Talk:Movement Strategy/Events/Movement Charter Global Conversation, 26-27 June 2021
Three questions about the Movement Charter drafting committee
Hi, this is an invitation to discuss three questions that need answers in order to create the Movement Charter drafting committee. You can find more context about these questions on Movement Strategy/Events/Movement Charter Global Conversation, 26-27 June 2021.
The objective is to collect questions, opinions, ideas, points of agreement and disagreement. A first report of this conversation will be published by the end of Friday June 25 to inform the Global Conversation on the following days. Other conversations in other languages are being organized here.
Please keep the conversation focused around each question, to make the conversation more accessible for everyone. If you want to discuss other topics about the drafting committee, just create a new section. Qgil-WMF (talk) 19:39, 16 June 2021 (UTC)
1. What composition should the committee have in terms of movement roles, gender, regions, affiliations and other diversity factors?
- Everyone who wishes to participate on the committee should be allowed to. This maximizes diversity, as it eliminates exclusion. TomDotGov (talk) 14:03, 17 June 2021 (UTC)
2. What is the best process to select the committee members to form a competent and diverse team?
- There should not be a WMF-led process to select committee members, any more than there is a process to select people who edit the content that is at the core of the Mission, and the policies that are at the heart of the projects that make up the mission. TomDotGov (talk) 14:03, 17 June 2021 (UTC)
3. How much dedication is it reasonable to expect from committee members, in terms of hours per week and months of work?
- As with the drafting of other policy, that should be up to the committee members to decide for themselves. TomDotGov (talk) 14:03, 17 June 2021 (UTC)
- @TomDotGov The problem is, many people will consider applying or not depending of the expectations on commitment. Every time volunteers are sought for committees, a common question is how much time is this expected to take. If there is no information, then there is a risk to lose many potential good candidates, indirectly privileging those with the privilege of plenty of free time. This problem is more acute when considering volunteers from underrepresented groups.
- For this reason, it is important to set some expectations beforehand. Then sure, the formed committee can fine tune these expectations as they see fit. Qgil-WMF (talk) 22:31, 17 June 2021 (UTC)
- I think there's something wrong if the only people who can participate in drafting the movement charter are those that can commit a certain amount of time to it. Someone who spends half an hour reading the draft and has a really good point to make about it can make a valuable contribution, as can people who spend quite a bit of time drafting it. The idea of creating a small committee in which everyone is able to contribute the same amount of time is just taking this in the wrong direction.
- At the end of the day, the ratification of the movement charter is going to involve people of all parts of the community - and is going to have to gain some sort of global consensus. The way to build towards that is to make sure everyone who will be ratifying it has a chance to have their concerns addressed in the drafting - and so it's better to invite people in early in the design process, rather than to have a closed committee produce a document that is then rejected by the community.
- Probably the worst form of privilege here is knows-someone-privilege - that only people with connections in the WMF will be represented. By not being selective, in the same way editing articles isn't selective, we can avoid this source of bias, ans make it more likely the process will complete successfully. TomDotGov (talk) 05:49, 19 June 2021 (UTC)
- This doesn't feel well suited to committee work to me. Make it easy for anyone with time and interest in an aspect of the charter or council to write down what they would like to see, and for what purpose; the decision that may require a committee can be reduced to compiling a consensus document from those elements, and addressing the elements not included. See also this comment. –SJ talk 20:29, 22 June 2021 (UTC)
I am having trouble understanding exactly what the meaning of the following sentence is: "In the case of appointments, some believe the decisions could come from a self-appointed group with participation of the Foundation, some prefer a selection committee that would be elected." Also: "selection committee that would be elected." does not seem to be "appointments". It seems to me that "selection committee that would be elected." should be in the topic about elections. Can someone clarify? --Felipe da Fonseca (talk) 12:29, 19 June 2021 (UTC)
I think that we can make a universal consultation of the three questions posed. I suggest a discussion in Meshdesign, but it can be by another method as well. A WMF-sanctioned consultation.--Felipe da Fonseca (talk) 13:04, 19 June 2021 (UTC)
The Charter Drafting Committee should occur in two stages, namely 1) a first stage focused on diversity and 2) a second stage focused on technicality.
