Kelly Martin wrote:
On 6/1/06, Anthere <Anthere9(a)yahoo.com> wrote:
There is something hugely upsetting in the
comments I read in this
thread. It is seeing people complain things are not publicly
discussed... but who do not even comments when the issues are raised
publicly. It is seeing people complain things are not done... but they
do not do things themselves. It is seeing people complain we do not
welcome their help... but they say no when we ask them.
Well, my perspective on the above comments:
I complain about the Foundation to many people. I don't do anything
about it because the structure of the Foundation is such that I am
disenfranchised from actually having any influence other than through
backchannel politicking. The bylaws of the Foundation concentrate all
power in the Board, and further structured so that a majority of Board
members are not responsible to anyone but themselves. This structure
makes the Board inherently resistant to change. I am not sanguine
that the Board will ever even recognize all of the problems that exist
right now, let alone come up with a useful solution.
it is the second time I see you using that expression. What does that
mean "I am not sanguine" ? except for not being an orange which is
probably true ?
So I complain to
my friends and associates, and try to convince them to
agree with me
(that the Board is going about the business of running the Foundation
in the wrong way) with the vague hopes of eventually convincing enough
of the Board members to put their personal interests behind their
fiduciary duty to the Foundation and, for once, start making decisions
that reflect what is best for the Foundation instead of what is best
for that individual Board member. (No, I shall not name names. If
you are on the Board, it's up to you to decide whether I'm talking
about you or not.)
I do not feel concerned.
As to being asked to help: The only representatives of
who have ever asked me to help are Danny Wool and Brad Patrick.
(Well, except for when Jimbo asked me to serve on the enwiki ArbCom,
but he was doing that as Jimbo, not as CEO of the Board.) Even when I
told people that I was ready and willing to help, I never got
requested to do anything. So I've concluded that WMF doesn't really
want my help. Either this is because the WMF has concluded that my
talents are of no use to it, or because the WMF has ignored me when
I've offered to help.
Right. I have one job for you. I forwarded on checkuser list yesterday
an email of someone complaining of misuse of checkuser on fi. I do not
have the time to study the case. You are in charge of exploring the
issue, clarify if there was blantant abuse (in this case, please ask us
to remove the status) or mostly ignorance (in that case, please inform
the checkuser). Do you accept the job ?
So, yes, you may be asking for help, but frankly I
find it hard to
figure out what help you need or who to talk to about it -- and
besides, your volunteer coordinators should be working to match
volunteers with tasks that need doing, instead of making volunteers
hunt around to find something to do that fits their talents. But then
again, that's yet another one of the myriad defects of the WMF: the
Foundation appears to have no clue how to manage volunteers, either.
(Does WMF even have a volunteer coordinator?)
Is the job of a board member
1) define the strategy of the Foundation in the long run
2) manage everyday operations of the organisation
3) focus on human management of volunteers ?
According to books, it is 1. According to reality, it is 2. According to
wishes, is it 3 ?
Let me see... I need
1) someone with good knowledge of cell phones to help us figure what we
could do with wikipedia and cell phone (technical description). Able to
answer all emails on OTRS of cell-phone people proposing various
2) Someone with good graphical skills to improve the look of a CD for
kids 7-13. And make the external jacket. Speaking french will be a bonus.
3) Someone to clean up and rearrange all pages on meta related to the
Foundation. Good english skills required as well as knowledge of the
4) Someone to update various pages on the foundation website. To check
the discrepancies between the english version and the other languages
version. To contact the various editors responsiable of this version to
tell them about the discrepancies. Require : access to WMF site and good
5) A baby-sitter at Wikimania for my baby. Skills : knowledge of kids.
Plump preferred. Male, female, trans welcome. Date and location : early
august in Boston.
6) A lawyer or legal counselling to fix broken contracts received on
OTRS. Skills required : patience and availability.
are not making everyone happy. I am looking for someone to review both
and make new proposals. Additional jobs : doing stats of useage. Asking
Brion to add a system to allow easier consulting. Skills : tough skin.
8) OTRS assistant : job, improve the spam filter. OR, clean up the board
9) Fundraising assistant : someone to help Mav to write a resolution
allowing the creation of that committee. Then, help to make a GREAT
fundraising before summer. Skills : being creative with good
communication ability. Urgent job.
10) Business development : I need someone to help figuring out how much
are trademarks are worth. Example : if we make a dvd, how much to ask
per item. If we make a board game : how much to ask per item.
11) Also in business development. I need someone to collect the names
and addresses of all mirrors (in all languages) and to contact them one
by one to propose them a live feed; Will require to contact translators
to fix languages templates. Should get a tech description from Brion.
Skills and various : should have tech knowledge and OTRS access.
More later as soon as I had time to really think about it.
I imagine I'll anger more than a few people with
this email. I hope
so; maybe out of that anger will come the desire for change (instead
of the desire to kill the messenger, which I fear is more likely to be