increasing the
quality of the discourse without heavy subjective moderation.

The first proposal impacts all posters to this list, and the last
three proposals are aimed at providing a more clear framework within
which criticism and whistle-blowing are permitted, but that critics
are prevented from drowning out other discussions. The bandwidth that
will be given to critics should be established in advance, reducing
need to use subjective moderation of the content when a limit to the
volume will often achieve the same result.
--

Proposal #1: Monthly 'soft quota' reduced from 30 to 15

The existing soft quota of 30 posts per person has practically never
been exceeded in the past year, and yet many list subscribers still
clearly feel that a few individuals overwhelm the list. This suggests
the current quota is too high.

A review of the stats at
https://stats.wikimedia.org/mail-lists/wikimedia-l.html show very few
people go over 15 in a month, and quite often the reason for people
exceeding 15 per month is because they are replying to other list
members who have already exceeded 15 per month, and sometimes they are
repeatedly directly or indirectly asking the person to stop repeating
themselves to allow some space for other list members also have their
opinion heard.
--

Proposal #2: Posts by globally banned people not permitted

As WMF-banned people are already banned from mailing lists, this
proposal is to apply the same ‘global’ approach to any people who have
been globally banned by the community according to the
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Global_bans policy.

This proposal does not prevent proxying, or canvassing, or “meat
puppetry” as defined by English Wikipedia policy.  The list admins
would prefer that globally banned people communicate their grievances
via established members of our community who can guide them, rather
than the list admins initially guiding these globally banned people on
how to revise their posts so they are suitable for this audience, and
then required to block them when they do not follow advice.  The role
of list moderators is clearer and simpler if we are only patrolling
the boundaries and not repeatedly personally engaged with helping
globally banned users.
--

Proposal #3: Identity of an account locked / blocked / banned by two
Wikimedia communities limited to five (5) posts per month

This proposal is intended to strike a balance between openness and
quality of discourse.

Banned people occasionally use the wikimedia-l mailing list as a
substitute of the meta Request for comment system, and banned people
also occasionally provide constructive criticisms and thought
provoking views.  This proposal hopes to allow that to continue.

However people who have been banned on a few projects also use this
list as their “last stand”, having already exhausted the community
patience on the wikis.  Sometimes the last stand is brief, but
occasionally a banned person is able to maintain sufficient decorum
that they are not moderated or banned from the list, and mailing list
readers need to suffer month after month of the banned person
dominating the mailing lists with time that they would previously have
spent editing on the wikis.
--

Proposal #4: Undisclosed alternative identities limited to five (5)
posts per month

Posting using fake identities allows people to shield their real life
*and* their Wikimedia editing 'account' from the repercussions of
their actions. This provision to allow fake identities on wikimedia-l
is necessary for whistle-blowing, and this mailing list has been used
for that purpose at important junctures in the history of the
Wikimedia movement.

However it is more frequently abused, especially by some ‘critics’ who
have used incessant hyperbole and snark and baiting to generally cause
stress to many readers. Sometimes this is also accompanied with many
list posts on various unrelated threads as the ‘critic’ believes their
criticism is so important that all other discussions about Wikimedia
should be diverted until their problem has been resolved to their
satisfaction, which is unlikely anyway.

Note this explicitly does not include anyone posting using their real
world identity, whether or not they have a Wikimedia account.

Where a poster does not clearly link to either Wikimedia account, or
does not 

Re: [Wikimedia-l] Amazon Echo' use of Wikipedia; CC license compliance?

2017-07-27 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Simon, could you clarify?

Can you configure the device to give attribution?

On Thu, Jul 27, 2017 at 5:56 PM, Simon Poole  wrote:
>
> Maybe some fact checking before getting all upset would be a good idea?
>
> The blog post is a good story, but doesn't actually reflect how Alexa
> works wrt searching WIkipedia (I just quickly reconfigured one of mine
> to US English just to verify).
>
> Simon
>
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fundraising pilot on Facebook

2017-06-29 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Hi Sam,

Does this involve paying Facebook and Instagram?
If so, how much is being allocated that part of this pilot?

IIRC, at least Facebook has a separate program for non-profits, but
they didnt offer ads for non-profits at reduced rates as part of that
program.

What targets have been set to evaluate whether this pilot will be
considered successful?
If it is just to *learn* about potential demographics, I fear that
most of the knowledge gained will already have been published
previously by other non-profits who've tried similar.

I cant help but notice that you mentioned the work will be done by
Middle Seat , and not that it is former staff
member Zack Exley's company.
Is there a requirement that this consulting job will culminate in a
published and openly licensed report by Middle Seat?

Regards,
John

On Fri, Jun 30, 2017 at 12:58 AM, Samuel Patton  wrote:
> Hi everyone,
>
> I'm writing to let you know about a project we're trying on the
> Foundation's fundraising team. Thanks to all the help and advice we've
> received from our colleagues in Communications, Legal, and Community
> Engagement.
>
> *I've posted this announcement as an update on Fundraising's Meta Page
> , and would be happy
> to answer questions and keep the discussion up there.*
>
> Over the next three weeks, the Advancement team will be conducting a small
> fundraising pilot on Facebook and Instagram. This will involve sponsored
> posts, served in English to people in the United States, that will direct
> users to donate to the Foundation using our own donation processing pages.
>
> Fundraising is always interested in exploring new ways to reach people who
> find value in Wikipedia and are interested in supporting the Foundation’s
> mission. Advertising across social networks is a proven and popular way for
> nonprofits to find new supporters and build organizational awareness, and
> we’re excited to dip our toes into this.
>
> Like the many tests we run for Fundraising, this pilot will involve
> experiments testing different imagery, copy, and calls to action. We hope
> to answer the question: how well does our on-Wikipedia.org messaging
> perform when presented on another site? It will also examine how our
> appeals perform across demographic and interest groups.
>
> *Where will the ads appear?*
>
> This pilot will use “sponsored posts,” which is what Facebook calls content
> that appears in the news feed of Facebook users.
>
> They will also appear on Instagram as “sponsored stories” that appear
> within the flow of photo and video posts users scroll on that network.
> (Instagram is a Facebook property.)
>
> They will not appear as banners, pop-ups, or display ads that appear
> alongside the news feed. This is a test in what is called “native”
> advertising, meaning it uses the same content display area that users
> expect from Facebook and Instagram.
>
> *How will you target your ads?*
>
> In addition to the broad parameters of language (English) and country
> (U.S.), we have identified a few target audiences that might respond
> particularly well to our appeals: educators, philanthropists, and frequent
> consumers of news. We will build these audiences based off self reported
> information about educational achievement, news readership, and
> philanthropic interest. I've included details on each audience below. In
> addition to these, we have discussed the value of comparing effectiveness
> across other characteristics - age, gender, etc.
>
> A large part of the value in running this experiment is to *learn* whether
> there are any demographic differences in how people respond to our
> messaging. If this experiment does give us compelling info about who is
> more likely to donate, that is exciting! And we'll talk as a group about
> what to do with that knowledge.
>
> *Can users opt out?*
>
> Of course. Users can hide individual ads if they are not of interest to
> them. This is also something we can measure to better understand how to not
> annoy or impose on social media users in future fundraising drives.
>
> *Who is working on this?*
>
> Fundraising is partnering with the social media folks in Communications to
> run this test. The promotion and measurement of ads is being managed by a
> small company called Middle Seat.
>
> *Will you keep us in the loop?*
>
> Absolutely. By July 15 we intend to share an overview of our testing so far.
>
> Stay tuned for more updates!
>
> sam
>
> ---
>
> *Possible target audiences:*
>
> *STUDENTS & EDUCATORS*
> *How likely to donate are current students and educators?*
> Age: 18 - 65+
> Target: Current students above high school level and educators based on
> self-reported “job title”
> Reach: 1,000,000+
>
> *PHILANTHROPISTS*
> *How likely to donate are Facebook users interested in both philanthropy
> and donating to charitable causes?*
> Age: 18 - 65+
> Target: Facebook 

Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Wikitech-l] Tech Talk: Wikimedia Foundation Technology and Product Q Session #2

2017-05-09 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Sorry this email was held in moderation past its useful date.
Srishti Sethi was somehow moderated, which has been rectified now.

On Tue, May 9, 2017 at 11:05 PM, Srishti Sethi  wrote:
> REMINDER: This talk starts in 1 hour.
>
> On Mon, May 1, 2017 at 3:54 PM, Srishti Sethi  wrote:
>
>> Hello everyone,
>>
>> Please join us for the Wikimedia Foundation Technology and Product Q
>> Session #2 by Victoria Coleman (CTO) and Toby Negrin (Interim VP of
>> Product) on May 9, 2017, at 17:00 UTC via YouTube live.
>>
>> Link to live YouTube stream: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q4kfgU9SZcg
>>
>> IRC channel for questions/discussion: #wikimedia-office
>>
>> More details:
>>
>> This talk is a follow-up of the Wikimedia Developer Summit session
>>  and will address the next
>> set of questions gathered via a voting survey for the summit:
>>
>>
>>-
>>
>>For WMF dev teams, what is the right balance between pushing own work
>>versus seeking and supporting volunteer contributors?
>>
>>
>>
>>-
>>
>>Do we have a plan to bring our developer documentation to the level of
>>a top Internet website, a major free software project?
>>
>>
>>
>>-
>>
>>How can volunteers bring ideas and influence the WMF annual plans and
>>quarterly goals? (Currently, when plans are published it's too late)
>>
>>
>>
>>-
>>
>>What vision do you see for MediaWiki and volunteer developers five
>>years from now?
>>
>>
>> Looking forward to your presence!
>>
>> Best,
>> Srishti
>>
>> --
>> Srishti Sethi
>> Developer Advocate
>> Technical Collaboration team
>> Wikimedia Foundation
>>
>> https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/User:SSethi_(WMF)
>>
>
>
>
> --
> Srishti Sethi
> Developer Advocate
> Technical Collaboration team
> Wikimedia Foundation
>
> https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/User:SSethi_(WMF)
> ___
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> wikitec...@lists.wikimedia.org
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikitech-l



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] More politics: "WMF Annual Report"

2017-03-02 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Fri, Mar 3, 2017 at 11:49 AM, Peter Southwood
 wrote:
> If the format was compiled before Trump was elected, then this argument is 
> either irrelevant or becomes that the foundation must avoid offending 
> politicians in power by changing public statements to be uncontroversial at 
> the time of publishing.

The arguments being made here are not that WMF should avoid offending
politicians or be uncontroversial.

Understanding how a message will be received is the core of
communications, and should be reviewed and rechecked by the
communications team throughout a project, and even re-evaluated as the
final 'publish' button is clicked.

In this case I feel the message of the Annual Report is that WMF is
quite U.S. focused, and is overly anti-Trump.  The selection and order
of the first few facts mostly aligns with the key issues in U.S.
politics.  Those stories/examples/photos used to justify including
these first few facts in the WMF Annual Report seems occasionally
strained.  e.g. How did WMF support Wikimedian Andreas Weith taking
photos of polar bears?

If the WMF wants to project that image, those fact pages need beefing
up to support the WMF staking out a claim to get involved in those
fights.  Like others here, I dont think this is the right direction
for the WMF to take, but I agree with all the positions and appreciate
the significance of those issues.  The cynic in me feels that the WMF
projecting that image will resonate well with a large percentage of
the typical "Wikipedia" donors.

Given the facts (in the Annual Report) that most of the worlds
population is still not online, and those coming online or yet to come
online usually do not have access to education resources online in
their own language, an International focus would highlight those facts
as critical for the WMF's mission.  Those facts can also very
uncomfortable for politicians across the world, of all political
leanings, who spend more on guns than on books.  Those facts are also
very uncomfortable for a lot of liberals who have had a good education
and very comfortable lives, with a high quality Wikipedia in their own
language.  Those facts also underscore how far we are away from
reaching our mission, and encourage us to re-focus on the mission and
make us pause before getting too involved in problems that are not
clearly on mission.

-- 
John Vandenberg

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

2017-02-15 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Hi James,

I agree these types of breakages, if unintentional and not regular,
should be raised elsewhere first.

Given Fae's reluctance to use private correspondence,...

Is there a public wiki page which can be used to alert the relevant
team to any future breakages, in the first instance?

Or can this be managed through Phabricator? an existing tag?

Fae, you said you have your own scripts, which you are no longer
maintaining due to changes by Google.
Is your code in a public repository somewhere?
We do not need to use the Google apis for accessing this data.
Google allows spreadsheets to be exported as csv.
here is the CSV link for the Advanced Permissions data.
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1DruVc7T9ZqTcfGwFAlxQrBMR4QBSD_DtjpDtGqMAAi0/pub?output=csv

With a small script, we could re-publish this dataset as csv into a
git repository, and then another script could read the csv and
re-publish the data as wikitext onto a Wikimedia site.

On Wed, Feb 15, 2017 at 6:44 AM, James Alexander
 wrote:
> On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 11:53 AM Fæ  wrote:
>
> Usecases are appearing, thanks to whomever is intervening, though in a
> narrow column so hard to read.
>
> Now I can read it, I see that it is out of date. As a test sample, I
> JethroBT (WMF) was granted m:admin rights in June, these expired by
> August 2016 and were eventually removed by a volunteer steward in
> October 2016. Though I JethroBT is an admin on meta right now, this
> was via a separate use case dated "42676", which I presume is
> November. Could the spreadsheet be properly reviewed and updated
> please, including reformatting the date field so it's easy to
> understand?
>
> Pine - yes this process of "WMF Advanced Permissions" includes admin
> rights for any WMF website and so by-passes the community procedures.
>
> Fae
>
>
> Hi Fae,
>
> As I’ve mentioned on previous occasions when you’ve brought up this
> spreadsheet on the mailing list, it occasionally breaks. That was the case
> here. If you send me a quick note if you see the issues, we can fix it, as
> we did today with the use case query (including make sure that it’s
> multiple columns again.) Pointing that out so it can be quickly fixed is
> much better done via a private poke that we'll see quickly rather than a
> public mailing list post that we may not see until after hours or until
> somebody lets us know about it. Obviously if we ignore your emails or
> refuse to fix it, then the math changes, and a post to this list makes more
> sense. I do not, however, think breakage (or overlooking notes about
> breakage) has been a frequent problem over the past couple years (though we
> have certainly had a couple breakages).
>
> The public sheet is up to date to the internal version of the data (which
> is done automatically). However, the automated data collection is better at
> “adding new” than “removing old.” A member of the team does annual audits
> of the data to ensure that defunct entries are removed and that everything
> else matches reality. The time for the next one is coming up.
>
> James
>
> *James Alexander*
> Manager, Trust & Safety
> Wikimedia Foundation
>
> PS: I also fixed the weird date thing you were seeing on some of them...
> not sure what caused that (was just a format display thing).
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Passing of User:Danveg, and reminder about people in distress

2017-01-04 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
I have made a small change the introduction to indicate the WMF has a
important role in the management of the page content, but the WMF is
not intended to be the sole author.

I believe that is in line with James offer for the commuity to edit the page.

On Wed, Jan 4, 2017 at 5:10 PM, rupert THURNER  wrote:
> On Wed, Jan 4, 2017 at 10:34 AM, James Alexander 
> wrote:
>
>> On Tue, Jan 3, 2017 at 9:16 PM Gnangarra  wrote:
>>
>> > Maybe we should invite the affiliates to put together and maintain a
>> > resource page on Meta with contact details for such organisations so that
>> > everyone has access to necessary local details regardless of where they
>> be
>> >
>>
>> Great minds think alike :) We're putting together a curated list of
>> resources on meta
>> > Mental_health_resources>
>> for resources like this you can find right now. If anyone has additional
>> resources (especially for countries not currently listed) we'd love more!
>> We're trying to look into each resource before listing (and keep the list
>> short and usable for each country) so the talk page is best for additions.
>> Right now we have it set up to both list all of the countries we have
>> information for and list YOUR country (based on your IP) first to make
>> usable information easiest to find.
>>
>> it looks good, i wanted to add  for switzerland. but touching a page which
> is from the foundation by the foundation, and the main support page even
> stating "serves the foundation"? i do not even have a right to edit there?
> and i always thought foundation stuff is on the foundation wiki *wonder*
>
> rupert
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] (no subject)

2016-11-15 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Nov 14, 2016 at 11:37 PM, Dariusz Jemielniak  wrote:
> Until we have better tech available, I want to assure you that I want to be
> available, and apart from Meta, I gladly offer IRC or video conversations,
> or other media, to whoever feels it may be useful (let's track this
> committment of mine in the old-fashioned way for now).

Rather than IRC or video, which both have significant problems for
this type of open engagement, perhaps WMF could install a modern group
chat system, like Zulip, or another Slack-like tool.

