Both stability and growth come at a cost - is that cost acceptable?
The way I understand it from the mid-year fundrasing report in
January, the $5M were on top of the fundraising target, basically
gathered by exposing our readers to more banners than needed. My
opinion is that's a very high price to pay and that there should be
more stringent rules regarding continuing fundraisers after their
target has been reached (which in turn will probably require even
better planning, including for the Endowment).

As to whether some donor influenced the Board's decision, that
statement looks really far-fetched based on available information. It
sounds more like an opportunity that either appeared or was created
after the $5M target had been set.

Strainu


2017-08-21 23:49 GMT+03:00 James Heilman <jmh...@gmail.com>:
> My personal position is it is critical to have a stable organization before
> growing. The WMF has achieved greater stability over the last 1.5 years so
> I think further growth is becoming again a good idea.
>
> James
>
> On Mon, Aug 21, 2017 at 7:48 PM, Rogol Domedonfors <domedonf...@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
>> 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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>
> --
> James Heilman
> MD, CCFP-EM, Wikipedian
>
> The Wikipedia Open Textbook of Medicine
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