It's been pointed out that I erred in two significant ways when discussing
Katherine's background: Prior to becoming CEO, she was Chief Communications
Officer, which is a more senior position than the one I named; and, where I
said that prior to her time at WMF her career was "largely
Michael, thank you for weighing in. Your background in the movement and
perspective is unique and valuable. (For those who don't know, Michael was
an early WMF board chair, and also the founder of the Signpost newspaper.)
I'll respond to everybody in this thread, but I want to start with
y other team I could convince and it was
> critical to onboarding me.
> It lived to serve just the documentary process that you mention.
> Philippe Beaudette
> > On Aug 25, 2020, at 6:35 PM, Pete Forsyth wrote:
> > I've thought a
I've thought about institutional memory quite a lot since I stopped working
at WMF in 2011. A few points I think are worth considering:
1. Often, institutional memory is measured in terms of
staff/executive/board turnover; while there has indeed been a very high
rate of turnover at
or minds (but perhaps you have reason to disagree with that - ?)
On Fri, Jul 17, 2020 at 12:41 PM Andy Mabbett
> On Fri, 17 Jul 2020 at 17:19, Pete Forsyth wrote:
> > Since it seems
> > that multiple people are misunderstanding yo
On Fri, Jul 17, 2020 at 4:17 AM Andy Mabbett
> On Fri, 17 Jul 2020 at 02:47, Pete Forsyth wrote:
> > We would be better off if
> > there were clearly articulated, published policies for OTRS
Glad we agree on this central point! I think if
I believe there's an important point about OTRS to discuss, but the present
framing -- rooted in a challenging examination of the issue's history -- is
making it difficult to get at.
OTRS agents, both individually and as part of a collective, have a
tremendous influence over the perception of
Erik, thanks for posting the essay here. Glad to see the interest in this
I wrote this because I have found that when somebody asks me about the NC
provision, I often want to point them to a simple webpage (rather than
"reinventing the wheel" every time it comes up). There are some pages
Worth noting, for those who may not have been tracking this issue in the
media in recent years: CEO Katherine Maher has prominently and frequently
highlighted how big tech companies benefit from Wikipedia and Wikimedia
content, and that they pay little if anything for it. This shows up in many
My apologies for the error, the "Governance Wiki" URL is:
On Thu, Jun 25, 2020 at 9:15 AM Pete Forsyth wrote:
> As a former, active admin on Meta (but not a current one), I'd like to
> make a few points. I have also not been heavily involved in
As a former, active admin on Meta (but not a current one), I'd like to make
a few points. I have also not been heavily involved in this rebranding
project, though I should disclose that I've taken a position against it.
1. A page such as this one can play one or both of two roles: (a) a FAQ
I tend to agree with Nathan here. I don't know the history of the event
described, so I'm not sure whether or not it would be fair to bring up even
if it had been Natalia. But certainly, publicly identifying the incorrect
person in an accusation is no small thing.
Gnangarra, you have given
This is certainly a reasonable request, Fae, and I support it; there's no
reason not to forge ahead with this request.
However, for the benefit of anybody on this list who's not familiar, and
just to ensure that this point is in the record: there's a more complex
problem with the name of the
Very nicely done, Florence and Alacoolwiki! It was indeed very out of date,
and it seemed scattered. The new page seems much more readable,
informative, and sustainable.
I added a couple of suggestions for small improvements on the talk page.
On Wed, May 13, 2020 at
As we approach the 25th anniversary of wiki and 20th of Wikipedia, I'm
reflecting on the various lessons that can be drawn from the way our
community has approached governance over the years. We've had a number of
conflicts; many have had significant impacts on the structure and culture
How can we most effectively support your excellent effort with this?
User:Peteforsyth on Meta, English Wikisource, English Wikipedia, etc.
On Mon, Apr 20, 2020 at 1:22 PM Tito Dutta wrote:
> Very well-written and well-supported by statistics.
, or of independent
research, it would be good to know about it.
