User talk:Shani (WMF)

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Hello, Shani (WMF). Welcome to the Wikimedia Meta-Wiki! This website is for coordinating and discussing all Wikimedia projects. You may find it useful to read our policy page. If you are interested in doing translations, visit Meta:Babylon. You can also leave a note on Meta:Babel or Wikimedia Forum if you need help with something (please read the instructions at the top of the page before posting there). Happy editing!

Teles «Talk to me ˱C L @ S˲» 18:59, 23 May 2020 (UTC)

Thanks much, Teles! It's really nice to get a welcome note, even though I've been around with another account for ages. :) Shani (WMF) (talk) 21:02, 25 May 2020 (UTC)

Global Council?[edit]

I was looking at the ideas put forward by the Strategy process, and I'm intrigued by the idea of the creation of a broadly-representative Global Council, with many elected members. I spent some time over the past week starting to work on some ideas for how the seats could be distributed; see User:Yair rand/Global Council distribution formula. The strategy people seem fairly confident that the Global Council is going to happen, but the impression I get from the various Board reports and minutes is that the Board is generally, ah, rather more skeptical. And if I understand correctly, whether or not this goes ahead depends on what the Board decides. Do you think it's likely that this will go forward? Is it worthwhile to continue preparing for that possibility? --Yair rand (talk) 20:45, 25 May 2020 (UTC)

Hello, Yair. I just answered you in another thread, and I'm happy to see a comment relating to the actual processes here (which is part of what I was asking for in the other discussion). To your question, the board has approved the strategy recommendations. We, as a movement, were supposed to begin the implementation process in the Berlin Summit, which as you probably know was postponed due to COVID-19. The implementation discussion are still something that needs to happen. Part of it is a discussion on priorities, timeline etc. WMF staff are working together with volunteers to adjust to a COVID-19 reality, including envisioning new paths for continued conversation with our communities. I am not sure how you got the idea the board is skeptical. Can you refer me to specific resources so I might better understand where your impressions come from? You know that other than that I cannot disclose what individuals on the board think, but I can say that the board will not make any decision relating to any recommendation, including a Global Council, without getting feedback from both the communities and WMF staff. As I said, that still needs to happen. The UCoC in that sense is unique case, as the board decided it is a critical pre-step to any implementation of the strategy recommendations. So my advice would be -- if you passionately feel it's a good move and have ideas about how to implement, please join the discussions on it when that happens. Best, Shani (WMF) (talk) 21:00, 25 May 2020 (UTC)
Thank you for the information.
I got the impression that the Board was skeptical from a few things like this, from the Board feedback summary: "the term “governance body” suggests that it will have power to make a lot of decisions; against using anything worded around “governance” - a community advising committee, etc., is necessary; ok if renamed to “global advisory council”", and some of the concerns mentioned in the February minutes, which sounded contrary to the role put forward in the recommendations. But if it's already been approved, I assume that the difficulties must have been figured out.
I hope to participate in the discussion regarding the Global Council when it happens. Thanks. --Yair rand (talk) 21:41, 25 May 2020 (UTC)

Thank you for helping to create the Wikimedia 2030 Movement Strategy Recommendations[edit]

Wikimedia 2030 Celebration Image Wikimedia 2030
Thank you very much for everything you did to help create the Wikimedia 2030 Movement Strategy Recommendations! I am especially grateful for the enormous amount of work you did in the Partnerships working group and all the care and commitment you brought to the process. --Nicole Ebber (WMDE) (talk) 09:42, 25 June 2020 (UTC)

Restored comment[edit]

I think you may have missed that the owner of the comment decided against restoring it. Sometimes it's good to allow a comment to be retracted without unnecessary attention. (No reply necessary.) Alsee (talk) 12:32, 7 December 2020 (UTC)

Thanks for this note, Alsee. Let it be noted that from the way the note was phrased, it wasn't clear to me that it was with consent from [[user: ‪Alexis Jazz‬]|Alexis Jazz‬], and I honestly thought it may be a mistake. Specifically because it was a "heated" comment, I wanted to avoid the appearance that I shy away from criticism and therefore restore and answer. I'm quite ok with you removing the second one. All in all, I welcome everyone to the discussion, and was glad to see that Alexis Jazz was finally able to engage constructively, even if we disagree. Best, Shani (WMF) (talk) 20:59, 7 December 2020 (UTC)

"Wouldn't have stood a chance"[edit]

Hi, I was just listening to the recording of the Board's office hours, and I was surprised to hear your point relating the change in the ASBS system and your own election. (I also heard basically the same thing from User:Raystorm in another office hours.) Just in case the Board is taking this as evidence for a "insufficient diversity (or other skills or some such) -> Board intervention -> problem solved" pattern, I thought I'd look into the 2019 election to see if the assertion that you would "never stand a chance" had only chapters voted was actually correct. (Also, I was interested in how the possibility of adding a third seat would have affected things.) So, after some coding, a few points:

  • A lot of the STV results are sensitive to slight changes one way or another. You're presumably aware that in the actual election, you were one vote away from losing to two different candidates. Had there been three seats up for election, the results would have been Nataliia, Pharos, and then you.
  • Had only chapters and the one (at the time) thematic org voted: With two seats up for election, the winners would have been Nataliia and Maor Malul, with you falling slightly short; with three it would have been the two of them followed by you. (Pharos, interestingly, actually would have only had a single vote in support before being eliminated early on.)
  • I did some more fiddling with various possibilities, and it doesn't look to me like the inclusion of the usergroups actually generally influenced things towards more diversity.

