Grants talk:Programs/Wikimedia Community Fund/Rapid Fund/CIP101 Wikipedia Project for Sustainable Development (ID: 22451751)

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Feedback[edit]

Turkish: Aynı kullanıcının görüş bekleyen diğer bir başvurusunda detaylı olarak açıkladığım gerekçelerle şiddetle karşı olduğumu beyan etmek isterim. Teşekkürler, --justinianus | talk 13:49, 23 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

English: I would like to declare that I am strongly against it, for the reasons I explained in detail in another application by the same user, which is awaiting comments. Thanks, --justinianus | talk 13:49, 23 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Feedback from Doǵu[edit]

Strong oppose per above also;

Currently, there is a conflict of interest between the user Gufo46 and Egezort in their work. They use the Wikimedia Foundation as a source of income and are not collaborating effectively with their community. There is an ongoing discussion on the Turkish Wikipedia village pump regarding this matter.
Doǵu ( m ) 14:27, 23 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

@Doǵu: Thank you for sharing your concerns on the proposal here. I acknowledge there are some community members in Turkey who do not feel the applicants are collaborating effectively. Please see my comments and questions below regarding other concerns:
  • Currently, there is a conflict of interest between the user Gufo46 and Egezort in their work. What is the conflict of interest in this situation? If it is related to a relationship between the applicants, can you clarify what that relationship conflicts with? This is important, because merely being in a relationship with someone else involved in a funding proposal is not inherently a conflict of interest.
  • They use the Wikimedia Foundation as a source of income I'd like to make two points here: First, many people in the Wikimedia movement use Wikimedia Foundation funds as a source of income, and this does not violate any particular policy or the Terms of Use as I have seen asserted by some community members on Turkish Wikipedia. Applicants receive this compensation because the work they propose is nontrivial, and often is effectively a part-time or full-time job depending on its scope. Sometimes these jobs are related to an affiliate program or project, and other times they are roles in projects maintained by other groups or individuals. Secondly, we will not fund activities that replace volunteer activities in a given community. This includes things like general editing activities and simple on-wiki tasks. However, we have compensated individuals to perform other tasks such as training, especially when that training is extensive or complex, as individuals typically cannot perform these tasks on a voluntary basis. I acknowledge there are some movement volunteers who generously contribute their time towards complex or extremely demanding movement work, but this does not mean that everyone should be held up to those standards of volunteering.
With thanks, I JethroBT (WMF) (talk) 21:30, 23 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Hello @I JethroBT (WMF), it's worth noting that Gufo46 and Egezort are not collaborating on a professional basis for the Gufo46 and Egezort projects. In fact, they are romantically involved and have openly shared this information with the public. Interestingly, when it comes to applying for grants, they are opting to involve only their close friends in these projects. However, this selective approach in project partnerships is causing some concern within our community, as it raises questions about potential conflicts of interest. The perception is that the projects may not be receiving an unbiased evaluation due to the close personal relationships involved. Moreover, it's noteworthy that Gufo46's contribution profile suggests they may not be highly experienced in this field. Their inclusion in the project lists appears to be influenced by their romantic involvement with Egezort, potentially to enhance the numerical representation on the list. This observation raises concerns within the community about the merit and expertise of the individuals involved in the projects. It's crucial to address these concerns to ensure that project evaluations are based on qualifications and skills rather than personal relationships. When we examine the funds allocated to the projects and the outcomes they yield, we find that the outputs of these projects do not seem to align with the financial resources allocated, especially when compared to Türkiye's minimum wage. I can honestly state that it is necessary for the Foundation to officially address and communicate its stance on whether this is considered a conflict of interest by WMTR. This announcement and notification can be made in the Village Pump of Turkish Wikipedia. Additionally, I must emphasize that WMTR perceives this as a conflict of interest. In the aftermath of such a decision, there will be a significant burden on WMTR's shoulders in dealing with the potential repercussions. Please keep in mind that the concerns expressed here are not only mine but also represent the concerns of a community I am a part of. While there may not be a likelihood of reaching a consensus with the Foundation on the conflict of interest issue that concerns us, it is possible to separate this matter from that theme and evaluate it solely based on the inconsistency in the outputs of the projects. Ideally, we hope the Foundation respects the consensus reached within our community. If the outcome turns out to be the opposite, it'll be undermine the weight of the local consensus & communities. The Foundation should carefully consider the possibility of losing community trust over just one project.
Doǵu ( m ) 22:23, 23 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Doǵu: Thank you for elaborating more on these concerns. Please see my comments below:
