User:MarkTraceur/Essays/WMF usernames

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Just so it's super clear, I'm writing this as a volunteer.

This is my account without a (WMF) at the end of it, so I am a volunteer.

I don't have any special powers on this account. In fact, I'm a totally separate person. My hopes and wishes for the projects have changed since five minutes ago when I made an edit to as a staff member.

I'm writing this so you'll know how to tell if I'm a volunteer or staff member at any particular moment during the day.

When you're on a wiki, I'll be logged in as "MarkTraceur" if I'm a volunteer. If I'm a staff member, I'll switch to a separate browser window which is already logged in as "MarkTraceur (WMF)", switch out my brain pans, and you'll be able to identify me by the " (WMF)" bit of the username.

If we're on IRC together, any opinion imparted by the part of my brain that's employed by the WMF will be made by the nickname "marktraceurWMF". I may switch back and forth between that and plain ol' "marktraceur" pretty quickly, even arguing between the two separate nicknames from time to time. Try to keep up!

I have not yet gotten separate Gerrit or Bugzilla accounts, so for now I will paste the following disclaimer in every Bugzilla comment and commit message I submit:

This account is owned by someone who is both a WMF employee and a volunteer.
Because these two roles are totally separate and not at all alike, it should be
made clear that this action is taken as a (VOLUNTEER|EMPLOYEE). Thank you for
your understanding.

If you ever receive an email from me, it will come from my address. The "real name" in the "From" header will be "Mark Holmquist". I will include an extra "X-Is-Volunteer: True" header in the headers as well. If you receive an email from my staff alter-ego, it will be from a "" address, the real name will be "WMF Staffer Mark Holmquist", and there will be an extra "X-Is-Volunteer: Hell No" header.

In real life, when I am acting as a volunteer, I will stick a large and easy to read sticker to my forehead which says "VOLUNTEER" in large, bold block letters. Between 09:00 and 18:00 local time, I will remove that sticker and affix a large button (six inches in diameter) with similarly large letters spelling "WMF STAFF".

When we are speaking on the phone, I will simply yell "STAFF!" or "VOLUNTEER!" into the receiver at the beginning of the phone call, and then subsequently if I change roles in the middle of the discussion. It is up to you to keep track of state.

If we are ever scuba-diving together, and I must take an action, I will use American sign language to sign the word "staff" or "volunteer" depending on the context. You are expected to have studied American sign language beforehand, as part of the standard scuba certification course for Wikimedia volunteers. Any time-sensitive harpoon gun discharges are presumed to be actions as a volunteer unless I explain otherwise shortly after the shark has died.

In any other situation, you are free to ask me what role I'm acting in, provided we are in a position to talk about such things.

See also[edit]