On Mon, Nov 25, 2019 at 9:34 PM Gerard Meijssen
> Kiwix and off line Wikipedia did exist at the start of Wikipedia Zero. It
> is great that you brought some to Africa but you do
: Do you know if MIT asserts any copyright over the videos? I'd
like to upload a couple to Commons, but want to be sure the copyright won't
be an issue.
On Thu, Nov 7, 2019 at 11:31 AM phoebe ayers wrote:
> Dear all,
> We are looking forward to WikiConf
Thanks Phoebe, looking forward to the conference -- and I think the college
students I presented to this morning, most of whom will not be able to
attend in person, will enjoy the opportunity to watch from afar.
Do you know whether the videos will be available afterwards, as well?
+1 to Mike's approach.
An *option* for carbon offsets seems worthwhile. A *requirement* seems
potentially at odds with our desire to be inclusive and accessible. And I
agree that something specifically tailored to a community built around
making information accessible would be a much better fit.
Back to the original question (which is an interesting and worthwhile one,
surely applicable to many events across the movement), I would hope that
the WMF has some ability to provide guidance on these matters, or failing
that, the committees who have put together other conferences (e.g.,
"something" without first undergoing a deliberate and comprehensive
approach to building buy-in throughout that community. (See "Spanish Fork")
User:Peteforsyth on (primarily) English Wikipedia, English Wikisource,
on a project-by-project basis. Demonstrating
an ability to win support at specific projects, and then demonstrating that
implementing an EDP paved the way toward good results, could form a
Strong advocacy in a strategy document does not form a compelling argument.
from list moderators to reduce the number of notifications like this one.
[[User:Peteforsyth]] on meta etc.
On 1/16/19 11:04 AM, Lane Rasberry wrote:
Risker raises the point of moderating research requests. I do not want to
comment on this survey
That's wonderful news. For those of us who don't speak Hebrew, can you say
a bit more about how this project came about?
On Tue, Nov 13, 2018, 10:16 PM Hello,
> It is a great pleasure for me to let you all know that wikimedia Israel
> had developed a web scraper that crawled in various
It's unusual, and discouraged by the IRS (the United States' tax agency),
for board members to be paid. I won't get into details, but I think this is
a good thing, as it's tough to avoid conflict of interest when earning
money from an entity you're seeking to get funding for. You can read a
I want to chime in briefly, since I have direct personal experience in
Not long ago, Support & Safety took an action to exclude somebody for
whom I, as a volunteer, felt some responsibility. Initially, I felt that
there was inadequate communication with me, and as a
On 02/07/2017 12:07 PM, Bill Takatoshi wrote:
Anyone can go to Recent Changes and send a SurveyMonkey link to the
most recent few hundred editors with contributions at least a year
old, to get an accurate answer.
Will a respected member of the community please do this? I would like
to know what
On 02/07/2017 04:36 AM, Gerard Meijssen wrote:
When we learned that one of our own was in a prison in Syria, we could not
care less. A lot of words were spend on expressing how sad it was but no,
we could do nothing about this because this would be "political".
For me it is proof how
On 02/06/2017 11:01 PM, Gerard Meijssen wrote:
The huha with no banner for Bassel has cost our community because it has
proven that we do not care about our own.
You may of course continue to assert what the "huha with no banner"
proves. I happen to disagree,
On 02/06/2017 12:43 AM, Christophe Henner wrote:
I'm delighted to see this issue getting some attention. I believe the core
of the problem comes from the WMF's identity, from the start, as a
technology company; so shifting in this direction might be an uphill
battle, but I feel strongly that
On 02/06/2017 11:53 AM, Pine W wrote:
You wrote, "This delegates authority, not responsability." Perhaps you
could explain the distinction. It seems to me that the two go hand in hand.
Pine, I disagree. I have had plenty of jobs where I had the authority to
do something, but
On 02/05/2017 10:10 PM, Michelle Paulson wrote:
We know that the Foundation’s prior statement on this executive order
has generated debate in the communities, on mailing lists and in other
forums. Some disapprove, with concern that the Foundation has taken a
political stance on
On Fri, Jan 27, 2017 at 9:17 AM, Lodewijk
What I am curious about, is whether there are also efforts ongoing that are
focused on influencing community behavior in a more preventive manner.
