Surprised to not see this here yet. Not exactly reassuring and the
reference that the community process "may" feature voting is a dark shadow
on the rest of this, but it is what it is.
In response to comments from community members, the Board Governance
Committee has agreed to incorporate the following suggestions
1. *Replace the definition and repeated use in the Bylaws of “Chapters,
Thematic Organizations, and User Groups” with “Affiliates”.* This is
meant to make the language simpler, as well as not require a modification
to the Bylaws if movement affiliate models change.
2. *Clarify when the CEO is and can be excluded from executive
further explains the current standard practice.
3. *Change the name “rubric” to “evaluation form”.* This addresses
issues of confusion and difficulty of translation related to the term
In the next committee meeting on November 17, we plan to continue
discussing the following proposals:
- *Address concerns about the possibility of having a minority of
community-sourced seats compared to Board-selected seats.* Our intention
has always been to maintain the current structure of having a governing
majority of community-sourced trustees, and the Bylaws should reflect that.
Commenters have pointed out that the current draft of the revisions would
allow, in an extreme case, for there to be a 9-member Board with 7
Board-selected trustees, 1 Founder, and only 1 community-sourced trustee.
We will edit the draft to ensure that is not a possibility.
- *Clarify what it means to have a “community nomination process”.* Many
commenters have expressed concern that the proposed Bylaws language would
allow the Board to select community members to appoint to the
community-sourced seats without a community voting process. Specifically,
concerns have been raised about whether there will be a community vote on
The Board’s priority for the revised community nomination process is for a
process that enables diverse and equitable representation from communities
across the Wikimedia movement, in keeping with the goals and values of our
movement and strategic direction. The final process may feature voting; it
may integrate other means of community representative selection -- we are
looking at various models from communities and cultures around the world.At
the end of the day, we are committed to having a trustee selection process
that gives meaningful voice to the Wikimedia communities. For the purpose
of this effort, we will consider how to ensure that 1) the Bylaws confirms
the principle of community governance; 2) the selection process delivers
the diverse and strategic movement leadership required for the future of
our movement; 3) the selection mechanisms ensure appropriate community
input and agency in keeping with our culture and values.
- *Increase the amount of time it takes for the trustee term limits to
reset.* This addresses the concern that the current period of time, 18
months, is fairly short compared to the term limit of 9 years.
- *Remove or change the structure of the Founder seat.* This seat is
unique in that it is reserved for one person (Jimmy Wales), and it is not
subject to term limits. Commenters have suggested eliminating this seat,
converting it into a different type of seat, or converting it into a
different, non-trustee role.
- *Adjust the approach to community discussion for these governance
changes.* In addition to further refining these Bylaws changes, we are
hoping to launch the discussion of community-sourced trustee selection
pathways in early 2021. We have heard the requests to have longer
discussion periods and to have multiple rounds of discussions. We will take
these requests into consideration as we plan our timeline of next steps.
The Board expansion is meant, in part, to provide additional Trustee
capacity to engage directly with Communities in such discussions, and we
look forward to creating the conditions where this exchange can take place
We will post another update following our November 17 meeting.
In the meantime, we will update the documentation to reflect the current
status and to explain the process through which we expect to discuss and
make decisions on the topics above. This will include the conversation
about selection pathways. We are also thinking how to organize these
conversations in ways that make them enjoyable, open to nuance and
collaboration, and accessible across the diversity of our movement.
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