Welcome Esra'a! I look forward to working with you. :)

Mike, as Cristian says - the Wikimedia movement has a history of trying to
balance the safety concerns of volunteers in not-so-free regions (to put it
mildly...) with having them contribute to our projects and events. We
*need* these contributions, these voices - but we can sometimes be
hard-pressed to understand the challenges associated. Esra'a is not
requesting "security by obscurity" - she already has had ample media
coverage and recognition, as can be read in the announcement. She has even
attended and given a (wonderful) keynote at Wikimania a few months ago. We
*can* successfully figure out together how to balance having her voice
present while respecting her safety needs.

Again, thank you Esra'a for your willingness to take up the challenge of
serving on the WMF Board!

Kind regards,


El 2 dic. 2017 5:31, "Cristian Consonni" <crist...@balist.es> escribió:

On 01/12/2017 23:22, Michael Peel wrote:
> Thank you, Esra’a, for volunteering!


> However, I’m very concerned by this:
> "P.S. Due to the nature of Esra’a’s work, sharing photos or videos of
Esra’a may endanger her safety or the safety of others. To help ensure the
privacy and safety of Esra’a and her colleagues, we are not sharing any
photographs or videos of Esra'a. We ask that you please join us in
supporting this important safety consideration.”
> This is security by obscurity (https://www.wikidata.org/wiki/Q133735) -
which is at best a temporary measure that won’t last, particularly in a
high-profile position like this. Aside from the potential media coverage,
Wikimedia events are very well photographed by Wikimedians who want to
illustrate a rather well-read encyclopaedia… This leads to an awkward
situation where someone’s safety and Wikimedia’s openness are conflicting,
which is not OK.

Sorry, but I have to disagree, Mike.

Openness - as generally understood in Wikimedia - does not conflict with
respecting someone's privacy, much less so with not endangering their
safety. I believe that respecting the privacy and anonymity of our
editors (and readers, as well) is a value of Wikimedia.

Furthermore, I feel that Wikimedians value very highly their privacy and
anonimity, in fact, there are several Wikipedians with whom I have
edited pages for years now, and I still have no idea of their real
names, their age, their gender or where they live. All I know is their
nicknames on the projects and it's perfectly fine like that. There are
several rules that the communities have adopted to protect the privacy
and anonymity of every user.

Even at in-person events, there are usually ways to signal the fact that
one does not want to be photographed or have photos or recordings of
him/her, put online. You can also wear a badge with just your nickname
and not your real name, so that's not new even for our live events.

I agree with the idea that occupying a high-profile position and trying
to limit one's own exposure are conflicting goals, but I am sure that
this was very carefully.

So, I understand that this may seem different from the usual, but,
actually, it is not.


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