  • this selective approach in project partnerships is causing some concern within our community Applicants generally have a lot of agency over choosing who they want to work with, so long as those individuals have relevant and sufficient experience in their proposed roles. It would be helpful for me to understand what expectations you and other Turkish community members may have around how Rapid Fund applicants should be selecting their project teams. Is the main concern that applicants should not have people on their team with whom they have a close relationship, or do these expectations involve other needs?
  • Additionally, I must emphasize that WMTR perceives this as a conflict of interest. It is surprising to receive an official position of an entire affiliate on a sensitive issue from one of its members, as opposed to its leadership. While I'm aware of the discussion on Turkish Wikipedia and that your concerns are shared by others there, I've received no such communication from the User Group consistent with what you are saying. Is there some communication from the User Group that reflects this opinion? In general, I would advise against broad representations of WMTR unless they are specifically documented.
  • While there may not be a likelihood of reaching a consensus with the Foundation on the conflict of interest issue that concerns us, it is possible to separate this matter from that theme and evaluate it solely based on the inconsistency in the outputs of the projects. Ideally, we hope the Foundation respects the consensus reached within our community. If the outcome turns out to be the opposite, it'll be undermine the weight of the local consensus & communities. The Foundation should carefully consider the possibility of losing community trust over just one project. A few comments on this:
  • The main concerns I am hearing from you and other community members are that 1) applicants do not have sufficient experience to complete the proposed activities or achieve the stated outcomes, 2) previously funded projects have had low impact or not have met goals, and 3) that community members feel that funding requests for this and some previous proposals are too high and do not sufficiently correspond to the expected outcomes. Whether the applicants are in a relationship or not is somewhat immaterial because it's not clear why this relationship specifically may interfere or otherwise make completion of the project unlikely. This is important because this is a different consideration compared to concerns about experience or past impact, which may have still been brought up even if the applicants were not in a relationship.
  • Constructive feedback from communities is welcome on proposals we review for funding, and I will acknowledge that this feedback frequently informs our funding decisions. However, I also want to emphasize that funding decisions are not based on consensus, nor are they a vote.
  • On the topic of constructive feedback, I also want to acknowledge that your own feedback to the applicants on Turkish Wikipedia does not appear to be especially constructive in my view, in stark contrast to your feedback here. Statements like this one, for example, appear to be adversarial and unnecessarily hostile. The intention seems to be to intimidate rather than to resolve a conflict. Even in situations when there are legitimate concerns, this kind of communication inflames, extends, and worsen community conflicts. I ask that you consider a different approach to your conduct moving forward on this funding-related matter regardless of where that platform happens to be.
I JethroBT (WMF) (talk) 06:38, 24 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@I JethroBT (WMF), I'm afraid I disagree with the notion that I haven't exhibited constructive behavior. Unfortunately, I don't share the same opinion with you on this matter. We have always approached our questions in a constructive manner on Turkish Wikipedia, and there is a distinction between slightly intensifying the tone of our responses and making non-constructive comments. I also apologize if you accused me of this.
Doǵu ( m ) 09:33, 24 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Dear @I JethroBT (WMF), it seems like you haven't understood the point I'm trying to make here. The conflict of interest I am referring to is not solely based on individuals being involved in a romantic relationship; rather, I evaluate it as a conflict of interest when they turn Wikimedia Foundation Grants into a profit through a cooperative they establish among themselves and their close associates. If the users in question had not engaged in such a collaboration and were open to our community, there would be a place to contribute and participate in their physical project stages. Adem and Caner had previously expressed their desire to participate in these projects but didn't get any chance to even walk and take photos with them. From your messages, I suspect that either you're talking with Ege and hearing his point of view in a private discussion, and it's effecting your point of view because you're trying to find your way in a foreign language and he can express himself in a direct English conversation, or you are translating Trwiki conversations from the web and missing nuances. What I strongly want to emphasize is that I do not support individuals using a structure they create, excluding other members of the community, for the purpose of making money. It's not about Ege, it's my principle. But in this case, these individuals do not have the necessary knowledge to go to universities or schools and provide education about Wikipedia there. How can they educate others about these matters when they are unaware of even the policies in our local community? First and foremost, these users haven't written any featured or good articles; how can they prepare a project related to the creation of these articles without a participant author who wrote one of them? We also expect you to communicate openly with us and our community during this process, not just with Ege. Throughout this process, I invite you to openly discuss the complaints and topics Ege has brought to you in public. We conduct all of this process openly in relevant communities and Wikimedia projects. I will not further occupy you with what I oppose in this matter.
Doǵu ( m ) 17:57, 24 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Styyx[edit]

