On Thu, Feb 11, 2016 at 4:37 PM, Pine W <wiki.p...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I would respond by saying that openness is a value in the Wikimedia
> movement and that our values should not be for sale at any price. Policy
> and practice should be that documents for all restricted grants received by
> WMF will be published on Commons and that the community will be notified of
> all restricted grants that are being contemplated by WMF. If a potential
> donor is uncomfortable with that, then they can donate unrestricted funds
> anonymously, and those funds must be spent only on programs that are
> explicitly authorized under WMF's published annual plans or sent to the
> reserve or the endowment. Again I will say that I hope that our value of
> openness is not for sale at any price.

You twist  my argument as I was proposing to put our values for sale. I
don't think it is even borderline close to ASG, or other norms typical for
Wikimedia space, and I don't think it is a fair reflection of what I wrote.

I believe that it may be impractical to require all grant applications,
especially of smaller amount,  to be made public, if it impacts our ability
to gather funds. It is a decision that we should make after listening to
professionals in this area (who have sat with the big donors on hundreds of
occasions, and also know our movement inside-out), not just being driven by
a natural tendency that we want to know more.

Transparency is important, but it should not be reduced to the community
having access to all documents if it may impair our work. It is also
transparency of process (understanding HOW a decision is made, not
necessarily seeing all documents), and also the reasoning (explaining WHY
either WMF or the Board believe or do something). In both areas there is a
scope for improvement and I am a full supporter of such improvements.

And yet, the bigger picture is that we have been literally flooded with
information requests and comments over the last two months, and we have
spent most of our time on that. I understand the context and I'd say it is
understandable in the circumstances and fine. But at some point the Board
also needs to focus on what it is for as well: setting the vision, thinking
about the wider horizon.

If we are to survive the next 10 years as the top 10 website, we should
focus externally more, and start building more stuff that our readers care
about. I totally agree that WMF has failed on many occasions here, and we,
the community, were right (when I recall the first deployment of the VE I
grit my teeth). But ultimately we need to be really able to move on, to be
able to move forward.



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