I apologize that I could not figure out how to snip this message with a
Scott: Do not forget "Email this user" (from user and talk pages) in our
Cheers! Wayne Calhoon
Co-coordinator: Bay Area WikiSalon 
 Meta planning page: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Bay_Area_WikiSalon
 Forward facing public page:
 November event page:
On Fri, Nov 18, 2016 at 11:35 AM, C. Scott Ananian <canan...@wikimedia.org>
> A few weeks ago our Executive Director gave a talk on "Privacy and
> Harassment on the Internet" at MozFest 2016 in London. I encourage you to
> read the transcript:
> Katherine argued that the Wikimedia project can take a lead role in
> creating a culture of respect and inclusion online. I whole-heartedly
> agree, and I hope you all do too. She concluded with:
> "We have a lot of work to do. I know that. We know that. As Molly’s story
> > illustrates, we are not there yet."
> I'd like to open a broader discussion on how we get "there": how to
> build/maintain places where we can get work done and control abuse and
> vandalism while still remaining wide open to the universe of differing
> viewpoints present in our projects. We can't afford to create filter
> bubbles, but we must be able to provide users safe(r) spaces to work.
> By habit I would propose that this be a technical discussion, on specific
> tools or features that our platform is currently missing to facilitate
> healthy discussions. But the "filter bubble" is a social problem, not a
> technical one. Our project isn't just a collection of code; it's a
> community, a set of norms and habits, and a reflection of the social
> process of collaboration. A graph algorithm might be able to identify a
> filter bubble and good UX can make countervailing opinions no more than a
> click away, but it takes human will to seek out uncomfortable truth.
> So although my endgame is specific engineering tasks, we need to start with
> a broader conversation about our work as social creatures. How do we work
> in the projects, how do we communicate among ourselves, and how do we
> balance openness and the pursuit of truth with the fight against abuse,
> harassment, and bias.
> Let's discuss discussions!
> Here are some jumping off points; feel free to contribute your own:
> We currently use a mixture of Talk pages, Echo, mailing lists, IRC,
> Phabricator, OTRS, Slack, Conpherence, and Google Doc on our projects, with
> different logging, publication, privacy/identity, and other
> characteristics. I tried to start cataloging them here:
> Because of this diversity, we lack a unified code of conduct or mechanism
> to report/combat harassment and vandalism.
> Matt Flaschen replied in the above thread with an update on the Code of
> Conduct for technical spaces:
> ...which should definitely help! The creation of a centralized reporting
> mechanism, in particular, would be most welcome.
> I created a proposal for the Wikimedia Developer Summit in January
> discussing "safe spaces" on our projects:
> Subscribe/comment/click "award token" to support its inclusion in the dev
> summit or to start a conversation there.
> I have another, broader, proposal as well, on the "future of chat" on our
> Subscribe/comment/click "award token" there if that angle piques your
> It seems that "groups of users" arise repeatedly as an architectural
> meta-concept, whether it's a group of collaborators you want to invite to
> an editing session, a group of users you want to block or ban, a group of
> users who belong to a particular wikiproject, or who watch a certain page.
> We don't really have a first-class representation of that concept in our
> code right now. In previous conversations I've heard that people "don't
> want <their wiki project> to turn into another facebook" and so have pushed
> back strongly on the idea of "friend lists" (one type of group of users) --
> but inverting the concept to allow WikiProjects to maintain a list of
> "members of the wikiproject" is more palatable, more focused on the editing
> task. From a computer science perspective "friend list" and "member of a
> wikiproject" might seem identical--they are both lists of users--but from a
> social perspective the connotations and focus are significantly different.
> But who administers that list of users?
> Perhaps we can build a system which avoids grappling with user groups
> entirely. It was suggested that we might use an ORES-like system to
> automatically suggest collaborators on an editing project based on some
> criteria (like editing history), rather than force you or the WikiProject
> to maintain an explicit list. Perhaps you can implement block lists to
> combat harassment based entirely on keywords, not users. Do we trust the
> machine to be more fair and less abusive than us mere mortals? Additional
> ideas welcome! (I don't have a dedicated phab task for this, but
> https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T149665 might be appropriate if you want
> to contribute off-list.)
> Hopefully this has been enough to prime the pump.
> Let's discuss discussions.
> Let's live up to the hope placed in us by the Washington Post:
> Let's retake the lead on building and renewing a healthy collaborative
> community. We can't afford to be complacent or content with the status
> quo. Let's come up with new ideas, build them, find the problems, and try
> again. It starts with deciding that we can do better.
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