Talk:Wikimedia 2030/Process planning

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change aversion[edit]

How do we ensure that we work along our values and ethics, while being aware of a natural change aversion?

Nicole Ebber (WMDE), the phrase change aversion has been used often enough by the WMF that this wiki has had a page on the term for several years. It is commonly considered to refer broadly to "experienced editors", and it has been interpreted in the past as an ad-hominem attack to discredit legitimate concerns. I don't think that is the message you want to communicate. Alsee (talk) 11:24, 8 November 2017 (UTC)

Thanks for the ping, Alsee. Delphine has suggested an alternative wording (reluctance to change), which I think is a better fit. Best, --Nicole Ebber (WMDE) (talk) 20:05, 8 November 2017 (UTC)
Nicole Ebber (WMDE) the problem is not a word, the problem is the message. Replacing a word with a synonym does not change the message. No matter what synonym you use, it is an insult and ad-hominem fallacy to preemptively delegitimize people and arguments as "irrational luddism".
The correct answer is to remove the sentence and discuss each issue on the merits. Alsee (talk) 00:54, 9 November 2017 (UTC)
Nicole Ebber (WMDE) your lack of response here, revert, and edit summary have increased my concerns. However perhaps it is merely some unfortunate language, echoing irrelevant past conflicts. Could you clarify what it would mean if the change facilitation were to encounter a "change averse" solid-majority community consensus? Thanx. Alsee (talk) 14:06, 22 November 2017 (UTC)
Alsee as I have written in my edit summary, carefully facilitating the change that comes with the new direction and being mindful about organisations' and people's concerns is an essential step in the process. In the past, we do have observed certain reluctancy to change in organisations, groups and individuals, and I do believe that it is relevant to have this item in the drafting notes. As the process will have to be designed differently according to each topic it addresses, it is not feasible to respond to this very concrete question at the moment. --Nicole Ebber (WMDE) (talk) 14:39, 22 November 2017 (UTC)
Nicole Ebber (WMDE) disregarding what you may have observed elsewhere, the issue we need to address here is not community reluctancy to change. We've had largely the opposite problem. We have observed, and I can extensively list, cases where Wikimedia staff pushed things that turned out to be failures... cases where the community criticized proposed-changes and those criticisms turned out to be accurate, cases where Wikimedia staff disregarded the experience and expertise of the community, cases where Wikimedia staff badly disregard those criticisms as "change aversion", cases where Wikimedia staff tried to push a doomed change against consensus leading to a long-term toxic relationship with the community.
So either get rid of the problematical bullet point about change aversion, or add a far more necessary item acknowledging that changes need to be in line with consensus. If you want "change management" to help smooth minority change aversion, sure. However trying to change-management-steamroll an issue against consensus will produce two results. (1) It will likely provoke a shooting war with the community, and (2) it will add long term poison to the already toxic distrust that has built up from past conflicts. Alsee (talk) 19:42, 27 November 2017 (UTC)
I wonder where you read that the natural reluctance to change only refers to the editing community. What we mean here addresses the whole movement, its people and its organizations. In addition, the level of detail that you are referring to lies a couple of steps ahead and will have to be adjusted to each and every topic and stakeholder group that the next process steps addresses. Best, Nicole Ebber (WMDE) (talk) 13:35, 30 November 2017 (UTC)
As I indicated in my original message, change management / change aversion has a problematical theme for years. If you and I advocate change-X, and there are eight other people in the room all saying it's a bad idea because Y&Z, then you and I have no inherent basis to dismiss the other eight people as "change averse". The overwhelming likelihood is that the majority is right. And even if the majority does happen to be wrong, the harm of trying to defeat a majority by force almost certainly outweighs any intended benefit of the change itself.
Aside from unhelpfully replacing one word with a synonym, you have been unwilling to to add or remove anything from the current text. Are you averse to change here? Is there any agreeable change we can make to the text, so it expresses a message which cannot be interpreted as "a minority trying to discredit or steamroll-against a majority consensus"? Alsee (talk) 16:16, 30 November 2017 (UTC)

Should we try to balance good governance with volunteer motivation?[edit]

@Nicole Ebber (WMDE): I tried to answer as many of your questions as I could, but then I got to "How do we find a balance between good governance and volunteer/ad-hoc engagement/motivation" and I wondered whether that was a good idea to attempt. What motivated that question? My response question is: What is the advantage of working to balance the two instead of, for example, allowing the natural amount of each in accordance with the motivations of those in each role? James Salsman (talk) 15:36, 25 December 2017 (UTC)

Hi James Salsman and thank you for sharing your thoughts. To clarify the process, let me quote from the front page: "In order to work towards our new direction with full potential, we need to create clarity and find answers to the following questions. Please note that this is a first collection of questions which need to be thoroughly formulated and prioritized before we can start working on them. For each question we will also have to figure out who should be at the table when answering them." The questions are not really meant to be answered by individuals right now, they can rather be seen as food for thought or rough outlines of the topics that different stakeholder groups might want to discuss and find answers to in the coming weeks, months, and years. The way you framed it on the front page now gives the impression that your answers reflect an agreed upon response. I would thus like to ask you to create an extra section either on the talk page, a sub page or a new paragraph on the front page where you share your personal answers. If others also want to start sharing before the process for phase 2 is set up, they are of course free to do so. The same approach goes for the question that you mention in your comment. The question was motivated by the stories and experiences from within the movement, and attempts to figure out how to create the best possible environment for volunteers in balance with measures for good governance – and from what I read in your comment, that's also how you understood it. Best, -Nicole Ebber (WMDE) (talk) 15:00, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
@Nicole Ebber (WMDE): I'm happy to do that. Would you prefer that each question be numbered along with sections for discussion as to whether the question has been sufficiently formulated, what its priority should be, and which people should be answering it, along with sub-sections for one or more answers? (Example for the first four questions.) What is the criteria for deciding who should answer the different questions? James Salsman (talk) 16:59, 9 January 2018 (UTC)
@James Salsman: yes, seems to makes sense to do it like this. But please note that this page is still only notes and a collection of topics, and that we won't start inviting people to contribute to it right now. Phase 2 designing hasn't fully been kicked-off, yet. This is also why I cannot answer your question regarding the criteria right now. I guess it will very much differ for each question and the variety of different stakeholder groups. Again, thanks for your engagement. -Nicole Ebber (WMDE) (talk) 12:31, 10 January 2018 (UTC)
Okay, I will finish the numbering after thinking about a table with 4+ columns later. I like the questions, and I'm sorry I didn't have time to answer more of them. I'll ping you when I do and ask when the invitations go out. James Salsman (talk) 14:33, 10 January 2018 (UTC)