[Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Sue Gardner
Hey folks,

I had a 90-second conversation the other day with SJ about whether it
would make sense for us to use volunteer clerks as support for the
FDC (Funds Dissemination Committee), and I'm wondering if anyone can
point me towards any documentation of the role -- a description of how
it's typically used, either inside Wikimedia or outside. I have the
gist, but am curious to learn more, if anyone's got links they could
point me towards.

Thanks,
Sue


--
Sue Gardner
Executive Director
Wikimedia Foundation

415 839 6885 office
415 816 9967 cell

Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in
the sum of all knowledge.  Help us make it a reality!

http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate

___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Thehelpfulone
And the SPI (Sockpuppet Investigations) clerks are described at
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Sockpuppet_investigations/SPI/Clerks#Clerks
.

On 1 May 2012 20:03, Thomas Dalton thomas.dal...@gmail.com wrote:

 The English Wikipedia ArbCom's clerks are described here:

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Arbitration_Committee/Clerks

 On 1 May 2012 20:00, Sue Gardner sgard...@wikimedia.org wrote:
  Hey folks,
 
  I had a 90-second conversation the other day with SJ about whether it
  would make sense for us to use volunteer clerks as support for the
  FDC (Funds Dissemination Committee), and I'm wondering if anyone can
  point me towards any documentation of the role -- a description of how
  it's typically used, either inside Wikimedia or outside. I have the
  gist, but am curious to learn more, if anyone's got links they could
  point me towards.
 
  Thanks,
  Sue
 
 
  --
  Sue Gardner
  Executive Director
  Wikimedia Foundation
 
  415 839 6885 office
  415 816 9967 cell
 
  Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in
  the sum of all knowledge.  Help us make it a reality!
 
  http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
 
  ___
  Wikimedia-l mailing list
  Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
  Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l

 ___
 Wikimedia-l mailing list
 Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
 Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l




-- 
Thehelpfulone
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Thehelpfulone
English Wikipedia Administrator
___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Samuel Klein
On Tue, May 1, 2012 at 3:06 PM, Yaroslav M. Blanter pute...@mccme.ru wrote:

 Based on this definition, I would not like to be called a clerk. May be an
 Arbcom clerk is ok, because they are supposed to keep records and undertake
 routine administrative duties, but not for FDC, whise members are expected to 
 advise.

The advisory group would not be clerks.  The question is whether it is
helpful to also have clerks, to handle record-keeping and routine
administration to support the work of the FDC + advisors.

SJ

___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Risker
On 1 May 2012 15:00, Sue Gardner sgard...@wikimedia.org wrote:

 Hey folks,

 I had a 90-second conversation the other day with SJ about whether it
 would make sense for us to use volunteer clerks as support for the
 FDC (Funds Dissemination Committee), and I'm wondering if anyone can
 point me towards any documentation of the role -- a description of how
 it's typically used, either inside Wikimedia or outside. I have the
 gist, but am curious to learn more, if anyone's got links they could
 point me towards.



I'd suggest that before giving any thought to whether or not the FDC
process would benefit from clerking, it would be better to determine what
that process actually is, and whether or not the members of the FDC think
that clerking would be useful.  In other words, this decision is at least a
few months down the pike.

Risker/Anne
___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Risker
On 1 May 2012 16:47, Michael Snow wikipe...@frontier.com wrote:

 On 5/1/2012 12:37 PM, Risker wrote:

 On 1 May 2012 15:00, Sue Gardnersgard...@wikimedia.org**  wrote:

 Hey folks,

 I had a 90-second conversation the other day with SJ about whether it
 would make sense for us to use volunteer clerks as support for the
 FDC (Funds Dissemination Committee), and I'm wondering if anyone can
 point me towards any documentation of the role -- a description of how
 it's typically used, either inside Wikimedia or outside. I have the
 gist, but am curious to learn more, if anyone's got links they could
 point me towards.

 I'd suggest that before giving any thought to whether or not the FDC
 process would benefit from clerking, it would be better to determine what
 that process actually is, and whether or not the members of the FDC think
 that clerking would be useful.  In other words, this decision is at least
 a
 few months down the pike.

 I don't know, is it actually that hard to make a determination that
 creating this kind of support role is useful? We may not have worked out
 all the details of the process, but it seems clear that the process will
 have a certain weight appropriate to the importance people are placing on
 this issue. That could make it quite natural to need clerks, even if we
 don't know yet exactly what the clerks will do. If people like SJ and Sue
 are anticipating a possible need, that's a decent indicator that we might
 as well have the conversation and not simply postpone it.

 If some kind of clerk position is created, I expect it can evolve fairly
 naturally as the funds dissemination process itself gets more developed.
 It's not that different from arbitration clerks, who have picked up various
 tasks over time as it was deemed practical and helpful for them to do so.