The enthusiasm for Discourse hasnt resulted in any significant adoption.
I venture to suggest that this is because it isnt mobile friendly, and
doesnt integrate with MediaWiki authentication.
Their app is little more than a web-browser (and the WMF labs instance
doesnt support the necessary API anyway.)
https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T124691
https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T150733

I've created a task about this problem for GCI and Outreachy which are
about to start:

https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T150732

I see Slack is being used by Portuguese Wikipedia

https://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikip%C3%A9dia:Slack

It would be good to hear their opinion on this tool?

On Tue, Nov 15, 2016 at 4:58 AM, Pine W  wrote:
> Hi Dariuz, I like how you're thinking. Perhaps the Board could make public
> use of Phabricator to triage and track issues.

+1

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] We appear have been partially blocked in France (probably accidentally)

2016-10-17 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Oct 18, 2016 at 3:54 AM, geni  wrote:
> Apparently on the orders of the french government orange added us to
> their blocked terrorist sites list. This did apparently have the fun
> effect of  DOS the government page people were redirected to, Source
> (among others):
>
> http://www.lemonde.fr/pixels/article/2016/10/17/une-erreur-bloque-l-acces-a-google-pour-les-clients-d-orange_5014900_4408996.html

They also added Google to the list..?

http://www.itnews.com.au/news/frances-block-of-google-for-terrorism-melts-govt-server-439591

Workaround: use the Google free DNS.

That is one way to force everyone to learn how to work around service
providers blocking access to terrorist websites.

-- 
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] A new Wikipedia fork: InfoGalactic

2016-10-10 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Ads on the horizon according to
http://infogalactic.com/info/Infogalactic:Roadmap and
https://infogalactic.com/info/Infogalactic:Advertising

forks are hard... lots of bugs on
https://infogalactic.com/info/Infogalactic:Bug_list_for_editors

My first Special:Random result was ... a connection timeout, reloaded
ok https://infogalactic.com/info/Reza_Mansouri

Special:Random again, and another connection timeout, reloading ok
https://infogalactic.com/info/Feature_integration_theory

After 10+ successful Special:Random, I get another connection timeout,
reloading ok https://infogalactic.com/info/Vasiliki_Papazoglou

Here is one to watch:

https://infogalactic.com/w/index.php?title=Gamergate_controversy=history

On Tue, Oct 11, 2016 at 1:13 AM, David Gerard  wrote:
> "INFOGALACTIC: an online encyclopedia without bias or thought police"
>
> Home page: http://infogalactic.com/info/Main_Page
> Announcement: 
> http://voxday.blogspot.com/2016/10/project-big-fork-infogalactic.html
> Roadmap: http://infogalactic.com/info/Infogalactic:Roadmap
>
>
> - d.
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Affiliates] Changes to current chapter and thematic organisation criteria

2016-08-21 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
I agree with Ben.

It is worthwhile understand why existing chapters may not meet these
criteria, especially if it is viable/active chapters that fail the
criteria, rather than the few dormant chapters who also fail simpler
criteria.

I suspect these criteria, which are a good baseline, can be refined in
consultation with existing chapters and the broader community.

My biggest concern is that "event" is undefined, and could include meetups
of only a few people, mostly regulars, with nn/little impact. That would
render this criteria useless, or worse encourage wasted effort to tick the
affcom criteria boxes.

And if the activity levels are only maintained in order to obtain chapter
status, they will quickly reduce activity levels after chapter status is
granted unless there is a funded plan to maintain and grow the chapter
after affcom has given the group the nod.

On 22 Aug 2016 03:22, "Ben Creasy"  wrote:

> Does the Affiliations Committee have a list of existing chapters which do
> not meet the proposed criteria? I think we should at least get a sense for
> that, and those chapters should be notified and be put on the path to
> meeting standards or losing their status.
>
> What's the harm in letting chapters which can't meet the proposed high
> standards drop into user group status? This will also force the committee
> and board to figure out reasonable requirements. I realize that chapters
> have special privileges and the process would be something like a probation
> period followed by a graceful revocation of privileges.
>
> I'm not super knowledgeable about this topic, but I've heard that chapters
> becoming inactive is a problem. The solution is to anticipate that and
> create a process for handling chapter inactivity non-disruptively. What's
> the current process?
>
> On Aug 20, 2016 9:50 PM, "Pine W"  wrote:
>
> > > What harm is avoided by eliminating the ambiguity you refer to, Pine?
> >
> > One of the harms is that aspiring chapters don't know what standards we
> > should be aiming to meet, because the standards are vague. Another
> > harm is that the Affiliations Committee doesn't have clear criteria to
> > apply,
> > which means that decisions are likely to be more subjective and
> > inconsistent than the decisions would be if there was a more specific
> > set of criteria.
> >
> > As I mentioned in my previous email, I feel that it's okay to have some
> > flexibility in the requirements, such as by saying "a chapter must meet
> > four of
> > the following six criteria" or "this particular requirement may be met in
> > one
> > or more of the following ways". But those flexible criteria should be
> > clearly
> > defined.
> >
> > > How is that damage ameliorated by, as you suggest, re-classifying
> > > a chapter as a user group?
> >
> > I feel that this is a separate issue. There should be no privilege
> attached
> > to
> > already being a chapter. It is unfair to apply one set of criteria to
> > existing
> > chapters, and a much tighter set of criteria to aspiring chapters.
> Chapter
> > status should be linked with a substantial level of current or recent
> > activity
> > in Wikimedia.
> >
> > Chapter activity levels may decrease for many reasons, some of which
> > are beyond their control, such as if a fire breaks out in their office,
> or
> > if an
> > especially strong community organizer leaves the country. If such things
> > happen and the activity level or membership level of the organization
> > decrease, it is reasonable (if not desirable) to have the organization,
> > which
> > now would resemble a user group rather than a chapter, actually be
> > categorized as a user group until the organization recovers. I would call
> > this
> > "truth in advertising". It's not comfortable, but it is the reality, and
> it
> > would give the group a strong incentive to re-energize itself and return
> > its
> > levels of membership and activity to the levels that it once had, rather
> > than
> > allowing it to keep the privileges of chapter status with few of the
> > responsibilities and expectations.
> >
> > Pine
> > ___
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] FW: My final email

2016-08-17 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
What is https://www.pages04.net/ ?

WMF has given them a copy of (a subset of..?) the donor email list, as
this link has Peter's email address on the page:

https://www.pages04.net/wikimedia/WMFUnsubscribe/Unsubscribe?spMailingID=52077018=Mzk5NjI0Mzk2ODUS1=OTgyOTg3MDUyS0=OTgyOTg3MDUyS0

If you dont want to try that link, the following will give you a
general idea of the form donors are being directed to:

https://www.pages04.net/wikimedia/WMFUnsubscribe/

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Slides and video of Wikimedia Foundation presentations at State of the Map US

2016-08-01 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Aug 1, 2016 at 1:05 PM, Gerard Meijssen
 wrote:
> Hoi,
> A question that is very much under discussion is if presentations like
> these deserve a place at Wikidata. Given the subject and the relevancy of
> our current state of mind on subjects like these it makes perfect sense. We
> are already able to produce lists using the tools provided by Magnus to
> update when new talks of a conference or on a subject are present.
>
> What do we think? Are presentations like these notable? Are the
> presentations of Wikimania notable?

Context for Gerard's post is:
https://www.wikidata.org/wiki/Wikidata:Administrators%27_noticeboard#Controversy_around_the_item_.22Wikimania_talk.22
https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikidata/2016-July/009158.html

I believe it is highly off-topic wrt the subject of this thread about
Katherine's talk, which cant be compared with creating Wikidata items
about non-notable Wikimedians simply because they presented at
Wikimania.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Wikimedia Announcements] Wikimedia Foundation Form 990 for FY 2014-2015 now on-wiki

2016-06-28 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sun, Jun 5, 2016 at 10:09 AM, John Mark Vandenberg <jay...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On 5 Jun 2016 05:19, "Greg Varnum" <gvar...@wikimedia.org> wrote:
>>
>>
>> John asked about filing and other fees paid by Jones Day, and if the fees
>> were separate from consulting costs. Unfortunately, we don’t have an easy,
>> quick way to divide the Jones Day expenses into registration fees and legal
>> fees, but we can provide more information about where the costs came from.
>> Each trademark application costs about $1,000–5,000 (sometimes more),
>> including filing fees and attorney’s fees. The cost for each application
>> depends on the country’s application fees, the country’s administrative
>> hurdles, the breadth of protection we are seeking, whether we can reuse
>> materials prepared for previous applications, and whether we encounter
>> resistance from trademark offices or other trademark holders.
>
> Your response isnt clear, but it strongly implies the stated US$1.7M stated
> on page p.61 does include the fees paid by Jones Day to relevant government
> bodies around the world.  No surprise there.  But it is surprising that
> Jones Day doesnt provide detailed invoices that separate their own services
> from fees they have paid on the WMF's behalf.
>
> If the WMF doesnt know what the fees cost, the WMF does not know how much
> extra it paid for an external consultant to do the paperwork for them ... ?
>
> How much will it cost for someone to split the 1.7 M bill?
>
> Their relationship with WMF has come a long way since the 'pro bono' work
> that Jones Day did to recommend acquiring a trademark on a public domain
> logo (and somehow convincing many WMF staff that it was a brilliant idea).
>
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Community_Logo/Request_for_consultation#Legal_representation
>
>> Finally, regarding John's question about non-program service investment in
>> Europe (page 35), this represents our foreign currency bank accounts with JP
>> Morgan in the UK. The purpose of this holding is to retain donations
>> received in EUR, GBP, CAD and AUD in their original currency to minimize
>> currency exchange risks.
>
> Do I understand correctly that the 5.2M was to meet minimum account opening
> deposit criteria for four accounts for the four currency.
>
> The money cant be withdrawn while these accounts are open? Is it being
> managed by an investment fund?  If so, which one, or what is the expected
> rate of return on this investment.  Did the WMF have an option for which
> fund was used, or was it stipulated by JP Morgan/ etc?

I havent seen any clarification regarding this.

Was the investment in pound sterling?
The pound has been going down steadily over the last year.
And now we have a steep drop due to Brexit.

Is the investment being used by JP Morgan to support fossil fuel projects?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Wikimedia Announcements] Wikimedia Foundation Form 990 for FY 2014-2015 now on-wiki

2016-06-04 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On 5 Jun 2016 05:19, "Greg Varnum"  wrote:
>
>
> John asked about filing and other fees paid by Jones Day, and if the fees
were separate from consulting costs. Unfortunately, we don’t have an easy,
quick way to divide the Jones Day expenses into registration fees and legal
fees, but we can provide more information about where the costs came from.
Each trademark application costs about $1,000–5,000 (sometimes more),
including filing fees and attorney’s fees. The cost for each application
depends on the country’s application fees, the country’s administrative
hurdles, the breadth of protection we are seeking, whether we can reuse
materials prepared for previous applications, and whether we encounter
resistance from trademark offices or other trademark holders.

Your response isnt clear, but it strongly implies the stated US$1.7M stated
on page p.61 does include the fees paid by Jones Day to relevant government
bodies around the world.  No surprise there.  But it is surprising that
Jones Day doesnt provide detailed invoices that separate their own services
from fees they have paid on the WMF's behalf.

If the WMF doesnt know what the fees cost, the WMF does not know how much
extra it paid for an external consultant to do the paperwork for them ... ?

How much will it cost for someone to split the 1.7 M bill?

Their relationship with WMF has come a long way since the 'pro bono' work
that Jones Day did to recommend acquiring a trademark on a public domain
logo (and somehow convincing many WMF staff that it was a brilliant idea).

https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Community_Logo/Request_for_consultation#Legal_representation

> Finally, regarding John's question about non-program service investment
in Europe (page 35), this represents our foreign currency bank accounts
with JP Morgan in the UK. The purpose of this holding is to retain
donations received in EUR, GBP, CAD and AUD in their original currency to
minimize currency exchange risks.

Do I understand correctly that the 5.2M was to meet minimum account opening
deposit criteria for four accounts for the four currency.

The money cant be withdrawn while these accounts are open? Is it being
managed by an investment fund?  If so, which one, or what is the expected
rate of return on this investment.  Did the WMF have an option for which
fund was used, or was it stipulated by JP Morgan/ etc?

--
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Wikimedia Announcements] Wikimedia Foundation Form 990 for FY 2014-2015 now on-wiki

2016-05-25 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Wed, May 25, 2016 at 6:31 AM, Gregory Varnum  wrote:
> Greetings,
>
> Thank you to everyone for your questions and thoughts regarding the Wikimedia 
> Foundation's Form 990.
>
> Regarding Lodewijk's first question about the legal services (totalling 
> US$1.7M) which were conducted by Jones Day (page 61 - Part VII): As our 
> global reach has grown over time, we felt it was important to strengthen the 
> trademark portfolio and solidify the protection of Wikimedia’s marks 
> globally. In December 2013, we began working with Jones Day on our global 
> trademark filings, registrations, and oppositions. During the 2014-2015 
> fiscal year we filed 1,500+ new trademark applications for 35 different 
> trademarks in 100+ countries. A significant portion of the legal services 
> expenses in 2014-2015 went toward the mandatory government trademark 
> application filing fees.
>
> These new trademark applications contained expanded coverage and revised 
> descriptions to ensure better protection of Wikimedia's marks and projects, 
> including countries where readership was growing through targeted programs or 
> distribution (such as Wikipedia Zero and mobile readership). Going forward, 
> we anticipate (and are beginning to realize) a decrease in trademark expenses 
> year over year, now that we have this initial foundation is in place. This 
> investment immediately benefits Wikimedia and its communities by ensuring 
> that our trademark portfolio reflects the maturity and breadth of the 
> Wikimedia movement, and protects us against certain forms of infringement or 
> misuse.

Hi Gregory,
Just to confirm, the stated US$1.7M stated on page p.61 includes
filing and other fees paid by Jones Day to relevant government bodies
around the world?
If so, any chance you can separate it into such fees paid *through*
Jones Day, vs the consultation fees of Jones Day.
You say it was a 'significant portion', but that is very vague
terminology, meaning very different things to different people; it
would be nice to have a ball park figure.

Also there was a USD ~5.2 M investment in Europe listed on p. 35 as
not being program services.  I didn't see any reference to it in the
FAQ; apologies if I missed it (It would be lovely if the source
document was posted on meta for easier navigation, etc.).  Could we
have a little more info about this line item?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons Picture of the Year 2015 round 2 voting has started

2016-05-16 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, May 16, 2016 at 2:07 PM, Steinsplitter Wiki
 wrote:
> As far i can see there are two volunteers listed at 
> https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Commons:Social_media/Facebook  , i talked 
> with Yann - it wasn't him.

Umm, didnt we have a larger team of volunteers who managed the Commons
page?  IIRC, WMF removed them all, and I assume the WMF now determines
who has access to the account.

> The second volunteer is Rodrigo.Argenton, and i am wondering who granted him 
> access - looking at his block log i don't feel comfortable at all [1].
>
> [1] 
> https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Special:Log/block=User%3ARodrigo.Argenton

Also blocked indefinitely on br.wikimedia.org by Teles with a curious
block message (sincronizando com bloqueio em conta principal).

https://br.wikimedia.org/wiki/Especial:Contribui%C3%A7%C3%B5es/Rodrigo.Argenton

Hopefully that can be cleared up.

Yann & Rodrigo should be able to say who posted these, as all managers
can see which manager authored each post on the page.

https://www.facebook.com/Wikimedia.Commons/posts/1127382660617355:0
https://www.facebook.com/Wikimedia.Commons/posts/1120943991261222:0

Obviously the media licensing needs to be followed carefully by
whoever is a Facebook manager.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Account of the events leading to James Heilman's removal

2016-05-11 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Wed, May 11, 2016 at 5:21 PM, John Mark Vandenberg <jay...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Wed, May 11, 2016 at 4:48 PM, Gergő Tisza <gti...@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Hi Fae,
>>
>> On Tue, May 10, 2016 at 1:14 PM, Fæ <fae...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>>> Not tricky at all. There are *plenty* of other similar organizations
>>> that have elections for their trustees to their boards, including
>>> several Wikimedia chapters/affiliates where their boards have oversite
>>> of many employees and significant sums of money.
>>
>>
>> can you share a few examples of organizations where board members are
>> appointed in a binding election and members of the electorate do not have
>> to identify themselves to the organization?
>>
>> Or are you suggesting that the WMF should turn into a membership
>> organization and Wikimedians who are unwilling to share personally
>> identifying information with the WMF should not be allowed to vote?
>
> I dont see how the voting method is particularly relevant to this thread..?
> It seems this thread is more about governance by post-appointment
> trustees, who have been properly vetted before being appointed.
>
> I dont recall that we've had any serious incidents of the board
> election outcome being disrupted because we use a voting process that
> includes non-identified people.

i.e. I think we , the community, selected *three* **great** Trustees
in the last community election, and the issues that caused us to loose
two of them are post-appointment and we should be looking into the
governance post-appointment to prevent it happening again.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Account of the events leading to James Heilman's removal

2016-05-11 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Wed, May 11, 2016 at 4:48 PM, Gergő Tisza  wrote:
> Hi Fae,
>
> On Tue, May 10, 2016 at 1:14 PM, Fæ  wrote:
>
>> Not tricky at all. There are *plenty* of other similar organizations
>> that have elections for their trustees to their boards, including
>> several Wikimedia chapters/affiliates where their boards have oversite
>> of many employees and significant sums of money.
>
>
> can you share a few examples of organizations where board members are
> appointed in a binding election and members of the electorate do not have
> to identify themselves to the organization?
>
> Or are you suggesting that the WMF should turn into a membership
> organization and Wikimedians who are unwilling to share personally
> identifying information with the WMF should not be allowed to vote?

