Gerard Meijssen wrote:
always many vocal supporters, and there are always people who
are silently opposed. Or rather, they are silent until those in power
give in to the lobby and create new wikis, and then they open up with
ridicule and criticism. We've seen it many times before.
-- Tim Starling
This is in my opinion a really nasty argument. It basically says, that
anything can be frustrated because there are people who are silently
opposed. It negated all the need of building a visible consensus or
opinion. In essence, given this as a "reasonable" argument, anything
goes as long as you are able to support yourself.
Basically you say to the people who want these new languages that they
should piss off. That your Wikimedia Foundation is not their Wikimedia
Foundation. That they do not need information in their language.
Look, I know my views are extreme, and I know they're not representative
of the community. I never said those people who were silently opposed
were in the majority, I'm just saying that I have some support. But if
you can't get a single sysadmin out of about 15 to support your cause,
or a single Board member, where is the consensus in favour?
Yes, I'm biased, but why don't you ask Brion instead? He has generally
been in favour of adding languages, his only concern is the criticism
he'll receive if he does so.
If you like, go to [[m:Developers]], work your way down the list of
people with shell access, and make a request to each one in turn. I'll
even give them a tutorial if they want to create a wiki.
What I'm saying is, don't make this about me. I have my opinions, but
there's no reason you can't work around them.
I can't help but feel sympathetic here, the politics involved are
complex, the method for "working around" my opinions might not be
obvious. So let me give you some advice. Here's what I think you should
do to get new languages created:
1) Find a sysadmin who is willing to get involved
2) Develop a language creation policy, with the close involvement of
your chosen sysadmin. Get their agreement on every detail, give whatever
concessions are necessary to acheive this.
3) With help from me or Brion, your chosen sysadmin should then become
familiar with the technical details of wiki creation, and should be able
to perform it in the future with little fuss.
If you can't find a sysadmin (i.e. someone with shell access) for item
1, find someone with CVS access instead. Have them develop a web
interface for language addition. I've already developed a script for
adding wikis (remember the create wiki button), so they can use that as
a base. Make it so that anyone with steward access (or something) can
add languages. That widens your field from 15 to about 60.
If there's no one with CVS access willing to do it, then find anyone at
all who knows PHP. Have them develop the web interface as a patch, then
ask someone with CVS access to commit it.
I will support this process. I'll offer technical advice to the
developer or sysadmin involved, I'll commit patches to CVS and I'll
activate the automated interface on the live site, assuming it works. I
reserve the right to express my opinions in the policy discussion, but I
promise I won't resort to silly stunts like threatening to leave.
I generally don't fix bugs or upload language files for wikis such as
jbo and got, and I reserve the right to extend that to any particularly
objectionable new wikis. That shouldn't be a problem though because
Brion is happy to work on any Wikimedia wiki.
I know this all seems like a lot of work, but I'm am telling you
honestly, this is what I think is required. It'll satisfy the Board
(they don't have to ratify the policy), it'll satisfy the developers and
it'll allow a compromise between those for and against new languages.
All you need is one developer. If your cause really is a worthy one, you
should be able to find one.
-- Tim Starling