[Foundation-l] Communication

Keegan Peterzell keegan.wiki at gmail.com
Sun Jun 6 04:13:37 UTC 2010

Okay, so from my perspective, here's where we are:

The WMF staff cares about the projects and we respect the work that they do.
 Additionally, they do a much better job than the other top...well, one
hundred websites in the world in communicating with their volunteers and
their userbase.  The flip-side is that this is the reason that most
organizations put up a wall between administration and staff.  Not that this
is healthy, and I certainly don't encourage it, but this is what a thread
like the ones we've had recently fosters: Damned if you do, damned if you

1. MediaWiki software support
      Damned if you don't:  Volunteers won't necessarily jump on fixing the
software patches/extensions if they are to hard and there is not enough
           time or energy to go around.
      Damned if you do:  You didn't listen to the community and implemented
these changes without review.

2. Project support:
      Damned if you do:  We demand that the office intervene in pushing
through community requested enhancements, and we will complain about them
when you do.
      Damned if you don't:  Why do we pay these people?

3. Takedown notices/other staff or founder actions:
     Damned if you don't:  The Wikimedia Foundation does not care about its
userbase, and requests that all issues about content being directed at the
uploader (at their own legal expense).
     Damned if you do:  GET OFF MY LAWN

I'm sorry if this seems terse.  Well, actually I'm not.  The Foundation is
as actively engaged as it can be and hands off as it can be.  Say an
"engine" as it was put doesn't like vector.  Well, I don't either.  But what
do you want?  Polls?  Noticeboards?  Even more discussion than we already
have now?

I'm a big fan of discussions, I'll talk about most anything endlessly.  This
is talking about running a business, and sometimes that requires stifling
discussion until the appropriate time for ideas and reforms have come about
as well as {{sofixit}}.  Criticism is what should build a business model,
and I'm certain that the WMF takes this to heart because, as mentioned, they
don't have the steel heart wall that most major websites do.

Long story short:  chasing+tail=killing time.

Just my opinion.



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