I also oppose the approval of this grant. As explained in detail on the Turkish Wikipedia village pump and the previous request, the received grant does not match the final result of the previous projects initiated by this user and affiliated users (i.e. this is as close as it gets to throwing money down the sink). The first project aimed to create around a dozen articles, with three of these being featured articles (FA). I understand that writing FA's is hard, especially for new editors, which was the target audience of this project. The difficulty of this goal was extremely underestimated and obviously was not met, with no articles being promoted to FA status. The explanation in the final report on this is a honest piece on what went wrong and what is going to change to avoid this, and I would've accepted it as valid self-criticism if the other easier goals of the project were close to being met. They weren't. No articles whatsoever were created, the number of newly signed-up was way off and none ended up returning to the Turkish Wikipedia. The second project intended to create 100 Turkish proverbs, which was again not met by some distance. Some of the created content could be considered as insulting eg. acıma yetime, döner koyar götüne; "don't have pity on an orphan, they will turn [their backs] and hit you in your ass" (which is an idiom and not a proverb but that's the least of our concerns). Interesting and perhaps hilarious thing to do with your friend group but not something for you to take a grant of 1k from the foundation. As the preceding projects were not close to meeting their respective targets, I can only conclude that a new project with an even larger grant will not be much different. Moreover, I am highly disturbed by the fact that the money left over from previous projects (c. 550 USD in total), not returned to the foundation and declared to be used "in future projects" on both instances, was not taken into consideration when making the request (the budget document has no mention of such thing). Instead, the user decided to apply for a grant of 4986 USD, just 14 bucks below the maximum grant. This obviously raises my eyebrows regarding the integrity and legitimacy of this request. Styyx (talk) 18:27, 23 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Thank you for the feedback, I'll respond to some things. Let me break down the situation for each concern.
1) For the first project, both the walk and the presentations lasted longer than we had anticipated. The account creation and editing part was supposed to be the last hour of the meeting and we chose to continue the presentations fully instead of that. There were 4 presentations done that day, 3 of which were directly Wikimedia related (the other one was about the Curious Steps programme). I believe that having talked about Wikipedia's gender issues and related UG's (such as WMLGBT) means that the project did indeed produce output. Had we chosen to focus on editing instead, we would have to keep the presentations short, which I believe would have been a greater loss. I intend to do similar walks in the future too and the project that we did has provided the backbone for that.
2) I have also written in the report that I believe that the lack of proverbs shouldn't be seen as a major failure of the project. We exceeded our expectations regarding how many Lexeme words were added. We did the lessons in a class in which a majority of the students weren't paying attention and the computer lab was hard to access every week (and even when we managed to, there were many technical problems). I believe it would have been difficult for us to anticipate this, but we still managed to get some students (around 5) to be interested in adding words within the lessons on their phones. 2 of them continued back home too. The reason we couldn't attract all students' interest is due to a few factors that we have thought about a lot, these include our non-authoritative approach, the fact that the class that we went to had a lot of uninterested students (as opposed to a group that would have chosen to be there) etc. If we are to do Lexeme related projects again, we intend to tackle some of these differently.
Other than the outputs outlined in the core metrics, all the conversations about Abstract Wikipedia and Lexemes happened during the presentations, which I believe is also an output since we provided an understanding of the purposes of these projects. There may be no way to quantify this but we have seen that some students were interested in the subject and asked questions both regarding linguistics and regarding Wikidata.
As for the proverbs/idioms (idioms are also Lexeme-able) with swear words, I believe that that is not an issue at all. If high school students want to put in proverbs with swear words in them, I don't think that that's a bad thing. We allowed for it saying "If it really is a proverb you can add it", we removed some that weren't afterwards, I am in regular communications with someone from the Lexeme community and we have done much work to address these issues.
3) About the 550 USD thing, I thought that that would already be accounted for, that I would be given not 4986 but that the previous funds would be deducted. I don't/didn't know that I had to explicitly state this as it is probably kept in records in the fund allocation system. But if it is necessary/possible, I can update the budget request to reflect this. Thank you for bringing it up.
4) I believe that the potential for this project should be derived more from what I've done so far (without a budget) instead of other projects in which there were many differences regarding participant profile and participation times. https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/CIP_Wikipedia_Project (the documentation doesn't exist in some weeks, something I'm seeking to fix by getting help through a paid role because I myself couldn't handle it as well as I wanted to)
In this project, we did presentations to 4 classes (I was doing the presentations in 3 of them), and as per event metrics' calculation, reached a total of 397 edits. Most of these are Wikidata edits and the rest are trwiki and Commons edits. We have done workshops in which we photographed some plants from our campus (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Tosun_Terzio%C4%9Flu_Bah%C3%A7esi), we have done Lexeme related work, we have done translations of Sustainable Development related articles from English to Turkish etc. We all managed to do these without a budget. Next term, if we do manage to get this budget, I believe these numbers will also go up. So I believe that my core metrics are both more relevant to this project than the previous projects, and also that I will be able to reach them. Egezort (talk) 04:28, 24 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]
"We all managed to do these without a budget" If so why do you need "budget"? If you can organize all those stuff without getting a grant from Wikimedia Foundation, then you can keep doing so. I don't understand why you require a budget for contributing to Wikipedia, a thing that many of us do without a single dime. VectorVoyager (talk) 10:37, 24 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Kadı[edit]

