Dear Math(ML) enthusiasts,
mathematical expressions are essential building blocks for the
representation of mathematical knowledge in Wikimedia Projects and
To coordinate the maintenance and development of tools relevant to the
global mathematical community the
Wikimedia Community Group Math 
was established in 2019.
Ultimately, the group's mission is to decide on pragmatic steps
towards the goal of making mathematical knowledge easily accessible to
every human being.
In 2021, some implementation details of the caching mechanism of the
Math rendering pipeline had been updated to the latest software
development paradigms employed in Wikimedias codebase. In addition,
Wikimedia joined the W3C MathML working to pave the ground for native
and accessible Math rendering in browsers without workarounds like
images or special text formatting to match mimic math rendering.
For 2022, the goal is to further simplify the rendering process of
mathematical expressions and to continue the work on the MathML 4
standard . Moreover, we aim to facilitate more active participation
in discussing the next steps in Math-related developments for
Wikimedia projects. Therefore, we strive to further maximize our
geographical and gender diversity.
In contrast to 2021, where most improvements remain under the hood of
the Math extension codebase , in 2022, there are even a few
achievements this year.
- We have a new Wikimedia hosted mailing list math(a)lists.wikimedia.org
(if you were subscribed to the old mailing list, you should have been
transferred to the new mailing list)
- Math is now bundled within the default distribution of MediaWiki 
- The rendering of \omicron was fixed
If you receive this email but you did not sign up for any of the
mailing lists in the recipient list, you might be in the BCC field and
want to subscribe to our new mailing list ;-)
All the best
André and Moritz
https://schubotz.org | +49 1578 047 1397
Please note: all replies sent to this mailing list will be immediately directed to Wikimedia-l, the public mailing list of the Wikimedia community. For more information about Wikimedia-l:
WikimediaAnnounce-l mailing list -- wikimediaannounce-l(a)lists.wikimedia.org
To unsubscribe send an email to wikimediaannounce-l-leave(a)lists.wikimedia.org
The Wikimedia Foundation’s Global Advocacy team is excited to announce the
approval of the Human Rights Policy
by the Board of Trustees on 8 December 2021. Please read our blog post
about the policy and what it means for the Wikimedia Foundation’s work in
the coming years on Diff. We invite you to join representatives of the
Foundation’s Global Advocacy and Human Rights teams here
<http://meet.google.com/wio-vdkw-phd> for a conversation hour tomorrow, 10
December, at 10:00 AM ET (15:00 UTC) to address any immediate concerns,
questions, or suggestions regarding this policy or how it will be
implemented. The session will be recorded for later viewing and you may
submit questions by email to myself (rgaines(a)wikimedia.org) and Ziski Putz (
zputz(a)wikimedia.org) ahead of or following the conversation hour.
Additional conversation hours on this policy will be made available in the
*Ricky Gaines *(he/him/his)
Senior Manager, Advocacy Audiences
Before this last 21st day in the 21st year of 21st century
is globally over, I try to re-initiate re-thinking
on this 15 years old proposal for a Wikipedian-in-residence
but also articles in (only) 27 language Wikipedias,
Meta, Outreach wiki and elsewhere
for updating the notion of WIR and roles it performs in Wikimedia,
an ecosystem of diverse entities, dynamics and relations.
As Wikimedians with wider perspective than a single wiki project, often
more than a single language and for sure more than single community, gear
up to discuss and act on 2030 strategy, that includes new initiatives, new
formations of decentering resources, new content, forms and methods of
working, with new priorities, conditions, tools, services and what
not…there is also a value in reflecting and reimagining what is already
established but often overlooked practice.
Some of the WIR practitioners have been self-reflecting on and off publicly
https://wikistrategies.net/5-things-wikipedian-in-residence/ and engaging
with communities https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tc9YgFm2eso there was also
3 years ago WREN UG (Wikimedians in Residence Exchange Network User Group)
was recognized with the aim to protect the common elements of the role and
for creating a peer support network of new and experienced WIRs for
collaboration and to encourage a global professional environment which
inspires institutions to appoint persons to engage with Wikimedia.
