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Here are my Wikimedia credentials:
- Most active contributor from early 2002 to early 2004
- English Wikipedia Administrator from early 2002 to present
- Member of the English Wikipedia Arbitration Committee from January 2004 to September 2005
- Chief Financial Officer of the Wikimedia Foundation from July 2004 to August 2006
- Wikimedia Steward from April 2004 to February 2013
- Candidate in the Summer 2004 Wikimedia board elections (nearly won)
Old stuff: User:Daniel Mayer/Ask the candidate
I think it is great that Wikipedia exists, that it is free and will forever be free. It is also great that /anyone/ can contribute. This is, IMO, a revolution in how information is presented, controlled and distributed and is in-line with the true intended nature of the World Wide Web.
Combining the wiki concept with free content also creates something that is far more radical than even free software; truly anybody can contribute. That idea is astounding - especially given the fact that Wikipedia is such a shocking success.
Wikipedia is absolute proof that, left alone, groups of people tend to work together to build magnificent things instead of tearing them down. Locking things down, on-the-other-hand, leads to stagnation and, if anything, tempts people to break-in and make a mess of the place. Since it is trivial to vandalize Wikipedia, there is very little reward for the vandal; especially since repairing damage by vandals is easier than creating the vandalism in the first place.
All this tends to ensure that Wikipedia will, on average, improve over time and self-heal. Wikipedia is Linus' Law on steroids; given enough eyeballs reading Wikipedia, all bugs are shallow since fixing /any/ error instantly is as easy as clicking "edit this page" and "Save". What a wonderful concept!
Our content is what matters most here. So if the way we run our community is contributing to a breakdown of neutrality and quality in our content, then we need to make some modifications.
Wiki is a wonderful technology and philosophy that has been the main component of our success. But it is still just a tool. If that tool is not working as well now as it did when we were small, then we should explore ways to improve that tool. In short: Wiki is a means to an end, not an end in itself.