Strong oppose. per discussion in trwiki. Kadı Message 21:06, 23 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

VectorVoyager[edit]

Strong oppose. I would like to speak the mind of people here in an informal manner. No one needs money to do contributions to Wikipedia or organize basic talks about it. Many of us contribute to Wikimedia projects in our free time because we believe in the philosophy of free (as in freedom) information and collaboration. Their private university already gives them classroom and help that they require to do whatever LGBT+/Neurodiversity/etc event they do, while many of us including experienced contributors do whatever we do by our own humble means. I think that giving away that much money because they claim to do some workshop while Wikimedia Foundation is in need of money is ridiculous. VectorVoyager (talk) 10:30, 24 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

I want to clarify a few things.
First of all, neither of us are wealthy, I myself am studying in Sabancı University through full scholarship. (Gufo46 through %75 scholarship, which is still not easy for them to afford) I don't think these are relevant to the grant application and I find it inappropriate that this non-truth would be given as a justification for opposing.
Second, this grant outlines a project that not only has basic talks about Wikipedia, but aims to integrate a Wikipedia project into the CIP programme. If successful, it will continue even after I graduate (I may or may not continue leading the project after that, I don't know yet).
Third, yes the university provides us with classrooms, internet, food/coffee for some meetings, and transportation for outside events. None of those are in the budget due to this, the items in the budget are things that the university doesn't provide us.
Fourth, our neurodiversity or LGBT+ projects aren't in-campus projects, CIP is. Egezort (talk) 11:08, 24 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Sorry for mislabeling you. Still, my point persists: We are yet to be convinced why you need a budget for making a talk about Wikipedia or contributing to it which is done by thousands of people like me and many people for free. Its obvious that the grant is not 100% used for the event itself, and the events made by you could be/can be done so without any funds. VectorVoyager (talk) 15:48, 24 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Comments from I JethroBT (WMF)[edit]

Hello, Egezort. Unfortunately, we are not able to move forward with funding the proposal at this time. One fundamental issue unrelated to the discussion here is that there is less funding with which to support Rapid Funds in the CEE/CA region generally than expected, and so not all proposals can be funded at this time, even if eligible. However, given the extensive discussion here and on Turkish Wikipedia regarding the proposal, there are multiple, community concerns related to your past and proposed work. I appreciate your responses on some of these matters so far. There are other points of feedback that will be important for you to address in order to build better community trust and shared understanding around your proposal if you wish to pursue it in the future. I have summarized these points below:

  • The current proposal mainly focuses on training and related outcomes, and there are concerns that you and your team do not have a sufficient level of experience on-wiki to train others. This concern is also relevant to some of the previous trainings you have given. How would you summarize your skills and experience with editing on Wikipedia or other Wikimedia projects that participants would receive training on in this proposal? What experience do you have specifically with training others in general on Wikimedia projects that would support this proposal?
  • Some community members have also brought up concerns around a lack of community engagement with Wikimedia communities related to this proposal. This concern is supported not only by community feedback, but also in that you have few contributions to discussion-based spaces on Turkish Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects (such as Wikidata) you are actively contributing to. Do you understand why community members would have reasonable concerns with funding an individual or team that has minimal on-wiki engagement and communications in the proposed project, especially when training involves supporting people to interact with other volunteers on-wiki around their work and contributions? I specifically want to acknowledge that in the past, even when individuals or teams possess project-relevant expertise, a lack of experience interacting with that Wikimedia community and working through conflict has sometimes led to problematic outcomes such as low project impact, negative experiences for newcomers, and frustration felt by both the project team and the related Wikimedia communities.
  • A final area of concern relates to compensation. Some concerns have been expressed that the project activities should not require compensation, as they relate to training. Separately, others have expressed concerns that the amount of funding requested is excessive. It would be helpful provide more information around why you feel these activities go beyond usual volunteer activities in your community to justify the request, and how you have determined reasonable rates of compensation for the proposed roles.