In recent times Wikipedian-in-Residence, is more often
Wikimedian-in-Residence, in rapid growth of Commons and Wikidata (but also
in 2021 first one in Wiktionary) and sometimes Wikimedian-at-Large, in more
generalized practice of strategy or direction setting work.
Additionally in time of pandemic when doing physical events is challenging
and many of the (potential) partner organizations are closing down or
limiting public events to bare essential, short and transient it is more
important than ever that individuals (rather than cohorts of editathon
enthusiasts) keep revisiting institutions and work with them in a most
flexible mode and scale.
Finally to start both re-visioning and maybe even re-positioning WIRs in
Wikimedia we should think of what this network of ‘free agents’ can bring
towards 2030, beyond what WMF, affiliates, UGs, HUBs, WikiProjects and
other organizational forms can. Also think how much more useful this
initial inspiration of artists, writers and researchers in residence could
be if these creative and critical roles in the art and cultural sector get
embraced and encouraged more often and more intentionally.
we had articles in Germany published connecting the activities of Wikimedia
Enterprise with our licensing advocacy. Please find below the article of a
filmmaker, published last week in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, one
of the large German newspapers. Below you find our response, published this
week in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. I hope this is useful for
*Wikimedia perverts the common good*
*Wikimedia plans to commercialize its content. At the same time, the
organization is lobbying hard to get its hands on high-quality free content
from public broadcasters. This is ruining the filmmakers*.
The Wikipedia information platform has so far been financed by donations
from Silicon Valley tech giants, among others. These include primarily the
market-dominating Internet giants such as Google, Facebook, Apple et
cetera, all of which earn money through traffic with content from
Wikipedia. In specialist circles, these donations are regarded as a
reciprocal business: Donors and Wikipedia profit from each other.
Wikimedia is the operating organization behind Wikipedia, but it has long
been looking for a stable business model to finance itself. In the spring
of 2021, Wikimedia finally announced that it would build a corporate
interface that would simplify the automated use of Wikipedia content and
for which commercial companies would pay. In other words: money is to be
made with the content on Wikipedia. For example, with services such as the
voice assistants Siri <https://www.faz.net/aktuell/technik-motor/thema/siri>
or Alexa, which access content via Wikipedia. The donation business based
on reciprocity, as described above, would thus be transformed into a proper
business relationship. The name for it: Wikimedia Enterprise API.
For this business to be profitable in the long term, Wikimedia must ensure
the comprehensive supply of information on Wikipedia, but also enhance it
for the social networks
high-quality images and films. Expanded offerings increase demand. And in
order to secure the capital-rich clientele in the long term - according to
the law of Internet capitalism - Wikipedia could also become the dominant
platform in the education sector for images and films that can be accessed
as free as possible.
Contempt for the state and collectivism
Wikimedia Deutschland's intensive lobbying campaign for so-called "free
licenses", which has been ongoing for several years, should also be
understood in this context. Public films, especially documentaries, are to
be offered free of charge on Wikipedia via CC licensing (Creative Commons
licenses). Many know this campaign under the formula "Public money = Public
good". A vulgarization of the idea of the common good that devalues the
legal status of goods whose production takes place through state
redistribution or in publicly supported economic segments such as the film
and television industry. The claim is an expression of a typical
contemporary amalgamation of libertarian contempt for the state and
collectivist ideals, which in this case hides quite shamelessly behind
rhetoric about the common good and flickering fantasies of the "free
In recent years, Wikimedia's lobbying activities around the reform of
European copyright law have resulted in striking rejection from German
production and copyright associations. With the public broadcasters, on the
other hand, they have been somewhat successful: At the intensive
instigation of Wikimedia, there have been pilot tests with CC-licensed
clips from productions of the "Terra X" documentary series (ZDF) in the
last two years. And indeed, CC clauses are increasingly found in the fine
print of individual Terra X production contracts. This is the result of
so-called "round tables" at which, it should be noted, no representation of
the German producer community was present. Wikimedia, at any rate, is
celebrating its statistics today; the Terra-X clips are generating
respectable user numbers on the Wikipedia page.
