Jump to content

Universal Code of Conduct/Coordinating Committee/Election/2024/Candidates/Barkeep49

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki

Barkeep49 (Questions)

Account Barkeep49 (talk meta edits global user summary CA)
Candidate details
  • Languages: English
  • Region: North America
  • Active wikis: English Wikipedia
  • Wikimedian since: 2005
Selected home wiki English Wikipedia
Type of seat (regional; community-at-large; or both) (division of regional seats) Community-at-large
Candidate Introduction
Introductory statement / Application summary (maximum 200 words): Why are you running for the Universal Code of Conduct Coordinating Committee? What would you contribute? I am running for the U4C because:
  1. I believe in free knowledge
  2. I want the U4C to help communities but not rule over them

To be successful the U4C must respect the principle of subsidiarity. Success means helping communities through training and sharing successes. It also means helping communities that might have few or no administrators.

I am excited to help the committee create processes and systems. These should work for the committee and the community. This has been some of the work I have done as an Arbitrator.

If elected you can be confident that I will...

  • do the work. I have been someone who has done lots of work for the committees I've joined
  • remain accessible and responsive. Communicating is especially important for a new committee with lots of potential power
  • listen carefully. It's vital to learn from others, understand perspectives, and consider others' thinking.
  • strive to improve. If something isn't working, we should improve it. I am willing to try new things, and equally willing to admit when something new hasn't worked. Fundamentally, I believe it is important for us to try to do better because we can be better.
Please describe your Wikimedia experience (such as contributions to the Wikimedia projects, memberships in Wikimedia organizations or affiliates, experience working on conduct issues in your community, activities as a Wikimedia movement organizer, or participation in building Wikimedia policies). I started editing in 2005 because of how excited I was about a free encyclopedia anyone could edit. I contributed infrequently until 2018 when I got serious about editing. I love to write high quality knowledge that serves our readers; an area I focus on writing about is children's literature. Over time I expanded from just writing to getting involved in the English Wikipedia project and then the bigger Wikimedia movement.
I served on the UCoC Enforcement Guidelines Committee (2021), the UCoC Enforcement Guidelines Revision Committees (2022), and on the U4C Building Committee (2023). I have also been elected to two terms on the English Wikipedia Arbitration Committee (2021-2024). Before this I was also active with dispute resolution as an administrator on English Wikipedia.
Professional Experience, Skills and Education
Please briefly describe 3 situations that show how you worked on, or advised others on, a complex conduct or policy issue. How did you work with others to address the situations? Three situations that show how I've worked on complex conduct and policy issues are:
  1. U4C membership I came up with the concept for the U4C in May 2021 and have been thinking about membership ever since. It was always important to me that the membership of the committee be diverse. Many ideas were brainstormed by the community. The committees I've been on have tried to meet multiple needs. I believe the work here isn't done.
  2. Request for adminship English Wikipedians have long been unhappy with the Request for Adminship process (RFA). In 2021, I started and moderated a review process. This process identified issues the community saw with RFA and proposed some modest changes. The 2021 process has now been used by the 2024 RFA review.
  3. Wiki chat spaces are places that I like. I am someone who uses both IRC and Discord. The English Arbitration Committee had a case where people were being harassed onwiki based on conversations that were happening on a WikiProject Discord server. I built on the work of another arbitrator who surveyed the policies of many of these spaces to write recommendations for "official" Wikipedia chat spaces. Many of the English Wikipedia chat spaces have adopted these recommendations.
Leadership Experience
Can you describe a policy, on wiki or off, that you helped to create or change? What did you learn from this experience? I have written above about some of my experience creating and changing policy in my 3 answers above. I will not repeat any of that. I have learned just how important it is to get the wording of policy right, especially policy that will be translated into other languages. I have also seen just how valuable feedback from a diverse group of people can be when drafting policy to make sure it will have support and that it will work for a wide range of cultures and projects.
How have you been able to empower people to make their voices heard? This is very important to me and I try to live it. I will share two examples of how I do that. I have worked to nominate people for adminship on English Wikipedia who would add diversity to the pool of administrators. During my time on committees, I try to bring up ideas from people who may not be at a meeting to make sure their perspectives are not ignored.
Sometimes in professional situations, there are personality conflicts. Explain how you remain productive even with personality conflicts. First, I think getting to know people as people is helpful. A good personal relationship can help keep the conflict focused on the dispute rather than the person. We can find a way to solve a dispute, but you cannot "solve" a person. When in a conflict I try to do more listening than talking. I want to understand the other person and find what we can agree on. Sometimes it will mean compromise and sometimes it means thinking about the problem or solution in a new way. And sometimes conflict just means you need to take a break, like going for a walk to enjoy nature. But the focus needs to be on what we can do together, not the personalities. In a situation like the U4C, everyone will be there because of their passion for the work we do and out of a desire to help. Remembering that goes a long way.
Strategic Thinking
In your opinion, how can the U4C be a positive influence in the Wikimedia movement? I have very high hopes that the U4C will be a positive influence in the Wikimedia movement. An important way the U4C can be a positive influence is through excellent proactive work. The U4C is responsible for training. High quality training will help people learn about the UCoC and build their skills. Helping with a high quality reporting form can also be a positive influence. A good form will let editors get help they need and do it in a way that is helpful to communities. A low quality reporting system would instead leave reporters feeling ignored and/or responders feeling overwhelmed and both groups feeling misunderstood. I wrote in my statement about how important I think it will be for the U4C to share successful ideas among communities. Finally, I think if the reactive cases are handled thoughtfully and with care to produce outcomes that help communities, it will build confidence in the U4C and the UCoC even with those not involved in the case.
How would you help the Universal Code of Conduct develop and improve over time? The upcoming chance to revise the UCoC is so important. There have been a number of good ideas for changes and revisions to the UCoC in the past 3 years and now we will have the time to actually do them. This process also will help add further legitimacy to the document, because Wikimedians will, for the first time, have the chance to ratify it.