With thanks, I JethroBT (WMF) (talk) 22:44, 24 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Hello, thank you for letting me know, thank you for also specifying that your rejection is not due to the community pushback but due to financial reasons, I hope it will clear up some confusion within the community.
I'll try to address all points:
1- I'll try to summarise my experience and why I believe that I am competent enough to lead workshops about Wikimedia projects. Throughout my existence on Wikimedia and its UG's, I have done around 10 presentations about it, some of them I have done more than once. The ones regarding CIP can be found here: https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Category:CIP101_Wikimedia_Presentations_in_Turkish&action=edit&redlink=1
In most of these presentations, I have seen that people were paying attention and asking questions, which I think that I was able to answer adequately. I also have a plan of making these slides into videos to be used later, which was a part of my responsibilities within this project.
I don't have much experience on Wikipedias in terms of editing, but I have read through many of the policy pages, I have academic literacy around which sources to trust and not trust due to my education in university, and I have spent a lot of time thinking about what would be ways for newcomers to contribute easily. I have used these experiences within the lessons that I've run and I'm refining my strategies with every feedback I get from the students.
Other than this, because of my experience in CIP, university clubs, and some unrelated Erasmus+ Projects, I have developed leadership skills that help me organize people around a common goal. I have used this skill in the CIP Wikipedia Project last term in the weekly meetings that we did with the project's supervisors.
I am currently enrolled in the Organiser Labs program and will get the certificate for it within a few weeks.
As an added point, I have some knowledge about Wikipedia's sister projects, particularly Wikidata. My project actually contains more of Wikidata and Commons than it does Wikipedia. In lessons that I've conducted, I have seen that it was fairly easy for me to convey not only technical information about these projects but also about what their purpose is within Open Culture overall.
I do still have a lot to learn, and I have experienced some failures (particularly with the International group that I was supervising), but I believe that I still am fit to run this project.
2- I do understand the concerns there, in fact, when these concerns were first communicated to me (alongside the COI accusation), I said that I was open to fixing the issue about communication but that I didn't agree with their COI accusation. To fix this, I messaged the WMTR Telegram Group back in July, which was met with enormous aggression and what I believe to be violations of the UCoC. Since this wasn't addressed by anyone within the group, and the attacks seemed to continue, I decided to disengage from the community. This is something that I wouldn't have done if necessary actions were taken by the people responsible for community management. I don't ever want to involve people who can get away with their aggression towards me due to systemic deficiencies in my projects. I believe that that alone gives me a valid enough reason not to engage with people from the community. If, in the future, these problems are properly addressed (and I don't have to fear aggression and accusations based on rules that don't exist from the community when I approach them) I intend to communicate more with the community. Otherwise, I don't want to abide by a model in which people can get away with accusations and attacks on me.
I have also been in communications with other communities through Telegram and other means, I believe that this can show that I have no problem related to community engagement overall, but just for this specific community. I believe that I have explained my reasons adequately.
3- I have seen in many other grant applications that leading projects like these can involve compensation for project leaders. I believe that the creation of new material, the coordination of the supervisor groups (which if successful, creates new Wikimedia organizers, which is not the aim for every supervisor but for some that want to do more), the management of club activities etc. all exceed beyond what a normal volunteer (in either CIP or Wikimedia) would do. They all take a lot of time too, which isn't necessarily fun or relaxing. To be blunt, I may have to choose between studying for exams or doing CIP Wikipedia work at times, which in a completely voluntary effort, ends with prioritising more urgent matters, but when it is a paid role, it is a responsibility that I have to assume due to external factors too.
As for the amount, I admit that for the General Support Application I created around a year ago, I hadn't done extensive research but had only gone through some other General Support Applications to determine what the amount of money for such projects was.
But for the later applications (the Neurodiversity related one that Gufo46 prepared and I helped with, the previous CIP application, and this one) I picked a rate around 15$ an hour, which is what some people in the USA are asking the minimum wage to be (and it is in some states as far as I know). I believe that my labor shouldn't be considered as less valuable than people in the US just because I'm living in Turkey.
I don't know if I've been able to answer all of your questions in as much detail as you wanted me to, but I can clarify points if you want me to. Egezort (talk) 07:31, 25 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Comments from Adem[edit]