The German film and television industry and all those creatively involved
are now rubbing their eyes in the face of how this rose-tinted deception is
catching on, not only among broadcaster executives but also in media policy
circles. They have all failed to ask the obvious question: Why does
Wikimedia need CC-licensed public service content at all? Wikimedia could
also simply enter into a blanket licensing agreement with the relevant
collecting societies such as VG Bild-Kunst. Just like schools,
universities, and libraries do. And just as Wikimedia itself wants to
conclude user agreements with Google
<https://www.faz.net/aktuell/wirtschaft/thema/google>, Apple, Amazon or
Facebook for facilitated access to content held on Wikipedia. It would be
easy to solve all the legal issues. And thanks to the collecting societies
that represent the interests of filmmakers, authors and ancillary copyright
holders would also have their fair or livelihood-protecting share of the
Propaganda for "free licenses"
Wikimedia has rejected VG Bild-Kunst's offer to license protected works. As
long as its campaign in Germany has not completely failed, the
organization is apparently continuing to speculate on CC-licensed,
high-quality public-domain freeware, for which it does not have to conclude
licensing agreements with the collecting societies precisely because it is
already CC-licensed. A good deal for Wikimedia and the Internet giants. A
disastrous one for the production landscape.
Notwithstanding. Self-publication of content via Creative Commons on
subject-specific platforms or in social media makes perfect sense for
certain content such as academic publications or even NGO or hobby films.
Professional film works, on the other hand, always represent bundles of
legally guaranteed legal rights for script, direction, production, camera,
music et cetera. Films created under professional market conditions are
simply not suitable for simplified publication via Creative Commons
Wikimedia ignores these facts in its ongoing propaganda about "free
licenses" and waves away the criticism with colorful flags that say "common
good". In their own interest. At the expense of us filmmakers, at the
expense of authors and copyright holders.
The German film and television landscape is facing enormous challenges due
to the growing importance of platforms and the resulting dynamics in the
audiovisual market. Perhaps as never before. At this time, it is crucial
that those with political responsibility as well as the public broadcasters
use these challenges in intensive dialog with filmmakers as an opportunity
to sustainably strengthen the production landscape in all its diversity.
Even better, to allow its creative power to unfold better than before.
What filmmakers need for this are stable legal foundations and fair market
standards. The stickers with the vulgar formula "public money = public
good" call these foundations into question. They should now finally be
scraped off the windshields of media policy in Germany.
David Bernet is a documentary filmmaker and co-chair of AG DOK
(Professional Association of Documentary Filmmakers in Germany).
Free licenses for the common good
by Dr. Christian Humborg, Executive Director of Wikimedia Deutschland
Public money - public good! With this formula, Wikimedia Deutschland is
campaigning for knowledge content that is financed with tax money or the
broadcasting fee to be available to everyone. Some see their business model
threatened by this demand. "This is ruining filmmakers," reads an opinion
piece published this week by documentary filmmaker and co-chair of AG DOK,
This is a view that ignores the possibility of new financing models,
especially for filmmakers and media professionals - and above all the
absolute necessity of finally adapting the public broadcasting system in
Germany to the realities of the 21st century. Politicians and the
broadcasting commissions of the federal states themselves have long
recognized that something has to be done. Broadcasting content only via the
traditional channels of radio and television no longer does justice to the
mission of the public broadcasters. If you want to create good, reliable
content for everyone, you have to offer it in the way it is used today:
Accessible at any time, shareable, adaptable.
It is alarming that, in this situation, creative people are being ground
down in the dispute between content exploiters such as film companies and
publishers, platforms, public broadcasters and politicians. But it is
incomprehensible that David Bernet points the finger at Wikipedia and
Wikimedia, of all places.
