abhinav,

i read that the membership fee is 100 INR, which is the price of a beer.
that sounds fair. how many members do you currently have? do you use the
annual fundraising page to let people know that they can become members
like e.g. wikimedia deutschland (WMDE) does? WMDE, by using this simple
strategy, were able to get 70'000 members with a population of 80 mio,
which makes them one of the biggest clubs in germany.

rupert


On Tue, Jul 16, 2019 at 2:14 AM Samuel Klein <meta...@gmail.com> wrote:

> +1 Lodewijk -- I was thinking the same thing.
> Abhinav and Kirill: thanks each for sharing these public updates.
>
> On Mon., Jul. 15, 2019, 4:29 p.m. effe iets anders, <
> effeietsand...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> >
> > I think it would be at the very least helpful to the wider community to
> > better understand that component. Could you spell out in a bit more
> detail
> > what those capacity concerns were, and what other findings may have
> > existed? This may especially be helpful to the India community, as it
> would
> > be especially hard to address the issues without a full understanding.
> >
> > Thank you!
> >
> > Warmly,
> > Lodewijk
> >
> > On Mon, Jul 15, 2019 at 3:03 AM Kirill Lokshin <kirill.loks...@gmail.com
> >
> > wrote:
> >
> > > Dear Wikimedia-l readers,
> > >
> > >
> > > AffCom understands the complexity and sensitivity of the circumstances
> > > surrounding the decision to de-recognize Wikimedia India as a chapter,
> > and
> > > we would like to share more information around it. This decision was
> not
> > > taken lightly, and only came after consistent warnings, including
> > > suspensions of the chapter, and continued attempts by AffCom to bring
> the
> > > chapter’s activities in line with the requirements for chapter status.
> We
> > > understand that volunteers would like more information about this
> > decision
> > > and past actions that influenced its outcome. We will attempt to
> provide
> > an
> > > overview of the factors and history that led to this decision.
> > >
> > > Wikimedia India has been given ample time to address their lack of
> > > compliance with minimum chapter expectations since their initial signs
> of
> > > non-compliance in 2015 and concerns presented to them during their 2015
> > > site visits, initial 2016 suspension, and most recent 2018 suspension
> > last
> > > November. The Wikimedia India Executive Committee (EC) has repeatedly
> > > failed to respond in a timely and complete manner to call requests,
> > annual
> > > reporting timelines, and remediation deadlines for demonstrating
> > > compliance.
> > >
> > > It is worth noting that there may be issues related to incomplete
> > > information regarding the current relationship between WMIN and AffCom.
> > > Abhinav is a current WMIN representative, but he was recently appointed
> > to
> > > the EC on June 14, 2019 [1] following the EC’s receipt of the final
> > > revocation notice sent on June 13, 2019. He was not informed of, nor
> did
> > he
> > > participate in, our communications regarding the current suspension
> > process
> > > before that time, so he has had to rely on second-hand knowledge of the
> > > situation. The remaining four members of the EC appear to have fully
> > > abdicated their responsibility for communications leadership and as
> such
> > > further confirm the chapter’s lack of capacity at this time.
> > >
> > > Suspension notices give explicit requirements for what and how to
> > > communicate with respect to a chapter’s capacity and provide a timeline
> > for
> > > addressing gaps to meet requirements. We’re providing a table
> reflecting
> > > the most recent suspension notice, the requirements included, and the
> > date
> > > they were to be delivered below for the community’s context:
> > >
> > > According to the suspension notice, Wikimedia India was to:
> > >
> > > Status
> > >
> > > Submit an Action Plan. By January 15, 2019, the chapter was to submit
> an
> > > updated Action Plan including a timeline with dates for completing the
> > > tasks outlined.
> > >
> > > Submitted past deadline.
> > >
> > > Received on March 4, 2019.
> > >
> > > Insufficient response; awaiting new action plan for potential
> > > reorganization as outlined in April call.
> > >
> > > Complete and submit the required overdue chapter activities and
> financial
> > > reporting. The chapter was to submit the reporting by December 1, 2018.
> > >
> > > Submitted past deadline.
> > >
> > > Received Activities Report on December 3, 2018 and Financial Report on
> > > December 22, 2018.
> > >
> > > Develop a strategy and timeline for addressing the following potential
> > gaps
> > > in meeting the basic criteria for chapter status in terms of Legal
> > > Structure, Open Governance, Active Contributor Involvement, and
> Capacity.
> > > By
> > > January 15, 2019, the chapter was to submit a plan, via email or posted
> > > online, demonstrating how the chapter meets the specific chapter
> > > requirements outlined. If the chapter does not currently meet the
> > > requirements, they were to provide a plan and timeline for how to
> address
> > > these issues before June.