On 01/27/2017 09:54 AM, Danny Horn wrote:
Your idea for using
I strongly support keeping messages without a clear connection to
Wikimedia's purpose off this list -- especially when multiple people have
already objected to a certain topic.
I am as worried about world politics and the future as anybody on this
list, but Wikimedia has a fairly clear mission
On 01/25/2017 09:52 PM, Anna Stillwell wrote:
Got it. (I add color so I can see. I think I need better glasses. Sad!).
I was just asking whether you thought it was reasonable to give them the
time that they asked for. It wasn't a governance question, or a discussion
about authority. I was
Anna Stillwell wrote:
On Wed, Jan 25, 2017 at 4:53 PM, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com> wrote:
Your points are valid and well taken. If I may summarize what I think I
heard, it's basically: "Getting things right can be hard, and if full
preparations weren't made ahea
Your points are valid and well taken. If I may summarize what I think I
heard, it's basically: "Getting things right can be hard, and if full
preparations weren't made ahead of time, thorough answers may not be
readily available. Be compassionate/patient." Is that about right? If so, I
> > > > > > > organization
> > > > > > > > in direction that they were not planning to go. Or even
> > > > when
> > > > > a
> > > > > > > > funder pays for something outside o
Thank you for bringing this up, Yann. Some relevant context is that Meta
Wiki users considered permitting such files on Meta Wiki a year and a half
ago, and decided not to. The electorate was not very big (14 votes, total),
but it was carefully considered, with compelling arguments made on both
Structured data on Commons is a huge and important area -- for one thing,
the whole Media Viewer project would have gone much more smoothly if there
were underlying structured data to rely on. Kudos to WMF and Sloan for the
focus on this issue!
If I'm not mistaken, this is by far the most
> On Thu, Dec 1, 2016 at 10:36 PM, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com>
> > On Mon, N
On Mon, Nov 28, 2016 at 5:25 PM, Joseph Seddon
> Finally we didn't get any interest in our fundraising feedback and design
> sessions last week and the week before so they were put on hold, however if
> there are individuals who are interested in taking part in
recent, politics-heavy readership.
* If you haven't seen them, you'll enjoy the winning photos from Wiki Loves
Earth (republished from the Wikimedia blog), and the country-level nominees
from Wiki Loves Monuments.
Editor in Chief
On Sun, Nov 13, 2016 at 2:21 PM, Rogol Domedonfors
> Jimmy Wales wrote: "it is possible and welcomed to bring forward issues to
> board members at any time".
To Jimmy and the board:
This statement is, frankly, very much belied by the facts.
In 2014, I delivered
A fully enumerated list of "cons" would be an important place to start.
Wikimedians and WMF have long promoted the existence of stuff ike the
"Congress edits" twitter account, which reports account-less edits from
capitol hill. We often block high school IP addresses at certain times in
ov 2, 2016 at 4:32 PM, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Dan, I disagree. Three points:
> 1. Rogol explicitly said they *hesitate* to suggest that anybody resign;
> nobody on this list has asked her to resign. Best not to exaggerate.
> 2. It is true that t
In my view, the Wikimedia movement and the WMF often miss important
opportunities to fully examine significant controversies in our history.
It's an important practice, and can help parties who disagree absorb
lessons, develop a shared understanding of what happened, and avoid causing
Upload of free photos from Swiss library underway
co-Editor in Chief, The Signpost
Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
On Tue, Sep 6, 2016 at 11:19 AM, James Forrester
> *TL;DR*: Communities using Flow are invited to fill out a survey about what
> they want to see from Flow,
From this web page: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Flow#Development_status
Pine, maybe so, but if that's what you're going for, your best move might
be to privately urge the people who have talked to you to come forward
publicly -- rather than you sharing their words without attribution or
The information that came through from your message is, "Pine asserts
We recently had a huge amount of discussion about the importance of search,
on this list and elsewhere. My strong takeaway from that was, nobody
disagrees with the position you're advocating here, Jimmy - that our search
is problematic, and is worth investing in.
