Minutes for the October 7-8 meeting of the WMF Board are now posted:
Sorry about the long delay on getting these up.
* I use this address for lists; send personal messages to phoebe.ayers
<at> gmail.com *
* I use this address for lists; send personal messages to phoebe.ayers
<at> gmail.com *
I just wanted to send out a reminder that the first IRC office hours for
Geoff Brigham, WMF General Counsel, will be held this coming Friday,
December 2, 2011 at 18:00 UTC. Geoff would like to talk about his broad
legal strategy for 2011-12, and talk specifically about what he plans to do
in the coming months. It would be really great if you could join us. Docs
are on Meta, as usual.
Community Organizer at Wikimedia Foundation
> Message: 7
> Date: Wed, 12 Oct 2011 11:07:54 -0300
> From: Andrew Crawford <acrawford(a)laetabilis.com>
> Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] Image filtering without undermining the
> category system
> To: Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1
> In general I think this is the best and most practical proposal so far.
Thanks I appreciate that.
> Having filter users do the classifying is the only practical option. In my
> opinion, it is unfortunately still problematic.
> 1. It is quite complicated from the user's point of view. Not only do they
> have to register an account, but they have to find and understand these
> options. For the casual reader who just doesn't want to see any more
> penises, or pictures of Mohammed, that is quite a lot to ask. The effort it
> would take to implement a system like this might outweigh the benefit to
> small number of readers who would actually go through this process.
Yes my wording of the options is not ideal, and I'm hoping we can make it
more user friendly. But the process isn't very complex. If we create
It need be no more complex than
I'm pretty sure we can make it simpler than buying some censorship software
with a credit card and then installing it on your PC.
> 2. It is obviously subject to gaming. How long would it take 4chan to
> out they can create new accounts, and start thumbs-upping newly-uploaded
> pictures of penises while mass thumbs-downing depictions of Mohammed?
Subject to gaming, well it's bound to be. But vulnerable to gaming,
hopefully not. Fans of penises are welcome to add their preferences. That's
why I didn't include the option "Hide all images except those that a fellow
filterer has whitelisted".
If some people find naked bodies wholesome but crucifixes troubling, and
others the reverse, then the filter will pick up on that as an easy
scenario, and once you've indicated that you are happy to see one or the
other it will start giving a high score to things that have been deemed
objectionable to people who've made similar choices to you, or things that
were deemed wholesome by people whose tastes run counter to yours.
Conversely it will give low scores to images cleared by people whose tastes
are highly similar to yours or to images objected to by people whose tastes
are the reverse of yours.
> 3. How can we prevent the use of this data for censorship purposes?
We prevent the use of this data for censorship by not releasing the
knowledge base, only showing logged in users the results that are relevant
to them, and not saying how we've come up with a score. If we only had a
small number of images and a limited set of reasons why people could object
to them then it would be simple to impute the data in our knowledge base,
but we have a large and complex system, and some aspects would be inherently
difficult to hack by automated weapons. An experienced human looking at an
image with a filter score would sometimes be able to guess what common
reasons had caused a filterer or filterers not to want to see it again, but
a computer would struggle and often anyone but the filterer who'd applied
that score would be baffled. If you had access to that individuals filter
list it might be obvious that they were blocking images that triggered their
vertigo, depicted people associated with a particular sports team or train
engines that lacked a boiler. But without the context of knowing which
filter lists an image was on it would be difficult to get meaningful
information out of the system.
> keep the reputation information of each image secret? I imagine many
> Wikipedians would want to access that data for legitimate editorial
> Well of course any of the editors could themselves have the filter set on
and would know what the score was relative to their preferences. But
otherwise the information would be secret. I don't see how we could give
editors access to the reputation information without it leaking to censors,
or indeed divulging it generally. Remember the person with vertigo might not
want that publicly known, the pyromaniac who blocked images that might
trigger their pyromania would almost certainly not want their filter to be
public. As for "legitimate editorial reasons", I think it would be quite
contentious if anyone started making editorial decisions based on the filter
results, so best not to enable that - but I'll clarify that in the proposal
Thanks for your feedback
> Andrew (Thparkth)
> On Tue, Oct 11, 2011 at 5:55 PM, WereSpielChequers <
> werespielchequers(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> > OK in a spirit of compromise I have designed an Image filter which should
> > meet most of the needs that people have expressed and resolve most of the
> > objections that I'm aware of. Just as importantly it should actually
> > http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:WereSpielChequers/filter
> > WereSpielChequers
> > _______________________
> Thanks for that and for your comments on
The only exeptable filter would be a _strictly_ personal one.
Stored on the users computer in an encrypeted file, which he can transfer from one computer on his memorystick or CD to the other if logged in with the same username, but not to be shared with others.
Never ever to be stored on any computer under the influence of the WMF and paid by money donated in favour of free content.
And even that would be a great compromise, as the WMF would provide the tools to limit excess to knowledge.
Every other option would make users vulnerable to requests to use the file of "Big Brother" and to update it in regular intervalls.
And the foundation respectively the board is not able to suggest a list of images unsuitable to "women in the developing south" or "schools in the bible belt" or "users with red-green blindness" or or.
It's time to stop this stupid idea altogether and concentrate not to loose more longtime users.
Good editorial work in the open, which includes choice of images. No censors in the background.
I am using the free version of SPAMfighter.
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There has been some discussion in journalism circles that newspapers, who
after all, provide the raw material for many of our topical articles
might copy our system of organizing material under a subject heading, at
least for their online sites.
Even our most aggressive deletionists have never tried to delete
everything that is more than one day old.
It's getting towards the end of November, which means it is time to
run the Wikimania bidding process for 2013.
Given the traditional absence of a formal system, I'm putting myself
forward as Jury co-ordinator - a non-voting person who helps the
Jury form and Bids get started up, sets the timeline, and hopefully
makes sure everything happens smoothly.
In this role, I would like to make two requests:
Firstly, I'm sure the whole Wikimedia community would love to see as
many good bids as possible. There are already a few bids on Meta,
but if you or your local community are thinking about putting one in,
I'd urge you to get started now - there's not much time left before
new bids will not be accepted. Making a good bid for Wikimania can be
a lot of work, but we all benefit from there being a strong field of
Secondly, I would like to invite volunteers to serve on the Wikimania
2013 jury. There is a list of general requirements on Meta, but to
* The Jury will have some from the Wikimedia Foundation's Board and
staff alongside the community volunteers;
* You can't be on the Jury if you're closely involved in a Bid (it's a
conflict of interest);
* You need to have some free time during the selection period (January-March);
* We want to represent the community across the different projects and
* We of course want a mix of people from a diverse range of
backgrounds, sexes, cultures and regions of the world.
If you wish to be involved in the Jury, please e-mail me (off-list) at
jdforrester(a)gmail.com - I hope we can announce the Jury in the first
week of December, so please contact me as soon as you can.
Please also consider passing this message on (and translating it!) for
your wiki's community forum for those that don't read these mailing
Thank you, and good luck to all Bids.
 - https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_2013
 - https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_2013/Jury
 - https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_2013/Bids/Timeline
 - https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_2013/Bids
 - https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimania_jury
James D. Forrester
jdforrester(a)wikimedia.org | jdforrester(a)gmail.com