> > >
> > > Submitted past deadline.
> > >
> > > Received on March 4, 2019.
> > >
> > > Insufficient response as detailed in April call.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > Resolve concerns related to organizational best practices. By May 1,
> > 2019,
> > > the chapter should be able to demonstrate that it is following the
> > > Wikimedia Foundation Board’s recommendations for organizational best
> > > practices
> > > <
> > >
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/WMF_Resolutions/Organizational_best_practices
> > > >
> > > .
> > >
> > > Submitted past deadline.
> > >
> > > Received on June 4, 2019.
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > More information on chapter requirements is also available on Meta:
> > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_chapters/Requirements
> > >
> > > Although the Affiliations Committee has decided not to renew this
> chapter
> > > agreement, this does not reduce the importance of the Republic of India
> > to
> > > the Wikimedia movement. We regret that this action has become necessary
> > due
> > > to the chapter’s failure to meet the requirements of continued
> > recognition,
> > > as outlined in the table above. We would also like to reaffirm the
> > > committee’s deep and continued commitment to support affiliates in
> India
> > > across geographies and languages.
> > >
> > > As we have previously indicated, all rights and permissions granted by
> > the
> > > Wikimedia Foundation to Wikimedia India in the Chapter Agreement will
> be
> > > revoked as of the termination of the agreement on September 14, 2019.
> In
> > > the meantime, we will continue to engage with Abhinav and the executive
> > > committee of Wikimedia India privately until we can align on a public
> > > communication plan and process to transition the chapter from its
> current
> > > recognition status. We will continue to discuss whether and how we can
> > > share the outcomes of these discussions on Meta once we have agreement
> > > between the executive committee and the AffCom on the best way to do
> > this.
> > >
> > > Regards,
> > >
> > > Kirill Lokshin
> > >
> > > Chair, Affiliations Committee
> > >
> > > [1]
> > >
> > >
> >
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimediaindia-l/2019-June/014128.html
> > >
> > > On Sun, Jul 7, 2019 at 4:50 AM Abhinav srivastava <
> abhinav...@gmail.com>
> > > wrote:
> > >
> > > > Dear Friends From Affcom,
> > > >
> > > > I am posting an open public request for your notice of Suspension
> moved
> > > at
> > > > Wikimedia India (WMIN) which we continue to contest and to our
> ignored
> > > > demand of having a public hearing as shared with you all over mail
> and
> > > > shared again here under Annexure [A]. You have taken an official
> > position
> > > > on suspension without even hearing us even once, unexplained
> > accusations
> > > > have been provided and we continue to believe Affcom has been
> > > > insufficiently investigating facts before making judgements. We
> > > repeatedly
> > > > over and over again provided justifications over Mail but you never
> > took
> > > > them to your notice and only over calls you heard us, provided your
> > > > rationale for expectation gaps but never took our oral commentary
> which
> > > > refutes your claims,in any action, anywhere. Now you say WMIN won’t
> > > remain
> > > > a Chapter after 14th September and be transformed into a User Group.
> > > >
> > > > Republic of India happens to be one of the only few countries where
> > > besides
> > > > volunteer driven Chapter and User Groups has a full-time staff based
> > > WMF’s
> > > > Allied Organisation CIS-A2K [1]. Wikimedia India activities [2] may
> be
> > > less
> > > > due to no source of funds [3] however, Community Members from India
> put
> > > > their efforts, strive hard to take the movement ahead.  Whether it be
> > the
> > > > previous financial year or the present, no Wikimedia Foundation
> Grants
> > > like
> > > > Rapid Grant, Project Grant etc have been applied by Wikimedia India
> > > members
> > > > to support any Chapter activity. They remain self-financed. We
> received
> > > > your notice last year when Wikimedia India was contesting a dispute
> > with
> > > > CIS-A2K over attribution grabbing for our self-financed projects and
> > > > ignoring Chapter at important National level initiaves [4]. While
> > working
> > > > with virtually no source of funds and struggles with WMF’s Allied
> > > > Organisation, your notice of suspension was the least bad we could
> have
> > > > had.
> > > >
> > > > We continue to contest your suspension notice. It was Suo Moto (on
> its
> > > own)
> > > > decision making and as found and re-stated above and below in detail,
> > > there
> > > > were gaps and misunderstanding in your basis. We also continue to
> > contest
> > > > there has been a Rush-to-decision making. No written responses via
> Mail
> > > to
> > > > Chapter’s clarification are being provided and invitation for calls
> are
> > > > initiated where brief responses are shared on a Cloud Document. It
> has
> > > been
> > > > subsequently found by both parties on there being gaps in
> > communication.
