Wikimedia Foundation elections/2022/Candidates/Kunal Mehta

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Kunal Mehta (Legoktm)

Legoktm (talk meta edits global user summary CA  AE)

Renseignements sur le candidat ou la candidate
Me speaking at the 2017 Wikimania hackathon
  • Informations personnelles :
    • Nom : Kunal Mehta
    • Lieu de résidence : New York City, USA
    • Langues : en-N
  • Informations éditoriales :
    • Wikimédien(ne) depuis : 2007
    • Wikis actifs : English Wikipedia, MediaWiki.org, Commons, Meta-Wiki, Wikitech
Introductory statement / Application summary.
Cette section sera traduite. (150 maximum de mot)
Je suis wikimédien depuis 2007 et j’ai également été un ancien employé de la WMF pendant 8 ans (see full biography). Ces deux rôles m’ont permis d’acquérir une solide compréhension des besoins techniques et des réalités du mouvement.

Une communauté technique saine et durable est dirigée par des bénévoles, des affiliés et du personnel de la WMF – c'est la raison pour laquelle j'ai déployé mes efforts pour encadrer et responsabiliser les développeurs bénévoles. J'ai concentré mon travail sur la création de fonctionnalités et d'outils qui donnent le contrôle aux utilisateurs sur le wiki, comme AbuseFilter, SpamBlacklist ou global CSS/JS.

Une partie essentielle du travail de la WMF consiste à développer et à maintenir les fonctionnalités techniques – il est essentiel que le Conseil d'administration prenne des décisions éclairées sur les initiatives et les priorités techniques. En tant que personne ayant une expérience pratique du développement, du déploiement et de la maintenance de fonctionnalités qui répondent aux exigences uniques de Wikimédia, je pense que mon expérience et ma perspective peuvent aider le Conseil d'administration et la WMF à mieux servir le mouvement.

Contributions aux projets Wikimedia, adhésions à des organisations Wikimedia ou affiliées, activités en tant qu'organisateur du mouvement Wikimedia, ou participation à une organisation alliée du mouvement Wikimedia.
(100 mots maximum)
As a Wikimedian since 2007 and a former WMF staffer for 8 years (see full bio), I have a strong understanding of the technical needs and realities of the movement. I work to build features and tools that give control to users on-wiki. A healthy and sustainable technical community is one led by volunteers, affiliates and WMF staff alike, which is why I’ve worked to mentor and empower volunteer developers. Wikimedians are disappointed with the WMF’s recent technical output; I would like to bring my experience in successfully creating, deploying and maintaining technical projects to the WMF board.
Expertise dans les domaines de compétences identifiés comme des besoins par le conseil d'administration.
  • Stratégie et gestion organisationnelles
  • Développement de produits et/ou de plateformes technologiques au niveau de l'entreprise
  • Politique publique et droit
  • Science des données sociales, analyse big data et apprentissage automatique

(150 mots maximum)

I bring significant experience in “Enterprise-level platform technology and/or product development” as well as “Organizational strategy and management” to the board. Wikimedia technical development is radically different than the rest of the web, with an intense focus on privacy, security, transparency, internationalization, and user freedom. Blending my experience as a longtime volunteer contributor and as a WMF engineer, I understand the desires for new features and bugfixes while balancing the day-to-day needs of building and defending a secure platform. I’ve developed new features for editors and resolved sitewide outages during late nights and weekends. I regularly give input on technical roadmaps, favoring a bottom-up approach for determining strategy.
Expériences vécues dans le monde. Nous sommes particulièrement intéressés par les expériences vécues dans les régions d'Afrique, d'Asie du Sud, d'Asie de l'Est et du Sud-Est et du Pacifique, et d'Amérique latine et des Caraïbes. Nous pensons que l'expérience dans ces régions pourrait aider à élargir la capacité du conseil à atteindre l'objectif de la stratégie du mouvement, à savoir une participation plus équitable, même si nous reconnaissons que d'autres expériences peuvent également constituer des contributions importantes.
(250 mots maximum)
As a journalist, I’ve had the opportunity to listen to others, tell their stories and amplify their experiences. I’ve interviewed homeless university students, victims of assault, as well as politicians and activists. In 2018, I traveled to Italy and Greece to report on the ongoing refugee and migrant crises firsthand. On the island of Lesbos, we visited Moria (aka “the worst refugee camp on earth”), interviewing refugees fleeing the Syrian civil war, as well as residents on the island who were living with the influx of refugees.

Telling these stories and more have allowed me to gain a better appreciation for experiences I personally haven’t lived through. I do my best to make sure as many other people can gain that same appreciation by releasing as much content as possible under free licenses.

