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2015 Ombudsman Commission announcement
I apologize for the length of the announcement. :)
The application period for new commissioners for 2015 recently closed. The Wikimedia Foundation is extremely grateful to the many experienced and insightful volunteers who offered to assist with this work.
As with last year, this year’s OC will consist of seven members, with a two-member advisory team who will guide the new commission and also, if necessary, fill in in the event that the OC is unable to act due to incapacity or recusal. Last year’s advisors rose to full membership when two members found themselves unable to complete their terms due to competing time demands.
I am pleased to announce the composition of the 2015 OC.
Their willingness to remain, to bring their familiarity with processes and their experience to the new arrivals, is greatly appreciated!
Please join me in thanking the following volunteers, who have given substantially of their time to serve the commission:
User:M7, Mario Benvenuti, who primarily edits Italian Wikipedia, where he is also known as M/. Mario is also an admin and bureaucrat on Meta and a steward. He is a former CheckUser. (Resigned in June due to time conflicts.)
I'd also like to say a hearty thank you to those returning and those coming aboard for the first time, as well as to all those applied. Again, it was an extremely able group of volunteers, and while this mix of users may best serve the need for this year, I hope that those who applied will consider applying again for future commissions.
The composition of the 2015 Ombudsman Commission has just been announced on Wikimedia-L. The announcement text is above. In nutshell, the OC in 2015 will consist of:
Serving in an advisory capacity, and filling in if necessary, will be:
Great appreciation goes out to the departing members of the OC. User:Levg and User:Sir48, we are grateful. Sir48, we are particularly grateful to you for agreeing to take on full membership again midyear when you had only signed on to be an advisor. :) User:M7 and User:Stryn, while both required by time constraints to withdraw midyear, your service on the 2014 OC is also much appreciated. --Maggie Dennis (WMF) (talk) 14:34, 2 February 2015 (UTC)
Title does not match duties
The commission is great. I appreciate the contributions of anyone who serves on it. The people in this role serve an essential function.
The "ombudsman commission" here is not doing ombudsman work in any usual sense of the term. I would not want anyone to think that the Wikimedia community has any named ombudsman available. When I think of an ombudsman, I think of a person who is available to hear and confirm any sort of complaint, and particularly complaints about the highest authorities in an institution. The ombudsman commission here has narrow oversight over only the volunteers who use checkuser tools.
It might be worthwhile to rename this position to match its role. "Privacy enforcement" might be appropriate.
- Bluerasberry, while some ombudsman positions in the wider world are broad and general, many have more limited mandates, and look at a specific aspect of an organisation or practice. In this case, it is an independent body from the local projects where checkuser is in place, and provides independent review how that tool is used. I wasn't involved in the discussions where the name was decided upon, however, and can't speak to how/why it was chosen. Patrick Earley (WMF) (talk) 22:34, 8 December 2015 (UTC)
Call for Applications - OC 2016
|New commission has been named.|
This is a call for community members interested in volunteering for appointment to this commission. Commissioners should be experienced Wikimedians, active on any project, who have previously used the CheckUser tool OR who have the technical ability to understand the CheckUser tool and the willingness to learn it. They are expected to be able to engage neutrally in investigating these concerns and to know when to recuse when other roles and relationships may cause conflict. It is important that volunteers for this role commit to being active in their work on this commission, including participating in email discussions and, ideally, occasional virtual meetings.
If you are interested in serving on this commission, please drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org detailing your experience on the projects, your thoughts on the commission and what you hope to bring to the role. The commission is deliberately quite small, so slots are limited, but all applications are appreciated. The deadline for applications is January 1. Any timezone. :) Please feel free to pass this invitation along to any users who you think may be interested. Patrick Earley (WMF) (talk) 22:22, 8 December 2015 (UTC)