[Foundation-l] [Announcement] update in board of trustees membership

George Herbert george.herbert at gmail.com
Tue Dec 18 19:07:01 UTC 2007

On Dec 18, 2007 10:55 AM, Ray Saintonge <saintonge at telus.net> wrote:
> Milos Rancic wrote:
> > While WMF is better the it was, there are still a number of systematic
> > problems. The main problem *is* ambivalent position of the Board:
> > something between despotic, oligarchic and representative democratic
> > body. (Of course, in the sense of from where power comes, not in the
> > sense of methods.)
> >
> This is a fundamental problem in democratic organizations, despite the
> fact that it has been repeatedly stated that Wikipedia (and hence
> Wikimedia) is not a democracy.

I don't know about the "...and hence"; WMF is not en.wikipedia

WMF is a traditional charity company organization, with the added
wrinkle that most of the board of directors come from the community
via open elections.  In that sense we resemble a republic, not a
democracy, but it's still not a governmental structure... it's a
charity company, mostly-elected board and hired executive(s) and

> Rulership structures want to get on with
> the business at hand, and it can be terribly frustrating when decisions
> must be made to wait for any kind of consensus from the populace.  We
> even have difficulty defining just who that populace is, and that makes
> it more difficult to know who should be a participant in the consensus.
> While the Paris Commune of 1871 debated, the outside forces did not
> hesitate to do what was necessary to run them over.

I think you're confusing the projects and Foundation too much, and
misreading how the Foundation works.

Governmental analogies only go so far, and I think yours have gone
past the breaking point...

-george william herbert
george.herbert at gmail.com

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