Grants talk:APG/FDC recommendations/2013-2014 round 2

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This page is for comments about the FDC's recommendations to the board on funding allocations for Round 2, 2013-14.

Please leave comments under the appropriate section for each entity. For general comments, please leave them in the designated section below.

Formal appeals should be submitted to the Board representatives on the FDC.

General comments on overall recommendations[edit]

Congrats! I just had time to read this through once, so I can't really comment on the substance - though nothing strikes me as being wrong or poorly thought out. What I really want to congratulate you for is the format of the report and how well written it is. I know that it is challenging to write a report like this and make it interesting, but your report has none of those usual problems. Everything was worded clearly and you got a large number of important points across without repetition or boilerplate. Truly well written. Smallbones (talk) 15:15, 24 May 2014 (UTC)

Many thanks! :) Pundit (talk) 15:33, 24 May 2014 (UTC)
Thanks Smallbones! We feel encouraged:) --Ali Haidar Khan (Tonmoy) (talk) 15:36, 24 May 2014 (UTC)
Thanks a bunch for the kind words. I really hoped we would be useful and to the point. notafish }<';> 07:09, 25 May 2014 (UTC)
Yes, this was a very insightful report, especially your analysis of areas where WMF could improve. I hope the organization takes your recommendations seriously but if an incomplete funding proposal was submitted, I'm not sure if that hope is realistic. It's important to have an assessment of strengths and areas for improvement from community representatives. Liz (talk) 02:16, 5 June 2014 (UTC)
Congratulations to the FDC and you deserve this much as the task seems herculean, going by the volume of work in front of you. And thanks to the many FDC members who've shown such patience with community members while they were voicing out their opinion.
Having said that, I would have been very happy if concerns raised were dealt with much more firmness than we've got to see, especially in the case of CIS's proposal from India. Thanks again! --H P Nadig (talk) 01:03, 19 June 2014 (UTC)

Comments regarding CIS[edit]

My heart goes out to anyone who has to work with such diverse a country as India..Our states are like many countries together and sometimes waring. Many organisations from the West that come to India and want to work at a national level are ill-prepared for what they encounter. I have experienced how some mis-steps destroyed the OLPC effort in India but hope there will be a renewal of efforts and learning from mistakes. I am happy to support any wiki programme in India in my limited capacity as I totally support wikimedia's larger goal and believe that wiki women in India like me have a lot of potential to contribute. Cutting budgets down drastically does not help...supporting the team to utilise and re-allocte it differently may.User:outofindia

Hello outofindia. Thank you for your insight. My hope is also that we all learn from our mistakes and truly converge around the advancement of free knowledge in India. If you have any insights about "mistakes not to repeat", I'd be happy to hear about your experience. Our movement needs as many perspectives as possible to adjust to local circumstances and any help is truly welcome. Don't hesitate to reach out per email delphine[AT]notafish[punto]org. Cheers - notafish }<';> 19:36, 25 May 2014 (UTC)
Dear outofindia, as pointed out by Ravi on a comment below, the discussion is about CIS's FDC application. And there are some grave concerns about the application, the eligibility criteria and the budgeting as such. Given all these, I tend to think that cutting budget for this was just a very soft approach and much so for the kind of concerns that have been raised by the community. If anything, the application in itself should have been put back to some serious scrutiny and evaluated based on some hard evidence for what is being passed as 'responses' to the serious concerns raised. There is apparently some serious Conflict of Interest at play here as well, quite evident if you follow the lengthy discussions that have happened on the proposal form's discussion page. These are still to be addressed satisfactorily.
And funding to this specific agency need not necessarily be deemed as the collective "support to India" as there's the Wikimedia India Chapter as well which has been part of the FDC. Also, I'm not a subscriber to the calls that say money requested by CIS is lesser than other entities as each $ equals close to 60 Indian rupees and the money being recommended as of now is still a very substantial amount for most non-profits operating from here post conversion and in the local context.
The salaries and administrative expenses themselves seem to be overshadowing other spending on this proposal. It has been pointed out on several occasions that the salaries proposed are quite extravagant and this has been acknowledged by the reviews as well.
It is good however that a community discussion was initiated and several people have been able to voice out their opinion about what seems to be quite ridiculous spending. --H P Nadig (talk) 00:54, 19 June 2014 (UTC)

The discussion is about CIS and one wonders why anyone in FDC would club it with WMIN chapter or suggest disbanding WMIN chapter. One also wonders why Anasuya who represents WMF which is a working partner of CIS didn't recuse herself from the discussion while Arjuna Rao who is a local community member recused himself unnecessarily. Overall, I appreciate the FDC recommendation for trying to reflect the spirit of the community discussion even though it has overlooked many valid concerns raised. --Ravi (talk) 14:27, 7 June 2014 (UTC)

Comments regarding WMFR[edit]

Comments regarding WMNO[edit]

Comments regarding WMF[edit]

I have a question about something in the "software development" portion of the FDC recommendations regarding the Wikimedia Foundation proposal.

In that, it says "The effectiveness of persona-based strategy for the identification of user needs and prioritization is not clear, as no evaluation of this has been done after the roll-out of Mobile apps. It is suggested that the software team assesses the effectiveness of its processes, tools, team by an appropriate mix of surveys, and use of experts in the field and take corrective action to address the gaps."

Which mobile apps are you referring to?

This passage seemed to lack sufficient detail to explain what was being commented on, and why. Many teams have used user-centered design tools like personas, user stories, and usability testing. Not all of them are used in the same way, and we don't use a single "one size fits all" approach to gathering user needs since every product tends to target different kinds of users (mobile vs desktop, readers vs new editors vs existing editors, and so on). In this regard, the feedback is somewhat confusing and not very actionable. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 22:33, 30 June 2014 (UTC)

Steven Walling (WMF), Thanks for your comment. I understand that software teams are using different user centered design approaches. The feedback is meant to highlight the need for closing the loop on some of the initiatives of WMF by assessing their impact, to further improve the software development practices. For example, WMF conducted Mobile strategy research (overall recommendations on page 23 of the report) in 2011 and brought out expectations of users in the form of Personas. I could not locate how this has been used in developing Wikimedia mobile apps or mobile sites. To my knowledge, there has been no follow up after the release of Wikimedia mobile app, in the form of survey's or additional strategy initiative, to see whether the user expectations were met or whether new expectations arose as a result of the experience of using the mobile apps to drive further development. I understand that retrospectives are being done on projects and would like to suggest including inputs from further engagement of readers/editors beyond wiki talk pages/bugzilla bugs boundaries. --Arjunaraoc (talk) 09:47, 3 July 2014 (UTC)