The knowledge content financed by taxes and broadcasting fees is manifold,
but access and use are anything but self-evident: Why are publicly financed
research data behind paywalls of private specialist publishers? Why is the
Axel Springer publishing house forced to acquire rights for the broadcast
of the historically significant Elefantenrunde on election night? Why don't
public broadcasters make these rights available from the outset, especially
when it comes to purely in-house productions? Wikimedia is not concerned
with entertainment or weekly sporting events. But publicly funded knowledge
content should be free. It should be permanently findable, usable and
available regardless of location.
Freely licensed - and adequately funded
Creatives - apart from a few superstars - still earn far too little money
from their valuable work. Interest groups and employer organizations, above
all public broadcasters, urgently need to work on fair remuneration. At the
same time, it is also a matter of greater public appreciation of their
work. I hardly know any creatives who are only concerned about the money
and not also about attention. Provided that they are fairly remunerated,
free licenses can address both points.
If creators receive five euros for their content and another one euro each
for two subsequent uses, what would be so bad about it if they received
seven euros instead and the work was free for that? Also in terms of
predictable financial planning, I would prefer the latter. In fact,
creatives are regularly confronted with so-called total buyout clauses as
the only contract model, but without free licensing and without reuse
Regardless of the financing, the free licensing of content often fails due
to the lack of suitable contract templates. Experience shows that those who
have to deal with the necessary formalities for every project again - and
sometimes against resistance - quickly give up. Public broadcasters
therefore urgently need to develop contract templates that enable editorial
teams and commissioned creatives to produce content under free licenses in
an uncomplicated and legally secure manner.
One thing is clear: Whether creators are adequately compensated for their
services by public broadcasters should not depend on licensing. Free
licenses bring great advantages for broadcasters and society, such as
simpler and longer-lasting usability, simpler rights clearance, and
potentially greater visibility. These advantages should also be remunerated
accordingly. In any case, creators and editors must be enabled to use free
licenses without fear of loss of income.
One reason for the difficult negotiating position of creative professionals
is the lack of a strong lobby. For the many creatives, negotiations on an
equal footing would only be possible if individuals did not pull out. Just
how difficult it is to act collectively in the face of monopolists was
demonstrated again in the newspaper market last week, for example, when it
became known that Madsack had signed a contract with Google for Showcase.
The intention to bundle the negotiating power on the side of the content
users in Corint Media did not work out at that point. The role of
collecting societies is extremely important and it is to be welcomed that
they are no longer allowed to represent only their members in some sectors.
It's also about reach
Wikimedia has always urged rights compliance and at the same time called
for the modernization of copyright where it no longer functions reasonably
in a digital age. On the other hand, it was the large advertising platforms
such as YouTube whose rise and growth would hardly have been conceivable
without disregard for legal standards. Precisely because Wikimedia respects
copyright, it relies on free licenses that make it possible for everyone to
use and edit content permanently and in a legally secure manner.
Furthermore, Wikimedia welcomes all considerations for a non-commercial,
European media platform as a basis for the exchange of publicly funded
content. Instead, public broadcasters in EU member states mostly limit
themselves to short-term collaborations, limited also by national
exploitation licenses, while at the same time uploading content to globally
available commercial platforms such as Youtube.
The example of Terra X from ZDF shows that there are distribution
alternatives, such as the Wikimedia platform Commons. The Terra X clips
posted there alone currently achieve more than two million views per month.
To put it in perspective, that's two million views more than if they were
to appear only in the media libraries of the public broadcasters for a year.
Making Terra X clips available benefits the quality of Wikipedia, no
question. But it primarily benefits the viewers - and it's good for Terra
X's sustainable reach. Reaching many people is the mission of public
broadcasters. Not to mention, Wikipedia articles committed to a neutral
point of view are certainly a more suitable environment for public service
information content than YouTube and other commercial platforms.
