User:MF-Warburg/Board election 2013

vide etiam: User:Rschen7754/VoterGuide2013 User:Theo10011/VoterGuide2013.

How I vote, and why:

useful links: Wikimedia Foundation elections/Board elections/2013/Candidates

I based my decisions on a mixture of general considerations of what I knew about the candidates, and answers to the questions. In the latter part, these questions were particularly interesting to me:

My opinions about the importance of the questions (or: what I care about).

  • Part 1
    • 1 Sisterproject of wikipedia - It's somewhat important that Board members know the different projects and that there is not just enwiki. Hopefully a matter of course.
    • 2 About MediaWiki development - This is a very important question. The main problem of WMF is IMHO that idiotic tools which nobody needs are pushed forward by the staffers (cf. the brilliant page wikiafication), while really important software improvements (think of global abusefilter) do not get done or are always postponed.
    • 3 Improving quality - super-boring, the Foundation has next to nothing to do with the content of the projects and the quality of that.
    • 4 Foundation's long-term vision - somewhat important
    • 5 Communication and activity level - very important
    • 6 Distance to the community - very important
    • 7 Network of chapters (affiliates) - somewhat important
    • 8 2012-2013 Annual Plan, Narrowing Focus, and Fundraising - zzz
    • 9 Endowment - very important. Always thought that the Foundation already had such a thing, because in Germany Stiftungen (=foundations) usually work this way. Only recently I got to know by an article in Der Kurier about the Board election that this is not the case.
    • 10 Advocacy - super-boring to me
  • Part 2
    • 1 What will you bring to the board humanly speaking? - super-boring. I don't care for job-interview-like embarassing questions.
    • 2 What skills will you bring to the board? - dito
    • 3 Why should I NOT vote for you? - oh why not.
    • 4 About diversity - somewhat interesting.
    • 5 About trust and understanding - somewhat important!
    • 6 Child protection and the WMF - somewhat important as well.
    • 7 Anonymous editing of Wikipedia biographies - Ridiculous question. First of all, enwiki's editing restrictions are completely unimportant for the Board. Second, it would only be concerning if a candidate agrees to the question here ("real name registration" and stuff).
    • 8 Foundation wiki coup and multilingual communication - very important!
    • 9 Dozens WMF private wikis and "no place to work together" - rather boring
    • 10 What will you leave to the WMF after being in the board? - a bit interesting
  • Part 3
    • 1 Regional Wikis to acquire new content and authors - somewhat interesting.
    • 2 LGBT visibility - super-boring. And a thematic organization shouldn't be created just because it's good for looking politically correct.
    • 3 Use of off-wiki sites which harm the Foundation and individual Wikimedians - ?
    • 4 About the approval of new Chapters - I don't care about this issue, but it's somewhat important
    • 5 Executive director selection and oversight - somewhat important
    • 6 About overspending and/or misspending - ?
    • 7 Narrowing focus and funding allocations - boring.

I would have definitely voted for Millosh, but unfortunately he withdrew his candidature.

I do prefer some candidates that got a yes vote from me more than others, but since the electoral system this year has no "ranking" features, I won't give a ranking here either. You can probably see it from my comments anyway.

