>
> Here's a fundamental source of disagreement. It gets at something I'm not
> sure the strategy process is properly addressing. Does the WMF lead and
> direct the Wikimedia movement?


Personally, I don't think the WMF knows the answer to this, either in
practice, or what they want.

We are in a sort of weird situation where "the WMF" often feel they don't
have any power because "the community" won't let them exercise it, and/or
they (as the WMF) don't feel they have enough mandate or are representative
enough to do things. At the same time, most of "the community" feels they
don't have any significant power or influence because the WMF makes the
real decisions and no-one is ever going to pay attention to them, the
individual community member.

Part of the reason the WMF has outsourced much of its long-term planning to
the Movement Strategy process is because it isn't confident it has the
mandate to actually make decisions like this.

Or is its role to provide support and
> services to the movement's contributors, who are (collectively) its
> leaders? Should it impose change on projects based on its own determination
> of need, or respond to needs identified by project communities?
>

I think really it depends on the quality of leadership provided by movement
contributors. Indeed, when Wikipedia was first set up the whole idea was
about empowering everyone to make decisions and assuming that good-faith
contributors would work issues out between them. This has turned out to not
work in many important areas, for reasons that I won't attempt to go into
here (and no, it's not all the WMF's fault)


> I think this becomes the true basis of the anger and resistance on the
> English Wikipedia: *the sense that the WMF has declared that it is
> leading now, instead of supporting*. That's also the message in comments
> that assert the WMF has the authority to do what it likes, and no
> obligation to explain or justify its decisions. Each time the WMF has taken
> similar decisions the reaction has been similar, but as I mentioned in a
> previous post... They are not learning the appropriate lessons.


I think you have correctly identified why so many very active Wikipedians
get so frustrated with the WMF. I am not sure how much light that sheds on
the right solution, though.

Chris
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