> > > > However, even after clarity during call, Affcom has not taken any
> > action
> > > > over them.
> > > >
> > > > The basis of your suspension notice has been shared here for the
> wider
> > > > audience.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >    1.
> > > >
> > > >    Legal Structure : Affcom asked Wikimedia India to resolve and
> obtain
> > > its
> > > >    necessary license in order to obtain funds. At present, as per
> > > > Government
> > > >    of India restrictions it is difficult to obtain foreign funding.
> > > > Wikimedia
> > > >    India informed the Affcom on roughly 13,000 Non-Government
> > > Organisations
> > > >    (NGO)s [5] are struggling with a similar crisis to which Affcom
> > > >    responded, “reconsider applying for a User Group.” and “no
> evidence
> > > that
> > > >    the current organization’s leadership will be able to drive this
> > > problem
> > > >    toward resolution”. Chapter efforts and commitment in resolving
> the
> > > said
> > > >    crisis cannot be dusted in few words. A Government restrictive
> > policy
> > > > which
> > > >    has an impact on 13,000 NGOs and Affcom finding flaws in WMIN
> Board
> > > > Members
> > > >    capability. WMIN would leave it for public interpretation.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > Why not a capability audit for hosting zero-budget activities? While
> > most
> > > > of the time are being spent on resolving the said crisis, WMIN
> > continues
> > > to
> > > > undertake activities as listed. Taking the Open Knowledge Movement
> > > forward
> > > > remains a commitment for the Chapter irrespective of whatsoever
> > political
> > > > climate may remain. Affcom was asked two questions respectively in
> this
> > > > regard however no response has been attained. The questions are
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >    1.
> > > >
> > > >    Would zero-budget activities, those self-financed not meet
> > > sufficiency ?
> > > >    Please elaborate for us to stand better and to improve upon.
> > > >    2.
> > > >
> > > >    Would resolving Legal Structure and being able to receive WMF
> Grants
> > > be
> > > >    a necessary criteria for WMIN to meet sufficiency or continued
> > > > activities
> > > >    not meet the fulfilment criteria?
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > (2) Open Governance : Affcom informed Chapter that a member needs to
> be
> > > in
> > > > physical presence at the Chapter Assembly to cast vote and raise
> voice
> > > and
> > > > asked The Chapter to change its bylaws. This information is anything
> > but
> > > > false. This was communicated during the Call but Affcom did not bring
> > > > anything in action. Also, as per the Chapter Agreement between WMF
> and
> > > > WMIN, a copy of bylaws was provided in English Language to WMF. The
> > > bylaws
> > > > were approved by the then Chapter’s Council. No evidence has been
> > brought
> > > > to notice on WMIN violating the Clause 7.2 of the Chapter’s
> Agreement,
> > > >
> > > > “The Wikimedia Chapter shall be required to advise the Foundation of
> > any
> > > > planned or actual change in the bylaws or status of the Chapter which
> > > might
> > > > affect the Foundation or the continued existence or effectiveness of
> > this
> > > > Agreement.”
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > (3) Active Contributor Involvement :The November 10 email carried the
> > > > statement, “The chapter lacks broad and diverse membership, community
> > > > representation, as well as buy-in and involvement “ and “Membership
> > seems
> > > > to be sourced through university leadership rather than through open
> > > > community participation and representation.”  Chapter till date
> > received
> > > no
> > > > evidence or logic construction on how the said argument was reached.
> > > Later
> > > > during the call, Affcom did acknowledge that there has been a
> > > communication
> > > > gap. Chapter further floated the idea of sharing the Member’s data
> base
> > > > after discussing privacy policy over them.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > (4) Capacity : WMIN was able to submit its annual reports on 21st
> > > December,
> > > > 2018 (3.5 months late) due to a notice by Income-Tax department which
> > > > caused delay in preparing our Financial reports. Although we do not
> > have
> > > > any annual grants or use any money to support any activity, as per
> > > > Chapter’s agreement, affiliate is required to submit Financial
> Results.