  1. Leigh Ann Thelmadatter (Thelmadatter)
    "While I hate to trash anyone's valuable volunteer time, I do worry about the "dilution" of the Wikipedia brand. New projects are exciting but real value is had only with long-term, stable participation by a community". Very true. Excitement over new projects often seems to high to me and just be fueled by "yay we got a new project", which is the wrong idea. "We have pretty clear standards about what constitutes a viable new-language Wikipedia (to take out of the incubator) but no such for other wiki-type projects." Disagree. We do: It's simply based on activity in the Incubator (obviously, for already existing sister projects only. New sister project proposals are not hosted on Incubator).
    "As noted elsewhere, we have no criteria for closing a project." <- I read that as we should get some. Good.
    "While I have no desire to trash anyone's service to the community, I mentioned to Signpost that we should consider term limits for board members. It is not possible to keep the same energy level after a certain amount of time. It is also important to have new voices on the Board to prevent stagnation." Agreed.
    I didn't understand her answer to the "distance to the community" question, honestly
    "As of right now, I do not believe there is enough oversight over affiliates, as shown by some of the more recent problems with various chapters." <- I guess I disagree, some chapters maybe do weird stuff, but most seem to be behaving well.
    Good answer to the diversity question.
    I find the answers on the "anonymous editing" and Foundation/Community-co-working rather difficult.
    "I dont see how chapter status has to be so intricately tied to nation-state" Agreed.
    (Looks like 5:4). I didn't know her before, in conclusion I will &  support.
  2. Phoebe Ayers (phoebe)
    rightly identifies problems about the (non-existing) closing projects process
    "I do strongly support the principle that engineering should also be tasked with supporting the existing community (which includes the core meta-processes that stewards are involved in)" <- Thank you. IMHO it's important that the Board's excuse cannot always be "yeah, weeee don't make such detailed decisions, we have staffers!" And the staffers then only do nonsense which seems to please the Board because it's fancy wikiafication, believed to improve "user experience" and "new editor attraction". People who are too stupid to register using the old form cannot edit either.
    "I don't think real-name registration is the way to go; how in the world would we scale such a thing across all 280 languages, even if it was philosophically desirable (which I don't think it is)?" <- +1000
    Good ideas on "no place to work together"
    In conclusion, I'm not that convinced, but still, &  support.
  3. Francis Kaswahili Kaguna (Francis Kaswahili)
    The answers are all weird and hardly understandable. I doubt this user has any real understanding of Wikimedia (community and/or Foundation). Even if, he has serious lacks of understanding copyright (see user talk:Francis Kaswahili) and the English language. &  oppose.
  4. Jeromy-Yu Chan (Yuyu)
    I didn't know him before, but was convinced to &  support based on answers to the questions.
    "I think as the Wikipedia already become a brand, so we have to focus on bringing more people involved in Wikipedia, and then seeing them if they want to switch or also contribute in other projects" <- I think this approach is actually honest and an obviously true one.
    He also has good thoughts on communication of the Board via mailing lists, and about "distance between Foundation and Community". Not to mention that he clearly speaks out against the BLP real-name-registration blabla (question 2.7).
    I find the answer to the regional wiki question to be on the spot.
  5. Samuel Klein (Sj)
    Yes please. No matter if I disagree on particular issues, he is the Board member who obviously has most contact with the community. Who I have no problem naming a part of the community. Keep on! &  support.
  6. Michel Aaij (Drmies)
    Don't know him. No answers on most questions, and I don't really understand most of the lengthy answers which were given. Sorry, &  oppose.
  7. Tom Morton (ErrantX)
    Sister projects answer unconvincing.
    Good ideas about question 2, MediaWiki development. I think "Encourage volunteer teams to build tools, features and plugins" is naive though
    "The board should actively display the capacity to question their decisions in light of objection." <- yes please? The Board sucks at this currently, no?
    I like the answer to the Distance to the community question.
    In conclusion, I'm rather divided on this candidature, I decided to &  oppose.
  8. María Sefidari (Raystorm)
    "This should ideally be determined by both the engineering team and the community. There is no other way. Engage the specific community (be it stewards or any other), and listen to its members about their needs." <- ok
    Important points about the participation of the non-English speaking community
    "Nowadays, it takes some effort to keep on top of what is going on in the movement. A discussion started on some page on Meta is moved to another page on Meta and then jumps to the Wikimedia-l mailing list." <- she knows what she is talking about
    "Trust and understanding" question: answer is a bit wobbly
    2.6, 2.7 ok
    &  support.
  9. Kat Walsh (Mindspillage)
    Did not answer any of the questions up to when I started writing this page very shortly before the beginning of the election. And that even when the election was already postponed. I must also say that I have never heard much of what she did as a member of the Board. Therefore, clearly &  oppose.
  10. Liam Wyatt (Wittylama)
    I found this the most difficult to decide. I think he is quite right in most of his answers, but nevertheless something holds me back. I decided to &  support anyway.
  11. John Vandenberg (John Vandenberg)
    The answer to question 2 is "I believe our most urgent development priority should be a modern discussion tool, like mw:Extension:LiquidThreads." GODVERDOMME WHAT DO YOU SAY? LiquidThreads is the root of all evil, I am martyred enough already when I sometimes need to face it on or And Flow, aka LiquidThreads 2.0 is not going to be any better. "This should also help stewards, as oversighting individual threads is easier from a community management perspective than oversighting an entire discussion page." Well, this is not false, but definitely not an issue any steward would see as urgent. No no no. [here formerly something wrong was said, see talk page. I was however not convinved enough by other things to support. Therefore my vote stayed &  oppose as initially stated here].

--MF-W 01:14, 8 June 2013 (UTC)