> From the interactions I've observed, you (Wil) are too smart to be doing
> what you're doing, which makes some of your behavior all the more worrying.


> You're willfully ignoring the consequences (real and potential) of your
> actions. I'm worried about what it says when you have 18 posts to
> wikimedia-l this month and your partner has one. I'm not even sure she's
> subscribed to this mailing list, a big official forum, much less
> registered and actively posting in forums such as Wikipediocracy.
> But you are.

You should ask Lila directly about her participation here. I'm sure
she'd love to here from you.

> Even if you had no connection to Lila, what would you or anyone else
> around here think about a contributor who suddenly starts wanting to get
> involved and is immediately posting to Wikipediocracy and poking around
> child protection issues (one of the most sensitive issues in the
> community)? People are obviously going to be wary of someone like this.

I'm sure some people will be. I think that some other people may also
welcome a perspective that isn't political. I've heard from many
people in the WP community, both on this list and off, who tell me
that they have been following what I've been saying on WO and here and
appreciate what I'm doing. For some reason, they don't feel that their
perspectives would be welcome here or on some other WP forums. :(  Now
that's something I think we can all agree is a problem worth fixing.

> Wikimedia is about creating free educational content. I look at
> <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Contributions/Wllm> and I see you
> have fewer than 50 edits to articles, and the last two are (minor) edits
> to your partner's article. I'm pretty worried about what that says.

Yeap. I got the business from the Wikipediocracy guys on that, too. If
you'll look at the edits, one was to fix a grammatical mistake and the
other changed Lila's art major to the correct name. Immediately after
committing I realized that this probably wasn't kosher, so you'll see
a comment from me in the talk page asking if I should revert them. I
learned that it was better to give information on the talk page and
let other people edit that don't have a COI as they see fit. But I
should have checked the COI policy first, and I've since read through
it. I apologize to the entire community for that. I will try to do

> I'm not sure you're someone who wants to be involved in Wikimedia. Not
> yet, anyway. There's a concern that you're simply someone whose partner
> just got a job as the head of the Wikimedia Foundation and you want to dig
> into the drama and other juicy parts. There's a concern that you're not
> here to contribute Wiktionary entries or Wikisource transcriptions or
> Wikipedia articles or other free educational content. Or perhaps put
> another way, you have 110 posts to Wikipediocracy and you've been
> registered there since May 2014. Meanwhile you have 79 total edits to the
> English Wikipedia and you've been registered there since July 2006. This
> is absolutely not a means of wiki-dick measuring or editcountitis, I'm
> just looking at what you've been saying versus what you've been doing and
> how it might affect both perceptions and the future reality.

When you say "a concern," do you mean a concern that you have or that
someone else has? It's no biggie, but I think it's nice to know whom
I'm addressing when I reply to questions. But answer I will,
regardless. :) Of course I got more interested in Wikipedia with
Lila's appointment. Right now I'll be focussing on Commons for a bit,
because the sounds library has so much potential. I'm not really sure
if you're comparing the number of Wikipediocracy posts to Wikipedia
edits, but they are two very different sites. But as I get more
involved here and on the wiki, you'll probably see that post count go
up. Let me know if I'm not meeting an mission-critical KPI, tho. ;)

> These issues are swirling around in my head. Wikimedia is unusual, I
> realize, but nowadays every time I hear about someone's partner getting
> (overly) involved in that someone's work, I can't help but think of both
> GitHub and its recent issues (real-life) and the relationship on "House of
> Cards" (fiction). Real life and popular culture have their influence on
> us, of course. :-)

I don't know anything about House of Cards. I'm happy to say that
there is more attention being paid across Silicon Valley to making
more welcoming and comfortable environments for women in technology.
I'm sure the WP community has been considering some of the same issues
for WP itself.

> Both of these (GitHub + "House of Cards") are obviously very extreme
> examples, but given your (Wil) recent hyper-involvement, the juxtaposition
> of it with your partner's lack of involvement, your on-wiki track record
> (few substantive edits or involvement... and you've been editing your
> partner's article?), and your off-wiki track record (Wikipediocracy and
> here), I can't help but wonder what your role is here. I'm not sure the
> Wikimedia Foundation has ever had or ever should have a consort.

Do you mean that the Board of Trustees should only consider single
people for the role of ED?

> Are you acting as a surrogate for your partner in forums that she doesn't
> have time or inclination to participate in herself? Is this a good cop/bad
> cop type of situation? I'm still not sure what to think. I imagine there
> members of the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees that also still
> aren't sure what to think. I hope the Board is paying close attention.

The simple answer is no and no. The WO folks also speculated a fair
amount on what my motives might be. I'm afraid the story is more
boring than the speculation; I'm just like this, and it's got nothing
to do with Lila or the WMF.

I hope the Board is paying close attention to everything that's going
on in the community. I have no idea whether any of the trustees are
paying more attention to me than anybody else. I guess you could bring
me to their attention if you think it's worth their time.

> You seem to be fairly self-aware and proactive about combating the notion
> that you have any influence over the Wikimedia Foundation, while
> simultaneously wishing ("I'm a father and I want my kid...") to someday
> make big changes to Wikimedia and its policies. It's a mixed bag around
> here. It's very difficult to tell if you'll be a blessing or a curse.

Can't I be both? :) I'm very glad that you're asking these questions.
It is an unusual situation, and any thinking person would be wondering
these kinds of things. The fact is that I can't convince you either
way with what I say now. You'll get to know me- and hopefully, I you-
over the next few months through my actions. I ask only one thing of
you and the WP community in the meantime: please just -try- to think
of me as my own person as much as possible. Because, ultimately,
that's what I am.

> I've read your replies and I understand what you're saying (succinctly
> summarized by you as ",Wil!=Lila&&Wil!=WMF"), but what you're saying and
> what your actions are saying seem to be in contrast. If you want to get
> involved with Wikimedia, by all means, that would be great. But getting
> involved means contributing to free educational content and the
> surrounding movement. All you have to do is be bold and just click edit,
> as they say. Until then, there will be a sizable contingency watching and
> waiting for what will come of the decision to appoint your partner as
> Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation and what her role and yours
> mean to the future of Wikimedia.

Agreed. Talk is cheap. I've been working on some sound stuff this
week, and you've inspired me to start uploading it this weekend.


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