I dont see how the voting method is particularly relevant to this thread..?
It seems this thread is more about governance by post-appointment
trustees, who have been properly vetted before being appointed.

I dont recall that we've had any serious incidents of the board
election outcome being disrupted because we use a voting process that
includes non-identified people.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] election for 2 seats on WMF board of trustees ends May 7...

2016-05-03 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, May 3, 2016 at 7:03 PM, Lane Rasberry  wrote:
>..
> For the next election (in three years) I will propose a change. I want it
> to be easier for chapters to self-report their votes in a public way, if
> they choose to do so. Even if the election is closed, enough individual
> chapters seem to want to self-disclose.

This is a bit odd.  I vaguely remember that in previous years that
some chapters held discussions with their members online, and publicly
published the chapter decision before it was recorded on chapters
wiki.  Is that no longer possible?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Open and recorded WMF Board meetings

2016-04-25 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On 26 Apr 2016 09:25, "Craig Franklin"  wrote:
>
> I imagine that this is the email that Trillium is referring to, for those
> who are just joining us:
>
>
https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2016-February/082566.html
>
> Whether he means that he supported her "dismissal" or supported her
> "resignation" is left to the reader.

My reading of that is Jimmy supported her "departure" with sadness.
i.e. he avoids indicating how the departure occurred; neither dismissal nor
resignation.

No doubt that type of phrasing is in the HR handbook for situations like
this, to avoid pain or legal disputes after the fact.

Thank you Craig for nipping this one in the bud.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Gender gap on "classical" encyclopedias

2016-04-20 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Yes. That is SOP for studies about biographies and literature in general.
On 20 Apr 2016 18:04, "Gerard Meijssen"  wrote:

> Hoi,
> Given the existing number of articles and the gender gap in them, it is
> unlikely that activities make much of a difference. I think that it makes
> more sense to compare the new articles and see if the percentages are
> different in those. Did anyone look at it in this way?
> Thanks,
>   GerardM
>
> On 20 April 2016 at 09:39,  wrote:
>
> > Hi, as some of you may know, the Wikipedia gender indicator [1] tells us
> > how many articles are biographies about women x language/country/culture.
> >
> > In order to compare these numbers...Does anyone knows if there is an
> > existing comparison with gender balance in classical encyclopedias?
> > (Britannica, Larousse...) or, if not, could someone prepare a WD query
> > about it?
> >
> > I think it could be a good argument for us to use: e.g "at cawiki 12% of
> > bios are about women, compared to 5% in GEC, Our most famous
> encyclopedia".
> >
> > We could compare it also for temathic encyclopedias or other databases
> > existing in projects like Mix and match.
> >
> > Can someone help? thanks in advance
> >
> >
> > [1]http://wigi.wmflabs.org/
> >
> >
> > Àlex Hinojo
> > User:Kippelboy
> > Amical Wikimedia Programme manager
> > ___
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Gender gap on "classical" encyclopedias

2016-04-20 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
A comparison against classical sports biographical works, focused on
Australian sportspeople.

http://espace.library.uq.edu.au/view/UQ:301142
On 20 Apr 2016 14:39,  wrote:

> Hi, as some of you may know, the Wikipedia gender indicator [1] tells us
> how many articles are biographies about women x language/country/culture.
>
> In order to compare these numbers...Does anyone knows if there is an
> existing comparison with gender balance in classical encyclopedias?
> (Britannica, Larousse...) or, if not, could someone prepare a WD query
> about it?
>
> I think it could be a good argument for us to use: e.g "at cawiki 12% of
> bios are about women, compared to 5% in GEC, Our most famous encyclopedia".
>
> We could compare it also for temathic encyclopedias or other databases
> existing in projects like Mix and match.
>
> Can someone help? thanks in advance
>
>
> [1]http://wigi.wmflabs.org/
>
>
> Àlex Hinojo
> User:Kippelboy
> Amical Wikimedia Programme manager
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikipedia Kenya - copyright infringement

2016-04-10 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
http://www.wikipedia.or.ke/ now has ads dancing around the screen, the
donate link is gone, and the privacy policy and general disclaimer
have been removed.

It only has 107,391 articles according to special:statistics.

On Mon, Aug 4, 2014 at 9:29 AM, Pine W  wrote:
> I took a look at this. From my brief investigation, this appears to be a
> good-faith effort by someone to locally host a Kenyan version of Wikipedia.
> The donation button properly links to https://donate.wikimedia.org. The
> server geolocates to Estonia. I am forwarding this report to Legal. I hope
> that formal legal action is not necessary and that if the maintainers of
> the website are responsive that a mutually agreeable settlement can be
> arranged.
>
> Thanks for finding this, Teles.
>
> Pine
>
>
> On Sun, Aug 3, 2014 at 6:55 PM, Lucas Teles  wrote:
>
>> Hi, everyone.
>>
>> Somehow I was directed to this project in a search on Google:
>> http://www.wikipedia.or.ke/
>>
>> Does anybody know what is that project?
>>
>> It seems to have a large content in English but pages doesn't mention
>> authorship properly. I am assuming it uses Wikipedia content in violation
>> of copyrights.
>>
>> It also uses the Wikipedia logo improperly. Not sure if a mirror can do
>> that...
>>
>> Regards,
>> Teles
>>
>>
>> --
>>
>> *Lucas Teles*
>>
>> * Steward at Wikimedia Foundation. Administrator *
>> *at Portuguese Wikipedia.*https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Teles
>> Contact me:
>> [image: Facebook]  <
>> https://www.facebook.com/telesr  >
>> [image: Twitter]  <
>> https://twitter.com/Lucas_Teles >
>> [image: Skype] < lucastelesr >
>> Mobile: < 55 71 9374 2725 >
>> I am a Wikimedia volunteer.
>> Wikimedia Foundation can not be held responsible for my actions.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikiwand

2016-03-31 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Thu, Mar 31, 2016 at 7:24 PM, James Heilman  wrote:
> There output of our mainpage however is horrible
> http://www.wikiwand.com/en/Main_Page

On my LG L Bello 5.0" mobile phone it is worse than on desktop, with
that large language selection box taking over all of the screen and
not able to be closed, with only bits of the ugly mess in the
background.

And it is stale, showing February 25 as the current date for "On this day.."

However, that page isnt prominent in their system.

Instead they prominently link to http://www.wikiwand.com/news , which
is a very nice version of the English Wikipedia main page that looks
like it is in sync with the latest version on English Wikiped.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Who runs the Wikimedia Shop ?

2016-03-22 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Wed, Mar 23, 2016 at 12:51 AM, Sam Klein <sjkl...@hcs.harvard.edu> wrote:
>..
> On Tue, Mar 22, 2016 at 12:07 PM, John Mark Vandenberg <jay...@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
>>
>> IIRC, there were several affiliates that were previously running a
>> store, and naturally supporting the most relevant languages of their
>> community.  They were effectively shutdown, and localisation lost due
>> to centralisation to the WMF.
>
>
> Is this true?  Please record any actual examples on:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Wikimedia_trademarks

I dont have any actual examples, only possibly faulty memories of
events that mostly affected other affiliates.

As I recall, and apologies in advance for my memories fading or being
faulty, the French, Italian and German chapters were running what
could be considered a store before the WMF's "Chapters Agreement"
and/or "Fundraising Agreements" of 2009/2010 were required to be
signed by chapters , and the language of those agreements removed the
possibility of merchandise.

Again as I recall, many chapters tried to negotiate amendments to that
prohibition, and I vaguely recall the French chapter being successful,
and I vaguely recall the Italian chapter being unsuccessful.

I see the French chapter's shop is still open.

http://wikimediashop.spreadshirt.net/

I do not see a shop for Italia or Deutschland, but locals may be able
to find what I can not.

Any details regarding the old chapters stores, especially German and
Italian, would be most welcomed to augment and possibly correct my
vague recollections.

Sj, 99% of this happened during your time on the board, so it would be
great if you can help provide some clarity with whatever memories you
have.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Who runs the Wikimedia Shop ?

2016-03-22 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Mar 22, 2016 at 10:01 PM, Nathan  wrote:
> FWIW, it's clear that the trademark policy is intended to apply to users
> other than the WMF. This is all a bit overblown, considering the tiny scale
> of use and money involved.

IIRC, there were several affiliates that were previously running a
store, and naturally supporting the most relevant languages of their
community.  They were effectively shutdown, and localisation lost due
to centralisation to the WMF.  The trademark policy provides a sound
basis for this type of use of the trademarks, and could allow
affiliates to re-open their own shops.

I'd like to know if anyone has received a trademark license under that
"Commercial merchandise" provision of the trademark policy.

It would also be interesting to hear from anyone whose application for
Commercial merchandise was rejected.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Who runs the Wikimedia Shop ?

2016-03-21 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Mar 21, 2016 at 7:34 PM, Ricordisamoa
 wrote:
> Il 21/03/2016 13:14, Marc A. Pelletier ha scritto:
>>
>> On 2016-03-21 8:03 AM, Ricordisamoa wrote:
>>>
>>> As in [1] I'd like to know whether the use of Shopify is acceptable for a
>>> FOSS-friendly organization. Thanks in advance.
>>
>>
>> While Shopify isn't FLOSS-only, they're a fairly okay place that does
>> contribute to FLOSS themselves (mostly in the Ruby and Go worlds, that
>> intersect very little with our own tech).
>>
>> I don't think it's reasonable to expect that every external supplier is
>> all-FLOSS.  For one, the movement would be pretty much stuck without
>> hardware, networking gear, and power at the very least.  Not every
>> service/provider even *have* pure-FLOSS alternative - let alone good or even
>> adequate ones.
>>
>> -- Coren / Marc
>>
>
> My concern was about the (likely proprietary) JavaScript that is run on the
> customers' devices, but it turns out that it isn't actually required to
> browse and purchase?

I very quickly looked, and it appears to be mostly open libraries and
Shopify specific code for making purchases.
However any amount of tracking could be hidden somewhere in their
JavaScript, and an audit today doesnt mean it is safe to use tomorrow,
as the source code is not publicly reviewed before being deployed.

> And yes, it'd be nice if the server side was under WMF's control too!

IMO it is more important that any service on the "wikimedia.org"
domain (and others owned by WMF) is free software.

Outsourcing the service provision is fine, provided the software is
free software and the delegated service provider abides by our terms
of use and privacy policy.

If we need to run non-free services, that isnt free software or can't
comply with our terms of use and privacy policy, it should be hosted
on a different domain, preferrably the domain of the service provider
so that it is abundantly clear who the transaction is really with.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Who runs the Wikimedia Shop ?

2016-03-21 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Mar 21, 2016 at 5:28 PM, Joseph Seddon  wrote:
> Hey Florence,
>
> Regarding your first question the shop is Foundation owned and run but
> hosted by Shopify, an e-commerce provider. [1] The orders are then sent to
> our fulfillment partner, SWAGBOT. [2]

That it is run by Shopify appears to only be stated on the shipping page:
http://store.wikimedia.org/pages/shipping

https://www.google.com/search?q=shopify+site%3Astore.wikimedia.org

I think it would be appropriate to explicitly & prominently mention this on

https://store.wikimedia.org/pages/terms-of-service
https://store.wikimedia.org/pages/privacy-policy

Especially the Privacy policy, since it says

"The Wikipedia store is operated by third-party service providers,
and, as part of their operations, they may process your information.
Please consult their privacy policies for further information."

And then doesnt say who those third party service providers are.

Here in Indonesia, when I go to https://shopify.com, I am forcibly
sent to https://www.shopify.co.id/ , and when I click on Terms of Use
or Privacy I am sent to 404 pages.

https://www.shopify.co.id/legal/terms
https://www.shopify.co.id/legal/privacy

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] User interaction on Wikipedia --call for submissions

2016-03-15 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On 16 Mar 2016 07:07, "Moushira Elamrawy"  wrote:
>
> Hello Fae,
>
> Ideation phase [0], is a term widely used in product and design context.
> Now, I see your point around how volunteers who are not related to these
> fields, might not be familiar with it. Possibly something like, idea
> generation, or brainstorming could have replaced it.
>
> I am not sure though if the factors that you have listed are relevant; I
> think it is a matter of using a word in a certain context where it
actually
> fits, without realizing how a broader audience would perceive it.
>
> In any case, thanks for the note :-)
>
> [0] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ideation_%28creative_process%29

That is a woeful article, for a useless word with no fixed meaning. As far
as I can tell the component all usages agree on is "thinking" is involved.
See the many comments on the talk page.

A good test for whether a word should be used in communications to a wide
audience is how widely translated a Wikipedia article is. If it would be
translated to a different concept in other languages, it isn't a good
concept for this type of communication.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Affiliate-selected Board seats update

2016-03-11 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Fri, Mar 11, 2016 at 6:31 PM, Cristian Consonni
 wrote:
> Il 11/Mar/2016 11:50, "Gordon Joly"  ha scritto:
>> Do Chapters have to ask their membership, or are they empowered to vote
>> without going back to the members?
>
> Practices vary widely. Some chapters discuss how to vote in their (annual)
> general assemblies and they finally vote on who to vote. In other chapters
> it's the board that decides. In these cases usually there is a formal
> deliberation by the board and those are usually ratified by the members in
> the next general assembly.

Can we document this on meta?  i.e. a table of which affiliates do what?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Affiliate-selected Board seats update

2016-03-10 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Hi Itzik, do you mean a proper secret ballot?

On Fri, Mar 11, 2016 at 1:52 AM, Itzik - Wikimedia Israel
 wrote:
> Hi Chris,
>
> How and where the chapter will vote?
> I offered to do it privately, in order to avoid current votes to influence
> others chapters.
>
> Itzik
>
> - Sent from mobile
> On Mar 10, 2016 15:35, "Chris Keating"  wrote:
>
>> Dear all,
>>
>> The deadline for nominations in the Affiliate Selected Board Seats process
>> passed on Tuesday, and 10 candidates have been nominated:
>>
>>
>> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Affiliate-selected_Board_seats/2016/Nominations
>>
>> This is more candidates than any previous affiliate/chapter-selected
>> process, and I am pleased to note that 4 of the candidates are women and 5
>> are from countries not in North American or Western Europe. All candidates
>> who have received one or more endorsements from voting organisations by 23
>> March will be added to the ballot for the election.
>>
>> While only Chapters and the single Thematic Organization have a vote in
>> this election, all community members are invited to participate by asking
>> questions to the candidates, here:
>>
>>
>> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Affiliate-selected_Board_seats/2016/Questions
>>
>> Help translating candidate statements into other languages is also much
>> appreciated.
>>
>> (For more details about this process, please see here:
>> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Affiliate-selected_Board_seats/2016 )
>>
>> Many thanks,
>>
>> Chris Keating
>> (one of the election facilitators)
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Open and recorded WMF Board meetings

2016-03-09 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Thu, Mar 10, 2016 at 6:51 AM, SarahSV <sarahsv.w...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> On Wed, Mar 9, 2016 at 4:42 PM, John Mark Vandenberg <jay...@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
>>
>> Are we still waiting for Jimmy to agree/reject to James' request to
>> release an email?
>>
>
> Yes. Jimmy said on 28 February that he wanted to speak to others about
> whether it was okay to release his 30 December 2015 email to James. [1]
>
> There's also the question of releasing the more recent email he sent to
> James and cc-ed to Pete.
>
> James has said nothing needs to be kept confidential for his sake. [2]
>
> Sarah
>
> [1] https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2016-March/083058.html
> [2]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2016-February/082815.html

Jimmy, could you please treat this request with the absolute highest
priority.  It has gone on too long.
If some parts must be redacted because you cant get agreement from
other parties, then so be it -- just tell us why (broadly) some part
was redacted.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Open and recorded WMF Board meetings

2016-03-09 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Thu, Mar 10, 2016 at 6:14 AM, Pete Forsyth  wrote:
> On Wed, Mar 9, 2016 at 10:35 AM, Jimmy Wales 
> wrote:
>>
>> I rejoined this list after a long absence, and I was immediately
>> reminded why some people call it "drama-l"
>
>
> Jimmy, if you -- specifically, you -- want to do things to decrease drama,
> there are much more effective things you can do. Your analysis and
> commentary about the general dynamics are not, in my view, helpful (whether
> or not they are accurate), because things that you, specifically and
> repeatedly, have been asked to do to reduce drama have gone ignored.
>
> You're on the record having dismissed a community-elected trustee's words
> as "utter fucking bullshit." You recently doubled down on that statement in
> an email to me and James. That's just one dimension of a huge collection of
> issues. Many people have asked you to deal with the damage you have caused
> recently and publicly, but none of the responses I have seen suggest that
> you understand your own contribution to some pretty serious problems.
>
> Telling the list what you think the general dynamics are, while you are
> apparently oblivious to your contribution to them, is not helpful.

