I think we need to distinguish the effort from the staff, from the capacity
and accomplishments of the organization. For example, here in Cascadia, a
very small number of people do quite a lot of work related to the Wikimedia
mission. That does not make us a chapter. Valiant efforts by people working
with limited resources are commendable, but that doesn't mean that an
organization has high capacity or is highly successful.

It is true that every organization's situation is different, but if we're
going to distinguish chapters from user groups, we need to have a
meaningful, transparent, fair, objective, and easily understood way of
making that distinction. It is possible to build some flexibility into the
criteria for chapter status while also meeting these other needs, as I have
already discussed.

Another option would be to eliminate the distinction, and call every group
a chapter. While that is possible to do, the WMF Board would want to think
about that very carefully.


On Mon, Aug 22, 2016 at 10:02 AM, Carlos Colina (Maor_X) <> wrote:

> Hi Pine,
> You seem to forget that the effort the doctors, nurses and staff at a
> hospital either in after-the-hurricane Louisiana or war-torn South Sudan is
> way bigger than those working for a state-of-the art hospital in Portland,
> Zurich or Singapore, so you think they shouldn't be considered "good
> hospitals" or not even "hospitals" because they don't meet the quantitative
> and set on stone criteria you suggest?
> I find that divisive, discriminatory, patronizing, to say the least. Every
> chapter's situation is different, so being absolutely quantitative would be
> unfair and damaging to the movement and the efforts of many wikimedians who
> cannot contribute in the ideal conditions, yet they go the extra mile where
> others living in a paradise wouldn't do that.
> *hat on*
> Again, the idea is to collect all valuable input from the community to
> refine the criteria, so nothing is set in stone yet. But that's the general
> idea and the AffCom is there to assist as much as possible to those groups
> who wish to meet the criteria.
> Sent from my HTC
> ----- Reply message -----
> From: "Pine W" <>
> To: "Wikimedia Mailing List" <>,
> "Wikimedia Movement Affiliates discussion list" <
> Cc: "Wikimedia Chapters general discussions" <>
> Subject: [Affiliates] [Wikimedia-l] Changes to current chapter and
> thematic organisation criteria
> Date: Sun, Aug 21, 2016 4:20 AM
> Hi Carlos,
> As I mentioned previously, I would suggest that the criteria should also
> apply to existing chapters. If any chapter's status is in doubt as a result
> of the new criteria, then the chapter can be given 6 months to rise to the
> occasion. If chapters still do not meet the new criteria after that time,
> it seems to me that they should be re-classified as user groups until they
> re-apply for chapter status and are accepted by AffCom as meeting the new
> criteria.
> Regarding the uniformity of standards, it seems to me that there needs to
> be a common baseline throughout the world. Otherwise, the definition of
> "chapter" becomes highly subjective and is effectively at the discretion of
> the Affiliations Committee. To use an analogy: a hospital that is providing
> reasonably good care for its patients would be considered a good hospital
> whether it is in Louisiana or the Philippines. Likewise, a hospital that
> lacks essential supplies, has a shortage of health professionals, and has
> suffered hurricane damage to its surgery rooms, is a troubled hospital
> whether it is in Louisiana or the Philippines.
> To use another analogy, this time demonstrating the problems with
> subjective and varying standards: the criteria for high school diplomas in
> the United States vary so widely that by itself a high school diploma is a
> nearly useless credential without knowing which high school granted a
> particular diploma. It seems to me that we should avoid this kind of
> ambiguity in the Wikimedia community.
> While there could be a variety of ways in which a group could be deemed to
> meet the standards for a chapter, such as by saying "a chapter must meet
> four of the following six criteria" or "this particular requirement may be
> met in one or more of the following ways", it still seems to me that the
> criteria for chapter status should be transparent, objective (primarily
> quantitative), and easily understood by all affiliates that wish to be
> chapters.
> I realize that this is a complex issue, and I hope that this input will be
> included for consideration as AffCom continues to discuss the criteria for
> chapters and thematic organizations.
> Pine
> El 19/08/2016 a las 06:28 p.m., Pine W escribió:
>> Hi Carlos,
>> In general, I like the new criteria.
>> I would like to suggest making the criteria entirely quantitative, so that
>> there is minimal subjectivity about whether or not affiliates are meeting
>> these standards and therefore there is likely to be less controversy about
>> the status of affiliates.
> The problem of  making the criteria entirely quantitative is that the
> context where affiliates operate is not the same across the world. We
> cannot apply a rigid, based in fixed numbers criteria because the situation
> of Estonia or The Netherlands, to give an example, is not the same of
> Venezuela, where people need to queue for hours just to buy a loaf of
> bread, if they happen to be lucky enough to find a bakery operating, or
> where scheduled 4-hour daily blackouts are the norm across the country
> except for the capital.
> If all affiliates operated in the same conditions, that would be another
> story.
> El logotipo y el nombre de Wikimedia, Wikimedia Venezuela
> <>, Wikipedia,
> Wikimedia Commons, Wikimedia Incubator, Wiktionary y otros proyectos
> relacionados <> son
> marcas registradas usadas bajo permiso expreso de su titular, la Fundación
> Wikimedia, Inc. <>, una organización
> sin fines de lucro. Otros nombres y marcas pertenecen a sus respectivos
> propietarios.
> Asociación Civil Wikimedia Venezuela (Wikimedia Venezuela) | RIF.:
> J-40129321-2 | Los Teques, Estado Miranda. Venezuela
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