[Wikimedia-l] Go away, community (from WMF wiki at least)

Florence Devouard anthere9 at yahoo.com
Sun May 12 18:44:46 UTC 2013

On 5/12/13 8:13 PM, David Gerard wrote:
> On 12 May 2013 18:47, Florence Devouard <anthere9 at yahoo.com> wrote:
>> Alternatively, it might be good to really move as much as possible of the
>> Wikimedia Foundation Wiki to meta (where at least, the community is in
>> charge of who is admin and who is not).
> This is a good idea anyway.
> Having the WMF wiki become a staff-controlled operation is not an
> outlandish or terrible idea - it's the official site of the nonprofit
> itself, after all. But this was not a good way to do it.
> That said, there are projects who do much worse. Here's GNOME's
> attempt to win the XFree86 Memorial Award for Community Management for
> 2013: https://bugzilla.gnome.org/show_bug.cgi?id=698544
> - d.

:) Yeah, pretty bad.

The main reason I would consider WMF wiki SHOULD NOT be an entirely 
staff-controlled and operated site is the fact we originally wanted it 
to be at least in part multilingual.

Current staff does not seem to be very interested in that original wish.

Some requests for translation are sometimes made but lot's of outdated 
content is still over there. Sometimes, it does not matter too much. 
Other times, it is quite unfortunate. Check out for example

Important ? yes
Should be translated ? I would say "yes, as much as possible"
Should old versions stick there ? I would say vehemently "no, should not"

Still, many languages still display the old version.
The staff will hide itself behind the fact that "only the English 
version matters". Which is why Dutch is still the old version: 
Is that good ? No, I would say it is "not serious".

Who can help clean that up ?
Well... if not the volunteers, then it would have to be the staff job. 
Except I doubt the staff would consider that to be part of its job. If 
only because staff does not speak 300 languages.

What's the best way to motivate volunteers to help with translation and 
update of non-English content ? I am not sure, but probably not in 
removing their admin bit as if they were dangerous people. Right now, I 
would go as far as saying that WMF on the contrary should look out for 
more people to help clean up ;)

How does that happen right now ? Well, volunteers do ask on meta to get 
an account for WMF wiki. Where ? Here: 

And guess who is taking care of giving them access ?
A volunteer who has the technical means to create them accounts.
Oh wait... not any more. Ah, hum. Well, I take it a staff member will do 
that in the future :)


Alternatively, the staff, with the official support of their management 
and the board can decide that the Foundation wiki should not try any 
more to be translated in other languages and should stick to what it 
actually is: a US-based non profit company.

Translations may be non-official... and on meta.


The multilingualism we hoped so dearly has always been an issue. It is 
poorly dealt with on the Wikimedia Foundation blog. Poorly dealt with on 
the Foundation Wiki. Poorly dealt with on OTRS.



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