I'm very happy to announce that the Affiliations Committee has recognized
 the Igbo Wikimedians User Group  as a Wikimedia User Group. The
group aims to support the Igbo Wikimedia community and to encourage people
that are literate in Igbo language at any level to become involved in the
Please join me in congratulating the members of this new user group!
Chair, Affiliations Committee
On 29.05.2018 20:33, praveenp wrote:
> I haven't seen any attempt to share the knowledge and wisdom acquired
> from Wikimania to community through mailing list or wiki. Users
> including me generally feel that community is being mocked on.
Hi to all,
without being too original here, and following praveenp comments - would
be good to encourage recipients of WMF scholarship to organize some type
of Wikimania follow-up activities back in their groups or chapters.
I do believe that most of them are doing it anyway without any
requirements from WMF, but if majority would do it - we could have
something as a ”permanent Wikimania” unfolding globally for a couple of
months after the official Wikimania.
> As I have said last year, this is not a complaint that I didn't get
> selected. This is not personal. This is about same persons receiving
> Wikimania scholarship year after year repeatedly. I am just using
> familiar user names from a familiar community, who got many repeated
> Even after I argued that none of these 'permanent scholarship
> receivers' sharing anything to community, I haven't seen any attempt
> to share the knowledge and wisdom acquired from Wikimania to community
> through mailing list or wiki. Users including me generally feel that
> community is being mocked on.
> I tried to keep myself away from local discussion about this, but
> injustice is so clear. And nobody is ready to discuss it openly, most
> probably because of the 'incompetency shaming' in almost all replies.
> On Tuesday 29 May 2018 11:19 PM, Lodewijk wrote:
> Given the context of the previous email you sent, I am assuming this
> is more a complaint that you didn't get selected than that the other
> two got selected.
> Similarly to the previous time you tried to have this discussion - I
> feel uncomfortable to make this about individuals.
> Is there a way to give rejected applicants more feedback on which
> factors play a main role, so that they can learn from it, especially
> if there is something they could improve in their application. I would
> add two sidenotes here though: it should only be provided on request
> (no need to rub people's noses into something unnecessarily) and it
> seems only viable at a level that can be easily extracted from the
> process (high level).
> Perhaps someone who knows the scholarship committee's work intimately
> could comment.
> On Tue, May 29, 2018 at 10:21 AM, praveenp <me.praveen(a)gmail.com
> <mailto:email@example.com>> wrote:
> Congratulation to all the selection committee who break the
> tradition of selecting one of the Malayalam communities two
> permanent Wikimania attendees, by selecting both of them.
> Congratulation to User:Netha Hussain & User:viswaprabha also.
>  "Granting Scholarship to same persons every year" thread,
> On Tuesday 15 May 2018 11:19 PM, Ellie Young wrote:
> Here's an update on various activities pertaining to the
> upcomingWikimania '18 which is being held July 18-22 in Cape Town,
> South Africa.
> WMF Scholarship Program: 135 people were offered and subsequently
> accepteda full or partial scholarship to attend. The awardees are
> listed by usernames and the list is posted
> The program committee has just finished its review anddeliberations.
> Rejections and acceptance emails have gone out in the past week.
> 95% of the accepted submissions are listed at:
> Plenaries and other sessions will be listed soon and a scheduled
> program in June.
> Registration and accommodation information is now up for everyone
> you are a scholarship or other WMF funded attendee (staff,
> contractor,board, etc), please wait until you hear from the WMF with
> your registrationand accommodation instructions.If you have any
> questions about the conference, please emailwikimania-info at
> spread the word!!!!On behalf of the Wikimania '18 Organizing Team
> Ellie YoungEvents Manager, Wikimedia
According to their twitter feed they have announced a partnership with
something called the "Request Network" for cryptocurrency donations.
Also this article here
Ok. I don't approve but I'm not french so not its not an area where I
can reasonably expect anyone to pay any attention to my opinions.
What concerns me is that they have retweeted something claiming the
partnership is with the wikimedia foundation rather than just
Is some form of clarification possible?
Thanks for your input on this question! I'll add a few clarifications
here to respond to points raised in the discussion so far. (As I'm
subscribed in digest mode, I'll have to cut & paste.)
