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Welcome to the Board of Trustees' noticeboard. This is a message board for discussing issues related to Wikimedia Foundation governance and policies, and related Board work. Please post new messages at the bottom of the page and sign them.
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Who protects 5 pillars[edit]


This is the content of my email to the board about my concern: As a journalist, I studied about Wikipedia, and I already wrote a few articles about it. What I found as an eminent threat to Wikipedia's 5 pillars is the fact "Decisions and consensus need to be made by the local community itself, the administrators and stewards of the Wikimedia projects do not have authority over the local community". By community, we can consider a large number of editors and participants, but most members of a community don't know each other, they do not have communication or meetings; Even they do not have enough familiarity with the system to reach a consensus. They are administrators who control the flow of information, they pick new admins and they decide which references or articles should be removed or accepted. Considering a group of high-level admins in a given language, they could create a team to control and manipulate the content of a language by themselves. So, they would control the management circle and keep their team small. In this scenario, Wikipedia's article eventually would fail to be neutral. It is while those administrators use Wikipedia's credit, support, and servers for what they intend to present as neutral articles. While Wikipedia itself provides mentioned services, it does not take any responsibility. Those admins know that they are immune against any verification and questioning. In my language of study, many of political articles are biased and almost any attempt to edit them would fail, complaints are not considered while administrators are aware about it. So, who can verify and defend Wikipedia's pillars in this situation (if no one have authority over the local community)?Erfan2017 (talk) 18:57, 27 February 2017 (UTC)

Erfan2017, the foundation board does not get involved in editing disputes. I see that you came here from FaWiki, and that you only have a handful of edits there. I used machine translation to try to see what you are complaining about. The translation was bad, so I can't fully understand what the disagreement was. However I can see that it is a minor matter that does not belong here.
To answer your concern: A few years ago Croatian Wikipedia was taken over by a small number of biased and abusive administrators. They were abusively blocking anyone they didn't like, and engaging in other serious abusive behavior. The global community dealt with it. All Croatian administrators were removed. New Croatian administrators were elected. I see no indication here that there is any major problem at Farsi Wikipedia.
It takes time to learn how things work at Wikipedia. If you are having problems at FaWiki, you should discuss it with other editors at FaWiki. Alsee (talk) 17:44, 1 March 2017 (UTC)
P.S. If you feel this must be discussed further, please collect extensive documentation of clear abuse, including abusive blocks, and post to M:Meta:Babel. Meta wiki is where we deal with global community management. Alsee (talk) 18:00, 1 March 2017 (UTC)
Alsee, thank you for considering this issue. As you mentioned I don't have lots of editing because I just tried to find how the system works. I tried to see if administrators care about bias in the articles. I had long discussions with two of the top administrators in Farsi language to reach to this conclusion. I don't have problem with editing, the issue is the Farsi Wikipedia as a whole. I will collect evidences and present them as you said. I believe the current situation in Farsi Wikipedia (in political articles), is totally biased. Erfan2017 (talk) 03:38, 2 March 2017 (UTC)
Wikipedia is a "do-ocracy" and is about "verifiability rather than truth". If you come forwards with high quality sources (at least in the area of science) changes will typically stick.
Reasonable people can still disagree but usually based on sources we can find a balance. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 18:46, 28 March 2017 (UTC)

Issues with OTRS[edit]

Mind if you read Wikimedia Forum#Backlogging in OTRS? Seems there are relationship issues with OTRS and Commons community. I need your input there. --George Ho (talk) 09:15, 8 March 2017 (UTC)

Hello? Is anyone home?[edit]

There are currently seven members of the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees, plus three vacancies.[1]

This is a test to see how many of the board members have this noticeboard on their watchlists.

Please respond (a simple "here" will do) so that we know that you read this noticeboard.

Also, please do not inform any other board member about this test; that would be cheating.

The test will be concluded and a count taken in two weeks, on Monday, 10 April, 2017. --Guy Macon (talk) 09:57, 27 March 2017 (UTC)