Are we still waiting for Jimmy to agree/reject to James' request to
release an email?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Access and Participation in the ASBS

2016-03-06 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
The affiliates should be engaging their members and their broader
ccommunit/stakeholders in this process, and to do that the members should
have translated material to evaluate.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Open and recorded WMF Board meetings

2016-03-05 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sun, Mar 6, 2016 at 9:58 AM, jytdog  wrote:
> Hi
>
> This is my first posting here.  Sorry if I do anything wrong.
>
> I wanted to note here the following post from James Heilman:
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2016-February/082816.html
>
> And I guess this one too
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2016-February/082763.html
>
> I fully understand what folks have said about the unworkability of
> videotaping meetings, and I also understand and appreciate what Risker
> wrote about minutes being legal documents that need to reviewed and
> approved by all.
>
> At the same time, some enduring record seems essential.  Recordings that
> are not made public, but that can be used to verify when things like the
> above happen?  So not open, but recorded?
>
> What is really hard about those two posts, is the irresolvable differences
> in statements that were made about those events.  Really hard.

I agree.

Start recording now, for private use of the board and associated staff
to save them time and so at least the internal disputes are about what
was meant rather than what was actually said.

And push the "open" part part of this topic until further down the
road, when there is a little more bandwidth to evaluate it properly.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Wikimediauk-l] Free as in beer

2016-02-29 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Feb 29, 2016 at 10:19 PM, Richard Symonds
 wrote:
> So...
>
> BrewDog, a Scotland-based "hipster brewery" - for want of a better phrase -
> have just "open-sourced" their entire recipe collection.
>
> You can read more at https://www.brewdog.com/lowdown/blog/diy-dog.
>
> It's not entirely clear what "licence" they're using but they say:
>
> "copy them, tear them to pieces, bastardise them, adapt them, but most of
> all, enjoy them. They are well travelled but with plenty of miles still left
> on the clock. Just remember to share your brews, and share your results.
> Sharing is caring."

Ask them to clarify their license...?  The PDF would be a great
addition to Wikimedia Commons, if possible.  However the inclusion of
packaging diagrams in their PDF's recipes is likely to mean they dont
want to release this PDF under generous terms, but instead this is a
marketing gimmick only.  If we can only get it without those packaging
diagrams, that would still be good.

> I guess "free as in beer" has a slightly different meaning now!

no, no this is not some magic moment of enlightenment.

similar sharing of beer recipes has occurred as long as beer has existed.

Even properly licensed shared beer brew recipes have been around for a
*very* long time.

Even the US Whitehouse got in on the action

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wh_beer_recipe_both-o.svg

There are even companies that share their beer trademark

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_Beer

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] The reinstatement of James Heilman

2016-02-27 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
If the board can not back up Jimmy's assertion he has removed for cause, I
am pretty confident the community will 'select' James again, just as soon
as they are given an opportunity.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Facebook marketing inside pt.wikipedia

2016-02-19 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Indonesian Wikipedia has used site notice to link to their Facebook
group, Twitter, and Instagram for years.

Their facebook page has 97,236 likes.  https://www.facebook.com/id.wiki
posts often get 100 likes

compare with Wikimedia Commons page, with 2,793 likes, and posts
usually attract < 10 likes.
https://www.facebook.com/Wikimedia.Commons/

On Fri, Feb 19, 2016 at 5:28 PM, Joseph Seddon  wrote:
> Hey Rodrigo,
>
> I don't know of any example where Site Notice has been used in the past to
> point people to facebook.
>
> Although the intentions behind what is being proposed are good ones, I
> think there are probably issues that surround neutrality and with the very
> different privacy policy of facebook.
>
> Based on those things alone it is not something I would recommend. I would
> be happy to follow up with you further off list if you would like to
> discuss this further.
>
> Regards
>
> --
> Seddon
>
> *Advancement Associate (Community Engagement)*
> *Wikimedia Foundation*
>
> On Thu, Feb 18, 2016 at 1:42 PM, Rodrigo Padula <
> rodrigopad...@wikimedia.org.br> wrote:
>
>> Hello fellows!
>>
>> Since the end of the last year some contributors from pt.wikipedia are
>> discussing regarding the idea of including the promotion of our Facebook
>> Page on site Notice [1]
>>
>> That proposal was started by Teles, a Brazilian steward. He received a lot
>> of local support.
>>
>> The general idea is to bring more people from Facebook to access Wikipedia
>> through our Facebook page, but what we are doing is redirecting users from
>> pt.wikipedia to Facebook and including a free Facebook ads on pt.wikipedia.
>>
>> I would like to know if it is ok for the Wikimedia Movement and if this
>> kind of Facebook promotional campaign was proposed and published in other
>> wikipedias/wikimedia projects.
>>
>> [1]
>> https://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikip%C3%A9dia:Esplanada/propostas/Inserir_p%C3%A1gina_da_Wikip%C3%A9dia_em_portugu%C3%AAs_do_Facebook_no_sitenotice_%2825nov2015%29
>>
>> Best regards
>>
>> Rodrigo Padula
>> Coordenador de Projetos
>> Grupo Wikimedia Brasileiro de Educação e Pesquisa
>> http://www.wikimedia.org.br
>> +55 21 99326-0558
>>
>>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Elsevier?

2016-02-14 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Feb 15, 2016 at 10:00 AM, Milos Rancic  wrote:
> On Sun, Feb 14, 2016 at 11:37 PM, Lodewijk  
> wrote:
>> that is a perfectly fine opinion to hold, thanks for sharing. However, the
>> WMF should, in my opinion, only make political statements like severing
>> ties with an organisation that offers something that is useful to the
>> editing community, either when legally obligated, or when there is an
>> overwhelming consensus.
>>
>> I don't sense such overwhelming consensus just yet.
>
> Having connection with Elsevier by WMF and not having "overwhelming
> consensus" between us on this issue -- after Elsevier started
> litigation against Sci-Hub -- are highly hypocritical positions of WMF
> and Wikimedia movement.
>
> Similar litigation produced the death of Aaron Swartz. In his case, it
> was JSTOR, which initiated the trial.
>
> Fortunately, WMF didn't make any deal with JSTOR but with Elsevier, as
> it would be direct attack on Aaron's legacy.

Actually, they did...

https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikipedia:JSTOR=485563919

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Reducing the net cost of Wikimania

2016-02-10 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Thu, Feb 11, 2016 at 2:28 AM, Itzik - Wikimedia Israel
 wrote:
> If we want to talk about the cost of Wikimania it will be great if the WMF
> and the local team will share the costs.
>
> Until now Wikimania London didn't published anything:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_2014/Budget
>
> And also Mexico:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_2015/Budget
>
> Maybe I missed something, but it's strange that such discussion takes place
> without a real budget breakdown. To summarize 2 huge event to "1$ million
> USD" does not make sense.

I agree.  Without public data, how can there be an informed public consultation.

I've asked for similar data at:

https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Grants_talk:IdeaLab/Towards_a_New_Wikimania#Analysis_on_repeat_funded_attendees

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Thanks, likes and progress on Wikimedia Discourse pilot

2016-02-07 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Feb 8, 2016 at 6:31 PM, Lodewijk  wrote:
> Is there any progress on finding a mailing list that likes to be guinnea
> pig (a.k.a. innovation leader) and try it out? I don't think it has to be
> an alternative for this particular mailing list in this phase, any mailing
> list of some size would do.

wikisource-l was interested, but is concerned about whether high
fidelity dumps of Discourse could be made available in a standard
format.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Board-l] Fwd: WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

2016-01-22 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sat, Jan 23, 2016 at 5:21 AM, Dariusz Jemielniak  wrote:
>..
> The identified mistakes/shortcomings of the whole process:
>
> 1. In the background check performed by the HR and the legal department we
> have not had a specific PR check as an immanent part. While it sounds like
> common sense  (doh! I know, although many organizations don't actually do
> that), it seems that each department focused on their own turf mostly- HR
> confirmed the highest expertise, and the legal department confirmed no
> legal threats.
>
> How are we going to address this in the future? We have already prepared a
> modification to the process, including a PR subroutine into the larger
> background check process.
>
> 2. The BGC has failed individually as well, for a rather silly reason. An
> often returning argument has been that we must have known about the case,
> since it is high in google.com results.
> The initial screening was conducted by Alice, Frieda, and me. None of us is
> a native English speaker and our searches included google.de, google.it and
> google.pl - none of them included the information about the controversy in
> the top 10 results at the time (btw, the pando article is clearly trending
> up and is in the top 10 results in google.pl now, while it was not even a
> couple of weeks ago).

> How are we going to address this in the future? We are going to assume a
> global audience of our movement and conduct searches specifically taking
> that in mind.
>
> 3. We have not asked the candidates a very simple question: is there
> anything in your past that may be perceived as controversial, or require
> additional explanations?

There is also a fourth problem.

Every single board of trustee member is responsible for their vote,
and should have done their own due diligence, checking the dossier
they had been given.  It means that 10 people failed to find and/or
highlight this issue.  There were three native English speakers on the
board who would have been using English searches  (James, Jimmy &
Stu).

Jimmy has disclosed on January 8 that he did 'Google' Arnnon prior to
the appointment.

"
I cannot speak for the entire board. As for myself, I was aware (from
googling him and reading news reports) that he had a small part in the
overall situation when he was told by Eric Schmidt that Google had a
policy of not recruiting from Apple, and that a recruiter had done it,
and that the recruiter should be fired, and he agreed to do so. As for
your other allegations, that he "helped manage that collusion", the
part about some "ugly and humiliating" termination, and chastisement
by a Federal Judge, I don't (yet) know anything about
that.--[[User:Jimbo Wales|Jimbo Wales]] ([[User talk:Jimbo
Wales#top|talk]]) 09:41, 8 January 2016 (UTC)
"
https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?diff=prev=698802294

I would expect that a board member seeing that would raise it for all
other board members to consider if it wasnt part of the dossier
provided by HR and/or board committees.

fwiw, A few days ago Jimmy disclosed that "James voted in favor of Arnnon".
https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?diff=prev=700325768

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John Vandenberg

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Profile of Magnus Manske

2016-01-20 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Wed, Jan 20, 2016 at 12:51 PM, Marc A. Pelletier  wrote:
> On 2016-01-19 12:53 PM, Pine W wrote:
>>
>> The constitutional crisis that WMF created by using Superprotect to force
>> Image VIewer on the communities [...]
>
>
> ... except that this is not what happened.  While that narrative might be
> satisfying for someone who looks for a sense of being the stalwart defender
> of an oppressed community, the reality is that superprotect was created to
> block the deployment of a technically inapt and entirely broken "fix" that
> was - itself - a kneejerk reaction.
>
> Which is not to say that its creation or use was wise in any way - it
> wasn't.  But trying to reframe things in "oh, evil WMF did all wrong against
> the poor, innocent community" terms serves no purpose other than create a
> windmill to tilt at.

It is comments like this from WMF staff which make me think that WMF
has not yet really internalised the reason why VE, MV, etc. were such
a problem.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Proposal for New Project - Wikilore

2016-01-18 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
in regards to https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikilore

On Tue, Jan 19, 2016 at 2:55 AM, Johan Jönsson  wrote:
> 2016-01-18 16:37 GMT+01:00 Tanweer Morshed :
>> Yeah, I do think the same as well. Wikisource is a good option for that.
>
> It could be that the Wikisources I'm familiar with are the exceptions,
> but they tend to be very vary of material that has never been
> published, and this seems to very much be about writing down what's
> passed down orally.
>
> I also imagine the need to do this would be greater the smaller the
> language, or at least the less likely it is someone else would write
> them down, which probably would correlate with fewer persons who are
> potential Wikimedians. Wouldn't that require the creation of a fair
> number of Wikisources that would probably never have a decent chance
> of getting a community?

Wikisource could host most of it, if the oral history is recorded from
a native speaker and direct cultural participant.
There was a good talk about this at the Hong Kong Wikimania.

The recording would be uploaded to Wikimedia Commons, and then the
transcription can be created on the Multilingual Wikisource, or a more
appropriate Wikisource if one exists for the language, and it is a
valid source because it has appropriate provenance.

Some Wikisource might reject this type of work, especially if the
provenance was not high quality, but if provenance is high quality it
is a valid type of source.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Monetizing Wikimedia APIs

2016-01-18 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Jan 19, 2016 at 2:38 AM, Isaac David  wrote:
>
> Le lun. 18 janv. 2016 à 3:17, Andrea Zanni  a
> écrit :
>>
>> On Mon, Jan 18, 2016 at 9:59 AM, David Goodman  wrote:
>>
>>>  Nor am I concerned that our information might be used by people who
>>> oppose
>>>  our
>>>  principles. We ask just the same of our contributors--that the
>>> information
>>>  they contribute may be used for ''any'' purpose.
>>>
>>
>>
>> My concern is when our CC-BY-SA (or CC0) user-generated information is not
>> shared-alike AND it is a cost for the movement (ie a cost in terms of
>> bandwidth and electricity).
>> If Google harvests our information, using massively the API we provide,
>> and
>> they just make it a silo for them to use (for the Knowledge Graph, for
>> example) and this hurts us, I'm wondering if
>> we can do something about it. There are only very few players who can take
>> all our information and use it as an internal asset, enriching it and NOT
>> sharing it.
>>
>> I don't think in binary, so for me there is no contradiction to have a
>> CC-BY-SA content, but some caveat for big, big, big players.
>> I'm not saying (nobody is) that we have to shift to a NC license. Just
>> that  I don't want our movement to be hurt by multi-billion dollars
>> companies: I'm not an expert of the commons (I bet many people in this
>> list
>> are) so I'm genuinely interested in hearing opinions about this. Is such
>> thing as "tragedy of the digital commons"? Can Google (or Amazon or
>> Facebook) exploits us?
>>
>> Now please tell me (gently, :-D) where is my mistake in this line of
>> thought.
>>
>> Aubrey
>
>
> CC-BY-SA allows everyone (including big companies) to modify (for instance,
> to enrich)
> and not share-alike AS LONG AS their extended work is kept private. That
> means
> Facebook pages and Google infoboxes based on CC-BY-SA content ought to carry
> the CC-BY-SA license too, because they are distributed to an audience wider
> than the
> changes' copyright owners (usually the companies themselves).

By this logic, and it is reasonable but debatable, if a Google search
infobox should be CC-BY-SA, then Wikidata items that contain all the
same infobox values from a Wikipedia article should also be CC-BY-SA.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Strategic planning

2016-01-12 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
'On Wed, Jan 13, 2016 at 7:42 AM, Anna Stillwell
 wrote:
> I like the idea of a strategic plan for the movement and one for the
> Foundation.
> I think that is a good idea.

Also agree.

I'd like to see strategic plan for the movement done first, and then
one undertaken for the Foundation when the 'movement's plan is
finished.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Announcement about changes to the Board

2016-01-10 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 12:44 PM, Dariusz Jemielniak  wrote:
> On Sun, Jan 10, 2016 at 7:51 PM, Fæ  wrote:
>
>> On 11 January 2016 at 00:37, Dariusz Jemielniak  wrote:
>> ..
>> This does not make sense. The existing trustees are *entirely*
>> responsible for the trustee selection process, including ensuring a
>> transparent and well governed process if nominations are taken.
>
>
> for clarification: I've meant that the selected new Board members
> themselves do not necessarily know who nominated them. Apologies for the
> confusion.

Hi Dariusz,

Do you mean you have no knowledge of who nominated the candidates?
Im also having difficulty understanding how you could vote without
being aware of who nominated the candidates.
But there are some ways that could be OK, if not ideal.

Was the filtering process concluded before you were appointed to the board?
Or was the filtering process done by a subcommittee?
Or was nomination data not provided as part of the info pack about
each candidate?
Or something else...?