The only directly related ideas
Sorry to post twice -- I spoke too soon with "single greatest opportunity."
An acknowledgment of community members' positive role in addressing the
Superprotect debacle is another important opportunity that should not be
On Tue, Jul 26, 2016 at 12:3
Excellent example Chris, thanks for taking the time to write that up. I
agree it would have had at least as much positive effect, and also
substantially less negative effect, than the original post.
One person's opinion might be especially worth considering: I wonder
whether the person whose name
On Tue, Jun 28, 2016 at 11:43 AM, Milos Rancic wrote:
> In other words, although I am not disclosing all of information I
> have, mostly to protect privacy of some people,
Yes, this is a difficult line to walk. I have encountered this issue many
times in the Wikimedia world.
On Tue, Jun 28, 2016 at 10:40 AM, Milos Rancic <mill...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Tue, Jun 28, 2016 at 7:27 PM, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com>
> > On Tue, Jun 28, 2016 at 10:03 AM, Milos Rancic <mill...@gmail.com>
On Tue, Jun 28, 2016 at 10:03 AM, Milos Rancic wrote:
> On the rest: being defensive is not useful; being constructive is.
I don't see anything in this thread that looks defensive; what I see (and
thoroughly agree with) is a request to more clearly define the problem. I'd
Risker, perhaps you missed this part of Patricio's message; I'm pretty
sure this is what Pine was referring to:
> In re-reading Jan-Bart’s original email  where he stated that Sue was
staying on as an advisor, it isn’t explicit that this was a paid position.
We should have been more clear on
Pine, as one of the admins who has worked to fend off this sustained
attack, I can attest it is exactly that. Your point is a valid one, but it
does not apply to this situation.
On Jun 5, 2016 7:13 AM, "Pax Ahimsa Gethen"
> I am
Reaching out offlist. Anyone who knows Chris well and has helpful input,
feel free to contact me offlist.
On Tue, May 17, 2016 at 5:44 AM, Chris Sherlock
> I've just been blocked forever. I've been bullied, and I'm having suicidal
On Sun, May 8, 2016 at 3:19 PM, Keegan Peterzell <keegan.w...@gmail.com>
> On Sun, May 8, 2016 at 4:36 PM, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com>
> > Keegan, that may very well be true (though I would say it's certain
> > communication channels, not
Keegan, that may very well be true (though I would say it's certain
communication channels, not "our entire movement.")
But stating that has no logical relation whatsoever to whether or not a
certain trustee should remain in their position.
Also: If there are eight people who repeat something ad
Like Todd and others, I appreciate your candid exposition of how things
went. It's important to have clarity about what happened here, and your
contributions are very helpful toward that end. Thank you.
However, these words ring hollow:
On Fri, May 6, 2016 at 9:03 AM, Denny Vrandečić
Thank you for providing an informative and accessible answer to Trillium's
relevant questions. It's truly heartening to see the organization improving
in its ability to communicate its intentions, etc. I hope that when broad
consensus among staff is reached (as you express in footnote ),
corded WMF Board meetings
To: petefors...@gmail.com, nawr...@gmail.com
26.04.2016, 14:32, "Nathan" <nawr...@gmail.com>:
> On Mon, Apr 25, 2016 at 8:49 PM, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com>
>> On Fri, Apr 15, 2016 at 2:42 PM, Trillium Corsage <
On Fri, Apr 15, 2016 at 2:42 PM, Trillium Corsage
> Jimbo responded to arbitrator GorillaWarfare on this list, basically,
> "yes, I supported with sadness the decision to dismiss Lila."
Wait -- seriously??
I missed this piece until today. But if this is true,
But...but...Moushira just acknowledged the point. Gracefully, I think.
