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September 11, 2009[edit]

We didn't have time to address questions such as the ones Alterego raised at the brief Board panel in Wikimania - that format isn't great for many people sharing their ideas in a short period of time. The three newest Board members are holding an open meeting Friday, September 11 at 1800 UTC on IRC channel #wikimedia, located on the freenode network (irc.freenode.net). If this is popular, we can organize more regular open meetings to discuss Wikimedia issues.

Please suggest topics and specific questions here, and attend if you can. These are all questions that have been raised by discussions above from editors on meta and from foundation mailing list threads over the past months. You can see the first set of 5 points below discussed in the logs.

  1. Board decision making
    • What does consensus mean to the board (internally for decision making, externally as reflective of community will)
    • What is the Board's relationship with the community / what should it be?
  2. Representation and voting
    • Who does the Board represent? (is it always the same constituency? is it the same for all Trustees?)
    • How does this relate to who is able to vote for elected Trustees?
    • Is wider participation in voting good? If so, how can we expand the circle of trusted voters?
  3. Omidyar Network grant
    • What are the specific targets required for full grant funding for global reach, global participation rate, and percent of funding from individual donors?
    • Is the measurement of participation as 'number of users making 5+ edits per month' consonant with the kinds of participation growth Wikimedia will prioritize? (Erik Moeller's talk about how to reach 300 million active participants focused on types of participation many of which would not be included in the 5+ edits per month measure.)
  4. Transparency
  5. What information do you need? Are there ways in which community members can help out the board, or give helpful input?
    • What areas of Wikimedia projects would you like to know more about?
    • Is there meta/fondationwiki documentation that can be improved, cleaned up, etc?
    • How can community members best participate in governance? -- phoebe 21:49, 8 September 2009 (UTC)Reply
    • How can the community contact the Board?
      Public contacts are often sent to foundation-l. But this is viewed as inefficient; see m:Improving Foundation-l

captured from the IRC channel and addressed online[edit]

  1. Publicity of this meeting: was it sufficient? Why wasn't this meeting better advertised?
    • consensus: No!! More advanced notice next time; and more notice the day of.
    • poor advertising: this was the first time we've held an open meeting in a while; we wanted to do it as soon as possible after wikimania but weren't able to finalize a time when Arne, Matt, and Samuel could all make it until a week ago; it was announced on all project mailing lists and on this page, but not elsewhere.
      This was partly a response to concerns by people at/around Wikimania that they didn't have much real interaction with the Board. I wanted to hold this one soon afterwards to address some of the questions that had been building since then. Despite the short notice, we got a fair number of questions (all from community members responding to the call for topics) and participants. Assuming we do this again, I will publicize it more widely, on-wiki and off, and in more languages. -- sj · translate · +
  2. captured from the IRC channel: Board resolutions: can they be posted more quickly?
    • discussion there: yes; they are usually posted when done within a few days or a week; Kat, the new secretary will be careful about this.
      aside from Sj: some decisions aren't clearly labelled as resolutions; including some routine topics that are resolutions one year and not the next (like the reappointment of existing board members). Some work needs to be done to figure out how to approve a statement about them for publication.
  3. What are the advantages to IRC over using wiki posts?
    It provides a sense of community and engagement and immediacy sometimes lacking; and people who feel paticularly strongly, or feel as though they are being ignored, can push for attention to the details of something they think has been overlooked. Conversely, for Board members who don't have much time to spare, it provides a way for them to be available to a large group of people for a fixed period of time.
    Some people suggested that a phone call might work better for some of these reasons if doable for the # of people who would be interested.
  4. Why does it take so long for Board votes and resolutions to be posted publicly and what can be done to hasten it?
    This is a misunderstanding. Board resolutions and votes are posted rather promptly on the foundation wiki. It is meeting minutes and other descriptions of the discussions behind resolutions that are not. The votes of late have generally been consensus approvals, so there is little to be read in the vote data per se. -- sj · translate · +
    Aside: Failed resolutions are often not published. Should they be?
  5. What's being done regarding Flagged Revisions on the English Wikipedia? What's the hold-up? Why hasn't the Board put more pressure to get things moving?
    The former two are questions for Brion and the tech staff, and you can read about the latest progress on the appropriate lists. As to the last: the Board is generally not involved in the level of detail implied by 'putting pressure on' the Foundation to prioritize or speed up one project or another. -- sj · translate · +
  6. Why isn't Wikimedia's public relations better? (Flagged revisions articles everywhere misreporting, inaccurate blog posts that later need to be corrected, Board announcements that hit the wires before hitting internal-l, etc.)
    Help is always welcome. This is a tough question; there are lots of different stories about WP that come up, and Wikimedia produces a good bit of material (in announcements, posts, and q&a) -- it is natural, if not the wiki way, to publish early and often and correct subtle inaccuracies. I agree, however, that announcements should never hit the wires before they hit a public list (internal-l is not the best example, as it is not a public list). -- sj · translate · + 16:57, 15 September 2009 (UTC)Reply
  7. Does the board thinks that it should be possible for mission related projects to be able to use and reuse wikimedia logos and trademarks?
    This hasn't been explicitly addressed since I joined the Board. Historically: some projects have been able to use the logos and trademarks, so the question should be about how, not if, it should be possible. 'Reuse' is a hard thing to define for trademarks, which are defined in part by ways in which they do not change, and 'Mission related' needs clarification.
  8. Why are the voter requirements in Board elections so high and what can be done to reduce them?
    Nominally to avoid fraud, and to guarantee that people voting have some understanding of the shared goals of the projects. Also thanks to historical precedent -- suffrage has long been determined solely by edit count across major events/votes on all projects. -- sj · translate · +
    1. What can be done to reform the Election Committee? Should it be abolished? Can we prevent future serious errors like those that happened in the July 2009 Board elections?
      That's a complex question, and deserves its own section and discussion on the election committee's page. Perhaps veterans of past Election Committees can weigh in on this topic. -- sj · translate · +