How many candidates for these two seats did you (personally) evaluate
before voting to appoint these two?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Something

2016-01-03 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Something is covered in NDAs.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Announcement about changes to the Board

2015-12-31 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Can the board please very clearly state whether this removal was for cause,
or not!?
On 1 Jan 2016 12:03 am, "Patricio Lorente" 
wrote:

> Thank you to everyone who responded to my email about the Board’s recent
> decision. We recognize this is the Board's first removal of a sitting
> Trustee, and that has led to questions and perhaps some confusion.
>
> I wanted to provide you with some additional information in response to the
> discussions on this thread. As many of you know, we did not intend for the
> decision to become public the way it did. We planned to have a discussion
> and decision in the meeting, but could not be certain of the outcome ahead
> of the final vote. Since the meeting, we have taken our time to work
> together to make sure the information we share will be accurate,
> respectful, and informative to the greatest extent possible. At the same
> time, there is a limit to what the Board can share. We have fiduciary
> duties, which include Board confidentiality, and we must respect them in
> this decision as we would in others.
>
> I want to be very clear that the Board decision was not about a difference
> of opinion on a matter of WMF direction or strategy between James and the
> other Trustees. Over the course of the past few months, the Trustees had
> multiple conversations around expectations for Trustee conduct,
> responsibilities, and confidentiality. Ultimately, the majority of the
> Trustees came to the opinion that we were not able to reach a common
> understanding with James on fulfilling those expectations. We have a duty
> as a Board to ensure we all abide by our roles and responsibilities as an
> essential condition for effective governance. I also want to reaffirm that
> this decision was made internally, by the Board, without any outside
> influence, and according to the process outlined in our Bylaws.
>
> Under the Wikimedia Foundation’s Bylaws, and, in accordance with Florida
> law (where, as a 501(c)(3) charity, the Foundation is registered), members
> of the Board who are selected through community or affiliate elections are
> then appointed to the Board by the existing members. Since all members of
> the Board are appointed by the Board itself, the Board retains the ability
> to manage its composition as necessary to maintain the working environment
> required to be effective.
>
> As someone who was appointed through a community process, I understand how
> important it is to have strong voices from the community on our Board. I
> want to be absolutely clear that this decision does not change our
> commitment to engaging with a diverse, talented, opinionated, and
> representative group of leaders to serve on our Board. It also does not
> change our commitment to encouraging and hearing different voices on
> direction and strategy.
>
> We are working with the 2015 Elections Committee to fill this vacancy with
> a member of the Wikimedia community. This is a top priority. More
> information will be available once the Board has had a chance to confer
> with the 2015 Elections Committee.
>
> From our viewpoint, our actions around the removal are concluded. We
> sincerely hope that James will continue to be an active, constructive part
> of the Wikimedia movement. I personally look forward to continuing
> collaboration with him.
>
> Thank you,
>
>Patricio
> --
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF Board of Trustees

2015-12-28 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Surely there must be a board resolution that needs to be pubished regarding
this?
On 29 Dec 2015 9:44 am, "James Heilman"  wrote:

> On Dec 28th 2015 I was removed from the board of the Wikimedia Foundation.
> Many thanks to all those who gave me their support during the last
> election. I have worked in the last six month to honor the trust placed in
> me by advocating for our values, communities, and projects.
>
> Sincerely
> James Heilman
>
> --
> James Heilman
> MD, CCFP-EM, Wikipedian
>
> The Wikipedia Open Textbook of Medicine
> www.opentextbookofmedicine.com
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF Board of Trustees

2015-12-28 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Nod. Found it. :/

https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Resolution:James_Heilman_Removal
On 29 Dec 2015 1:21 pm, "Nathan" <nawr...@gmail.com> wrote:

> On Mon, Dec 28, 2015 at 9:17 PM, John Mark Vandenberg <jay...@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
> > Surely there must be a board resolution that needs to be pubished
> regarding
> > this?
>
>
> It was published. It contains no information beyond the OP.
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[Wikimedia-l] Wikidata training in Oceania, SE Asia (Was: Quality issues)

2015-12-20 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Dec 21, 2015 at 11:22 AM, Gnangarra  wrote:
> This is going nowhere, one of the big issues is that there is a lack of
> understanding on how WikiData works and whats it purpose is.
>
>
> Wikimedia Australia solution is invest community money into bringing
> someone who has contributed to Wikidata to Australia to do a series of
> talks and workshops around the country over a three week period.

Ah, that sounds interesting.  Could you provide more information about
that please?  I havent seen this mentioned on the public mailing lists
before.

Wikimedia Indonesia is doing a Wikidata project next year and lapping
up all the training they can get.  I am sure they would be interested
in having a trainer stop over in Jakarta on the way to or from
Australia.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] (no subject)

2015-12-04 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 3:25 PM, James Heilman  wrote:
> 1) Yes everyone realizes that using a non free image in our fundraising
> banners is not okay. It was a mistake. These things happen and we correct
> them.

Funny how the first response from a WMF employee was that they thought
using stock images was OK.

https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2015-December/080112.html

Im not sure the Fundraising team are on board with your 'free content
only' expectations.  Lisa indicated that contractors are also allowed
to use WMF owned media that hasnt been released as free content, and
'upload to Commons' is not part of their processes before media is
used in worldwide campaigns.

Some declared fundraising principles, which everyone agrees and
adheres to, would be good.

> 2) When is it okay to run smaller commercial ads rather than larger
> fundraising banners? Never.

I think the acceptable model for 'commercial' ads worth exploring is
to run 'thank you' ads for large corporate donors, provided those
'ads' are not targeted based on content or user. e.g. targeting only
based on time segments or countries.

Would you find a donation matching 'ad' acceptable, like was done for
Virgin Unite in 2006?

https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Wikimedia_thanks_Virgin_Unite

> I would much rather see the WMF become smaller
> than to see ads run.

'smaller' isnt a good way to look at it.  reduced expenditure may be
achieved by being more efficient, especially by using volunteers more
effectively.

Are you doing any planning around that possibility?

My understanding is the WMF management + fundraising costs are ~30% of
expenditure, which is below the American Institute of Philanthropy
(AIP) 's best practise of 80% program spend.  The current rate is
still in acceptable efficiency ranges according to the AIP.  If the
revenue decreases, as is a credible concern that has been raised by
WMF Fundraising team, fundraising costs will need to decrease to avoid
that percentage moving into the unacceptable range.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] A moderator's Pleas

2015-12-03 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Thu, Dec 3, 2015 at 8:35 PM, Richard Ames  wrote:
> All -
>
> Please use a new subject line when introducing a new topic.  Please start
> the thread with a new message (not a reply) to
> wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org

My apologies.  I have no idea how my email became a new thread without a subject

https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2015-December/080111.html

It was supposed to be a reply to

https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2015-December/080106.html

a bug in gmail web interface is the only likely cause :/

I suggest adding a rule to mailman to enforce a minimum number of
characters in the subject line; any number above 0 would have quite
rightly rejected my post ;-)

> More frequent posters: please consider the soft limit of 30 posts per
> month... see: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l

The wikimedia-l stats website appears to be broken, not showing months
after July 2015.

http://www.infodisiac.com/Wikipedia/ScanMail/Wikimedia-l.html

https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T120294

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] (no subject)

2015-12-03 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
"On Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 6:29 AM, Lisa Gruwell  wrote:
> We agree with you that WMF fundraising should not use stock photography.
> This was a mistake by a designer.  We specify in our contracts with outside
> designers that the images used should be custom artwork that WMF owns (and
> can then share) or freely licensed images.

Someone needed to approve purchasing the stock photograph.  They are
not free...?  Was it WMF or Trilogy?
Even if it was Trilogy, WMF sanity check processes are also not
working.  Surely someone at WMF is responsible for QA of the images
used in fundraising?

https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/Special:ListFiles shows this stock
photograph was uploaded to donate.wikimedia.org many times, and worked
on by WMF staff members.

https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:10-coffee-txt-thepricekeepswikithriving.jpg
- SPatton (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:03-coffee-txt-goingallyear.jpg
- SPatton (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Newgreen.jpg - SPatton (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Greencoffeecup-alt.jpg - SPatton (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Greencoffeecup-4.jpg - SPatton (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-price-overhead-redcup.jpg
- SPatton (WMF) (marked as CC-BY-SA; is that legal with the Getty
Image?)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-overhead-3dollars.jpg -
RStearns (Trilogy)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-overhead-small.jpg -
RStearns (Trilogy)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-overhead-no-text.jpg -
BHouse (Trilogy)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-overhead-small.png -
RStearns (Trilogy)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-fr-faites_v1.png - Jseddon (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-fr-offrez_v2.png - Jseddon (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-fr-offrez_v1.png - Jseddon (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-it-oggi_offri_v2.png -
Jseddon (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-it-oggi_offri_v1.png -
Jseddon (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-it-dona_caffe_v2.png -
Jseddon (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-it-dona_caffe_v1.png -
Jseddon (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-en-donate_coffee_v2.png
- Jseddon (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-en-donate_coffee_v1.png
- Jseddon (WMF)
https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-price-overhead.jpg -
BHouse (Trilogy)

Jseddon uploaded several alternative coffee cup photographs to
donate.wikimedia.org (no metadata, but they look like his own work...,
and not too shabby) . How did a stock photograph become selected over
other options, and ownership/copyright was never raised during those
selection discussions?

That is a lot of donor money wasted by someone somehow deciding to use
a Getty image as part of a multimillion dollor fundraising drive for
an organisation supporting "It is like a library or a public park. It
is like a temple for the mind. It is a place we can all go to think,
to learn, to share our knowledge with others."

I do hope your contract with the external design company allows you to
reclaim the wasted donor money caused by their violation of the
contract regarding image selection.

"We’ve worked hard over the years to keep it lean and tight. We
fulfill our mission, and leave waste to others."

> We pulled that banner yesterday

Thank you.

> and asked our designers for a new custom image that we can freely license.

Why not use the Coffee SVG I found (very easily I must say)?

> We are running another banner with a custom light bulb image at 100% now.
> This artwork will be added to Commons.

IMO they should be uploaded to Commons first, with full metadata, and
create a workflow added around begging the Commons community to
prioritise checking these images quickly so they can be used in the
fundraiser.  That was how it was done before donate.wikimedia.org ,
when wikimediafoundation.org was used for these uploads, and that wiki
had a significant volunteer community assisting in maintenance.

Uploads to donate.wikimedia.org should either be limited to people
competent in copyright and responsible for that aspect, or at the very
least the upload forms should require that metadata is filled in, and
someone at WMF checks new additions regularly.

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[Wikimedia-l] (no subject)

2015-12-02 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
"On Wed, Dec 2, 2015 at 6:14 PM, K. Peachey  wrote:
> I might have missed it, but I can't see any attribution for the image… as I
> doubt it will be a click through to the file page.

I couldnt find the image in

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Cups_of_black_coffee

The image is only on donate.wikimedia.org, uploaded by "BHouse
(Trilogy)", which I assume means they are an employee of
http://www.trilogyinteractive.com (see previous years Form 990):

https://donate.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Coffee-price-overhead.jpg

It appears to be a stock photo, by photographer Dimitrios Stefanidis.

http://tineye.com/search/2267feed8737197d64056553011261b75ef34a9e/

http://www.istockphoto.com/photo/coffee-on-white-25228505

So my hopeful guess WMF bought a licence to the photograph, but even
that would be inappropriate IMO.

It wouldnt have been hard to make a free photo of a coffee, or even
create a derivative of this lovely CC0 SVG

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Cup_of_Coffee.svg

(assuming the license is correct; I cant see CC0 on
http://rejke.deviantart.com/art/Coffee-384565868)

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fundraising banner (again)

2015-12-02 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On 3 Dec 2015 10:25 am, "Craig Franklin"  wrote:
>
> On 2 December 2015 at 16:37, MZMcBride  wrote:
>
> > Sadly, other sites can be more obnoxious. Some sites have interstitial
> > advertisements that include auto-playing video. The Wikimedia Foundation
> > has not yet sunk to that yet.
> >
>
> [[WP:BEANS]] comes to mind, don't say that too loudly and give anyone
ideas!
>
> Although I have been pleasantly surprised at the content (if not the size)
> of the ads so far this year.

You approve of WMF using stock photos?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] In Solidarity with Library Genesis and Sci-hub

2015-12-01 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Dec 1, 2015 at 7:13 PM, Andrea Zanni  wrote:
> I don't really mind WMF working with closed-access publishers, if that
> works.
> What I think is that we don't put the same effort  indoing something with
> the openaccess world: all the initiatives I know are volunteer-based.
>
> Two pop up in my mind:
> the Signalling Open Access project, aimed to put an icon aside every
> reference in Wikipedia, to signal if the article is OA or closed. Ask
> Daniel Mietchen for updates.
>
> The other one is the possibility of uploading thousands of articles in
> wikisource, directly in HTML. Remember, we have Wikipedia Zero: putting
> stuff onWikisource means having a free digital library to everyone.

According to https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Mobile_partnerships
and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia_Zero , it is Wikipedia
only.
Is that out of date?  Does it now include Wikisource?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] In Solidarity with Library Genesis and Sci-hub

2015-11-30 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Dec 1, 2015 at 1:32 PM, Milos Rancic  wrote:
> May we actually stop having anything with these pest?
>
> http://custodians.online/

I dont believe we can stop using closed access journals, as that would
reduce the quality of our projects, but we can use links to them as an
opportunity to educate the public.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_%28idea_lab%29#Solidarity_with_Library_Genesis_and_Sci-Hub

However WMF should discontinue its relationship with Elsevier and
Taylor & Francis via the 'Wikipedia Library'.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Elsevier_ScienceDirect
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Taylor_%26_Francis

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Redirect blog.wikipedia.org to the Wikimedia Blog

2015-11-28 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Why?

I would prefer not, as I like the project domains to be kept clean,
and I suspect it would (by effect if not intent) be abusing
'wikipedia's name to push meta content higher up in the results.

Project domains should be used for that project only, so IMO it would
only be appropriate to host a Wikipedia specific blog on
blog.wikipedia.org (and likewise for the other projects).  However I
feel it is cleaner if project subdomains are restricted to language
codes except where redirects are needed for keeping historical links
working.

Currently when I search "blog wikipedia" , I get the Wikimedia blog as
the third result, followed by three Wikimedia blog posts about
Wikipedia.  Ideally that search should show _more_ Wikipedia content
about blogs in the search results before meta stuff like the Wikimedia
blog.

If we added and used blog.wikipedia.org, it would probably rank higher
in search results, which I believe is contrary to our goals.


On Sun, Nov 29, 2015 at 9:43 AM, Amir Ladsgroup  wrote:
> Hey,
> The subject is self-explanatory (also I have this suggestion for
> blog.wikiquote.org and other projects as well)
>
> What do you think?
>
> Best
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Celebrating Parisian culture and libertarianism

2015-11-15 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sun, Nov 15, 2015 at 11:17 PM, Gnangarra  wrote:
> Not sure we should be making such  a link as the events in Paris are not
> about Islam just as the actions of the women in Kentucky was not a
> reflection of Christianity. Paris is not the only place its unfortunately
> its not even the latest place to fall victim to ISIS.
>
> Wikimedia is a world wide community and the focus on Paris ignores all our
> other communities who have over the last week, months. year or longer have
> been affected by acts of terrorism, I think we should exercise care when we
> adopt activities that elevate events or imply some guilt of association
> immortalizing that as fact in a place like wikipedia

Very much agree broadly with Gnangarra, especially about links with Islam.
The most positive and wiki way to respond is to ensure we're being
neutral, and that the reality of all attacks around the world are
being adequately and accurately recorded in a balanced manner from a
worldwide perspective.

However the attack on Paris is widely viewed as an escalation, not
because a citizen of one country is more valued than another, because
some places are more treasured by larger number of people of the
world, and also we're more shocked as we expect they are better
protected, and that creates an elevation of its own.

I appreciate the Signpost for very tastefully responding, in a measured way.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Wikipedia_Signpost/2015-11-11/Gallery

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] help needed - Arkansas

2015-10-14 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Thu, Oct 15, 2015 at 5:40 AM, Keegan Peterzell  wrote:
> (If you don't have userinfo.js [0] in your global .js, I highly recommend
> it)
>
> 0. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:PleaseStand/userinfo.js

IMO this should be a standard gadget available for all wikis.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] help needed - Arkansas

2015-10-14 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
I randomly clicked user pages in
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Wikipedians_in_Arkansas and
found many 5,000+ currently editing Wikipedians, and one 40,000+
editor.

Sounds like hitting user_talk pages might be a better approach to
finding suitable Wikipedians.

