[Foundation-l] VC - alternative resolution

Milos Rancic millosh at gmail.com
Sat Apr 5 11:29:08 UTC 2008

On Sat, Apr 5, 2008 at 12:09 PM, Jussi-Ville Heiskanen
<cimonavaro at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 4/5/08, Milos Rancic <millosh at gmail.com> wrote:
>  > And, by the way, I was talking not only about the problems from
>  > outsider's perspective. There are a lot of simple or complex problems
>  > of the local communities which are not solved only because there is no
>  > a body which job is to listen those problems. I listed some of them:
>  > You need an interwiki bot? -- Make it! -- even it is a routine task
>  > for a number of bot owners. You want to take care about actuality of
>  > the data inside of articles about countries? -- Do it alone! -- even
>  > it is much more efficient to have one bot for all projects who is
>  > doing that. You want to compile a course from de.wv and en.wv sources?
>  > -- No, you can't do that, they are using different licenses. You want
>  > to connect Spanish, Russian and Dutch biologists who are working on
>  > Wikimedian projects? -- No, you can't do that because there is no a
>  > method for doing so. Or -- do it, no one is stopping you! -- Any help?
>  > -- Help? We don't have such institution.
>  >
>  > I am not saying that we should take base our work around cases like
>  > Russian Wikibooks or Moldovan Wikipedia are. However, as the Board is
>  > the final instance for all real-life and real-time issues, we need the
>  > final instance for community and content related issues. Yes, there
>  > are a lot of ordinary jobs to do and VC's tasks will be full of those
>  > types of jobs. But, if we are not making a general purpose body, then
>  > it is better to think about a number of working groups which would
>  > address particular issues. Making a body which would address
>  > all-but-some community/content problems seems to me as making new
>  > problems.
>  Can you clarify a point for me please. When you speak of a need for a
>  "final instance" for "community and content" related issues, do you
>  mean "final instance" in the sense that it would be "final" in the sense
>  that people would in time learn to respect what it was doing, and then
>  for the most part not argue too hard, unless they felt it was really going
>  seriously in the wrong direction?
>  Authority that comes from respect gained from being on the right side
>  of thorny issues more times than most, is a valuable if not easily
>  obtainable resource. If that is the kind of "final" authority you mean,
>  I have no problem. In fact I would whoop for joy the day I saw that
>  kind of thing get off the ground.
>  If you mean "final instance" in some harder sense, then of course
>  we come to the same problems as have been what the Board has
>  been rightly leery about. Whatever/whoever would be put on point
>  as a hard and fast authority, with no give at all, could very soundly
>  be argued to be an editorial control on the content. And really, we
>  all know we want to avoid that like the plague.

Hm. Actually, your first point (arbitrating in extraordinary
circumstances) is related to the Meta ArbCom, which in the future
shouldn't be a part of VC. An, of course, I don't think that we should
have a body which would take care about about every article. However,
one of the jobs of VC should be taking care about systematic
tendencies inside of the communities.

According to my intuitive understanding of your options, the answer
is, of course, that I don't think that we need the final instance in
the sense of hard and fast authority. The last thing I want is
interfering in issues of well developed communities because some
outsider (in the sense of that community; which includes future VC
members) didn't want to wait a couple of hours or days to leave that
community to solve the problem. At the other side, out-of-project
disputes should be addressed somehow, including solving of heavy bias
(or not so heavy, but systematic bias)  at some project noticed by an

I am still without a better word for the exact meaning for "the final
instance", so I'll try to describe: We need a body which would address
"no one's business". So, if a couple of instances (local admins,
stewards, some committee...) refuse to take some issue as their
business, there should be some "final instance" which will take care
about such issues.

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