One more proposal to "decomplexify" the WMF/Community processes :

Get inspired by maths and art.

There is nothing complex that cannot be simplified for an equivalent result.

Let's find the good degree of complexity at all stages and not just take the 
first raw equation that comes out.
 It may be exact, but just need to be reworked to get pertinent and easy to use.

What does simplify mean in math?

Simplify images to their core elements.


Pascale Camus-Walter

Le 18 mai 2022 à 22:46, Samuel Klein <> a écrit :

Dear Board (and all),

The growing complexity of governance efforts is defeating us. Process creep is 
an existential threat for projects like ours – it is self-perpetuating if not 
actively curtailed, as it filters out people who dislike excess process. 
There's a reason 'bureaucrats' and 'stewards' have unglamorous titles.

Global governance in particular seems to be suffering from this now. Let's try 
to scale it back!  Recent developments, all at least somewhat confusing:

Global Council: A three-stage vote for the drafting committee.  After 6 months 
of work in private, we know the charter will cover governance, resourcing, & 
community.  A ratifiable charter by 2023 should include Council scope, then 
another group may draft an election process. Council elections would start 

Conduct: Two years from first draft to realization. Custom review & revision 
process for policy, set to change ~once a year. Enforcement by another group 
(U4C), not yet defined, with an idea about annual elections for it [starting in 

WMF Board: A four-stage election, with a new complex nomination template. 
Nominees evaluated by another elected 9-person Analysis Committee, followed by 
a two-stage vote.
Months of process, 16 staff facilitators.  
Something has to give. We don't have time for all of these to be different, 
complex affairs. 
And this complexity feels self-imposed, like trying to push spaghetti through a 
~ ~ ~
Four short proposals for your consideration:

1. Focus discussions on the decisions we need to resolve, not on process.
We need a foundation Board & global Council for specific practical reasons. 
What challenges do they need to resolve this year?  What major issues + nuances 
are at play?

2. Make elections simple, flexible, consistent. 
Build tools and frameworks that conserve rather than soak up community time.  
Make longer processes capture proportionately detailed results. Empower a 
standing election committee.

3. Highlight ways people can engage with governance + prioritization, 
regionally + globally, beyond winning elections to procedural bodies. Support 
organizers + facilitators rather than hiring them out of their communities to 
facilitate on behalf of a central org.

4. Delegate more.  Delegate to community.  Delegate design and implementation.
Our communities excel at self-organization, and rebel against arbitrary 
mandates. Avoid language or policies that remove agency or exaggerate 
staff-community division.

𝒲♡,  SJ

Samuel Klein          @metasj           w:user:sj          +1 617 529 4266
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