On Wed, Oct 14, 2015 at 9:58 PM, Craig Franklin
 wrote:
> This is not an especially helpful response.
>
> Regards,,
> Craig
>
> On 14 October 2015 at 20:37, Jane Darnell  wrote:
>
>> Arkansas is considered one of the "fly-over" states. Good luck locating a
>> Wikipedian somewhere around there, not to mention a Wikimedian.
>>
>> On Wed, Oct 14, 2015 at 7:38 AM, Gnangarra  wrote:
>>
>> > G'day
>> >
>> > I have been contacted by an active Wikiproject Spam editor for help
>> > (because I've recently been working with an editor here in Perth in a
>> > similar situation),  to talk to a user who appears to be linked to the
>> > Encyclopedia of Arkansas. The user is just adding links to EOA in the
>> > external links section of related articles, another user has asked for
>> the
>> > links not to be blacklisted as its a good source.
>> >
>> > In these case the Australian chapter reaches out such editors as a
>> personal
>> > discussion over a coffee here works very effectively in turning this type
>> > of contact into potential programmatic activities.  Being just couple
>> miles
>> > too far way I was looking for someone closer who would be willing to
>> > followup with this on a local level.  As I said in my offer of help I'm
>> > happy to support and advise them that goes for who ever takes up the
>> reigns
>> > but the important part of developing this is impractical from here.
>> >
>> >
>> > on WP discussion
>> > https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:Cals.eoa#Help_offer
>> > https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_talk:Gnangarra#UOA
>> >
>> >
>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Spam#Encyclopedia_of_Arkansas
>> >
>> >
>> > already checked meta there isnt any chapters close by, nearest user group
>> > is in North Carolina with a smaller area of interest, and the only
>> > experienced editors(10,000+ edits) listed on the en Wikiproject Arkansas
>> > havent been active in the last 6 months
>> >
>> > --
>> > Gnangarra
>> >
>> > President Wikimedia Australia
>> > WMAU: http://www.wikimedia.org.au/wiki/User:Gnangarra
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimania 2017 Montreal - scooped by Signpost

2015-10-06 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Wed, Oct 7, 2015 at 6:17 AM, Gregory Varnum  wrote:
> Given that enWP alone has 123,540 active editors as of this morning,[1] it’s 
> not exactly a stretch…

What percentage of those are credible stakeholders in Wikimania?

How many are going to be eligible for Wikimania scholarships?

How many will attend a Wikimania?

Obviously a relative constant percentage will be attendees due to it
being very affordable to attend from their home.
This is an argument for ensuring the host cities are very
geographically diverse, but factoring in the size of the 'casual'
editor community who is likely to attend for this reason.

So, probably the most important question, depending on whether
Wikimania is to be a community event (which is up for debate)...

How many would fly to another country at their own expense to attend Wikimania?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Collaboration team reprioritization

2015-09-04 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sat, Sep 5, 2015 at 12:37 PM, MZMcBride  wrote:
> Amir E. Aharoni wrote:
>>Much more importantly, Flow very much does cover basic talk pages. You can
>>write a title and an OP and get people to reply. This has been working for
>>many months already. This is my definition of "covering basic talk pages".
>>
>>Even more importantly is that you can write a title and an OP and get
>>people to reply ON THEIR PHONES. This is nearly impossible on the classic
>>talk pages; on them you are lucky to even manage to read the existing
>>discussions, and typing a reply requires extra finger-acrobatics. With
>>Flow it's as easy as on Twitter. I do almost no coding for Mobile
>>Frontend and apps, but I'm a kind of a volunteer mobile technologies
>>ambassador in my home wiki, and good mobile support for talk pages is the
>>#1 request that I hear from veteran editors with regards to using
>>Wikipedia on their phones. This is another thing that Flow has been doing
>>for many months already.
>
> I think most of the points you raise here are true of LiquidThreads or
> _any_ prototype of a discussion system. Yes, you get a reply button
> instead of needing ":: " wikitext. That's great, I agree, but after
> having watched LiquidThreads rot and then seeing a lot of time, money, and
> effort put into Flow, I'm pretty dissatisfied with the deliverable being
> essentially a very intricate proof-of-concept. I think not getting Flow
> fully deployed to Wikimedia wikis is objectively a large failure to
> deliver. Consequently, it seems most prudent to be asking what went wrong
> and how it will be better next time. The underlying reality is that we
> still need a better on-wiki discussion system and it now looks like
> neither LiquidThreads nor Flow are going to be it.

In addition to this, we still have LiquidThreads (LQT) in production.

I can understand Flow being put into maintenance mode, especially if
temporarily while energy is focused elsewhere, but I believe the main
Flow project should at least include:

1. dumping Flow content into the public dumps (
https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T89398 ), and

2. decommissioning LiquidThreads on all Wikimedia sites by converting
them to Flow

According to Wikiapiary [1] , there are still seven 'active' WMF sites
using LiquidThreads.

I see LQT is still actively being used on five of them:

https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Special:RecentChanges=30==90

https://en.wiktionary.org/w/index.php?title=Special:RecentChanges=30==90

https://pt.wikibooks.org/w/index.php?title=Especial:Mudan%C3%A7as_recentes=30==90

https://fi.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Toiminnot:Tuoreet_muutokset=30==90
(conversion to Flow requested: T104089)

https://se.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Special:Senaste_%C3%A4ndringar=30==90
(conversion to Flow requested: T106302)

But no Thread: activity on two others:
http://hu.wikipedia.org/
(They are trialling Flow? T107301)
http://sv.wikisource.org/

It is also installed on two locked projects: Wikimania 2010, and
Wikimedia Strategic Planning.  Can't they be converted to Flow ?

And it is still installed on https://www.mediawiki.org/ .  Is that
still necessary?

Is the current plan simply "let users request LiquidThreads pages be
converted to Flow"?

Which of the above sites are only using it in user talk?

Have any of the above sites affirmatively decided they do not want to
switch to Flow (yet)?
If so, what are their reasons?

1. 
https://wikiapiary.com/w/index.php?title=Special:Ask=0=20=[[Has+extension%3A%3AExtension%3ALiquid+Threads]]=format%3Dtable%2Flink%3Dall%2Fheaders%3Dshow%2Fmainlabel%3D-2D%2Fintro%3D-3Cb-3EThis-20extension-20is-20in-20use-20on-20the-20following-20websites%3A-3C-2Fb-3E-3Cbr-20-2F-3E%2Fsearchlabel%3D%E2%80%A6-20further-20results%2Fdefault%3DThis-20extension-20is-20no-20longer-20in-20use-20on-20any-20website.%2Fclass%3Dsortable-20wikitable-20smwtable=%3FHas+website%3DWiki+name%0A%3FHas+MediaWiki+version%3DMediaWiki+version%0A%3FHas+extension+version%3DExtension+version%0A=Has+MediaWiki+version=descending%2Crand=no

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] [Wiki Loves Monuments] Wiki Loves Monuments in Italy largely blocked by WMF fundraising

2015-08-20 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Would it be possible for the WLM banner to show on the Main Page only
during 8-22 September, with the fundraising banner on every other
page?

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

2015-06-19 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Fri, Jun 19, 2015 at 12:22 AM, 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 .

Andy, have any of your sessions been using the VisualEditor?  I always
steered away from VE when conducting wiki training, but I hear it has
improved and maybe you've been using it during your training.

Is that part of the problem?  I see an old and very neglected task
about that here:

https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T72266

Seems bizarre that task is still unresolved when WMF is proposing to
enable VisualEditor for new accounts.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_%28proposals%29#Gradually_enabling_VisualEditor_for_new_accounts

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

2015-03-17 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sat, Mar 14, 2015 at 7:07 AM, Keegan Peterzell
kpeterz...@wikimedia.org wrote:
 ...
 All accounts that will be affected by this will be contacted on their talk
 page within the next couple of days.[4] All local wikis also have a
 publicly listed database of users who will be renamed, available at
 Special:UsersWhoWillBeRenamed.[4]

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?

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

2015-03-17 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Wed, Mar 18, 2015 at 4:24 PM, Legoktm legoktm.wikipe...@gmail.com wrote:
 On 03/17/2015 09:54 PM, John Mark Vandenberg wrote:
 On Sat, Mar 14, 2015 at 7:07 AM, Keegan Peterzell
 kpeterz...@wikimedia.org wrote:
 ...
 All accounts that will be affected by this will be contacted on their talk
 page within the next couple of days.[4] All local wikis also have a
 publicly listed database of users who will be renamed, available at
 Special:UsersWhoWillBeRenamed.[4]

 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?


 If you are connected to an SUL account, you will not be renamed. I filed
 https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T93044 for automatically updating
 the special page once this happens.

Much appreciated.

Can the global message be updated to mention that SUL'ing accounts is
an appropriate action to take?

I've already received 160 user talk enotif's from this message system
delivery, and from quickly scanning those emails I recognise many
usernames, so there seems to be many cases of un-SUL'd yet long
standing accounts of irregularly active people.

Also, lots of unanswered queries appearing quickly on
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User_talk:Keegan_%28WMF%29 , which is
the talk page linked in the global message that was sent out.  It
would be good to have extra hands assisting answering those queries
accurately so users dont make the wrong choice about the identity.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Data privacy, encrypted links and recent change captures

2015-03-10 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On 01/01/2014 9:11 AM, Federico Leva (Nemo) nemow...@gmail.com wrote:

 John Vandenberg, 30/12/2013 08:10:

 Are the Wikimedia transit links encrypted, especially for database
replication?
 MySQL has replication over SSL, so I assume the answer is Yes.

 If not, is this necessary or useful, and feasible ?


 It's currently the last todo in 
https://wikitech.wikimedia.org/wiki/HTTPS/Future_work#Security_enhancements,
AFAICS.
 The status of that document/work is unknown..

Could we have an update on what is being done over the last year to protect
the privacy of user data sent between datacenters?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Bye

2015-02-24 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
When was odder put on moderation, and what for?
On 24 Feb 2015 14:49, Federico Leva (Nemo) nemow...@gmail.com wrote:

 John Mark Vandenberg, 23/02/2015 21:59:

 Which email ? the crowdfunding email?


 Yes, because odder is in moderation (like many others, it seems).

 Nemo

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] RfC: Works which can't be freely licensed

2015-02-23 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Feb 23, 2015 at 11:23 PM, Amir E. Aharoni
amir.ahar...@mail.huji.ac.il wrote:
  But, my initial point was: Am I missing something? Would there be any
  reason why such grammar would have sense without ND clause?

 Milos,

 Could we not import these works onto Wikisource in original format,
 where they would be preserved without permitting altering from the
 original?  Wikisource community is a 'free-culture' equivalent of ND -
 altering the original is considered to be vandalism.

 This makes perfect sense to me.

 But since Milos asked: In Wikisource changing the original is indeed
 vandalism, but somebody must notice that it's vandalism. AFAIK Wikisource
 doesn't have a proper way to authenticate that the document is in its
 original form.

Could you elaborate on this?  If you open the links in my email, you
will see that the text can be verified against the edition on file,
and Wikisource projects typically have *revision* patrolling enabled
to help catch incorrect changes.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] RfC: Works which can't be freely licensed

2015-02-23 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Feb 23, 2015 at 11:46 PM, Amir E. Aharoni
amir.ahar...@mail.huji.ac.il wrote:
  But since Milos asked: In Wikisource changing the original is indeed
  vandalism, but somebody must notice that it's vandalism. AFAIK
 Wikisource
  doesn't have a proper way to authenticate that the document is in its
  original form.

 Could you elaborate on this?  If you open the links in my email, you
 will see that the text can be verified against the edition on file,

 Do you mean the side-by-side ProofreadPage view?

Yes.  If the original is uploaded, we can keep the Wikisource copy in
line fairly easily.

If necessary, we could even fully protect the pages.  The proection
policy on en.ws allows for that.
https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Wikisource:Protection_policy

 and Wikisource projects typically have *revision* patrolling enabled
 to help catch incorrect changes.

 Revision patrolling is less bulletproof than a checksum, but if it is
 enough for the people who care about this normative grammar's integrity,
 it's certainly enough for me.

How could checksums help?

-- 
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] RfC: Works which can't be freely licensed

2015-02-23 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Feb 23, 2015 at 6:51 PM, Milos Rancic mill...@gmail.com wrote:
 Which, actually, reminds me that we definitely need a non-free
 repository. For example, we could get that grammar to be quoted in
 whole, but there is no sense to change it.

 But, my initial point was: Am I missing something? Would there be any
 reason why such grammar would have sense without ND clause?

Milos,

Could we not import these works onto Wikisource in original format,
where they would be preserved without permitting altering from the
original?  Wikisource community is a 'free-culture' equivalent of ND -
altering the original is considered to be vandalism.

Then build a bot to create wiktionary pages where they dont exist, and
link those wiktionary entries to the relevant Wikisource page.

That was the idea we had behind this project

https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/A_Dictionary_of_the_Sunda_language
https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Index:A_dictionary_of_the_Sunda_language_of_Java.djvu

with wikt links added to pages yet to be created

https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Page:A_dictionary_of_the_Sunda_language_of_Java.djvu/28

But I've never gotten around to writing the ws - wikt bot , and was
sort of waiting for wiktionary-wikidata integration to simplify the
bot's overall structure.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Love on the wikis

2015-02-14 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sun, Feb 15, 2015 at 4:13 AM, Emily Blanchard
eblanch...@wikimedia.org wrote:
 Thanks Fabrice! This is pure sweetness.

 St. Valentine's Day comes but once a year!

Actually ...

It is celebrated at different times in the year, in various parts of the world.

And the Eastern Orthodox Church officially celebrates it twice. ;-)

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Annual Report from the Wikimedia Foundation

2015-01-29 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
https://annual.wikimedia.org/2014/#editcounterinfo

says

The edit counter is a live count of all edits across all databases in
Wikimedia’s servers.

How does it work? Every five minutes or so, the system queries the
databases in the Wikimedia cluster for the sum total of all edits on
the Wikimedia projects, and updates this number in a cache. This
version queries that cached number of edits using a custom script. It
picks a number smaller than the total cached number, displays that,
and starts counting upward.

Every few minutes it checks for a new, updated total count. If the
live counter has gotten ahead of itself, and the latest cached number
is smaller than the script's current count, it jumps back to that;
otherwise it keeps counting. The number usually runs about 3 to 5
minutes behind the actual total number of edits on all the Wikimedia
projects.

Edit Counter homepage


Sounds great, however, the homepage link at the bottom leads to


http://tools.wmflabs.org/wmcounter/


which returns HTTP ERROR 503: Service Temporarily Unavailable , and says



No webservice

The URI you have requested, /wmcounter/, is not currently serviced.

If you have reached this page from somewhere else...

This URI is part of the wmcounter tool, maintained by Emijrp.

That tool might not have a web interface, or it may currently be disabled.

If you're pretty sure this shouldn't be an error, you may wish to
notify the tool's maintainers (above) about the error and how you
ended up here.

If you maintain this tool

You have not enabled a web service for your tool, or it has stopped
working because of a fatal error. You may wish to check your logs or
common causes for errors in the help documentation.


On Thu, Jan 29, 2015 at 7:07 AM, Heather Walls hwa...@wikimedia.org wrote:
 Dear everyone!

 I’m happy to share with you the Annual Report from the Wikimedia Foundation
 for 2014 -- Knowledge is a foundation https://annual.wikimedia.org.[1] We
 published last Wednesday, but I'm just catching up enough to send the
 email. (Pardon me.)

 This year, we are telling the story of Wikimedia in the context of free
 knowledge, and releasing it as web version (wiki, too!) so that we can
 share that story with even more people.

 Knowledge is a foundation. It is a foundation for human potential, a
 foundation for freedom, a foundation for opportunity. Our mutual project,
 Wikipedia, is part of the global support structure for free knowledge.

 Most importantly, people are the foundation of Wikipedia. We are inspired
 by thousands of contributors who support the projects, and are excited to
 share a little bit about Dr. Netha Hussain, Jacek Halicki, Dumisani
 Ndubane, Dr. Adrianne Wadewitz, Ihor Kostenko, Dorothy Howard, Ram Prasad
 Joshi, and Jake Orlowitz.

 Thank you for the myriad of contributions you make, from coding to writing,
 editing to programs, and uploads to donations.

 We've written a blog post about the process we went through this year, and
 how we settled on the concept of 'knowledge as a foundation.'[2]

 You can participate in the wiki version of the report here, and soon help
 with translations [3]

 Thank you very very much,

 Heather  the Wikimedia Foundation Communications team


 1. https://annual.wikimedia.org
 2. http://blog.wikimedia.org/2015/01/21/annual-report/
 3.
 https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation/Annual_Report/2013-2014

 --
 Heather Walls
 Communications Design Manager I Wikimedia Foundation
 149 New Montgomery Street I San Francisco, CA 94105
 heat...@wikimedia.org
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimedia Foundation global ban policy

2015-01-19 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Jan 20, 2015 at 2:30 PM, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:
 Hi.

 Within the past week, Philippe has posted the Wikimedia Foundation's
 global ban policy: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/WMF_Global_Ban_Policy.

Raised it on the WMF board noticeboard, as I would expect they develop
 approve something like this with staff and community input.
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Board_noticeboard#WMF_Global_Ban_Policy

(sorry if it has been mentioned in some published board minutes; I didnt look)
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Congratulations to MediaWiki Farmers User Group for being approved as a Wikimedia User Group

2015-01-18 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
*sigh* I was hoping the farmers had united 

but good luck to the virtual farmers of ~85% men

On Sun, Jan 18, 2015 at 10:54 AM, Gregory Varnum
gregory.var...@gmail.com wrote:
 Greetings,

 Please join the Affiliations Committee in congratulating the MediaWiki
 Farmers User Group on their official approval as a Wikimedia User Group:
 https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Affiliations_Committee/Resolutions/MediaWiki_Farmers_User_Group_-_Liaison_approval,_January_2015

 The MediaWiki Farmers User Group is A user group of third-party developers
 who work on wiki farms. Our mission is to improve and standardize the way
 MediaWiki wiki farms are setup and run.

