[Foundation-l] How to contact the foundation's legal department?

Casey Brown lists at caseybrown.org
Sat Dec 18 19:24:10 UTC 2010

On Sat, Dec 18, 2010 at 5:13 AM, Federico Leva (Nemo)
<nemowiki at gmail.com> wrote:
> Please stop it: this is incorrect and perhaps you should at least double
> check if someone says it's incorrect, especially after a WMF staffer
> like Jon has confirmed so.

On Sat, Dec 18, 2010 at 12:21 PM, Huib Laurens <sterkebak at gmail.com> wrote:
> Why are you saying the staff answer is wrong? If staff says use
> legal at wikimedia.org why are you changing it?

Wow, you guys need to stop being so accusatory and rude; please stop
assuming bad faith.  No one's calling anyone a liar and they're both
actually right, but in different ways.

Dan's working with the Foundation for the fundraiser (so he's a
"staffer" too), was an early legal intern, and has manned the legal
queue on OTRS for years.  Jon is a relatively new staffer with Office
IT who's been helping cleanup e-mail addresses, aliases, and
everything else related to Office IT.

Stated simply, Jon was giving a *technical* answer, while Dan was
giving a more *procedural* and policy-based answer.

Here's the full story/background, as far as I know:

Traditionally, we never really published a "legal" address.  All
complaints/issues were directed to the general Wikimedia contact
address (info at wikimedia), which leads to OTRS.  These complaints were
then later sorted to their proper destination:  info-en, another
language queue, out to a staff member, to the legal queue, etc.
Tickets needing legal team attention, like from real lawyers talking
about litigation, went to the legal queue.  Since the legal queue/team
is quite small and most people do not actually need to talk to them,
we never publicized the direct address to the legal queue... this is
the legal-en@ address that Dan's talking about.

More recently, a "legal@" alias has been created which goes straight
to the current/interim General Counsel.  I would assume that the
reason this was created was because the Foundation has started using
aliases a lot more.  They probably didn't realize that we
intentionally didn't make that address since most people didn't
actually *need* the GC... or they did realize that, but decided it
wouldn't be an issue anymore and decided that an alias would be a good
idea anyway. :-)

As Dan says, they'll need to figure out internally how mail should be
redirected properly and how to make the best use of both the legal
team and the interim GC's times.  However, I wanted to make it clear
that neither of them is really "wrong" or calling each other a liar.

Casey Brown

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