Chris Luth wrote:
NEWBIE QUESTION: Sorry for coming into the discussion
a bit late, but
I've been following this for the last couple of days and must have
missed and am still failing to understand the legalities/conflicts of
interest that would prevent WMF from being the issuer of press passes.
What's up with that? Why the need for a separate organization?
I believe that there are no overwhelming obstacles against it. There
has been, traditionally, a severe infrastructure problem for the
foundation -- i.e. not enough funds to have enough people to actually
manage a process like this from the office. Without that
infrastructure, it would be irresponsible for the Foundation to have a
formal policy of issuing press credentials.
Also, note that in the US, a "press credential" is completely unofficial
and something that could be accepted or rejected by any particular
event. I suspect that if someone had a "press credential" from the
Wikimedia Foundation on behalf of Wikinews (probably with some mention
of Wikipedia so that some press people would know it is "us") it would
work quite well.
In some other countries, a "press credential" is a more formal
issued I guess by the government or some other similar "official body",
and so to help people in those languages, there could also be a need for
some paperwork to get recognized or whatever.
I think we should bring Mike Godwin into the conversation.
What I would personally support, barring any compelling legal reasons to
avoid it, would be to fundraise on wikinews itself to get the money for
the Foundation to hire a "Wikinews community liason" - like what Cary
does right now for everyone as a whole - who would be tasked fulltime
with helping the community shape policy about who is accredited, and
then carrying out that policy by, for example, checking IDs, reviewing
references, etc. I don't know what level of strictness we would want to