I still have it on my watchlist :-) Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 17:13, 28 March 2017 (UTC)
Me, too. What do you want to proof? Alice Wiegand (talk) 17:59, 28 March 2017 (UTC)
I really don't have any ulterior motive other than finding out how many board members read this noticeboard, and if there aren't very many, to follow it up with a request that they start checking it every week or so. --Guy Macon (talk) 18:18, 28 March 2017 (UTC)
Alice Wiegand, not speaking for Guy, but I see checking in on this page frequently as being part of your responsibilities. Nocturnalnow (talk) 14:57, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
Two weeks have passed. It appears that only one two current board members actuall reads the Wikimedia Foundation Board noticeboard. And, despite what it says at Wikimedia Foundation Board Handbook#Appointment and onboarding of new Board members ("Following a candidate's selection to the Board, the following steps should be carried out: [...] Emails and wiki accounts activated. At the direction of the Secretary, WMF's IT staff creates email and wiki accounts for the new Board member and arranges for systems access according to the Onboarding Permissions Protocol."), one board member (Kelly Battles), appears to have never edited Wikipedia, has no user account, and cannot be reached by email. --Guy Macon (talk) 06:26, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
I have it too :) But you sent that in the midst of Berlin I just missed it and he resurfaced today Schiste (talk) 07:32, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
My apologies. The next time I do such an experiment I will wait 30 days. --Guy Macon (talk) 14:05, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
@Schiste:What do you mean by "midst of Berlin". Nocturnalnow (talk) 14:39, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
The message was sent during the Wikimedia Conference 2017 and in the days before we had our board meeting. During that week I tend to favor face-to-face meetings and to catch-up on watchlists once back home.
Applications for community selected members to the board have opened. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 00:22, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
30 days wouldn't have changed a thing as I missed the update in my watchlist :) Should have been more careful. Schiste (talk) 07:11, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
"attentive" may be a better word than careful. Nocturnalnow (talk) 14:39, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
I missed it - have to admit that this is perhaps not the best effective form of communication. Pundit (talk) 16:40, 12 April 2017 (UTC)
If this is not effective than we do need to develop more effective methods of communication between the community and board. We need at least one centralized page on meta for public discussion IMO. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 20:40, 12 April 2017 (UTC)
Pundit, I think you should be fired or quit; right now. To claim you "didn't get the memo" and then blame it on the memo, is not only incompetent but arrogantly incompetent.Nocturnalnow/Alzheimer's victim
Nocturnalnow I think my brevity may have resulted in a misunderstanding. First, I got the memo late, and there's no denying that - the conference in Berlin and any other wiki commitments are not good excuses. I don't think that waiting for 2 weeks is acceptable (and we can't expect pinging by email to be the default sensible alternative). I'm not trying to redirect the blame - I think it is, ultimately, the Board's fault that the channels of communication are so dispersed and ineffective. As a matter of fact, several months ago I proposed organizing a centralized communication system/space for the Board, that would not only allow asking questions and adding proposals (and adding people to their weights), but also allow tracking of commitments. Such a central page would also allow better translating of comments/questions for people who do not speak English. The comm department at the WMF was open to the idea, but unable to commit at the time, but I hope we're definitely going to get there. I definitely will bring it to the next Board's agenda. Pundit (talk) 14:50, 13 April 2017 (UTC)

As the WMF is just a service organisation for the communities, and the board is the organ of the communities to control the WMF, the board has the duty to proactive engage with the community, and at least have to monitor the few pages like this one. If they don't, the make a clear statement of disregard of the core of the Wikiverse: the communities. Grüße vom Sänger ♫(Reden) 20:57, 12 April 2017 (UTC)

In principle, I agree. I'll clean my watchlist (it's been a bit crowded with things from the past). I'll also make it a priority to return to the idea, that I tried to promote, to have a centralized communication page (ideally, with commitment tracking, voting on ideas/questions/issues, and some translation). As stated above, I made such a recommendation to the Board several months ago, and the comms department agreed they should work on it, although in their view it is going to be quite a bit of work to do it well. Nevertheless, we need this. Pundit (talk) 14:57, 13 April 2017 (UTC)
  • Sänger and Nocturnalnow - FYI, I've started a board inquiry about the exact schedule/roadmap to create one landing page for board discussions, ideas, committment tracking. We all know it is needed, so it should not take forever, I hope. Pundit (talk) 12:33, 28 April 2017 (UTC)
  • I received a reply stating that it is not budgeted for this year. As I think it should be a priority, I've started a discussion, with several long explanations why it matters. The discussion is ongoing, I hope to bring it to the next board agenda. Pundit (talk) 05:03, 14 May 2017 (UTC)

Wikimedia Endowment[edit]

May I please have some substantive answers from the WMF to the questions asked at Talk:Wikimedia Endowment#How should we select members of the Wikimedia Endowment Advisory board?.

For background, see User:Guy Macon/Wikipedia has Cancer and Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2017-02-27/Op-ed. --Guy Macon (talk) 20:58, 12 April 2017 (UTC)

(...Sound of Crickets...) --Guy Macon (talk) 17:48, 18 April 2017 (UTC)
Answered on 19 April 2017, after posting the same question to most of the individual board member talk pages (one board member has no email and has never edited any Wikipedia project. Still zero evidence that asking a question of any kind on this page will receive a response, but I will wait the promised 30 days before making that conclusion. --Guy Macon (talk) 12:01, 21 April 2017 (UTC)
User:Guy Macon I think posting here is useful even if the question is asked and answered elsewhere. It is useful to have one central location for questions. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 17:09, 21 April 2017 (UTC)

Growing Wikinews into the premier news site worldwide[edit]

I'd be pleased to have your reactions to my suggestions for wm2017:Submissions/Building Wikinews into the premier news site worldwide.

Progress on every substantive issue I can think of is blocked, because every plausible countermeasure threatens someone with substantive control over the mainstream media. My research on this is summarized on v:Winning the War on Terror.

I hope to discuss this with you and others at Wikimania 2017. My proposed session on this would provide a formal venue for discussing this idea. Thanks, DavidMCEddy (talk) 14:17, 16 May 2017 (UTC)

Two of the links do not work. Best Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 14:50, 16 May 2017 (UTC)
Fixed, Doc James. - Amgine/meta wikt wnews blog wmf-blog goog news 16:06, 16 May 2017 (UTC)
Definitely worth a wider discussion. Pundit (talk) 06:01, 18 May 2017 (UTC)