LSS/foundation-l-archives/2006 11 19-25

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This is part of LSS, a mailing list summary service. It is a summary of foundation-l. Most posts whose authors are named have links to the full e-mail in the archive. However not every post is archived and the archive itself is so unstable that the urls will periodically be reassigned breaking the links in this summary. While edits to correct inaccuracies are welcome, changes to style or focus should first be discussed on the talk page. Decisions on whether to refer to people by their Wikipedia handle or their email name is arbitrary and may not be completely internally consistent. Some genders may be accidentally incorrect.Incorrect or not, this standard is used all around the net, for business or projects.

This issue covers (roughly) 2006 November 19-25


  • Discussion continued from [1]last week on the possibility of a WikiCouncil, focusing on what role it would serve, if it would be more or less democratic than existing structures, if that's a concern, and the relationship between the foundation and the community.
  • [2]David Moinniaux announced that the WMF has received a complaint regarding the content of the page on Homosexuality on the Arabic Wikipedia. After using automatic translators, it appears that the page has misinformation and POV issues, likely tied to Arabic cultural issues (the Yiddish encyclopedia was noted as being similar in this regard, due to the language's prominence in Orthodox Jewish communities). He noted that this is part of a larger issue when language and culture interact, and asked for comments on the issue. Mohammad Ibrahim removed some of the content, and commented that NPOV is easier with larger communities, commenting that moving towards it is a work-in-progress tied with efforts to grow the Arabic Wikipedia. In later discussion, means of contact between the Wikipedias and the Foundation were raised - the Wikimedia_Embassy was mentioned as a good means to place such requests.
  • [3]Anthere asked if anyone could describe the history/status of the situation regarding the request for a Moldovan Wikipedia Neil Harris and GerardM described the efforts as being primarily linked to the political/historical attachment different communities attach to Cyrillic versus Latin script for what is essentially the same language, suggesting a few possible ways to deal with the situation.
  • [4][5][6][7][8][9][10]David Moinniaux suggested that the current license status, where the foundation permits PD, free-license, and fair use content on Foundation projects, should be changed, because allowing fair use gives undue preference to American sources, would get more interesting content, and would aid in the educational goals of the foundation. This led to further discussion on promoting open content, differences between the European Space Agency and NASA, and the meaning of freedom as a Foundation goal.
  • [11]小犬, on behalf of the Wikimania 2007 planning committee (in Taiwan), noted that sponsors for Wikimania want to know how many people will watch the conference, and requested historical information on past years at Wikimania. SJ noted that good numbers are not available, and that streaming was not widely promoted - better promotion would presumably lead to more viewers. Others noted that streaming did not work very well, and suggested improvements.
  • [12][13]Anthere asked the list if they could think of other groups with similar missions and situations to the Foundation, in order to share best practices with them. OSDL,, Citizendium, and the Confluence project were suggested.
  • [14]Brad Patrick reported that a legal decision in the United States was good news for WMF, as it supported portions of a recent law protecting entities acting as "common carrier".
  • [15]Habj pointed out a Czech website that used the word Wikipedia in a generic way. Jan Kulveit noted that he would politely write them a letter in Czech asking them to change their site name.
  • [16][17]Erik Möller announced that WMF is assembling a database of high-level corporate contacts, at least partly for fundraising, and asked for submissions. Oscar noted that generally high-level contacts are partly personal, and in some cases should go through the person with the contact, not directly to the contact. Danny Wool noted that he would be collecting this list, and would be willing to work with potential donors/contacts to make sure it is handled with appropriate delicacy/style.
  • [18][19]David Gerard asked for a simple page on the foundation wiki, explaining reuse policy.
  • [20]Luke Brandt, commenting on an earlier discussion mentioning Fair Use images as being less preferred than PD or open-license images, noted that on the English Wikipedia, attempts to make such things as policy have generally failed.
  • [21]Mingwangx, of the Wikimania 2007 Planning Committee (Taiwan), gave his weekly report and asked for local volunteers.
  • [22]Antonia Gulli asked if webserver logs are available for academic research projects. Gregory Maxwell noted that logs are not kept (for performance reasons), and went into some detail about the webserver setup.
  • [23]Anthere noted that Wikipedia appears to have been blocked from Tunisia, asking for confirmation. Early evidence appears to suggest that it is not available. Mohammad Ibrahim said he would investigate.
  • [24][25]Jeff Merkey noted that he saw a Cisco TV advertisement that used the Wikipedia logo. It was noted that Danny approved the usage, and WMF received payment for the use. Oldak Quill and Geni asked for more community/foundation discussion/notice of such deals in the future.