Nathan commented: "I'm not seeing an argument here for why Wikimedia
should adhere to this law, if it is correctly stated by the OP. If
France passed a law banning Internet-published photos of living people,
how would we approach that law? If Germany barred publishing the place
of birth, date of birth or religious preference of public figures? If
the United States banned publishing the name of individuals accused of
Since I quoted it the law of 6 January 1978 in French, I'm pretty sure I
got it right. ^^ On the other hand, I didn't translate or interpret the
law in the context of current jurisprudence, so yes, maybe some more
should be said...
It is legal in France to write an article about a notable person and
mention their religious affiliation if they volunteer that information.
What is *not* legal is to extract that information about them and add it
to a database which lists Catholics -- as was done during the Vichy
regime with punchcards. How exactly were Jewish people rounded up and
sent off to concentration camps? (How did prefects go about locating
Freemasons during the war?). While there was certainly some
collaboration with the National Statistics Service (SNS) established
during the Occupation, the most recent research suggests that this
collaboration was not as significant as was once commonly assumed. The
1978 law was written before this research.
The fact that -- today on en.wp -- these religious categories are being
overwhelmingly applied to Jews (and to a lesser degree to Freemasons) is
certainly striking. (cf. the 862 members of Category:French Jews & the
21 members of the Category:French Christians).
Regarding the hypothetical situations you evoke (the first of which, of
course, being particularly relevant since people in France do have a
right to refuse the publication of their image (*unless* they are for
some reason newsworthy))... I imagine that they will have to be dealt
with on a case by case basis until national laws have been superseded by
the new-wikiwiki-order of supranational arbitration.
Todd commented: "We should no more follow French censorship laws than we
should follow Turkish ones. All editors are responsible for compliance
with the laws in their jurisdiction."
First, the issue is privacy, not censorship. Nobody has prosecuted or
will prosecute a newspaper for mentioning, for example, that Vincent
Bolloré is Catholic (since he is open about that fact and does not
object to having it reported). However, when the CRIF (a Jewish
foundation) petitioned the CNIL for the right to compile a list of folks
whose surnames were the same as the 150 most common donors to the
foundation for the purposes of a survey they were told this would be a
clear violation of the law.
What exists on en.wp is an ad-hoc categorization that does not guarantee
the quality of sourcing. Anyone can add the category "French Jews" to
100s of living people's biographies with hotcat in a matter of minutes
(with or without a source). Only the vigilance of the community is a
safeguard against this sort of action. The state of the database at the
moment is, again, telling: there are not 40 times more Jews in France
than Christians nor are Freemasons likely to be 7 times more numerous
than Christians. Yet this is precisely the *deformed* picture that
emerges from this ad-hoc categorization system. As James and Yarsolav
both observed, this is likely due to a problem of "bad editing" on
en.wp. (I didn't mention it in my OP, but just as there are no such
categories on French Wikipedia, Wikidata also does not seem to have
categories based on the religion of living French people. Based on my
limited research into the question, the ontology at Wikidata does indeed
seem more respectful of personal privacy.)
Second, concerning legally responsibility: of course! The WMF only
supplies the platform. The anonymous individuals who make use of it are
legally responsible for their contributions. As a result, living people
not wanting to have their religion included in a system of automatic
list-generation would need to file a complaint against X (porter plainte
contre X) in order to try to get the WMF to react to the violation of
their privacy if they cannot convince the anonymous volunteer they
contact in order to enforce their privacy rights (by deleting the
ethnic/religious category from their Wikipedia entry).
Still, it could be persuasively argued that a foundation has a *duty of
care* to its volunteers and should not facilitate their contributors
(whose age they don't verify) falling afoul of their national laws.
Simply excluding members of Category:BLP & Category:French
Jews/Catholics/Muslims/Freemasons/etc. from the hidden Category
"requiring diffusion" and adding them to the hidden Category "noindex"
would go a long way towards protecting privacy rights (at least as far
as google is concerned).
Finally -- again -- how useful are these automatically generated lists
towards advancing the "freedom of knowledge" (as Nathan put it)? To
repeat: these categories make it seem that there are/have been 40 times
more notable Jewish people and five times more notable Muslims in France
than notable Christians . This (derived) "knowledge" is patently
false. Now, granted, the purpose of the automatically generated
categories is not to come up with a comparative tally of noteworthy
people; but I think what this tally shows is in itself revealing:
Wikipedians are 40 times more likely to tag notable Jewish people as
Jews and 5 times more likely to tag notable Muslims as Muslim than they
are to tag notable Christians as Christians. This is worth thinking
about for a minute...