> > > > Meanwhile, WMIN reported its activities on every quarterly basis and
> > > shared
> > > > it with the wider Indian community via India Mailing List and also
> > other
> > > > channels [6], [7], [8],[9]. Annual activity report is a compilation
> > from
> > > > the quarterly reports.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > Affcom claimed via Cloud document that no high level response
> submitted
> > > and
> > > > repeated delay is not accepted. WMIN informed Affcom that previous
> > delay
> > > > needs to be looked at independently from earlier financial period and
> > > > suspension notice (WMIN then had a grant), but we received no
> response.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > (5) Organizational Best Practices : Affcom asked us to ‘Resolve’
> issues
> > > > relating to Organizational Best Practices, however, no information
> had
> > > been
> > > > received on respective deliverables not been met. The November 10,
> > email
> > > > carried the statement, “There are concerns about whether” referring
> > that
> > > > Affcom was also not sure themselves. WMIN shared the best practices
> > after
> > > > placing it in front of the community on member’s mailing list for
> more
> > > than
> > > > 15 days. To this Affcom responded that you are late with your
> > submission
> > > > hence we are terminating your contract. They never shared an evidence
> > and
> > > > when WMIN took its time placed it in-front of the community and then
> > > > submitted, they said delayed and instead of sending their response in
> > > > writing over mail they again invited us for a call. We continue to
> > insist
> > > > on providing a written response via Mail but no action.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > (6) Action Plan : Affcom asked us to submit an Action Plan and we
> kept
> > > > asking what deliverable are needed. We cannot commit on resolving
> > > > Government restrictions within a said timeline as more than 13,000
> NGOs
> > > > struggle with the similar crisis. We emphasised again and again we
> have
> > > > been running zero-budget activities and working for the movement. We
> > > asked
> > > > them to review Organizational Best Practices, based on gaps we could
> > have
> > > > taken things into consideration. They rather said, you have missed
> the
> > > > deadline, so WMIN has to be closed now.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > To sum up, Affcom friends, you made up your own decision, you made up
> > you
> > > > own hearing and you made up your own decision. It was a monologue
> > masked
> > > in
> > > > the name of a dialogue.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > I encourage you all to be in our boots someday, hosting activities on
> > > > zero-budget, fighting with the Government bureaucracy to attain some
> > > > funding as a help, the challenge of having a staff-based organisation
> > in
> > > > parallel, struggle with self-financing activities and most
> importantly
> > > > working with Affcom to save yourself from their de-recognition
> threats.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > If you believe you are correct, please abide to the request made
> under
> > > > Annexure [A] and put everything in public domain. Let community read
> > for
> > > > themselves and decide. If Affcom is more transparent about its
> > > > investigation and actions then community would be able to better
> > > understand
> > > > the work and provide an opinion.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > Regards,
> > > > Abhinav
> > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> > > >
> > > > [1] https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/CIS-A2K
> > > >
> > > > [2]
> > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimediaindia-l/2019-April/013994.html
> > > > \
> > > >
> > > > [3] Foreign Currency (Regulation) Act, 1960 compliance do not permit
> > > India
> > > > Chapter to receive money from its primary fiscal sponsor, Wikimedia
> > > > Foundation.
> > > >
> > > > [4] Board of Directors at CIS, acknowledged in March, 2019 for a
> > > compliant
> > > > made in August, 2018 for CIS-A2K Staff not doing their duty to the
> > order.
> > > >
> > > > [5]
> > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://foreignpolicy.com/2018/06/07/democracies-need-a-little-help-from-their-friends/
> > > >
> > > > [6]
> > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimediaindia-l/2017-July/013030.html
> > > >
> > > > [7]
> > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimediaindia-l/2017-October/013089.html
> > > >
> > > > [8]
> > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimediaindia-l/2018-January/013188.html
> > > >
> > > > [9]
> > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimediaindia-l/2018-April/013295.html
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> > > >
> > > > Annexure
> > > >
> > > > [A] Reallocating the Affcom - WMIN Communication To Meta : No
> > > > communications over email, video call, social media, instant
> messaging,
> > > or
> > > > anywhere but wiki! While this would not just be aligned with the
> > editing
> > > > spirit, it would promote greater transparency and also helpful for us
> > to
> > > > communicate the message to our community members. While, we
> understand
> > > > Affcom had been advocating the same, however, taking care of privacy
> > > > concerns, do let us.  Once we hear from Affcom on having no privacy
> > > > concerns, we may reallocate the discussions.
> > > >
> > > > If there a consent to this, would request a green light also for
> > > >
> > > >    1.
> > > >
> > > >    Archiving the entire email conversation over a cloud document and
> > > >    linking it to the relevant Meta page.
> > > >    2.
> > > >
> > > >    Documenting Internet Calls in an attempt to resolve communication
> > gaps
> > > >    and linking them to Meta page for greater transparency.
> > > >    3.
> > > >
> > > >    Based on Principal of Free Speech, allowing anybody to use the
> > > >    discussion page for expression of their views.
> > > >    4.
> > > >
> > > >    Any Volunteer is free to translate the text into the language of
> > their
> > > >    choice.
> > > >    5.
> > > >
> > > >    Upload All PDF sent via Mails to Commons and link them to the Meta
> > > Page.
> > > >    6.
> > > >
> > > >    All relevant customs and procedures which exist for any Meta page
> to
> > > be
> > > >    in action.
> > > > _______________________________________________
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