I'm know that the WMF has determined that it should have some form of
endowment,  The question is -- as is usual in question of this sort -- one
of balance: in this case, balance between current spending for the benefit
of the projects today, and accumulating capital for the benefit of the
projects tomorrow.  I am asking the Board to say why they decided to strike
that balance where they did -- given the obvious need for that support
right now -- and whether it is appropriate for large donors to apparently
influence that decision.

Reinhard

On Mon, Aug 21, 2017 at 3:02 PM, Yaroslav Blanter <ymb...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I am often critical of WMF, but I can only support this decision. The idea
> of creating of an environment was widely discussed in the community,
> including this mailing list, and had a widespread support. WMF merely
> follows the community wish in this case, and it is great to know that a
> donor agreed to match this amount.
>
> Cheers
> Yaroslav
>
> On Sat, Aug 19, 2017 at 12:58 PM, Vi to <vituzzu.w...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > Caveat: I support a definitely more frugal WMF so also the endowment.
> >
> > Try to read it from a different perspective. Before donating *lots* of
> > money donor wants to be sure WMF will be truly committed in pursuing the
> > plan of an endowment. Putting the same amount of money is a prove, for
> > donors, WMF truly wants to create an endowment.
> >
> > Vito
> >
> > 2017-08-19 10:33 GMT+02:00 Rogol Domedonfors <domedonf...@gmail.com>:
> >
> > > I was surprised to read the record
> > > https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Resolution:Approval_
> > > of_Endowment_funding_(Fiscal_Year_2016-2017)_and_matching_$
> > > 5_million_gift_from_Peter_Baldwin_and_Lisbet_Rausing
> > > of the decision to place $5M into the endowment.  After the anouncement
> > by
> > > Lisa Gruwell on this list
> > > https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2016-
> > > December/085712.html
> > > there was a discussion of what might be done with the funds raised,
> and a
> > > number of suggestions were made for how these funds could be used to
> > > directly support the work of the volunteers who contribute the content
> to
> > > the projects, such as
> > > https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2017-
> > January/085835.html
> > > .
> > >
> > > It is disappointing that the Board has chosen not to fund support of
> this
> > > kind.  What is more than disappointing, but positively disturbing is
> that
> > > the decision was made in the light of an offer from a donor to match
> the
> > > sum put into the endowment.  I suggest that this was not a fair offer,
> > and
> > > the Board's decision was the wrong one.  Effectively this donor has
> said
> > to
> > > the Board that they will pay the Foundation not to support the
> > volunteers,
> > > and the Board has agreed to follow their wishes.  If the donor believes
> > so
> > > strongly in the necessity to build up the mission by means of an
> > Endowment,
> > > why did they not simply gift the money directly into the endowment
> > without
> > > conditions?  Equally, if the donor believes so strongly that money
> should
> > > not be spent supporting the volunteer community, then I challenge them
> to
> > > say so explicitly in public and to defend their position.
> > >
> > > I call on the Board to explain to the community of volunteers precisely
> > why
> > > they have chosen not to offer that support to the community and to
> state
> > > that they will not allow future decisions of this nature to be
> influenced
> > > by the wishes of one donor, however generous.
> > >
> > > "Rogol"
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