Sorry to those who are tired of the image/consent discussions, but
just wanted to bring this to this list's attention as well.
I'm tagging this thread with "[Commons]" and suggest others do the
same in future to make it easier for people who do not want to discuss
Commons or who feel inundated with the subject matter to filter these
messages. Also, if you're using Google Mail, you can "mute" a thread
(under the "More" options after you open the thread) and you won't see
any future responses in your inbox -- other email clients have similar
Quick notes about an interesting development:
* User:Rillke on Commons has started prototyping a gadget that could
be used to simplify reporting of various issues with images with a
simple "Flag this image" workflow. This discussion is on the Commons
I've brought that discussion to the attention of WMF legal. Note: It's
not like the current workflow is completely broken -- the
Commons:Contact_us flow is actually pretty good -- but a nicer UI and
more prominent placement could help. The current workflow also does
not provide an option for consent issues.
* I've summarized the current state of his prototype here:
On the talk page I've also recommended that consent to be displayed in
an image be considered in the reporting options.
I'm sure Rillke would appreciate any active development help with the
feature, as well as continued feedback and encouragement (WikiLove?)
which is crucial for volunteer motivation.
VP of Engineering and Product Development, Wikimedia Foundation
On Fri, Jun 28, 2013 at 10:59 AM, Heather Walls <hwalls(a)wikimedia.org>wrote:
> On Fri, Jun 28, 2013 at 10:48 AM, Carol Moore DC <carolmooredc(a)verizon.net
> > wrote:
>> On 6/28/2013 5:09 AM, Lennart Guldbrandsson wrote:
>> On a wiki meetup in Gothenburg (where there for some unexplained reason
>> are always more women present than at the ones in Stockholm - different
>> women, not just the same), I mentioned the gendergap issue to one of the
>> female newcomers. She was not interested at all in the issue, since she
>> felt that her edits should stand on their own merit, not be based on her
>> gender. (Which made me feel like a creep for bringing the issue up.)
> I don't really understand how "merit of edits" is necessarily connected to
> issues of the gender gap (they aren't to me). Is there a way to frame
> speaking of this that helps assuage that? Perhaps I'm missing something.
Heather, let me take a crack at this, because I think it's a really
imporant issue to keep in mind.
When this list started (and since), I have reached out to a number of women
encouraging them to join. Some have and some haven't, but there's a pretty
common view that I believe is greatly under-represented on this list --
some of these people have subscribed, but of those who did, I think it's
safe to say that *none* participate in the discussion.
Several women (including my longest-standing Wikipedia colleague, with
about 100,000 edits to date; two WMF board members, a close work colleague,
and my mother) responded to the emergence of this list as follows. (I hope
I've reflected this accurately; I've BCC'd these individuals to invite
feedback in case I've gotten it wrong.)
- While the gender gap on Wikipedia is a significant problem, it is
better regarded as a *symptom* of an environment that is not welcoming in
general, than as a distinct problem in itself. The gender gap is best
addressed by advancing the general health of our community, rather than
trying to target gender issues specifically.
- Individual responsibility is an important component, and not
everything that appears gender-driven is actually gender-driven. In some
cases where a woman is having a bad experience, it results in part from her
own actions. Being called a victim-blamer is not appealing, so staying away
from a forum like this might be the safest bet.
I find this perspective compelling, and sometimes find myself concerned at
how little we hear from/about it on this list. I think it is a somewhat
nuanced position that often gets summarized in ways that are incomplete;
"letting my editing stand on its own merit" is, I think, a summary of the
second bullet point.
I'm not sure that registering and having enclosed spaces is the best way to
make women feel welcome. I'm sure that might make some women feel that way,
but at the Wiknic we had in LA, for example, far more women who had never
edited and not signed up for the event just dropped by because we were in a
park and looked inviting. Yes, Wikipedians can look inviting! (I don't
think it hurt that there were other women there, either.) I think there is
room for both approaches.
Dr. Adrianne Wadewitz
Mellon Digital Scholarship Fellow
Center for Digital Learning + Research
So, to spin off from the post to this list this morning about women being
heckled at a Wikimedia NYC meetup, I want to see if I can get a discussion
started about chapter meetups and friendly spaces. This is long, but advice
is desperately needed, so I'd appreciate people taking the time to read and
offer any insight they have.
I've been discussing the Medium.com
some members of WMNYC tonight, and it's becoming apparent that the heckling
*did *happen, pretty much as described, and that while no one thinks what
happened that day was right, no one knows what to do about it, either.
Wikimedia NYC has had some ongoing problems with women being treated oddly
at their events (men staring/leering at women, and now men heckling women),
and the chapter seems to be at a loss about how to deal with these issues
at an institutional level. The best solution that's been tried so far has
been targeted only at a particular person, with another man following the
known ogler intending to intervene if he's noticed ogling, but of course
men tend to quite understandably not be attuned to what behaviors make
women uncomfortable, and people who are being watched tend to behave while
being watched. At best, anyway, this solution can only address the behavior
of a single person, and then only if a) we have the manpower to supervise
the person and b) the watcher notices the behavior and c) the water
actively intervenes to stop the behavior before it impacts an innocent
meetup-goer or goers. This can't even begin to touch the issue of heckling
or aggression toward women at a room- or meetup-level.
It's not enough. Wikimedia NYC is struggling with a lack of manpower at the
best of times that makes it hard to have active moderation of events to
prevent behavior like the heckling described in the Medium.com story and
the unwanted attention I, among others, have been subjected to. There is
also, in my personal view, a fair amount of institutional apathy from some
- and only some, I want to make clear - of the chapter board and members
which has made it difficult for anything to get done about this issues. I
can't speak for other women in the chapter, but I've started staying away
from events because I come away from them feeling...slimed.
Does anyone have experience implementing friendly space policies,
especially in situations where volunteers numbers are extremely limited?
How can we make these chapter meetups less offputting to women? If a
chapter either can't or won't enforce friendly spaces for itself, is there
any recourse above the chapter level?
We had the Wikimedia UK Board elections two weekends ago, and regrettably
continue to have an all-male Board - pretty much an inevitable consequence
of having no female candidates.
Interestingly, we'd had expressions of interest from a number of women who
didn't end up standing, even though they had great experience and could
have been strong candidates. That kind of accords with what I've heard from
people who work on increasing the gender balance of British politics, who
say men are much more likely to assume they should stand for election, even
if they actually aren't very good.
However, all is not lost, as we can co-opt up to three further Trustees,
and co-opting three men isn't an option.
If you know any women who you think would be good please invite them to get
in touch; chris.keating(a)wikimedia.org.uk
There's a bit more information about our current Board here:
and also the skills and characteristics we are looking for in a balanced
Board, here: http://uk.wikimedia.org/wiki/Board/Characteristics
Celebrity chef Nigella Lawson was photographed by paparazzi this weekend
being choked by her husband, Charle Saatchi, in public recently.
IP's bombarded his article, and her articles, adding content, images, etc.
I checked out Charle's article tonight - one IP edit includes changing his
lead to say "he's a businessman" to "he's a prick" (paraphrasing). His
article was protected due to vandalism.
Nigella's article was bombarded with content, images, and so forth of what
happened. It has Good Article status. No one page protected it.
I protected it tonight.
I was really shocked to see that it wasn't protected, but Charles' article
Perhaps it's paranoia? I just had to get this off my chest.
*Museumist, open culture advocate, and Wikimedian*