Letter petitioning WMF to reverse recent decitions
The Wikimedia Foundation recently created a new feature, "superprotect" status. The purpose is to prevent pages from being edited by elected administrators -- but permitting WMF staff to edit them. It has been put to use in only one case: to protect the deployment of the Media Viewer software on German Wikipedia, in defiance of a clear decision of that community to disable the feature by default, unless users decide to enable it.
If you oppose these actions, please add your name to this letter. If you know non-Wikimedians who support our vision for the free sharing of knowledge, and would like to add their names to the list, please ask them to sign an identical version of the letter on change.org.
Superprotect letter update
Along with more hundreds of others, you recently signed Letter to Wikimedia Foundation: Superprotect and Media Viewer, which I wrote.
Today, we have 562 signatures here on Meta, and another 61 on change.org, for a total of 623 signatures. Volunteers have fully translated it into 16 languages, and begun other translations. This far exceeds my most optimistic hopes about how many might sign the letter -- I would have been pleased to gain 200 siguatures -- but new signatures continue to come.
I believe this is a significant moment for Wikimedia and Wikipedia. Very rarely have I seen large numbers of people from multiple language and project communities speak with a unified voice. As I understand it, we are unified in a desire for the Wikimedia Foundation to respect -- in actions, in addition to words -- the will of the community who has built the Wikimedia projects for the benefit of all humanity. I strongly believe it is possible to innovate and improve our software tools, together with the Wikimedia Foundation. But substantial changes are necessary in order for us to work together smoothly and productively. I believe this letter identifies important actions that will strongly support those changes.
Have you been discussing these issues in your local community? If so, I think we would all appreciate an update (on the letter's talk page) about how those discussions have gone, and what people are saying. If not, please be bold and start a discussoin on your Village Pump, or in any other venue your project uses -- and then leave a summary of what kind of response you get on the letter's talk page.
Finally, what do you think is the right time, and the right way, to deliver this letter? We could set a date, or establish a threshold of signatures. I have some ideas, but am open to suggestions.