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Shortlisting process for Board electionsEdit


This [1] WMF report proclaims that the affiliate shortlisting process for the Board of Trustees elections was created after a community feedback process. The call for feedback it links to, [2] , says that:

> One person on Meta-wiki stated that affiliates should not have a role in the election process, other than encouraging communities to vote. A call with the Sub-Saharan communities proposed a similar approach.

> A person from the CEE (Central and Eastern Europe) region proposed affiliates should create a shortlist of candidates that would later be voted on by the community. This proposal was supported by the attendees of the francophone conversations from the Western & Northern Europe region.

So, it appears this was proposed by a community member & supported by more people in the Europe region, opposed by another person and people in the Sub-Saharan region, and implemented without any further community consultation. This to me seems unfair, but I'd like clarification on this.

It also is concerning to me that this was, as it appears to me right now, decided by only community members in the Europe region, which comprises ~32% of all regional affiliates [3]. It is unclear how other community members were consulted. This appears to be not representative of the demographics of the Wikimedia movement as a whole; according to the 2008 General User Survey [4], editors in the Europe region do not comprise a majority.

I would appreciate clarification on how communities were consulted on this shortlisting process.


EpicPupper (talk) 04:49, 19 June 2022 (UTC)

@EpicPupper: I got the idea from reading Wikimedia_Foundation_Board_of_Trustees/Call_for_feedback:_Board_of_Trustees_elections/Affiliations_Consultation that this idea of a shortlist essentially bubbled up within the board and was then made the focus of any conversations following. Quotes:
  • "In the past, we had separate participation of communities and affiliates. Each of the groups voted in a way similar to Board elections but through a different process. Each chapter, user group, and thematic organization cast one vote. Affiliates elected 2 seats. That's how it was until now. Now, as the 2 categories have merged, at the first level, it is a formal change. We don't have a decision yet, the bylaws don't automatically say that/what we have to change. We could have elections in 2 sets. The community selects lists of candidates and affiliates select (not saying I'm proposing this)."
  • "this is all directed at a particular two-fold goal: to use affiliate as an important resource to allow us to obtain candidates with more expertise/qualifications as candidates, and also to filter the candidates to help the community make the best choices as to who is elected."
  • "the Board is not looking to impose anything but to consult and collect opinions as to what everyone would like to see from this election. Can affiliates give formal endorsements to candidates?"
  • "In some way, whatever the method that is chosen for these two seats, there should be a more restricted field of candidates - and that is where groups (both recognized and unrecognized) can be involved. So maybe a start will be with endorsements; e.g. a candidate should already have some support behind them."
  • "If all community-selected seats are done the same way with community voting, then the result will tend towards the same types of people and there is a suggestion to have different ways to select people to the board - as different methods could produce different results. If only community voting is used, some movement participants will not be represented."
  • "By Victoria: Currently, there are a range of options for affiliates to be involved; e.g. the same way as before (ASBS) or; the affiliates could select among the candidates, and the community votes on those candidates, or swap it around, to have the community vote on a shortlist for the affiliates to vote on."
The idea was then mainly discussed just with the affiliates. The community wasn't exactly disinvited, but people were told that the board wanted primarily to hear from the affiliates:
  • "How should affiliates be involved in the selection of new seats? ... The Board of Trustees is seeking feedback about this question especially, although not solely, from the affiliate community. Everyone is invited to share proposals and join the conversation in the Call for Feedback channels. In addition to collecting online feedback, the Movement Strategy and Governance team will organize several video calls with affiliate members to collect feedback. These calls will be at different times and include Trustees."
I am not aware of any on-wiki Request for Comment (RfC) seeking the community's views on this. This is just part of a general and concerted trend to move any decision-making away from the wikis and away from the established RfC process. Andreas JN466 11:20, 24 June 2022 (UTC)
  • @EpicPupper: Please, see my personal reply here. -- (Board Election Taskforce member, Trustee) Victoria (talk) 16:20, 25 June 2022 (UTC)




[3] reports 139 user groups and 38 chapters. 139+38 = 177; 56/177 = ~32.

[4] EpicPupper (talk) 04:49, 19 June 2022 (UTC)

June 2022 Meeting Outcomes from Wikimedia Foundation Board of TrusteesEdit

Please find a letter with June 2022 Meeting Outcomes from Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees here --NTymkiv (WMF) (talk) 16:38, 26 July 2022 (UTC)