Why would it be so hard to be humble and respect national laws by making
it such that membership in the category would not be diffused concerning
living people in countries where such lists are illegal? (As Yaroslav
points out, there is no guarantee of the quality of the sourcing).
En.wp might be wise to learn from the conservative approach to this
question taken by fr.wp and wikidata.
I hope this helps to clarify the original post.
ps: *Correction*: Contrary to what I mistakenly wrote in my OP there
are 96 members of the category French Muslims (not 0).
I'm a big fan of the GDPR and why it had to be created. (I'm doing a lot of
the bureaucratic work on the tech side at the day job and am getting very
used to thinking of ways something could constitute Personally Identifying
But I'm wondering how we'll approach it for the Wikimedia sites. Not just
the log data - but the content.
We already have problems with Right To Be Forgotten, and well-cited content
being removed from the search engines.
What do we have in place to deal with this when - not if - we get GDPR
requests to remove information about a person from the site?
I don't mean just the letter of the law, in the EU or the US - I mean also,
how we can handle this *right*. Because there are multiple competing
legitimate interests here, and the editing communities tend to take a lot
more care than they're strictly required to by law, because we are here to
get things right. (This is why our DMCA numbers are ridiculously low for a
top 10 site, for example.)
Is anyone keeping track of what the communities are doing, as well as WMF
I am writing to ask if there are any plans to render the English
Wikipedia compliant with French privacy laws. Currently, if a French
high school student goes to a French library, reserves a computer, and
types "List of French Jews" into Google, Duckduckgo, or Dogpile, an
adhoc en.wikipedia list of over 850 people (approximately half of them
living) appears in the #2 position (Category: French Jews). In the first
position is the English Wikipedia page "List of French Jews" containing
the following text, originally added in 2010, showing that the
en.wikipedia community is aware that they are breaking French law:
"The French nationality law itself, strongly secular, forbids any
statistics or lists based on ethnic or religious membership."
A French person tagging biographies of living people in en.wp with the
category "French Jews" is a violation of French privacy law which would
expose the Wikipedian to a penalty of €300,000 and/or 5 years imprisonment:
"Le fait, hors les cas prévus par la loi, de mettre ou de conserver en
mémoire informatisée, sans le consentement exprès de l’intéressé, des
données à caractère personnel qui, directement ou indirectement, font
apparaître les origines raciales ou ethniques, les opinions politiques,
philosophiques ou religieuses, ou les appartenances syndicales des
personnes, ou qui sont relatives à la santé ou à l’orientation ou à
l'identité sexuelle de celles-ci, est puni de cinq ans d’emprisonnement
et de 300 000 € d’amende." (source:
There is, to the best of my knowledge, no such category on fr.wp, as
people in France are well aware of the law.
See also "List of West European Jews" / Category: French People of
Jewish descent / Category: French People of Arab descent / Category:
French Freemasons (167), Category: French Atheists (93 including a
recent president), etc.
I noticed in researching the question that the Category "French rapists"
(2 BLP) is associated with the hidden category "No indexed", whereas the
category "French Jews" (100s of BLP) is associated with the hidden
category: "categories requiring diffusion". As a temporary measure (to
avoid actively feeding this info into search engines), perhaps
categories related to racial/ethnic origins, religious & philosophical
opinions could be tagged "No indexed" rather than "requiring diffusion"?
The WMF hosts their servers in the US, the Netherlands and will soon
also be hosting off-shore in Singapore, which probably leads WMF legal
to believe that this grants them immunity from French privacy laws.
Nevertheless, I thought I would mention that this is a potentially
significant problem going forward. Discussion leading to action
correcting this potential avenue of abuse might help the WMF to avoid
litigation, given that the current policies on English Wikipedia
actively facilitate violation of French laws.
(data from petscan.wmflabs.org): French Christians (21 members), French
Hindus (17 members), French Buddhists (9 members), French Muslims (0
members), French Jews (862 members).
Thank you for your time considering how best to address this problem.