Can't we simply trust her to incorporate the feedback into future
For anybody who had trouble discerning what the consultation is about, its
first question makes it clear:
"How can we make Wikipedia more
In case anybody believes Wikimedia Foundation personnel have entirely
forgotten this issue, please be assured that is not the case.
Speaking for myself, I'm not convinced that taking action on a two year old
RFC at Commons is the most pressing component
On Mon, Mar 14, 2016 at 11:00 AM, Risker wrote:
> There's a difference between "does the WMF generally include
> non-disparagement and non-disclosure clauses in separation agreements" and
> "how many separation agreements include non-disparagement and
The important thing (as Andreas initially said) is that informal
commitments from Trustees, to seek transparency in specific areas, not
continue to get lost.
The questions about what department it belongs in, the speed at which they
get addressed, etc. are all
I've enjoyed finding some messages I never knew were there, such as a
welcome message from two years ago on Basque Wikipedia, and a substantive
reply I had missed on Wikinews for 4 months. It's refreshing for a new
feature to make me immediately feel more connected to other volunteers.
Thank you to the Discovery team -- it seems to me that your work has been
largely overshadowed by political concerns in recent months (which may have
been necessary, but not pleasant).
I'm delighted to see working and useful software emerge, in spite of the
challenging environment that has
useful overview of how things could or should go in the future. Thank
you for that.
Specifics about my choice to release the email below:
On Wed, Mar 9, 2016 at 10:18 PM, Erik Moeller <eloque...@gmail.com> wrote:
> 2016-03-09 16:56 GMT-08:00 Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com>
-- Forwarded message --
*From: *Jimmy Wales
*Date: *February 29, 2016 6:21:46 AM
*To: *Pete Forsyth,James Heilman
*Subject: **A conversation?*
James, I wonder
On Wed, Mar 9, 2016 at 10:35 AM, Jimmy Wales
> 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
As many of you are aware, it's always been difficult to navigate
information about the proceedings of the Board of Trustees: minutes,
agendas, specific resolutions, notes, and commentary are split across Meta
Wiki, WMF Wiki, various mailing lists, etc.
So, I spent the last few days building a set
Whether to record meetings is a separate question from whether to release
the recordings publicly.
We have seen a lot of disagreement among Trustees recently. That's a
massive and *entirely avoidable* distraction for the movement. Please,
start recording the meetings -- if only for the
Enjoying this discussion, glad to see it happening. One question I haven't
Are there notes kept during executive sessions?
From what I've seen, it seems that the answer might be no -- and that
doesn't seem good. Having minutes is not the same thing as publishing
Assume Good Faith, we Assess the
Conditions Impacting Good Faith.
Or at least, we should.
On Wed, Mar 2, 2016 at 5:22 PM, Cristian Consonni <kikkocrist...@gmail.com>
> 2016-03-03 2:06 GMT+01:00 Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com>:
> > I
I heartily endorse what Asaf has said here, but I'd add one thing:
When someone runs for the board, that introduces a standard that goes
beyond Assume Good Faith. Ultimately, if appointed, a Trustee will need to
disclose any Conflicts of Interest. But those disclosures, as I understand
On Sun, Feb 28, 2016 at 10:53 PM, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com>
> Jimmy and James, I'm glad to see you both agreeing on some facts. That's
> encouraging. But IMO you should both put some careful thought into this
> On Sun, Feb 28, 2016 at 9:36 P
Dave, you're simply mistaken.
The paid editing amendment was passed by the Board in April 2014 (before
Lila was hired); it was merely *announced* in June.
On Tue, Mar 1, 2016 at 8:59 AM, David Emrany wrote:
> Dear Coren
> I think you are
Jimmy and James, I'm glad to see you both agreeing on some facts. That's
encouraging. But IMO you should both put some careful thought into this
On Sun, Feb 28, 2016 at 9:36 PM, James Heilman wrote:
> Finally facts are not determined by a vote. That you got unanimity for
> On Fri, Feb 26, 2016 at 9:40 PM, Keegan Peterzell
> <kpeterz...@wikimedia.org> wrote:
> > On Fri, Feb 26, 2016 at 8:04 PM, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com>
> >> Still, my list is very much influenced by what I
> >> ha
On Fri, Feb 26, 2016 at 6:17 PM, Risker wrote:
> Honestly, "we need a new board" is probably not an issue.