 Anyone interested in more information about the group can visit:
 https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Project:MediaWiki_Farmers_user_group

 Again - congratulations on the recognition and best wishes for the group's
 future work!
 -greg aka varnent
 Vice Chair, Wikimedia Affiliations Committee
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Commons copyright extremism

2014-12-12 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Fri, Dec 12, 2014 at 2:21 PM, Gerard Meijssen
gerard.meijs...@gmail.com wrote:
 Hoi,
 This problem is not new. It is not as if the Commons community is not aware
 of this perception. The perception that there might be a situation where
 someone is sued is not necessary shared by lawyers. They have to make a
 living as well so they will sue when they are paid to do so.

 When people complain that Commonists go to far in what they do and their
 only defence is you are demotivating me than that is exactly what needs
 to be done. They need to be demotivated to go berserk with their misguided
 interpretation of copyright.  When some hotheads leave the building, it
 will lower the temperature and we can start to talk.

 Commons is not the only project that serves the whole of our communities.
 Wikidata is another. I regularly find images for people that are not moved
 to Commons because Commons is not trusted. Now that pisses me off terribly
 and it sours my appreciation of Commons. As it is, Commons is not trusted
 and not discussing this only puts this discussion further back with even
 more ill feelings and even less appreciation for the people who do good
 work at Commons. They are ultimately the people who suffer the most.

And the same is said and done regarding Wikidata , which client
projects are very skeptical about trusting to hold data.  Wikidata
also has its own copyright issues.  If Wikipedia data is migrated to
Wikidata, and it is determined that Wikidata violations database
copyrights (whereas Wikipedia may not have), we have to migrate all
the data back.  Exactly the same as Commons.  Yet you've been a
proponent of Wikidata ignoring these database copyright issues.

http://ultimategerardm.blogspot.nl/2014/03/wikipedia-and-impact-factor-of-nature.html

Wikidata also has quality control issues that will mean it is going to
take a lot of work to clean up the data it contains in order to become
reliable. e.g. in the last few days you've created items and labelled
them as 'instance of human' , when they are not humans. :/

https://www.wikidata.org/w/index.php?title=Q18615764action=history
https://www.wikidata.org/w/index.php?title=Q18601263action=history

Your response when this exact same problem has been discussed several
times is, if I can paraphrase, .. you do so many edits that you
believe it is someone elses job to fix the small percentage of errors
caused by your hyper-productivity.  That works in theory in large
wikis, but doesnt work so well when the vast majority of new Wikidata
content is added by simplistic bots and humans doing similarly large
batches of semi-automated edits.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WaPo Wikipedia's 'complicated; relationship with net neutrality

2014-12-08 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
Comparisons to PBS/TV are not a useful pro-Wikipedia Zero argument, as
the TV network model is itself a convincing argument effectively used
by the pro-net-neutrality people as a worst case outcome of eroding
net neutrality - most people agree we need to avoid the Internet
descending to a TV network model, where distribution costs must be
paid by someone before the content is put onto the network.  NPR/radio
might be a better comparison, but again there the government grants
spectrum licenses, and it still differs from 'the Internet' as content
can't be pulled adhoc by the listener; the content is pushed over
physically limited resources (and adding channels requires engineering
advances / spectrum reorganisation, which is not as simple as laying
extra cables), and someone else decides what is pushed out, and when.

It seems Wikipedia Zero has 'sponsorship statements' because that was
a requirement imposed by these telcos in exchange for getting free
access to their networks to distributing Wikipedia Zero content and
Wikimedia Foundation decided it is an acceptable requirement, so it
was added to the contracts with these organisations.

Many worry that there are a few slippery slopes and conundrums around
our current position.  Two that concern me are..

Do we want all ISPs/telco's putting a 'sponsorship statement' on top
of Wikipedia content, as their requirement for allowing Wikipedia
content to be sent freely across their network to the reader?  In
Australia, some high bandwidth content creators (e.g. Big Brother)
enter into agreements with telcos to allow unrated access to their
content.  I am curious whether that type of sponsorship statement
appear on every single website page, or just on the entry screens.  If
a telco provides Wikipedia content freely to their customers, but
inserts a sponsorship statement like Wikipedia Zero, will Wikimedia
Foundation take them to court...for distributing Wikipedia content
freely without Wikimedia Foundation's blessing?

Do we want other free content providers, such as Project Gutenberg and
Distributed Proofreaders, to be less freely accessible than Wikipedia,
because telcos only consider 'Wikipedia' as a viable loss leader, and
these other free content projects dont have the human resources needed
to establish contracts with telcos?  Wikipedia has been built on the
back of these other free content projects, with millions of volunteers
who scanned/photographed/transcribed free content which has been
imported into Wikipedia and sister projects.  *If* we help erode net
neutrality, and telcos turn the Internet into a TV model, it may not
prevent Wikipedia being distributed as the telcos might be happy to
use Wikipedia as a loss leader, but it will strangle the vibrant free
content marketplace of which we have been a thought leader, and helped
Wikipedia become what it is today.  Wikimedia is not an island.

On Tue, Dec 9, 2014 at 8:23 AM, Mike Godwin mnemo...@gmail.com wrote:
 If MZ doesn't like the Public Broadcasting System, I see no reason for
 him to misplace his rage against public television and direct it to
 Wikipedia. Certainly PBS forces me to see sponsorship statements that
 Wikipedia doesn't force me to see.

 I don't actually see the Wikipedia banner ads, so I can't understand
 how MZ has conflated his experience with Wikipedia -- where I guess he
 does not log in -- with his experience of PBS, whose sponsorship
 announcements can't be avoided even if you are a donor.

 I do follow the debate about PBS from time to time, but MZ's comments
 haven't shown up there for me yet, if he has posted them.


 --Mike



 On Mon, Dec 8, 2014 at 8:10 PM, MZMcBride z...@mzmcbride.com wrote:
 Mike Godwin wrote:
Does this mean some platform providers will use Wikipedia Zero to
justify their own self-serving economic alliances? Of course it does.
But we don't have to let their propagandists define us.

 I think we should be explicit here: in exchange for zero-rated access to
 Wikipedia, the Wikimedia Foundation places a banner at the top of the
 page, inserting a prominent advertisement for the associated
 telecommunications company. So much for we'll never run advertising, eh.

 I'm still digesting this thread (and I certainly agree with Liam that this
 thread is a showcase for healthy and informed discussion), but I do
 wonder: if Wikipedia Zero is so great, why is Wikipedia Zero only
 available in developing countries (which we somehow make more pejorative
 by using the term Global South)? When will Wikipedia Zero be available
 in the United States or in the United Kingdom?

What's more--and this is central--Wikipedia Zero, by encouraging
higher usage of Wikipedia without additional costs to users, actually
increases demand on the mobile infrastructure. Providers will have to
increase capacity to handle the increased demand. In the long run,
this promotes overall increased internet access in the developing
world. That is an unalloyed positive result, in my view.

 

Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fundraising banner interfering with Google results

2014-12-07 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sun, Dec 7, 2014 at 5:43 PM, Nick Birse w...@nbir.se wrote:
 Russavia asked me to check this to confirm it wasn't just him or his
 regional Google setup, and it's both correct and looking into it further
 it's hitting every single page on Wikipedia that Google has indexed.

 If you search for DEAR WIKIPEDIA READERS: You're probably busy, so we'll
 get right to it. This week we ask our readers to help us. This week we ask
 our readers to protect our site:en.wikipedia.org we're both getting
 6,100,000 results.

 If you take, at random, some pages for that search result, and then try to
 find those pages through a fairly typical, sensible search result using the
 page title or keywords in the article, some search text results show the
 fundraising banner text, and other pages show a relevant text excerpt from
 the page.

 I'll pass this on to the developers too, but hopefully this helps here too.

The devs have been aware since December 4, based on the date
https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T76743 was opened.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fundraising banner interfering with Google results

2014-12-07 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sun, Dec 7, 2014 at 7:15 PM, Russavia russavia.wikipe...@gmail.com wrote:
 Thanks John for the link.

 I've made an edit to
 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ushuaia_%E2%80%93_Malvinas_Argentinas_International_Airport
 as I've been told that Google will update text in their search results when
 articles are created and edited. Is that correct? If so, how long will the
 fundraising text potentially be appearing in Google results for you think?

 I can confirm that
 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berry_and_MacFarlane_Monument is displaying
 correctly in Google results.

This is a great opportunity to encourage people to edit ...

How about a banner ..

If everyone edited just one page today, the google search result
snippets would be fixed in 2 hours.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fundraising banners (again)

2014-12-04 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Fri, Dec 5, 2014 at 12:48 AM, Yaroslav M. Blanter pute...@mccme.ru wrote:
 On 04.12.2014 02:30, John Mark Vandenberg wrote:

 On Thu, Dec 4, 2014 at 7:46 AM, svetlana svetl...@fastmail.com.au wrote:

 John Mark Vandenberg wrote:

 i.e. specifically asking
 previously highly productive volunteers who have stopped contributing
 whether they feel the increase in funds has not resulted in their work
 being adequately supported?


 Thanks for your great wording, John.

 ...


 Have you looked into the funding situation of your local chapter?
 Does it have large cash reserves and large predicable revenue flows?


 John, you do realize she is most likely talking about the same chapter you
 belong to, right?

I was aware that svetlana might be referring to Wikimedia Australia,
but didnt know whether she had disclosed her locality (I now see she
is using a .au email address..)
Contrary to their webpage http://wikimedia.org.au/wiki/Committee
(https://archive.today/5r3TH), and my enwp user page until a few
seconds ago, I dont belong to that chapter.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fundraising banners (again)

2014-12-03 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Thu, Dec 4, 2014 at 5:42 AM, Lila Tretikov l...@wikimedia.org wrote:
 I would like to expose this more, maybe after this crunch. Just keep in
 mind that it takes time to anonymize and process -- a time that is
 otherwise spent on optimizing or collaborating. One bucket of resources,
 many demands... and I'd like to keep us as lean as we are :)

 Below is a soundbite I got from many notes I get from our donors, this is
 not unusual about this banner:

 *...banner on wikipedia today motivated me to donate for the first time.
 I think the increased size properly conveyed the importance of the
 donations to running the site.  Previous banners were a bit too polite or
 subtle to get me thinking.*

Lila, the concern is not that the fundraiser is working, which your
soundbite confirms, but that it is deceiving people, or at least
manipulating them 'too much' to be consistent with our values.

One way to test that would be to organise a survey for donors,
informing them of the current financials, the current strategy
document and current status on achieving that strategy, a breakdown on
where the money is currently going and ask them whether they are happy
with the amount and tone of the information they were given before
being asked to donote.  WMF donors may already being surveyed like
this (ideally done by academics in the discipline rather than WMF
staff/contractors); if so, hopefully that data can be shared.

In addition to the concern about the tone of the fundraiser damaging
the brand, there is a strong correlation between increased WMF revenue
(and the growth of chapters) and the loss of edit contributors.   Has
research been done to rule out causation?  i.e. specifically asking
previously highly productive volunteers who have stopped contributing
whether they feel the increase in funds has not resulted in their work
being adequately supported?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fundraising banners (again)

2014-12-03 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Thu, Dec 4, 2014 at 7:46 AM, svetlana svetl...@fastmail.com.au wrote:
 John Mark Vandenberg wrote:

 i.e. specifically asking
 previously highly productive volunteers who have stopped contributing
 whether they feel the increase in funds has not resulted in their work
 being adequately supported?

 Thanks for your great wording, John.

 I belong to this category (somewhat). I stopped contributing because I felt 
 that my work is not adequately supported. I felt the need to develop some 
 software. I have rather limited free time however, and I've been in the not 
 highly productive on-wiki phase for over 3 years now.

 Incidentally, one of the entities that doesn't adequately support my work is 
 my local chapter. It had been extremely hostile toward Wikimedia movement and 
 after learning how it works I had no motivation to continue working with 
 Wikimedia projects. How poorly the Wikimedia Foundation itself works wasn't 
 the biggest obstacle (I found it mildly approachable and was (and am!) a tiny 
 bit happy with it).

Have you looked into the funding situation of your local chapter?
Does it have large cash reserves and large predicable revenue flows?

-- 
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Organizational effectiveness tool (for Wikimedia organizations)

2014-12-02 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Dec 2, 2014 at 3:32 PM, Federico Leva (Nemo) nemow...@gmail.com wrote:
 Why does the questionnaire seemingly exclude the WMF?
 https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Organizational_effectiveness/Tool/User_guide#Preparing_to_Take_the_Organizational_Effectiveness_Questionnaire
 If the WMF is one other organized group in the sentence A Wikimedia
 chapter, user group, thematic organization or other organized group, that
 would be nice to spell out.

No, .. from the survey itself:

Throughout, we use the phrase “Wikimedia Organization” to refer to
chapters, thematic organizations, and user groups.

And on the first page of questions there is a drop down What is the
name of your organization? , which excludes the WMF.

On that field, what if I am a member of multiple listed organisations?
 Should I fill in the survey multiple times?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Organizational effectiveness tool (for Wikimedia organizations)

2014-12-02 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Dec 2, 2014 at 5:37 PM, Samuel Klein meta...@gmail.com wrote:
 Thanks Anasuya!  That's quite a comprehensive survey but instructive to
 fill out.


 On Tue, Dec 2, 2014 at 3:46 AM, John Mark Vandenberg jay...@gmail.com
  wrote:

 No, .. from the survey itself:

 Throughout, we use the phrase “Wikimedia Organization” to refer to
 chapters, thematic organizations, and user groups.

 And on the first page of questions there is a drop down What is the
 name of your organization? , which excludes the WMF.


 I think the intro sentence just needs to be updated to include the WMF.

 The WMF is in that dropdown.   I did have to hunt to find it when I filled
 the survey out; it would be much easier if that list were alphabetized.

True enough, there it is, between the Netherlands and India.

Anyway .. how should we fill this in for multiple organisations?

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Board of Trustee elections

2014-10-06 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Oct 6, 2014 at 8:11 AM, Risker risker...@gmail.com wrote:
 On 5 October 2014 20:51, Marc A. Pelletier m...@uberbox.org wrote:

 On 10/05/2014 08:24 AM, John Mark Vandenberg wrote:
  I checked a few of the WMF admin staff who have been employed more
  than a year, and many dont look likely to reach the 300 threshold,
  even with wikitech and foundation wikis included.

 An interesting question, I think, is /whether/ anyone from the
 Foundation ever voted that would not otherwise have had sufferage from
 the edits requirement?


 Pretty sure they have, Marc.  It's difficult to tell for certain, because
 some of the applicable wikis where people might be posting are not included
 in the SUL grouping (for example, FDC wiki or other non-public wikis,
 Foundation wiki, etc).

It should be 'quite easy' to confirm wrt staff by looking for '(WMF)'
and 'office.wikimedia.org' in the raw data, and filtering out any
developers with merged changesets.

https://vote.wikimedia.org/wiki/Special:SecurePoll/list/290?limit=2000

This is not easy for volunteers because some of the staff usernames
are not SUL accounts, dont have links to personal accounts, and
userpages dont include names, so sorry for any mistakes made in the
following.

MRay (WMF) - no SUL account, or account by that name on meta or
wmfwiki - 'ray' doesnt appear on wmf:Staff

GGrossmeier_(WMF) - no SUL account, but an account by that name does
exist on wmfiwki, and belongs to dev Greg Grossmeier, but didnt have
merged gerrit patches for that period AFAICS.
https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/q/owner:%22Greg+Grossmeier+%253Cgreg%2540wikimedia.org%253E%22,n,z

Ldavis (WMF) - SUL account, easily meets community voting criteria

LVilla (WMF) - SUL account with a link to personal account
'user:LuisVilla', which from a quick count (I didnt use the
eligibility checker tool) to have met either criteria of the 200 total
edits or 20 recent edits.

Jorm (WMF) - didnt check; quite certain they were eligible one way or another.

Sbouterse (WMF), now Siko (WMF), and Seeeko - SUL accounts, achieved
the community voting criteria with both staff and personal account.
woot!

JMathewson (WMF) - SUL account, easily meets community voting criteria

KLove (WMF) - SUL account, may have amassed 200 edits across all
projects with a few months of employment (I didnt use the eligibility
checker tool to confirm this).  borderline case; but had she known
that she needed a few more edits to be eligible, my guess is she would
have done the necessary edits with ease in order to qualify.

Gyoung - not a SUL account, but does have SUL accounts GYoung_(WMF)
and GayleKaren, but between them doesnt appear to have met the
criteria for the 2013 election, but will easily meet the criteria for
the 2015 election.

Lcarr - not a SUL account, but lots of merged patches.
https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/q/owner:%22Lcarr+%253Cgeekgirl%2540gmail.com%253E%22,n,0024c1aff0b9

The other exception is for WMF board members; the easiest way to check
those is by username.