Really?  As best I can tell (given the paucity of information available at
this point), it won't be any more complex than the Grants Advisory Group;
that certainly doesn't need clerking.  I am actually quite concerned that
there is consideration to create a bureaucracy to support a committee whose
responsibilities haven't even been delineated; doing so would set the
course for the committee before the FDC Advisory Group even gets its teeth
into the question.

More particularly, since Sue has asked about job descriptions, the two
clerk areas on English Wikipedia are sockpuppet investigations and
arbitration committee pages. The former is quite active in the process
itself, including blocking of suspected sockpuppets; in many cases, they
act as checkusers without the tool.  Arbcom clerk responsibilities are
more oriented to keeping cases together, properly formatted, and tracking
voting.  English Wikipedia has repeatedly refused to permit the development
of any other recognized clerking roles within the project, usually with
good reason.

Risker/Anne
___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Risker
On 1 May 2012 17:06, Thomas Dalton thomas.dal...@gmail.com wrote:

 On 1 May 2012 21:47, Michael Snow wikipe...@frontier.com wrote:
  I don't know, is it actually that hard to make a determination that
 creating
  this kind of support role is useful? We may not have worked out all the
  details of the process, but it seems clear that the process will have a
  certain weight appropriate to the importance people are placing on this
  issue. That could make it quite natural to need clerks, even if we don't
  know yet exactly what the clerks will do. If people like SJ and Sue are
  anticipating a possible need, that's a decent indicator that we might as
  well have the conversation and not simply postpone it.

 I think it is fairly obvious that the FDC will need some kind of
 administrative support. The only question is whether that should come
 from volunteer clerks or WMF staff. There are pros and cons to both,
 so it's a conversation worth having.


I agree that it is likely they'll need some kind of support.  The type of
support they will need is mostly dependent on what their scope and
responsibilities are, though.  This is very much cart-before-the-horse in
my mind, kind of like hiring the cafeteria staff before you decide whether
or not you're going to have a cafeteria.

Risker/Anne
___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Thomas Dalton
On 1 May 2012 22:11, Risker risker...@gmail.com wrote:
 I agree that it is likely they'll need some kind of support.  The type of
 support they will need is mostly dependent on what their scope and
 responsibilities are, though.  This is very much cart-before-the-horse in
 my mind, kind of like hiring the cafeteria staff before you decide whether
 or not you're going to have a cafeteria.

All Sue has done so far is ask for some information in order to inform
a discussion. We're a long way from actually appointing any clerks.

___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Risker
On 1 May 2012 17:13, Thomas Dalton thomas.dal...@gmail.com wrote:

 On 1 May 2012 22:11, Risker risker...@gmail.com wrote:
  I agree that it is likely they'll need some kind of support.  The type of
  support they will need is mostly dependent on what their scope and
  responsibilities are, though.  This is very much cart-before-the-horse in
  my mind, kind of like hiring the cafeteria staff before you decide
 whether
  or not you're going to have a cafeteria.

 All Sue has done so far is ask for some information in order to inform
 a discussion. We're a long way from actually appointing any clerks.



Yes, which is why I provided the information about the roles of the English
Wikipedia clerks.  Having said that, the FDC Advisory Committee is having
its first meeting today, according to the Meta page (I note that the names
of the Board members and outside members aren't included on the list yet).
I'm just making it clear from my perspective that I find it concerning that
there are discussions about the infrastructure to support the FDC when we
are at the very beginning of the discussion about what the FDC should
actually be doing, and that  there are some considerably more disparate
views about what they will do than meets the eye.

Risker/Anne
___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Thomas Dalton
On 1 May 2012 22:31, Risker risker...@gmail.com wrote:
 I'm just making it clear from my perspective that I find it concerning that
 there are discussions about the infrastructure to support the FDC when we
 are at the very beginning of the discussion about what the FDC should
 actually be doing, and that  there are some considerably more disparate
 views about what they will do than meets the eye.

I don't think we are at the beginning of that discussion. The WMF
board's resolution  instructing Sue to sort out the creation of the
FDC (which followed on from lengthy discussions on meta, and had a
great deal of consensus) is pretty clear about what the FDC will be
doing. There are plenty of details to be finalised, but the basic idea
of what the FDC is there to do is already decided.

___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Samuel Klein
David Gerard wrote:
 The arbcom clerking role evolved from the tedious paperwork of
 arbitration getting annoying. Best not put a bureaucracy in place
 until it's absolutely needed. We have enough of a tendency to
 instruction creep without planning it in advance ...


Thomas Dalton wote:

 I don't think we are at the beginning of that discussion. The WMF
 board's resolution  instructing Sue to sort out the creation of the
 FDC (which followed on from lengthy discussions on meta, and had a
 great deal of consensus) is pretty clear about what the FDC will be
 doing. There are plenty of details to be finalised, but the basic idea
 of what the FDC is there to do is already decided.

