Milos Rancic wrote:
>My knowledge about Something is very obscure. From occasional
>discussions with some of WMF employees, I know that "Something is
>wrong". I am quite serious about that. I got impression that employees
>are not content with the Board decisions during the recent years.
>However, I couldn't define quite well the matter of that discontent.
>What I do see are the consequences of Something: Something creates
>particular dynamics inside of the core of our movement and we feel the
>consequences of that dynamics.
>However, I am living in a countryside of Wikimedia movement, far away
>from our capital, Bay Area. Thus, I admit I am not just not that well
>informed, but I am also probably not that capable to understand the
>basic concepts of Something.
>But I am sure there are some of you capable to fathom the deep mystery
>of Something.

Poe's law dictates that this thread may or may not be taken at face value.
I'll choose the former. For many people, the Something is Lila. The buck
has to stop somewhere and as noted on Meta-Wiki and elsewhere, since her
accession to the Executive Director position, there has been a very high
level of shake-up at the Wikimedia Foundation. Some points of reference,
looking at the "Staff and contractors" page:

* As of 2014-01-01:

* As of 2015-01-01:

* As of 2016-01-01:

No more Sue, no more Erik, no more many, many others. With the exception
of Geoff, we have a full turnover of the leadership/executive/whatever
team of the Wikimedia Foundation. This, in addition to two vacancies for
Chief Technology and Chief Financial Officers, along with a recent-ish
massive re-organization of the engineering team that ruffled feathers.

I like to remind people that Sue's start as Executive Director wasn't
exactly drama-free, but at no point in her tenure can I remember anyone,
inside or outside of the Wikimedia Foundation, suggesting holding a vote
of no confidence for her. The same hasn't been true of Lila, unfortunately.

I personally am still in the "wait and see" camp regarding the past two
years at the Wikimedia Foundation. But my personal views are less relevant
if public confidence among nearly everyone else is non-existent.

All that said, the underlying issue probably rests more with the Wikimedia
Foundation Board of Trustees itself than with its Executive Director.

We return, yet again, to this post by David Gerard:
<>. The Executive Director's role is
to implement and execute on the organization's goals. The organization's
goals are ultimately set by the Board of Trustees. Rather than tackling
the hard problem of what the Wikimedia Foundation wants to accomplish over
the next 1, 3, and 5 years, the Board has been instead concerning itself
with trying to maintain secrecy (lovingly branded as confidentiality) and
hierarchy, as it fumbles forward. Quite literally, the Wikimedia
(Foundation) Strategic Plan expired at the end of 2015 and the efforts to
write a new plan have been horribly haphazard, late, and lacking.

It's possible that the secrecy is hiding all of the work taking place in
the background, with people diligently studying the past five years,
associated goals, and figuring out what went wrong and what went right.
But the suspicion I have, as a somewhat-informed observer, is that the
high-level vision for what comes next for the Wikimedia Foundation is
missing. And that's what driving the low morale and high discomfort.

Perhaps ironically, this tumult and anxiety comes at a time when there's
so much to be excited about in the tech space. We have all kinds of new
tools: arbitrary Wikidata access, graphing/visualization libraries, more
powerful transclusion, Scribunto/Lua modules, VisualEditor, etc., along
with steady performance and operations improvements that have made the
sites faster and securer to load and more enjoyable to use. There are
reasons to be hopeful about the next few years, but also reasons to be
concerned. It's unclear what the precise ratio is currently.

Thyge wrote:
>It seams that NDA could by anything (1). Which one is something?

Wrong wiki. ;-)  <> has the answer.

Asaf Bartov wrote:
>On Sun, Jan 3, 2016 at 11:15 AM, Asaf Bartov <>
>>NDA = Non-Disclosure Agreement[1]
>>(and while we're at it, the acronym IEP opaquely deployed by Pine in the
>>other thread was the India Education Program[2])
>(my mistake: it was Kevin Gorman who used it, not Pine.  I should have
>looked it up.)

I kind of skimmed over "IEP" and half of me assumed it was related to
Individual Engagement Grants (IEG). Luckily Meta-Wiki again comes to the
rescue: <> and
<>. Maybe we should start selling
decoder rings.

Acronyms and abbreviations are fine, especially in a long document, but at
minimum the first reference should always be spelled out.


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