Risker, perhaps you missed this in my original message -- I did not express
that we need a new board.
Item #3 on my list was entirely under the heading:
had time to understand the problems. Quite a
> > few of the "solutions" I've seen on this list in the last 24-48 hours are
> > nothing much more than personal wishlists; almost all of them are
> > to solve problems that may or may not even exist.
To Oliver and Keegan -- I hear you guys loud and clear, and I am very aware
that the trauma of the last few months has taken this kind of toll.
Although there is of course much I don't know, I have been talking with a
number of staff, board, etc. for many months now about this. So to whatever
I agree with what Pine said -- it's worthwhile to consider keeping a record
of these conversations, at minimum for staff reference, even if making them
all public is not desirable.
Further to that point, I have found in many instances, involving a skilled
professional facilitator or mediator, who
Lawrence Lessig has done wonderful things for the free culture movement
(including making that very phrase famous!) I am pretty confident, given
his recent interests, that he would not want this position,but he's well
worth discussing anyway.
Though I don't know Larry Lessig personally, I do know
On Fri, Feb 26, 2016 at 12:41 PM, Yaroslav M. Blanter <pute...@mccme.ru>
> On 2016-02-26 21:20, Pete Forsyth wrote:
>> Now that Wikimedia's Executive Director is leaving, a central point of
>> contention has been resolved. But as
Now that Wikimedia's Executive Director is leaving, a central point of
contention has been resolved. But as many have said, the "real work" of
getting back on track comes next. I have been thinking about what the next
specific steps should be, and I have some suggestions here. I present
Regarding the Wikimedia Foundation paying editors, brokering paid editing
to displace the role of PR agencies, etc.:
Since 2009, my full time work has centered on this area, in providing solid
advice to companies and other organizations on how to engage ethically and
effectively with Wikipedia.
On Thu, Feb 25, 2016 at 10:17 AM, Chris Keating
> > I have to register disagreement with the idea that the WMF board is
> > duty-bound to serve the Foundation over the Wikimedia movement.
> I still feel this is more a semantic issue than a practical
l volunteers (along the lines
> of the FDC), I'm very comfortable. If it's owned by WMF management, I
> wouldn't bother reading their reports.
> If you and Andreas were to sign on, that would be a very good start.
> On Wednesday, 24 February 2016, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gma
> > On Monday, 22 February 2016, Pete Forsyth <petefors...@gmail.com
> >> Br
Anthony, two points:
1. Billinghurst is a very long-serving community member, and has always in
my experience been happy to talk things through. I'd urge you just to talk
with him directly.
2. Tension is high right now. If we're irritating each other more than
usual, keep that in mind...it may
On Mon, Feb 22, 2016 at 11:31 AM, Dariusz Jemielniak
> On Mon, Feb 22, 2016 at 2:08 PM, Pine W wrote:
> > I also hope that the current Board members will thoughtfully consider
> > whether it's in the best interests of the Wikimedia Foundation and
On Sun, Feb 21, 2016 at 7:13 PM, Molly White <
> It would be fairly trivial to archive the discussions there someplace that
> was publicly viewable. However, it would require consent from the ~450 (at
> last glance) members that their comments and the
On Sun, Feb 21, 2016 at 7:53 PM, SarahSV wrote:
> Pete, I think having a "truth and reconciliation" period would be
> helpful. I would like to see that process include Lila, which is why I
> talked earlier about calling in a professional mediation service.
> On Feb 21, 2016, at 3:54 PM, Thyge wrote:
> I really wonder why wikimedia discussions have migrated to FB. ...
On Sun, Feb 21, 2016 at 4:00 PM, Brandon Harris wrote:
> Because Talk pages suck as a medium for conversation and all
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