The two stages are complementary, the first representing the will of the global community and the second representing the necessary technicality of a document of this complexity and importance.
In this way, the first stage should include the largest number of users feasible to work together efficiently, which makes it imperative to divide the staff into thematic Working Groups. Each of the thematic Working Groups should, at the end of the working period, provide a draft document related to its respective theme.
The second stage, consisting of a single lean Working Group, should then, from the draft documents provided by the Working Groups of the first stage, create the final Charter.
- Community Ratification
Community ratification, therefore, will also occur in two stages, each ratifying the work of one of the Writing Committee's own stages. 1) in the first stage: a) there should be a community feedback hotline, which does not necessarily need to be constantly answered, but which serves as a "thermometer" for the Working Groups; b) before the final delivery of the draft charter, the Working Groups should present the text for the community to comment on, the Working Groups will then have a set time to discuss and incorporate as far as possible the community's recommendations. 2) in the second stage: there is no need for constant feedback from the community, so the final drafting group will put the text ready for ratification only at the end of the work, and if there is any major disagreement on any point by the community, the discussion will be reopened only on the questioned point.
Seats in the Working Groups in the first stage should be given only to users (security criteria will be defined), without reserve seats for WMF affiliates and employees (although they may join as users). In the second stage, people with the necessary technical capacity must be chosen. These people will be chosen by the totality of the Working Groups of the first stage with recommendations from the WMF.
Only users are legitimate to have seats, i.e. to be decision-makers, although all interested parties can and should be following the procedure at all times. If there are very important stakeholders, they can have an informative (non-decisional) seat on the Working Groups. To explain this legitimacy, stakeholders can be divided into two groups: 1) non-user stakeholders; 2) user stakeholders.
1) non-user stakeholders are large donors and large institutions that collaborate with the project, e.g. universities. These stakeholders, although they must be taken into account, cannot be decisive, otherwise they destroy the environment that the users (the major experts) have built: academics know how to build universities, wikimedists know how to build Wikimedia projects.
2) in the case of stakeholders who are users (affiliates and WMF), they end up getting their legitimacy from the users (there is an overlap in the case of seat reservations or votes), so they are 100% encompassed by the users. To make an analogy; 1) regarding the WMF: in the model of a state, letting the WMF decide on the Charter Drafting Committee is like letting the executive elect the legislature; regarding Affiliates: that all classes of professionals should be taken into account by the legislature of a state, like the medical class and the teaching class, etc. does not mean that the legitimacy of the government comes from any of these classes, rather, the legitimacy of the government comes from the singular individual, the population, of which all classes are a part. Reserving seats for affiliates is like reserving seats in the legislature for doctors. --Felipe da Fonseca (talk) 13:31, 22 June 2021 (UTC)
Movement Charter Drafting Committee proposal(s)
I have written up two proposals for the form and selection of a Movement Charter Drafting Committee.
It is a mixed community/affiliate/WMF-appointed grouping, and attempts to ensure Community buy-in while being highly aware of concerns raised about the issues a purely elected group can bring.
The first proposal is the clearer, but the second attempts to be an actual concrete proposal on utilising a form of regional representation.
Proposal for a large Drafting Committee
I had intended to post this proposal before the Sunday meeting, but didn't get around to completing it in time. Since then, a considerable amount of good progress has been made, particularly on the proposals by Nosebagbear and the WMF. The major distinctive feature of my proposal is regarding the committee size, which has elsewhere been called a settled issue.
I considered not posting this at all, as I really don't want to derail the progress that's being made, but I figure we can consider the ideas inside, and leave them behind if they don't make sense, without adding much delay.
So here's what I would like to happen: I'd like it if a couple of people could look it over, including someone from the WMF, and briefly give their thoughts about the arguments around the primary point on Committee size. Unless there's a clear indication that, in the view of those looking it over, the arguments presented in the proposal are convincing and reasonable, then my proposal should be moved off the table, and we should continue going forward building on the previous proposals by others, in the interests of not adding further delays.
(I'm sorry for dumping two pages of text on everyone this "late in the game". I really intended to have this ready a while ago. And also for it to be a lot shorter.) --Yair rand (talk) 23:08, 1 July 2021 (UTC)