Ryan Lane wrote:
>Kim Bruning <kim@...> writes (roughly):
>> 
>> 
>> Washington post article: http://wapo.st/1zUXNXj
>> 
>
>The response to this is embarrassing and lacking. Wikipedia Zero is an
>amazing program (and is one of the only excellent non-engineering things
>the foundation has done). [...]

I think calling Wikipedia Zero non-engineeering is kind of bizarre,
possibly just wrong. Wikipedia Zero spans both development and operations.
It has a MediaWiki extension
<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:ZeroBanner> and custom back-end
(Web server) configuration to support it. And of course ZeroBanner is just
the latest extension, it's had others, while parts of Wikipedia Zero's
infrastructure have been integrated (yay!) with other extensions.

To be clear, I'm not attacking Wikipedia Zero or the resources it's using,
I kind of like the idea, but it's definitely an engineering project. In
addition to engineering resources, Wikipedia Zero requires administrative
overhead for partnership negotiation and management, which is probably not
unique to the Wikipedia Zero team. "Only excellent" seems a bit rough.

>My biggest wonder here is: why in the world is the HR director for the
>foundation speaking with the press about this on behalf of the foundation
>(and the movement)? This seems like the kind of thing the communications
>department, or the ED (or DD) should be doing.

This isn't arguably wrong, just plain wrong. :-)  Gayle's title is "Chief
Talent and Culture Officer" and the Director of Human Resources is someone
else who reports to her; cf.
<https://www.wikimedia.org/wiki/Template:Staff_and_contractors#HR>. I agree
that for a media outlet such the Washington Post, having a C-level person
speak is best... and that's what happened here. (Now whether the Wikimedia
Foundation should be large enough to require a Chief Talent and Culture
Officer position is a separate question that can hopefully be addressed in
another thread.)

I'll let others respond on the basic point here about whether Wikipedia
Zero is violating net neutrality. I personally agree with Gayle that it's
complicated. :-)  I think it's difficult to argue that Wikipedia Zero is
not, at least in the strictest sense, a violation of net neutrality.

MZMcBride



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