May 12, 2010[edit]

An open meeting was held Wednesday, May 12 in #wikimedia on irc.freenode.net. If you want to participate, but cannot make this one, don't worry -- it will not be the last. Raw minutes are posted but need condensing - there were many threads covered. We may want to limit discussion to a smaller set of topics in the future. SJ · talk | translate

When: Wednesday, May 12, 19:00 UTC (12:00 PST | 15:00 EST | 21:00 CEST) [~90 minutes.]
Where: #wikimedia on irc.freenode.net. (Web IRC client)
Who: Everyone's invited.

Primary topic: the Wikimedia community, and where we are heading. Recent drama and related community and policy issues: how we handle controversial content, the role of Jimmy and the Foundation in projects.

Other related topics are welcome, but 90 minutes isn't a lot of time for a popular meeting, so interested participants should list topics they care about in advance (below), and may want to start discussions here on meta as well.

Suggested agenda items

  • Wikimedia community: past, present, future
  • Commons reflections
    Policy formation on contentious topics
    Editorial independence, self-governance of individual Projects
    Being welcoming to different audiences, controversial content
    Is Commons to be 'just' a backend for projects, or a curated library  ? (do we need all art or are invitations for image donations pointless as we will delete half of '[institution]'s nude pics')
    Possibilities other than curating our collection: (rating filtering etc)
  • Cross-project policies, interproject relations, community councils...
  • Regular WMF-Community debates...
  • Is WMF Outreach to schools appropriate or prudent given the 'not censored' principle? - Is WMF clear enough in communicating the nature of some materials hosted?
  • ...add yours

Related discussions[edit]

Please add links to related discussions taking place on Meta, Commons, Wikipedias and other projects.

Commons:Sexual content
Wikipedia: Deutsch (image removal discussion) | Kurier: Vulva reloaded | English (general discussion)
Petition to Jimbo

Just a note to indicate that I added a suggested topic above, though may not be able to attend due to the early hour (5am for me, I think) - sorry! Privatemusings 04:09, 11 May 2010 (UTC)Reply

June 2010[edit]

An open meeting is proposed for mid-June on IRC. Please add your name below if you can make it.

June 17, 1700 UTC[edit]

other topics[edit]

Foundation growth (see last meeting's minutes)
better communication, language barriers

September 2010[edit]

Sat September 11 1600 UTC[edit]

An open meeting is proposed for Saturday, September 11, at 1600 UTC (that's 0900 PST | 1200 EST | 1800 CEST | 2130 IST | 0200 SydneyEST...). Come meet our newest trustees, Bishakha Datta and Phoebe Ayers, and talk about anything that's on your mind. SJ · talk | translate 22:52, 31 August 2010 (UTC)Reply

Discussion topics

  • Open questions (and their closed answers)
  • Strategic plan objectives and next steps
  • Controversial content research and next steps
  • role of the foundation/movement roles
  • best way to communicate the work of the board
  • favorite ice cream flavors
  • add yours...



October... and beyond[edit]

It would be great to have regularly scheduled open meetings.

Would weekend days around 1500-1900 UTC be good times? Or a fixed day of each month, as something easy to remember? SJ · talk | translate 20:02, 7 September 2010 (UTC)Reply

Future presenters or moderators[edit]

Open meetings are for all Wikimedians. Everyone is welcome to organize a short session or agenda topic at a meeting, invite guests to present, talk about a significant project. Those with a little experience are welcome to moderate a whole meeting.

If you want to present a particular project, or to moderate part of a future discussion, please list yourself and what you wish to present. If you want to run all or part of a specific meeting, either add one to the schedule below or list yourself next to one that already exists.