While scanning the list I saw a few chapter people who voted from
[country].wikimedia.org , so it would also be worth checking those to
see if they were also eligible on content wikis.  If chapterwikis are
included in the eligibility counts, then foundationwiki and wikitech
(and other WMF public wikis) should also be counted.

-- 
John Vandenberg

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Board of Trustee elections

2014-10-06 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Oct 7, 2014 at 10:29 AM, Risker risker...@gmail.com wrote:
 John, please explain what your point is here.  I mean really, picking on
 individual people who voted in the election? That's crossing the line,
 especially as they met the voting eligibility criteria for the election
 involved, which happened 16 months ago.  I expect better from you.

My data is exhaustive, picking on _all_ voters (that I could find) who
were eligible via the WMF staff criteria or used their WMF staff
account to vote, so we can see the utility that criteria had last
time.

It was in response to Marc asking a question, which I roughly
answered.  Itzik's initial email said that WMF now has a voting power
of 12%, if the 2015 WMF election has the same turnout as last time.
IIRC, the WMF voting power for the 2013 election was around 9%.  That
is enough voting power to control who is on the board.  Even only
counting the WMF staff who actually voted in 2013, IIRC they had a
realised voting power which was able to determine which of three
candidates was in slot #2 and #3.  I am not suggesting that they voted
as a bloc, and do I believe they are the largest potential bloc of
voters.

As Marc suggests many of those people are also community members who
would be eligible due to the community edit count based criteria.  I
have quantified it to ~5 votes in the 2013 election which used the WMF
staff eligibility criteria, which is 0.27% of the 1809 total votes.

 If you would like to propose different voting eligibility criteria for
 future elections, including the one that will take place some time around
 June 2015, please do so

I already did that: 50 edits for each year of employment, and be
inclusive of all public wikis.

https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2014-October/074835.html

 - perhaps consider offering to chair the election
 committee for next year.

IMO the election must be run by a third party, as happened prior to
2013, by SPI.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Software_in_the_Public_Interest
Adequate staff support from WMF is also needed.

 But insinuating that some people didn't deserve
 to vote, or shouldn't have been allowed to vote using a staff account, when
 that was in the eligibility criteria for many previous elections (not just
 the 2013 one) is just rude.  As best I can tell, there were no concerns
 expressed in the lead-up the 2013 election about WMF staff having franchise.

If I am insinuating anything by providing data with a bit of
commentary, it is the opposite.
Any concerns about a WMF 'staff eligible' criteria voting bloc in 2013
are not well founded, but the list of who voted from a staff account
last time strongly suggests very few people would be affected by
removing that criteria.  Removing the WMF staff criteria does adjust
the *potential* voting bloc (213 votes) down to a more palatable
number, being only those that are active within the community, which I
think is a good thing to do.

However as I have said in earlier emails, I would prefer that we
refine the criteria such that more of the WMF and affiliate staff 
boards who are active within the community can vote in 2015.

-- 
John Vandenberg

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Board of Trustee elections

2014-10-05 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sun, Oct 5, 2014 at 3:49 PM, Itzik - Wikimedia Israel
it...@wikimedia.org.il wrote:
 Pine,

 As far as I know, government employees in most of the countries can vote
 only if they are citizens. So yes, of course we are not taking there
 democratic voice. As I didn't said a staff member can't vote because he is
 a staff member. Just saying that it is not enough to be a staff member in
 order to get the vote privilege.

IMO the minimum thresholds should be set at levels such that any staff
member who has employed for a reasonable period of time is likely to
be eligible, if they are engaging with the community on public
projects, which is how a person becomes part of 'the community', and
would be a suitable voter for community seats on the board.

e.g. Danny Horn joined in April 2014, and now has 284 edits globally,
albeit spread across seven projects.

https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Special:CentralAuth/DannyH_(WMF)

Danny will no doubt hit the 300 global edit mark by the cutoff date
which would be ~March 2014., roughly one year after he started.  I
suspect he may also meet any sensible criteria established for merged
patches, but havent checked that.

If we include the wikitech and foundation wikis in the edit counts,
many more staff and contractors will likely reach the thresholds we
set.

I checked a few of the WMF admin staff who have been employed more
than a year, and many dont look likely to reach the 300 threshold,
even with wikitech and foundation wikis included.  Maybe they are
editing on a private wiki?  Maybe those private wiki edits can be
imported to meta??

We could include different criteria geared more towards including
staff, based around edits per year.  e.g. 50 contributions per year
during employment at an approved movement entity, sounds to me like a
reasonable expectation of most roles at WIkimedia organisations.  That
would be inclusive of staff like Anna Lantz, whose role includes
documentation of our movement, using our public wiki projects.

http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/User:ALantz_(WMF)

https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Special:CentralAuth/ALantz_(WMF)

(sorry Danny and Anna for using you as examples)

-- 
John Vandenberg

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Wikimedia Conference 2015

2014-09-12 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Fri, Sep 12, 2014 at 8:17 PM, Wil Sinclair w...@wllm.com wrote:
 Actually, I'd like to speak up on the name.

 I imagine the name reflected the enthusiasm of its first attendees,
 but Wikimania has all the wrong connotations in today's world. True
 mania is marked by little control, commitment, and rest. It also
 implies that attendees have to be dyed-in-the-wool, unquestioning, and
 supremely devoted editors. I hope that's not the case. I doubt it's
 more welcoming for highly enthusiastic beginners, but it might
 convince casual editors who are more interested in the topics covered
 in our articles than the project itself that it's not for them.

 Moreover, mania is no joke. Some people suffer greatly from disorders
 like bipolar depression. We wouldn't call a conference WikiADHD (which
 is, as I have been very public about, something I suffer from). It's
 uncool to make light of it in any way, even when unintended.

 We can be both more sensible and sensitive by calling this conference
 something else. As has been suggested, Wikimedia Conference (maybe
 WikiCon for short) would be more appropriate.

+1

please.

-- 
John Vandenberg

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

2014-09-11 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Thu, Sep 11, 2014 at 8:21 AM, Wil Sinclair w...@wllm.com wrote:
 Tim, do you think that this list of all the useful stuff that talk
 pages can currently includes things that aren't being done because
 they are too advanced for newbie editors or too inconvenient for
 veterans?

 Regardless, you make a strong argument for keeping a meta-document
 that spans threads and/or should be more persistent. A lot of this
 stuff seems indispensable to recording decisions and linking to stuff
 that backs them up, avoiding constant rehashing of issues. My concern
 is how such a documents could be tied to pertinent threads in the
 discussion oriented software. Maybe we could create anchors in such a
 document that could make it easier for the right sections to be
 displayed alongside threads that reference them in the UI.

The concept of a meta document, which uses wikitext and is editable
using VE, would alleviate a lot of the concerns about Flow.  It would
be relatively simple to change processes from using 'Talk:x' to using
'MetaDoc:x' (still a big migration task, but less problematic than
going through process re-engineering for every Wikipedia process in
250+ projects with their own language).

If that meta document also had a talk namespace (MetaDocTalk:x), which
uses wikitext, the old-timers (and bots) will still have a place to
hold discussions and post notes using wikitext if they wish to.

-- 
John Vandenberg

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

2014-09-08 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Sep 9, 2014 at 11:30 AM, 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

Hi Erik,

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

Does it support uploading media to Commons?
Does it fix the problems with the official Commons app?
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?

-- 
John Vandenberg

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

2014-09-08 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Tue, Sep 9, 2014 at 12:14 PM, Dan Garry dga...@wikimedia.org wrote:
 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.

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

--
John Vandenberg

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

2014-09-07 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Mon, Sep 8, 2014 at 1:54 PM, Marc A. Pelletier m...@uberbox.org wrote:
 On 09/07/2014 01:57 AM, Diego Moya wrote:
 a major property of a document-centric architecture that is lost in a
 structured one is that it's open-ended, which means that end users can
 build new features and flows on top of it, without the need to request the
 platform developers to build support for them (sometimes even without
 writing new software at all; new workflows can be designed and maintained
 purely through social convention).

 And yet, after over a decade of open-ended design through social
 convention, the end result is...  our current talk pages.  Perhaps
 another decade or two will be needed before that document-centric
 architecture gives us a half-decent discussion system?

Or maybe it will take a decade to deliver a discussion-centric system
that meets the needs of our community to replace the document-centric
discussion system we currently have.

 Sorry if that sound snarky, but I have difficulty buying an argument
 that the current system has the potential to suffice when it has
 demonstrably already failed.  It does no good to have the hypothetical
 capacity for a good system if, in practice, it's unusable.

While it may not be everybody's dream system, talk pages are quite
usable, as demonstrated by a lot of people using them every single
day.

I am all for the addition of a discussion system, effectively the next
iteration of Liquid Threads, but it worries me to see the *deployment*
objectives are already articulated in annual plans to be complete
replacement of all talk pages in 2015.

This potential problematic deploy could be very easily de-escalated by
a WMF decision that Flow will not be forcibly deployed onto an
unwilling project, and can be deployed per-page.  If it is good
software, the projects will *ask* for it to be deployed, like they did
with LiquidThreads, and users will want to use it on their user talk
even if the wider community isnt ready to migrate.  e.g. once it is
beta quality, I am sure Jimmy Wales will want it enabled on his user
talk page, which would increase exposure to, and acceptance of, Flow.

-- 
John Vandenberg

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

2014-09-06 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sun, Sep 7, 2014 at 12:18 PM, Romaine Wiki romaine.w...@gmail.com wrote:
 2014-09-06 1:07 GMT+02:00 Steven Walling steven.wall...@gmail.com:

 On Fri, Sep 5, 2014 at 1:48 PM, John Mark Vandenberg jay...@gmail.com
 wrote:

  IMO the WMF should stop focusing on English Wikipedia as a target
  deploy site, and stop allowing its product management team and WMF
  staff in general to be salesman for it - it is scaring the community
  that all WMF staff seem to be so heavily vested in this 'product' as
  the salvation of the wikis.
 

 This is rank hyperbole.

 The MediaWiki deployment train delivers new software to all projects every
 week. One stage is to non-Wikipedia projects, which actually get new
 software *first.* Then in a second stage is for all Wikipedias
 simultaneously. So the default behavior for rollouts, if all you do is
 merge your code and wait, is that English Wikipedia gets basically no
 special treatment..[1]

 Now, for larger feature rollouts like VisualEditor or MediaViewer, the
 testing stage and eventual launch set their own special schedule. We have
 used English Wikipedia as a testing ground a lot in the past, which is
 natural when you consider a variety of factors.[2] That doesn't mean we
 haven't worked hard to test things out with non-English projects. Some
 examples:




 I am sure you have tested things out on various wikis, but I can confirm
 that seeing things been rolled out from a non-English wiki, they multiple
 times look like if the English community has requested it or has been
 copied from. One (large) example is the TemplateData part of the
 VisualEditor which seems to us (nl-wiki) copied from the English Wikipedia,
 in multiple ways. This is not how we work with templates.

IIRC Visual Editor depends on writing TemplateData JSON for all your
projects templates, using a mix of local language (parameter
descriptions) and English (JSON keywords), which works real well for
languages like Arabic and Hebrew.

--
John Vandenberg

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

2014-09-05 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sat, Sep 6, 2014 at 3:29 AM, Wil Sinclair w...@wllm.com wrote:
 This somewhat circuitously brings us back to the subject. We have a
 chance to rollout Flow the right way. There are some questions that
 come to mind that might tell us if we're headed for a big win or a
 bigger debacle:

 1) Is the WMF working with the community as closely and substantially
 as possible to make sure Flow is ready for primetime?

 ...

 What can we do to make the Flow rollout as smooth as starting '''now'''?

IMO the WMF should stop focusing on English Wikipedia as a target
deploy site, and stop allowing its product management team and WMF
staff in general to be salesman for it - it is scaring the community
that all WMF staff seem to be so heavily vested in this 'product' as
the salvation of the wikis.

Risker's assessment of the design problems is spot on.  As such, a
typical WMF-style big bang deploy of Flow is going to be the most
almighty bang the WMF has ever seen.  And the community is rightly
worried that 2015 is going to be the year that WMF forces Flow onto
the projects using its typical deploy methodology.

Start development of a rollout plan, and gain consent from the
communities on that rollout plan.

After rollout on MediaWiki has stablised, Meta-Wiki should be high on
the deploy list, as should any wiki which has LQT enabled by community
request.  Until discussion-focused wikis, such as Meta, universally
*likes* Flow, trialling it or rolling it out onto any
'work'/content-focused wiki without community consent is silly.  Until
it is satisfactorily deployed onto at least one non-English language
content project, it shouldnt be deployed onto English Wikipedia, as it
is safe to assume that the design will be too English Wikipedia
specific, and will fail badly on non-English projects, becoming
another WMF tool which looks nice on English Wikipedia but other
projects cant have it because it is designed wrong.

Allow project level opt-out of the Flow rollout plan.  Focus on the
projects that want it, and find/employ community advocates with the
necessary language skills for the projects at the top of the rollout
plan. They need to start work *now*.  They need to document existing
project workflows, talking with bot operators and site admins
especially when developing a migration plan.  Bot and gadget software
will need to be re-engineered *before* the deploy.

--
John Vandenberg

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

2014-09-05 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Sat, Sep 6, 2014 at 9:07 AM, Steven Walling steven.wall...@gmail.com wrote:
 On Fri, Sep 5, 2014 at 1:48 PM, John Mark Vandenberg jay...@gmail.com
 wrote:

 IMO the WMF should stop focusing on English Wikipedia as a target
 deploy site, and stop allowing its product management team and WMF
 staff in general to be salesman for it - it is scaring the community
 that all WMF staff seem to be so heavily vested in this 'product' as
 the salvation of the wikis.


 This is rank hyperbole.

Oh, I love you too.

 The MediaWiki deployment train delivers new software to all projects every
 week. One stage is to non-Wikipedia projects, which actually get new
 software *first.* Then in a second stage is for all Wikipedias
 simultaneously. So the default behavior for rollouts, if all you do is
 merge your code and wait, is that English Wikipedia gets basically no
 special treatment..[1]

That is unrelated; I am talking about 'features', which you address below...

 Now, for larger feature rollouts like VisualEditor or MediaViewer, the
 testing stage and eventual launch set their own special schedule. We have
 used English Wikipedia as a testing ground a lot in the past, which is
 natural when you consider a variety of factors.[2] That doesn't mean we
 haven't worked hard to test things out with non-English projects.

I urge the WMF to rethink using English Wikipedia as their testing
ground, as using it as the natural choice results in 'bad' designs
and community engagement around deployment.

One of the more recent WMF products:

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:PageTriage

An important note is that some of the configuration and code is
specific to the English-language Wikipedia's workflows and as it's
constructed now the extension is pretty much impossible to
internationalize: developing a universal, stripped-down version is on
our to-do list. (See bugzilla:48552.)

[bugzilla 48552 was created May 2013, and prioritised as Lowest by
James Forrester, and no change since.]

A lot of what I am suggesting is found in:

https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Okeyes_(WMF)/Localising_page_curation

Flow is going to be a very major deploy.  Do not make decisions about
that deployment based on which language your engineers use at the
water cooler or in commit messages.  Employ the right people now to
assist in a gradual deploy to communities that are ready for the pain
involved.

My guess is the English Wikipedia community would prefer to know that
Flow has been accepted on quite a few projects before it commences any
migration.  But maybe I am wrong; maybe that community will want to be
a testing ground.  Will you ask them?

--
John Vandenberg

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Let's fix templates

2014-09-03 Thread John Mark Vandenberg
On Wed, Sep 3, 2014 at 6:04 PM, Wil Sinclair w...@wllm.com wrote:
 I'd like to add distribution as one of the pain points. I wanted to
 have the templates that are available on enwiki for another Mediawiki
 installation, but I couldn't get them to work. It seems like every
 template has a maze of dependencies, and when I resorted to exporting
 all of the templates from the Mediawiki site, the software
 consistently crashed before all templates were exported.

This sounds like a bug.  Does anyone know of related bugs in bugzilla?

 I might have
 been doing it wrong, but I couldn't find any other options.

One option is to use a tool (e.g. pywikibot) to transfer each template.

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Manual:Pywikibot

This script transferbot.py does some of the required work, but it
would be nice if it was improved to detect and copy any dependencies
semi-automatically.

https://git.wikimedia.org/blob/pywikibot%2Fcore.git/HEAD/scripts%2Ftransferbot.py

 Ideally,
 something like a package management system for templates,

+1

 .. extensions, and skins would be a godsend.

This seems to be unrelated to templates, as they rarely depend on
extensions or skins, and deploy of templates is a very different
mechanism to deploy of extensions and skins.  fwiw, package management
systems do include separate packages for commonly needed extensions
and skins.

(Wouldn't it be nice if all skins could be written in Lua + LESS
stored as wikipages on the wiki, instead of distributed as php files;
I know of one LESS skin which works well:
https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Skin:Chameleon ; are there others?)

--
John Vandenberg

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