Dear All, 

More than a quarter of Wikimedia France’s members have requested that several 
topics be added and voted upon at he next general assembly to be held in 
september in order to reflect on the current governance issues.

The board has just confirmed that the minimum of members requested to do this 
has now been reached, see here (in French) for more details

We hope that we will be able to achieve a sound democratic debate and start 
working towards a resolution of the problems recently encountered. I am 
personally really happy to see that a significant number of members have 
expressed ideas and worked collaboratively to express their point of view.  

Kind regards, 

Nattes à chat 


> Le 4 août 2017 à 21:46, Devouard (gmail) <> a écrit :
> Le 04/08/2017 à 18:17, Gabriel Thullen a écrit :
>> What is important here is that trust has to be rebuilt between the chapter
>> members on one hand and the board & senior staff on the other hand.
>> The way I understand the situation is that the board has expelled a few
>> vocal opponents, a few board members have resigned, one staffer was fired
>> for refusing to censor a mailing list, some chapter members have had their
>> membership renewal refused, some known contributors are not able to join
>> the chapter, and there are now 25 new chapter members out of the blue. I
>> may be incorrect on one or two minor details, but I think that sums it up.
> It far from sum-it-up.
> There is also *very* disrespectful behavior from staff and management, 
> including
> * non respect of "friendly space policy" and comments directed to a very 
> involved member with autistic traits such as "it is you who should adapt and 
> you need to grow up to become an adult"
> * paternalistic behavior toward volunteers such as "you still have not 
> understood what I was saying. Let's meet face to face and I will explain to 
> you *again* so that you *really* get it"
> * legal threats toward volunteers who ask questions
> * referring to members in a very belittling way : "tartempion" or "pigiste"
> * refusal to acknowledge authorship of action from volunteers (such as "no 
> author name in wiki newsletter")
> * emails sent to board by members to "report issues" are immediately 
> forwarded to the management, making it impossible to safely and 
> confidentially discuss issues
> * there has been cases of doxing by the management, using member private data
> * set up of a black list of members that should not receive support by staff 
> in spite of being members.
> There is staff suffering, upon which it is difficult to comment publicly, but 
> is made quite obvious by the fact several staff members joined and created a 
> trade-union branch to be able to *defend* themselves.
> There are multiple rumors reported by members of quite "generous" expenses 
> reimbursement. Yet unclear due to non access to financial data.
> There are questions related to management using the resources and image of 
> the association, as well as WMF brand, to look for funding for a mysterious 
> entity no one knows anything about. Yet unanswered.
> There are questions related to using resources of the association to gain a 
> elected position.
> And a bunch of other things. Those would count as "one or two minor details".
>> The board says it has had two audits already, but I believe that they are
>> related to getting a certification - the IDEAS label - to help out with
>> fund raising. This is not a governance audit and they will not help us find
>> an issue to this crisis. (
> Absolutely correct. Those were certifications (and done prior to most of our 
> current issues). For example, a certification will check that there is a 
> Conflict of Interest Policy in place. And yes there is one. So there is 
> certification.
> What good is a COI policy when people do not report COI or when the members 
> of the committee do not have independance from those reporting COI... that is 
> another story. And this is when a governance audit can help.
> It may be that if WMF asks for a financial audit, only WMF will get the 
> outcome.
> Which is why we are currently voting so that the members get the RIGHT to 
> vote to ASK for a financial audit during the next General Assembly.
> But the amount of energy we have to spend to simply TRY to get answers is 
> frankly just wrong.
> Florence
>> I remain convinced that WMFR needs an independent governance audit, and the
>> results should be made available to the chapter members and to the staff.
>> Something drastic needs to be done so that this chapter can continue to
>> function. I also think that the members who have been expelled should be
>> allowed to rejoin the French chapter unconditionally. That is a goodwill
>> gesture that the current board can easily make and it will go a long way
>> towards finding a solution to this ridiculous situation.
>> The French press is starting to talk about what is going on at the French
>> Wikimedia chapter, are we all waiting for CNN to come in as well? For sure
>> that will get the WMF moving...
>> Best regards
>> Gabe
>> On Fri, Aug 4, 2017 at 5:45 PM, Ilario Valdelli <> wrote:
>>> Interesting but: "The review, commissioned by Wikimedia UK..." exactly
>>> who? Board, community, general assembly, group of members?
>>> Kind regards
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