The most significant block of work that was done ad-hoc last year
which would presumably be done by the FDC this year, was requesting
and reviewing annual plan and budget deatils from chapters that needed
infrastructure grants.
http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_chapters/Plans_2011-2012

That was reportedly a difficult process, in which some parties felt
paperwork was tedious and annoying or underspecified and inconsistent.
 It would be good to preempt that this year.

SJ

___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread Risker
On 1 May 2012 18:13, Samuel Klein meta...@gmail.com wrote:

 David Gerard wrote:
  The arbcom clerking role evolved from the tedious paperwork of
  arbitration getting annoying. Best not put a bureaucracy in place
  until it's absolutely needed. We have enough of a tendency to
  instruction creep without planning it in advance ...
 

 Thomas Dalton wote:
 
  I don't think we are at the beginning of that discussion. The WMF
  board's resolution  instructing Sue to sort out the creation of the
  FDC (which followed on from lengthy discussions on meta, and had a
  great deal of consensus) is pretty clear about what the FDC will be
  doing. There are plenty of details to be finalised, but the basic idea
  of what the FDC is there to do is already decided.

 The most significant block of work that was done ad-hoc last year
 which would presumably be done by the FDC this year, was requesting
 and reviewing annual plan and budget deatils from chapters that needed
 infrastructure grants.
 http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_chapters/Plans_2011-2012

 That was reportedly a difficult process, in which some parties felt
 paperwork was tedious and annoying or underspecified and inconsistent.
  It would be good to preempt that this year.


I don't see how having a clerking staff would make this process any less
challenging; the chapters and partner groups would *still* have to come up
with the budget, justify it, explain what it was going to be used for, and
all the clerking in the world isn't going to change that.

Risker
___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l


Re: [Wikimedia-l] Clerk role description?

2012-05-01 Thread phoebe ayers
On Tue, May 1, 2012 at 5:42 PM, Risker risker...@gmail.com wrote:
 On 1 May 2012 18:13, Samuel Klein meta...@gmail.com wrote:

 David Gerard wrote:
  The arbcom clerking role evolved from the tedious paperwork of
  arbitration getting annoying. Best not put a bureaucracy in place
  until it's absolutely needed. We have enough of a tendency to
  instruction creep without planning it in advance ...
 

 Thomas Dalton wote:
 
  I don't think we are at the beginning of that discussion. The WMF
  board's resolution  instructing Sue to sort out the creation of the
  FDC (which followed on from lengthy discussions on meta, and had a
  great deal of consensus) is pretty clear about what the FDC will be
  doing. There are plenty of details to be finalised, but the basic idea
  of what the FDC is there to do is already decided.

 The most significant block of work that was done ad-hoc last year
 which would presumably be done by the FDC this year, was requesting
 and reviewing annual plan and budget deatils from chapters that needed
 infrastructure grants.
 http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_chapters/Plans_2011-2012

 That was reportedly a difficult process, in which some parties felt
 paperwork was tedious and annoying or underspecified and inconsistent.
  It would be good to preempt that this year.


 I don't see how having a clerking staff would make this process any less
 challenging; the chapters and partner groups would *still* have to come up
 with the budget, justify it, explain what it was going to be used for, and
 all the clerking in the world isn't going to change that.

 Risker

I don't have a strong opinion about clerks vs paid administrative
help, or both. But I think what SJ is getting at is, like any large
budgeting or grantmaking process, there will be a fair amount of
paperwork that will have to be done by someone. Things like:

* Request tracking: when were requests received, were they
acknowledged, what stage of the review process are they in?
* What format do budget requests of various types go in? Are requests
in that format? Are templates made, and provided?
* Is guidance for making proposals easily accessible and clear? Is it
up to date?
* Are questions to the FDC answered? The OTRS queue or other address
monitored? Who do people write if they have general or specific
questions?
* Is there missing information in the proposals? Anything easily
corrected that needs to be added? Is something unclear? Do
translations need to be made? Are monetary amounts converted to a
standard? Are different accounting practices explained and reconciled?
* Are other aspects of global budgeting (via the WMF, the chapters,
etc) and other necessary information for the FDC made available?
* Are questions from the FDC (to the Board, WMF, etc.) tracked? Did
answers make it back to the FDC?
* Are reminders sent about the timeline? Are all interested parties
communicated with about annual deadlines?
* When is the FDC meeting? Are members supported for meetings
(scheduling, travel, etc?) Are minutes taken and posted in a timely
manner?
* Are decisions communicated to the community? Translated? Is there an
FAQ, and who writes the answers?
* When members are elected/appointed/whatever, is the
election/appointment process clear, fair and done well?

etc. etc. etc. And that's just off the top of my head.

None of  this has to do with the substance of is xyz program/annual
budget clear, thoughtful and impactful, and something someone in
Wikimedia should be doing -- which hopefully is the kind of analysis
the FDC will be providing -- but it is a substantial amount of work!

-- phoebe

___
Wikimedia-l mailing list
Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l