The collaboration between ZDF and Wikipedia on the Terra-X broadcast comes
from a volunteer group. This group, "Wiki Loves Broadcast," points out in
its response to
David Bernet's post that it is solely up to the volunteer community to
incorporate content like ZDF's clips into Wikipedia. Neither Wikimedia
Deutschland nor the Wikimedia Foundation can influence this.
Knowledge that belongs to everyone
Wikimedia is financially independent. Wikimedia is financed by donations
and membership fees from the millions of people who use Wikipedia and other
wiki projects. In concrete terms, Wikimedia Deutschland is backed by just
under 100,000 association members. In total, more than 500,000 people
supported Wikimedia Deutschland financially last year. In 2021, there was
actually money from platforms. While the figure in 2020 was 0%, in 2021 it
accounted for about 0.2% of revenue. I do not see any threat to
independence in this order of magnitude.
Internationally, too, millions of small donations ensure precisely this
independence. For the coming year - as in previous years - we expect
payments from companies and donations of more than $1,000 to account for
less than 20% of the Wikimedia Foundation's total income.
Two things are certain: Wikimedia cannot sell content at all, because
Wikimedia does not own any content, unlike any creative person. No profit
flows from Wikimedia to individuals, but all income is used solely for the
non-profit projects. Personally, I'm glad that among the world's major
internet platforms there is at least one that is not concerned with profit.
On Sun, Jan 30, 2022 at 6:11 PM Nathan <nawrich(a)gmail.com> wrote:
> I had the same reaction! Lots of old memories.
> I wonder, did we ever find out if the Lila-era WMF paid lots of
> ex-employees in exchange for non-disparagement?
> Reading through the thread, I find it very confusing how hard people
> worked to make sure information like that never got out.
I think it’s less interesting how many/how much was spent on
non-disparagements, and more interesting what a general post-mortem of
that period would show.
Some questions asked then are still things that would be useful to ask (at
least about the future, it’s been six years so probably not *that* useful
to ask them about 2015-2016 anymore):
(1) What mechanisms was/is the board using to measure ED performance? for
example, at the time, the board did not do executive team exit interviews;
why not? has that changed? A board shouldn’t micromanage an ED of course,
but it also has a responsibility to make sure it has some idea what is
(2) What mechanisms was/is the board using to measure organizational
health? For example, in 2015 we did an employee engagement survey only when
morale had already plummeted over a cliff; the board never asked for one.
Should it have? If not, what should it have been doing instead? (The way it
did listen to staff—anonymous backchannels available only to certain
staff—was… honestly not ideal. I understand that the HR team now does
regular engagement surveys; no idea if those are reported to the board’s
Talent and Culture Committee?)
(3) Does the board have any bright line tests for new appointed board
members in terms of what positions and past actions are/aren’t acceptable?
How is appointment, more generally, handled? (The board genuinely does
badly need experienced tech company leadership, because for better or for
worse WMF is a tech company. But what lessons could have been learned from
the failed(?) appointments during Lila’s tenure? Would any of them have
been relevant now?)
(4) What has the board done to address the challenge of the lifetime board
seat, and “founder syndrome” more generally? When I posted here about this
question a year ago, many employees and long-time editors immediately
**but privately** thanked me for raising the issue. That is, in my
experience, much more telling about the WMF staff experience than anything
to do with board elections.
It’s almost certainly too late to do a proper post-mortem - it’s been
almost six years! - and it’d certainly be a distraction from Maryana’s new
leadership. But perhaps the next generation of community-elected board
members could pick up the forward-looking versions of these questions.
 Non-disparagement clauses might be interesting to understand within
that context, but simply listing who did/didn’t take one, or how much was
spent, *without the broader context *of legitimate exec team turnover,
burnout, disempowerment, low pay for employees expected to live in SF, etc.,
would be unhelpful to the movement and possibly damaging to those
 membership not updated in 2+ years?
; minutes not updated in 7+ years?