Yes, Asaf is absolutely spot on. Though I am afraid it is a small part of a bigger problem.
Cheers Yaroslav On Wed, May 15, 2019 at 12:54 PM Gerard Meijssen <gerard.meijs...@gmail.com> wrote: > Hoi, > Asaf thank you very much. This response of yours helps build bridges. > Thanks, > GerardM > > On Wed, 15 May 2019 at 03:17, Asaf Bartov <asaf.bar...@gmail.com> wrote: > > > Speaking as a (very) longtime member of this mailing list, and one who is > > carefully observing it for a few years now as a volunteer list > > co-administrator: > > > > On Wed, May 15, 2019 at 3:56 AM Joseph Seddon <jsed...@wikimedia.org> > > wrote: > > > > > I, like many others, wish to see this list become a crucible of good > > > suggestions, healthy and critical debate about ideas and as a sound > > > mechanism for oversight and account . A huge amount of staff time and > > > movement resources is taken up by the consumption of its content. And > yet > > > it remains the greatest shame that much of the best most worthwhile > > > constructive discussions have moved to platforms like Facebook because > > this > > > list is viewed as hosting such an unhealthy atmosphere when emails are > > > written with such overt passive aggression. > > > > > > I call it out because if we want people to participate on this list, > the > > > unhealthy way in which this list gets treated by some of its most > active > > > participants needs to be dealt with. Otherwise valid points will not > get > > > acknowledged or answered. > > > > > > > I am not sure the causality here runs in the direction you describe. > It's > > true that this list had some aggressive, even vulgar participants in the > > past, and that some senior staff members, as well as board members, have > > left the list in protest. Personally, I think that was a mistake on > their > > part: to improve the list atmosphere, you model good behavior yourself, > and > > you call upon the rest of the list -- the "silent majority" -- to call > out > > bad behavior and enforce some participation standards (as, indeed, I and > my > > co-moderators have been doing since we took over). > > > > By senior people's departing this list, and no longer requiring staff to > be > > on this list, a strong signal was sent that this is not a venue crucial > to > > listen to, and that, coupled with the decreasing frequency of WMF > responses > > to legitimate volunteer inquiries and suggestions, had a *powerful* > > chilling effect on the willingness of most volunteers to engage here. > > Especially when, as you say, they were able to get better engagement on > > Facebook and other channels, despite the serious shortcomings of > > accountability on those channels (immutable archiving, searchability, > > access to anonymous volunteers, etc.) > > > > Yes, this list has also seen some pseudonymous critics whose questions > may > > have been inconvenient or troublesome to address. Yet I think the > > accountable thing to do would have been to respond, however briefly, to > > prevent the sealioning and sanctimonious posts that filled the list -- > and, > > I am sure, greatly annoyed and demotivated many subscribers. Even a > > response stating WMF chooses not to respond to a certain question, or not > > to dig up certain data, would have been better than the stony silence > that > > has become the all-too-common stance for WMF on this list. > > > > As you know, I also work for WMF (though I am writing this in my > volunteer > > capacity, and out of my care for the well-being of this list). While I > > have never shied away from responding on this list, I have on occasion > been > > scolded (internally) for attempting to answer volunteer queries to the > best > > of my knowledge, for "outstepping my remit" or interfering in someone > > else's remit. I have taken this to heart, and accordingly no longer try > to > > respond to queries such as Fae's (which in this case I find a perfectly > > reasonable question, meriting an answer). Several past attempts by me to > > ping appropriate senior staff on questions on this list (or on talk > pages) > > have also met with rebuke, so I have ceased those as well. > > > > For these reasons I do not accept this wholesale blaming of this list's > > subscribers on the difficulty having meaningful conversations here: > > > > But if we want to see staff members more actively > > > participating here then those long standing individuals need to really > > > thing about the tone in which they engage here, particularly those who > do > > > so most often. If that does not change, this list will continue to > > languish > > > and those few staff members who continue to engage here will slowly > > > disappear. This now increasingly perennial topic keeps coming up and my > > > fear is that it will on go away through the increasing abandonment this > > > list faces. > > > > > > > It is WMF that is not behaving collaboratively here. And it is within > > WMF's power to change it. C-levels, the ED, and other managers at WMF > > could all decide to participate more actively in this list; to respond to > > questions or delegate the answering to their subordinates, who are > awaiting > > their cue; and indeed, they could themselves make more use of this list > as > > a sounding board, a consultation room, and a reserve of experience and > > diverse context. They can be the change they (and you, and me) would > like > > to see. > > > > Perhaps this e-mail could convince some of them. And if not my words, > then > > perhaps those of some of the other list subscribers. > > > > A. > > _______________________________________________ > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l > > New messages to: Wikimediafirstname.lastname@example.org > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, > > <mailto:wikimedia-l-requ...@lists.wikimedia.org?subject=unsubscribe> > _______________________________________________ > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l > New messages to: Wikimediaemail@example.com > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, > <mailto:wikimedia-l-requ...@lists.wikimedia.org?subject=unsubscribe> _______________________________________________ Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l New messages to: Wikimediafirstname.lastname@example.org Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:wikimedia-l-requ...@lists.wikimedia.org?subject=unsubscribe>