I would like to make a few comments on this complicated topic. I don't want to address the issue as a conflict of interest or special relationship. I will talk about the reasons why this process has become this way:

  • We talked about this before applying for the "Wiki Takes Curious Steps" project, which was Ege's first application. It was a great idea, and I supported his application. I also attended the online meeting, which was the first phase of the project, and it was a very productive meeting. The second step, the walking and item editing part, was postponed to a later date due to devastating earthquakes and security warnings from foreign diplomatic missions on the route. Me and Caner (User:Kurmanbek) filled out the form to participate in the second stage, "Memory Walk & Wikimarathon". However, we were not invited to this stage, which was organized in September 2023, and no information was given either. I asked a question to Ege in the telegram group to get information, but he did not answer. We then examined the report and saw that the goals and outcomes did not match. Of course, each of us may not be able to achieve 100% goals in a project, and we may detect some problems and deficiencies. But there is no such result here. Here is a report with no output for one of the Wikimedia projects. Of course, it is the duty of the foundation's staff to analyze the report; this is just my humble opinion.
  • I also expressed my opinion on the second Lexeme project. I called Ege on the phone and underlined that this project might be challenging for secondary and high school students because it was already difficult even for experienced Wikipedians. There was a consensus on grammatical proficiency and the difficulty of understanding the Lexeme project, with a few feedbacks after the 2022 Wikidata Istanbul Conference. I think this event has been held, but I have no information about its results and goals.
  • He told about his first CIP project only to Basak and Zafer during a face-to-face event where I and a few WMTR volunteers were also present. At this point, there has not been a sufficiently careful movement regarding transparency. If this had happened, rest assured that the reactions would have been at a much different level. Similar applications for the CIP project followed several times. No attempt was made to alleviate or overcome the concerns and criticisms. Education and Partnerships Program Manager Başak was not invited to this CIP training program. I wrote several times in the Telegram group that it might be useful to have a few people participate as observers or viewers. Because one of the main reasons for concern was the comments regarding the competence of Ege and the people he assigned to provide education. Inviting managers with organizational experience or an educator with experience in a project as a sign of goodwill would have been an expected action. I regret to say that such a step was never taken, even though it was clearly stated that they wanted to be invited.
  • Ege was an invited user to the Turkic Conference held this year. We printed the name badge ourselves. You were there too, Chris. I would have liked him to come, meet with people from the Turkish community, and discuss these issues with you, but he chose not to come. Many face-to-face events (Wiki birthday, WikiTuesday meetings) were organized before and after the conference. Ege does not recognize the community and its respected members and prefers to ignore people's analysis and criticism. As a community member, I detect a very serious communication problem. Many users, including me, turned to community resources for their projects. Why were Ege's applications controversial? While we act with the mission of contributing to Wikimedia projects in our projects and want to include more experienced Wikipedians in these projects, why does Ege want to do the opposite? While we want to integrate the Ege into the community, why does the Ege want to isolate himself from the community? Why doesn't he want to help us while we help him with project ideas? (Caner invited him as a speaker in the 201 project with my advice, but he refused.) Ege is a user with strengths and potential. I told this to both him and the community members. However, his uncompromising attitude, unconstructive comments, limited impact projects, and negative attitude towards communication and interaction raise serious questions in the community, Chris. I would like this issue to be resolved and community members to return to the contribution side.

Adem (talk) 09:42, 25 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

Additional comments from I JethroBT (WMF)[edit]

@Anerka, Adem, VectorVoyager, Kadı, Styyx, and Justinianus: There has now been substantial discussion involving community concerns about this proposal and previous grants from Egezort and Gufo46, both here well as on Turkish Wikipedia. As program officer for the region, and in an effort to resolve this conflict, I would like to respond to some of these concerns, and then secondly, to invite Turkish Wikipedia community members from to provide constructive suggestions or improvements that would make clearer what community expectations there are for Rapid Fund proposals more generally. I will also be notifying other community members on Turkish Wikipedia to invite them to contribute to this discussion, either in Turkish or in English as they prefer.