Outside the bubble of the English Wikipedia, my experiences have given me a unique perspective on the technical needs of our diverse communities, which I’d like to bring to the board. During SUL finalization, I worked with stewards on implementing a new global renamers group. To empower cross-wiki patrollers and global sysops, I rolled out global CSS/JS. Wikisourcians particularly felt the pain of musical scores being disabled, and helped test it when we re-enabled it. And they, along with Commons uploaders, raised awareness of large file uploads being broken and helped with debugging until we found the cause and fixed it.

Maîtrise culturelle et linguistique de régions et de langues autres que votre région et votre langue maternelle. La connaissance interculturelle aide à construire des liens dans notre communauté multiculturelle.
(250 mots maximum)
I learned how to program via Wikibooks and Wikipedia, and it eventually grew into my dream career. I regularly interact with people from across the world through talk pages, IRC, etc., many of whom I now consider friends. I’ve spent my summers mentoring and working alongside GSoC/Outreachy students from Cameroon, India and Taiwan, not to mention many others from around the world through guidance on bugs, patch review and casual conversations.

Despite only speaking English (and fragments of Gujarati and Spanish), my key skillset is bridging the communication and culture gap between technical and non-technical users. I’m fluent in technical jargon and can translate that into plain language when helping people out over chat, in person and on technical village pumps. And I’m able to diagnose user complaints, turning them into actionable bug reports on Phabricator.

A key part of the WMF’s work is in developing and maintaining technical features – it is crucial that the board has someone who has real experience developing, deploying and maintaining features that meet Wikimedia's unique technical requirements. I regularly hear that the board and WMF upper management are out of touch with the needs of the developers and editors doing the work on the ground, and don’t realize the full scope or implications of projects they sign off on. Having collaboratively developed user scripts, gadgets, Toolserver/Toolforge tools, and MediaWiki extensions to benefit a diverse group of contributors, I’d bring a bridge to the technical community that is desperately lacking.

Expérience en tant que défenseur.e de la création d'espaces sûrs et collaboratifs pour tous et toutes et/ou expérience dans des situations ou des contextes de censure, de répression ou d'autres atteintes aux droits de l'homme.
(250 mots maximum)
As an administrator, IRC channel operator, and member of the Technical Code of Conduct Committee, I have significant experience ensuring users can work together in safe/collaborative spaces by working to catalyze and de-escalate situations, stepping in with sanctions to protect contributors as necessary.

I've invested time developing and improving anti-abuse/power user tools that give control to users on-wiki like AbuseFilter, SpamBlacklist and GlobalCssJs.

Creating safe spaces requires identifying and reducing power imbalances. In the technical community, there is a de facto power disparity between paid WMF developers and volunteer developers. To counteract this, I regularly mentor and support newer developers and nominate them for “+2” merge rights (which WMF staff get by default). A thriving and empowered volunteer developer community is essential to sustain the Wikimedia movement.

WMF staff also need a safe space, and must not be constantly in fear of being re-organized at the whims of a constantly changing upper management. The board must support the unionization of staff in addition to the previously promised ombudsperson.

I regularly fight attempts at censorship through my work with Kiwix, the offline Wikipedia reader, by packaging it for Debian, which makes it easier for users to install. Recently I wrote a guide showing how to set up a local mirror of the Russian Wikipedia using Kiwix and Debian.

At my day job, I’m privileged to continue the work that the late Aaron Swartz started in SecureDrop, building and supporting software to protect whistleblowers and journalists.

Expérience en relation avec (ou en tant que membre, dans la mesure où vous choisissez de la partager) un groupe qui a été confronté historiquement à la discrimination et à la sous-représentation dans les structures de pouvoir (y compris, mais sans s'y limiter, la caste, la race, l'ethnie, la couleur, l'origine nationale, la nationalité, l'identité de genre, l'expression de genre, l'orientation sexuelle, l'âge, la religion, la langue, la culture, l'éducation, les capacités, le revenu et l'environnement).
(250 mots maximum)
I am a person of color and do not feel comfortable sharing more than that publicly.
Vérification Vérifié par le comité électoral ou le personnel de la Fondation Wikimedia.
Éligibilité: Artículo bueno.svg Vérifié
Vérifié par: Matanya (talk) 09:03, 17 May 2022 (UTC)
Identification: Artículo bueno.svg Vérifié
Vérifié par: Joe Sutherland (Wikimedia Foundation) (talk) 23:55, 18 May 2022 (UTC)

2022 Board of Trustees Analysis Committee Rating

This table shows the candidate rating provided by the 2022 Board of Trustees Analysis Committee
Candidate Name Wikimedia Background Sought Skills Sought Regional Experience Human Rights & Underrepresentation Overall rating from the average score of the four categories Overall rating from the average score of the nine criteria
Kunal Mehta Gold Silver Silver Silver Silver Gold