[Wikimedia-l] The new narrowed focus by WMF: conflicts of interest

Jan-Bart de Vreede jdevreede at wikimedia.org
Sat Oct 27 18:11:05 UTC 2012


So just as a note from me personally (as a individual WMF Trustee member). What I think is the general idea is that 

1) Sue formulates her thoughts on meta rather than privately
2) This is influenced by the public discussion on meta
3) She wraps up at a certain point
4) and sends her final proposition to the board
5) And the board takes her proposition, and the feedback on meta (which she will have included in her proposition) and makes a decision

And in this case I think that all of that was done. Its not a "community-consensus" thing as far as I see. As your Board of Trustees (which also includes your representation) its our task to make that final decision. Having Sue prepare this decision in a public way is a great way of preparing for that decision.


On 27 Oct 2012, at 10:32, ENWP Pine <deyntestiss at hotmail.com> wrote:

> I agree with Denny’s point about COIs in this discussion, and I believe that the same issue has been raised regarding the FDC. 
> I find it helpful when people who have financial interests or other potential COIs disclose that information in their statements on that Meta page and/or in Wikimedia-l depending on where they make their comments, and I would be in favor of a policy requiring that potential conflicts of interest be disclosed in a situation like this. These potential COIs include being a staff member of WMF whose budget or employment would be affected positively or negatively by these proposed changes.
> In my own case, I'm not a fellow or aspiring fellow, chapter executive, paid researcher, or WMF staff person whose department would be affected by these proposed changes, so I believe that as far as my own comments are concerned, I can speak without a financial interest in the outcome of the discussion.
> If we operate by consensus instead of by mere vote-counting, and if editors and WMF staff participate in good faith, then hopefully there will be enough balancing and give-and-take negotiation among those with COIs for a supermajority consensus to solidify. The other option is to ask for people who don’t have potential COIs to make a decision based on the opinions and information provided by others. However, this may all be a moot issue since it appears to me that Sue, a few of her chosen associates, and the Board apparently intend to make decisions themselves, so the community discussion on that Meta talk page will be used for discussion but not for finalizing a decision. Someone please correct me if I’m mistaken.
> Pine 
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