Response to community feedback[edit]

In terms of community feedback, I acknowledged some concerns in an earlier thread in this talk page. Egezort has since responded to some of these concerns, and I wanted to add my own comments and conclusions here as well:

  • that the applicants do not have sufficient experience to complete the proposed activities or achieve the stated outcomes
    • Based on Egezort's statement above, and that he has recently completed the Organizer Lab coursework, I do not have substantial concerns about their level of experience with respect to training projects like the one proposed here.
    • Importantly, proposals that involve training on topics where the trainers do not have relevant or sufficient on-wiki experience will not be approved for funding.
    • Furthermore, I will also commit to ensuring that goals and metrics that are set by applicants are more realistic. It was clear that in one of the funded projects, for example, that the decision to commit to a metric based the featured article process was not viable.
  • that previously funded projects have had low impact or not have met goals
    • One general point about Rapid Funds is that we encourage some experimentation and risks in projects, which means that we are willing to fund proposals where there are some risks or uncertainty. We think is an important quality of Rapid Funds for several reasons: we can support a wider variety of community needs, organizers are better able to embrace risks and work to reach new groups or audiences with their work, and we can support more people to participate and grow in the movement as organizers.
    • In terms of reviewing reports, myself and the Community Resources team will naturally look at project outcomes, but also to see whether grantees have demonstrated learning and understanding around why project outcomes occurred, and how they will address challenges they experienced in the future. In these projects, some issues were not avoidable (such as the February 2023 earthquakes), but for more fixable issues (e.g. students not engaged, challenges with estimating participants, goals that were too ambitious), the grantees offered thoughtful reflections on how to resolve these issues. My position is that good organizers take the time to meaningfully reflect on their work and commit to making improvements based on what they learned. That need has been satisfied based on my review of the grantees' reporting.
  • that community members feel that funding requests for this and some previous proposals are too high and do not sufficiently correspond to the expected outcomes
    • Training roles can be eligible for compensation in a Rapid Fund proposal, because the work and preparation required can be substantial and go beyond what people can typically do on a voluntary basis.
    • The Community Resources team doesn't currently maintain a policy for how to objectively determine compensation rates when we review proposals. Instead, we generally ask what applicants need to complete the proposed work, and also acknowledge that we do not have enough resources to pay rates that might be seen for similar roles in for-profit organizations. We also take community feedback into consideration when requested rates of compensation are excessive or inappropriate, provided there is some basis for this concern. This arrangement exists in part because:
      • reliable information on local compensation rates for Wikimedia movement-related roles does not generally exist for our team to evaluate,
      • using minimum wage data within a country as a point of comparison has the effect of massively undervaluing movement work, especially when high rates of inflation are a factor, and
      • comparisons between funded projects are often unhelpful. For example, a project manager or trainer may have substantially different tasks or may need to work more in one project compared to another.
    In addition, the Community Resources team does not have a policy of supporting one universal rate of compensation for project roles based on the United States or elsewhere. Expectations that we can compensate movement work universally based on funded projects in the United States cannot realistically be done due to budget limitations and other risks to local community dynamics.
    • I also want to generally acknowledge that when a funded project doesn't meet certain outcomes, it is wrong to assume that grantees have misused funds, or committed some kind of wrongdoing in violation of their grant agreement. There's no evidence that any such conduct has happened here with past projects. I understand that some community members feel that these projects should not have been funded because they did not reach certain intended outcomes, but this is not the same as a misuse of movement funds, an accusation which is inappropriate here because there is no evidence to suggest that kind of conduct has occurred.

In addition, some other points of concerns that have been raised include:

  • Concerns around unspent funds being held by the grantees: The Community Resources team has a normal practice of allowing grantees to hold unspent funds until their next funded project if they are intending to prepare a future application. In these cases, the unspent funds are deducted from their next funded project. If grantees later decide not to conduct a project, we ask these funds to be returned to the Wikimedia Foundation. Consequently, I want to confirm that there is no reason for concern here.
  • Accusations of only involving close associates: The Community Resources team doesn't have a specific policy that funded projects must be open to all who want to participate in or help plan those activities. Furthermore, there are several legitimate reasons that organizers may limit participation or otherwise not invite specific community members. Sometimes, these considerations are more practical, such as having limited space or capacity for a training. In this case, some community members have made highly personalized, hostile comments about the grantees on this talk page. It is reasonable to assume that any movement organizer would not want individuals to help plan or participate in their event if their general conduct towards them, either on- or off-wiki, has been hostile or otherwise inappropriate / unconstructive.

Request for feedback from Turkish community members[edit]

To help avoid future conflicts, I would like to invite feedback from Turkish Wikipedia and WM Community User Group Turkey members on their expectations for Rapid Funds:

  • What kinds of community outreach or communications should applicants be doing with community members and local affiliates before submitting a proposal for the Rapid Fund program? (Note: Currently, We ask applicants to reach out to local affiliates about their project beforehand, as well as to use community discussion spaces to share their idea/proposal if the activities will involve that Wikimedia project.)
  • Are there any resources available to help applicants determine reasonable rates of compensation for work in Türkiye that goes beyond voluntary tasks?
  • Are there specific kinds of experience or skills applicants should develop before requesting funding for training through Rapid Funds?
  • Do you have any general, constructive feedback on this proposal that would help the applicants improve it for the future?