I'm not trying to argue against the decision to include usergroups (which seems reasonable to me), but the idea that things would have been hopeless without Board intervention looks incorrect to me. It is true you would not have won had the change not been implemented, but it is clearly not correct that you "wouldn't have stood a chance" in your words.

I wouldn't ordinarily think it relevant, but the fact that it came up twice by different trustees makes me think that maybe in came up in a discussion? Or at least maybe it's near something trustees have been thinking about recently, so the info could be useful somehow. Hope this helps in some way. --Yair rand (talk) 09:49, 24 February 2021 (UTC)

Open Letter from Arbcoms to the Board of Trustees[edit]

Dear Board of Trustees,

This is an open letter from arbitrators and arbitration committees from across the Wikimedia movement.

We have followed closely the process of the creation of the Universal Code of Conduct (UCoC). We know that many small communities do not have a basic set of rules, so it's hard for new editors to have a good sense of what is allowed and what not. Additionally, we encourage the creation of basic rules of conduct for all wikis to ensure that nobody gets treated poorly. Editors in our communities wish to have an environment conducive to creating high quality content. We do not want to see editors discriminated against based on opinion, culture, sexuality, etc. Editors should be judged by their editing. In our experience, the global community and our projects will generally endorse rules that ensure no individual is a victim of discrimination or hounding.

However, we are concerned about the enforcement of the UCoC and concerned about how that enforcement will be viewed on our projects. The lack of formal consultation with projects before the board approved the UCoC means it risks being seen as imposed by the Wikimedia Foundation from above, rather than being seen as a legitimate community endeavor. Several of our projects have seen major damage and harm done when the communities have come into conflict with the Wikimedia Foundation (for instance dewiki with SUPERPROTECT and enwiki with FRAMGATE). We do not want that to happen with the Universal Code of Conduct as that could undermine the benefits it has to offer for projects without well-developed policies, systems, and experience for dealing with editor behavior. Recent changes to the timeline to allow for more consultation and discussion are a positive step.

It is therefore vital that projects with more sophisticated governing systems, like ours, be formally involved in the next step of the UCoC process. We note the recent call for a new committee to draft the second phase. At least one person with experience as an arbitrator, or similar experience dealing with complex and difficult behavior issues, should be added as a member of the drafting committee, and at least one additional person with this experience, or experience as a Steward, should be added as an advisor.

We understand that individual projects cannot be given a veto over the implementation of the UCoC. However, we hope that you understand that individual projects must feel committed to whatever enforcement mechanisms arise. Without this sense of investment and partnership the UCoC will ultimately fail. Mere consultation is insufficient. A formal process for ratifying the UCoC enforcement system is necessary.

The UCoC must also be a living document. The community is changing and evolving and so has universal behavior. We know that this is a different document than if it had been created 10 years ago, and we feel that universal norms will be different in 10 years. A way to amend the Universal Code of Conduct must be added, and this amendment process should build on lessons learned to date to ensure that communities and individuals have a chance for meaningful input before any amendment is adopted.

Wikipedia and other projects are only possible because of the hard work of editors at communities to create and maintain the incredible store of knowledge available. This path is longer, but hasty decisions and decisions that lack legitimacy in the eyes of the volunteers they effect could cause real damage to our communities and the work we do. In the words of the Wikimedia Foundation values, "Collaboration is not always easy. Sometimes we struggle. Working together is hard, but it’s worth it. We do it because it makes us stronger." We ask you to be stronger together with us.


Signing members of the cswiki-arbcom[edit]

Signing on behalf of the dewiki-arbcom[edit]

For the enwiki-arbcom[edit]

Signing members of the frwiki-arbcom[edit]

For the plwiki-arbcom[edit]

Signing members of the ruwiki-arbcom[edit]

Signing members of the ukwiki-arbcom[edit]

Signing members of the pswiki-arbcom[edit]

(This was mistakenly posted to my personal user, Esh77, rather than my Board of Trustees user, by user:Barkeep49, at 02:50, 30 March 2021‎. It was moved here for further discussion). Shani (WMF) (talk) 21:46, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

Thanks, Shani. Can you confirm that the board as a whole as received the letter? We were unable to find any email address for the board as a whole. Best, KevinL (aka L235 · t) 22:18, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
Hello, KevinL. I have just replied to the open letter in the Board's noticeboard. As per no email to address the Board, the CAC (which was formed just recently) is working on setting up new lines of communications with the Community at large, so stay tuned. More details on that and things like "Board Office Hours" will follow as soon as we can. In the meantime, thank you for all your work and dedication towards a safer and healthier community. It is truly appreciated. Best, Shani (WMF) (talk) 23:01, 30 March 2021 (UTC)