[Wikimedia-l] Community consultation + Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director selection process

Oliver Keyes okeyes at wikimedia.org
Fri Jan 31 21:52:10 UTC 2014

On 31 January 2014 12:55, James Salsman <jsalsman at gmail.com> wrote:

> Craig Franklin wrote:
> >...
> > it would be grossly unprofessional for Erik, Jan-Bart, or anyone else
> > to publicly discuss the relative merits of people who may or may not
> > be involved in a confidential hiring process....
> No, the Board resolved to "consult the community as necessary to
> assist with identifying, evaluating, and selecting candidates" as per
> http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Resolution:Appointing_and_authorizing_a_transition_committee_in_the_search_of_a_new_Executive_Director
> How is it possible for the community to evaluate and select candidates
> without a transparent discussion of their individual merits?
> Easily; I think you're simply reading the resolution incorrectly. It can
be interpreted as "each individual candidate should be publicly outed and
discussed", sure, but I don't think that's what it means.

I interpret the resolution to mean candidates, plural, as a group, not
candidates as a collection of singular subjects. Or to put it another way:
the community can help with identifying candidates by suggesting people who
should be invited to apply (we did that) The community can help with
evaluating and selecting candidates by explaining what they'd like to see
in the new ED (we did that too). This doesn't extend to "the community
should be involved with every candidate as part of their individual
interview-and-hiring processes"; for all the reasons James gives below,
that would be a startling thing to see from the board, and something they'd
say explicitly if they actually intended to say it. I think the error may
be on the part of the reader and not the writer.

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