This is a difficult time for everyone.  Staff, particularly staff who work
out of the San Francisco office, have seen and been through things that are
not well known or understood outside of that small group; even "highly
involved" volunteers aren't entirely in the loop.  Former staff continue to
have a knowledge advantage over the vast majority of community members
simply because of their continued ties to friends and former colleagues who
remain on staff.

I encourage everyone to treat each other with respect, even when
disagreeing with the interpretations that other people have made based on
the (often comparatively limited) information that they have available.  I
can honestly say that I know some things that perhaps SarahSV and
Anthonyhcole don't know, but I certainly don't know everything - and I have
been in the SF offices twice in the last six months as a volunteer and
regularly converse with staff in certain areas in my role as a volunteer
working on various things.

One of the major barriers is the legitimate concern that many staff have in
trying to communicate concerns in a manner that is not destructive, either
to the WMF as an organization, or to their own professional reputations.
The whistleblower provisions at the WMF are very narrow (essentially only
permitting reporting directly to the Board chair/chair of the Audit
Committee if there is reason to believe that a law has been broken, not
just internal policies no matter how severe), as one example.  I've been
aware of concerns for about a year now, myself, but I've still found out
quite a bit more over the last few weeks. For staff, a lot of those early
concerns are practically ancient history, and that knowledge hasn't been
disseminated to a much broader community. Not to put too fine a point on
it, but the majority of the audience here doesn't know.

Anthony, speaking for myself only, I don't think that your association with
Wikipediocracy is particularly relevant; other active members of that site
have expressed significantly different opinions, whether within or outside
of "WMF-related" locations like this mailing list or Meta or The Signpost.
I'd like to discourage anyone from assuming that there are monolithic and
unified positions on the current situation amongst any particular group.
That includes former and current staff, editors of particular projects,
commenters on external blogs or through other non-WMF media or criticism
sites, user groups, chapters, etc.  There are a lot of different points of
view, and a lot of different levels of knowledge and information.

I'm not going to say "let's assume good faith", don't worry.  I'm going to
say "don't beat up on people who have different levels of information".


On 20 February 2016 at 20:31, Brandon Harris <> wrote:

>         Danny, don't kid yourself!  The folks at Wikipediocracy know
> everything about everything that's happened at the Foundation and about
> everything that will EVER happen.  They've never been wrong, ever!
>         I don't understand why we're still talking about this!
> > On Feb 20, 2016, at 5:29 PM, Danny Horn <> wrote:
> >
> > You know, it's possible that the people who work for the Foundation might
> > understand the situation in a more nuanced way than you do. I know it
> > doesn't seem likely, but dare to dream.
> ---
> Brandon Harris :: :: made of steel wool and whiskey
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