Responses to some or all these questions in English or in Turkish are both welcome. Your feedback can help applicants to create better proposals, as well as for our team to make more informed funding decisions in general. Thanks in advance for your consideration and constructive feedback on this need. I JethroBT (WMF) (talk) 07:32, 14 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]

I JethroBT (WMF), unfortunately I haven't received the ping and found this coincidentally; I suspect the others haven't either. The topic on this specific grant is basically stale since almost no discussion has occurred on trwiki since the final comment here. The thread on the village pump has been archived too. Note that Egezort was blocked for a brief period on the Turkish Wikipedia for failing to comment on said thread and his final contribution on trwiki was back in January (almost 3 months ago). However, as you may have seen from the discussion before it was archived, the sentiment of the community is overwhelmingly not in favor of this grant, and your comment above implying that it would have been granted if it wasn't for the lack of funds was not well received either.
I will say again that I don't think the requested grant doesn't match results and not much useful is being done. I would agree with the points you made in response if it happened once but you can't keep blaming external factors for poor results and give the same chance indefinitely. I know some folks at WMTR that do way more with actual gains for the project on a volunteering basis. If CR still feels that these results acceptable even after all of this, that would be your choice, but perhaps it would be helpful to reflect on why the this has less funding than expected in the first place, and where the remaining funding is going.
If you really want it, Anerka can re-open the archived village pump discussion and the community can go over the same thing again, but I don't think a lot more is going to come out of it. Styyx (talk) 19:39, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Hello @Styyx, perhaps I haven't been clear enough about some things regarding the outputs in my projects, so I would appreciate if you hear me out now.
For this project specifically, I had done it without a budget (due to the rejection of my previous application) for 3 months during the Fall term of 2023. Some documentation can be found here: CIP Wikipedia Project
This project produced more output than the previous two projects. I think that had this fund been accepted, the results would have been even better this term. The outputs of this project weren't talked about in the Village Pump discussion on trwiki. So evaluating my performance based solely on the two funded projects is seeing only half the picture, in my opinion.
To give a broad overview (excluding mostly one of the groups, which was a failure), there were 4 Wikipedia groups of more than 10 people each. I supervised 3 of them. All groups went at separate paces depending on the group dynamic, but some things we did are:
  • Linking orphan pages
  • Entering Lexemes (such as d:Lexeme:L1221044, and the necessary words to construct it)
  • Translating Sustainable Development related articles
  • Shooting pictures of the botanical garden in our campus
Alongside these, we did presentations and had discussions, which don't have a direct effect on Wikimedia projects, but is part of engagement. We talked about:
  • The 5 Pillars of Wikipedia
  • Open Culture, Creative Commons licenses
  • Abstract Wikipedia
In total, the supervisors and the students made 413 edits.
Regarding the Lexeme project, I had explained both in the report and on the Village Pump that the focus of the project had to change from proverbs to words, and there was an output of 229 words, which is more than double the amount we had aimed for in the proposal. I believe that only focusing on the 6/100 number in the proverbs really misrepresents the outputs in that project. Plus, we only counted the Lexeme contributions of the students, adding 94 more proverbs would be very easy for me to do if the effect on Wikidata is the primary concern here.
The reason I haven't continued the discussion on trwiki is because, among other things, that I didn't want to continue facing the hostility, and that the requirement for my engagement consisted of explaining what I would change to alleviate community concerns, instead of allowing me to make my case. I had also seen that what I said wasn't being taken seriously at all (Such as the explanation I made for the Lexemes) and that engaging more would be unproductive.
I want to thank you, because, even with your opposition against me, your comments so far have been respectful and substantive. I am happy to address any point of contention that you may have, feel free to ask. Egezort (talk) 22:54, 10 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@Anerka, Adem, VectorVoyager, Kadı, Styyx, and Justinianus: Pinging to the above discussion, as it appears my initial ping did not successfully register. I JethroBT (WMF) (talk) 18:47, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
@I JethroBT (WMF), Requested funds are astronomic. The outcome from Egezort's projects is like that. IMHO, the foundation should prefer to support other projects instead of Egezort's. Also, time is important, I think that we can create articles, make edits instead of discussing this for months. Regards, Kadı Message 19:26, 11 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I received ping this time & I'll reply as soon as I can. But that could take about a week. anerka (talk) 18:38, 14 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]