[Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

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[Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

MZMcBride-2
Hi.

The German Wikipedia has evaluated and decided against the default use of
MediaViewer on its project (preferring opt-in, rather than opt-out). Erik
has made it his mission to impose MediaViewer on the German Wikipedia
using Wikimedia Foundation staff coercion (cf.
<https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/153302> and
<https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/153345>). Both changes have been pushed
through hastily and have had negative repercussions as a result (missing
translations, disrupted workflows, etc.). From a recent Bugzilla comment
about the latter change, "it's clear this change was a kneejerk reaction
without a lot of thought as to the effects."

The security of the entire MediaWiki infrastructure, which in turn is the
security of a large portion of Wikimedia wikis, heavily relies on the idea
that local administrators can be trusted. With his provocative actions,
Erik has declared war on the German Wikipedia.

Given this, there are options for the German Wikipedians. This is a
non-exhaustive list and may not reflect the latest waste of developer and
system administrator resources coerced by Erik.

* Local disruptive accounts (such as "User:Eloquence" and "User:JEissfeldt
(WMF)") can be locally blocked by German Wikipedia administrators for
conduct unbecoming.

* Global accounts can have their privileges removed by stewards, who are
intended to serve as the "root" users of Wikimedia wikis.

* While the German Wikipedia's "MediaWiki:Common.js" has been
super-protected, there are other pages such as "MediaWiki:Vector.js",
"MediaWiki:Monobook.js", and "MediaWiki:Group-user.js" that can probably
be used to achieve the same effect.

* Importing edits on top of an existing page should replace the content
and bypass any protection, though this theory needs additional testing.

* Certain pages in the MediaWiki namespace such as "MediaWiki:Copyright"
still allow raw HTML, which can be used for a direct "<script>" insertion.

* JavaScript gadgets can be enabled by default across a wiki.

* CentralNotice from Meta-Wiki can be used to deploy JavaScript to the
German Wikipedia.

There are also more extreme options available.

* Using per-user CSS or JavaScript to forcibly hijack Erik's or another
staff member's account. This can be done locally on any wiki, including
sites such as Meta-Wiki.

* Disabling editing and/or reading of the German Wikipedia, using a
variety of tools. Erik's declaration of war makes this option viable, but
it should likely be used only as a measure of last resort. If Erik is
truly hell-bent on damaging or destroying the wiki model, perhaps the wiki
should simply cease to be. Using the title blacklist, the AbuseFilter
extension, site-wide JavaScript and CSS, and other techniques, it's
possible to fully disable reading and/or editing of the German Wikipedia
until an amicable solution can be found.

* A Wikimedia-wide vote of no confidence for Erik. Again, this is an
extreme option, but given Erik's behavior over the past few weeks
(including his actions on the English Wikipedia, which resulted in an
arbitration case involving him), beginning a vote of no confidence is an
idea worthy of consideration.

There are also alternate options.

* Disabling the MediaViewer extension by default on the German Wikipedia,
as requested by the German Wikipedia community.

* Accepting Erik's authority over the technical infrastructure of
Wikimedia wikis and allowing him to rule as a technical autocrat.

I'm interested to read others' views about options and ways forward here.

MZMcBride



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Brad Jorsch (Anomie)
*Note these are entirely my own personal opinions as a community member and
in no way at all represent anything official.*

On Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 3:12 AM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> I'm interested to read others' views about options and ways forward here.
>

People could realize that demagoguery and warring is going to make
everything much harder that it needs to be, and decide to block the people
trying to escalate the issue so that more rational people can work out a
rational solution.

On the enwiki VPT thread about this, User:Fluffernutter suggested that we
could eliminate 90% of the drama over software deployments by topic-banning
a small number of people from the discussions. That'd probably be a much
more productive topic than trying to brainstorm ways to make the situation
worse.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Russavia
Brad

On Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 1:43 PM, Brad Jorsch (Anomie) <[hidden email]
> wrote:

> *Note these are entirely my own personal opinions as a community member and
> in no way at all represent anything official.*
>
> On Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 3:12 AM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> >
> > I'm interested to read others' views about options and ways forward here.
> >
>
> People could realize that demagoguery and warring is going to make
> everything much harder that it needs to be, and decide to block the people
> trying to escalate the issue so that more rational people can work out a
> rational solution.
>
> On the enwiki VPT thread about this, User:Fluffernutter suggested that we
> could eliminate 90% of the drama over software deployments by topic-banning
> a small number of people from the discussions. That'd probably be a much
> more productive topic than trying to brainstorm ways to make the situation
> worse.


Can you please confirm that you are one of the people who did "Erik's
bidding" on this issue.

On a personal level or not, I find it disturbing that you would suggest
topic banning people because they have a dissenting opinion from the WMF.
This will not lead to rational discussion, but an echo chamber....is that
what people want?

Russavia
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

phoebe ayers-3
In reply to this post by MZMcBride-2
On Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 3:12 AM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi.
>
....

> I'm interested to read others' views about options and ways forward here.



I think the most helpful thing would be to not attempt to start wars, and
particularly not on behalf of anyone or against individuals. We are all on
the same side here: trying to make the projects (and the project
interfaces, as a part of that) better. That includes, for instance, trying
out a new way of viewing photographs.

I assume of course and as always that you send your message from a place of
also wanting the projects to be better and more usable. But it is hard to
see how anything you suggest above gets us there.

best,
-- phoebe
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Anders Wennersten-2

phoebe ayers skrev 2014-08-11 09:56:
> We are all on the same side here: trying to make the projects (and the
> project interfaces, as a part of that) better. .
I agree, we all want to to improve things. But with no criticism to any
individual , I do feel this again highlights my often stated standpoint.
- We must have proper user controlled development of the software
development.

And this include some sort of Steering group, liaison officers is Not
enough. And if such a group had existed they would have discussed on the
different opinions from the German communty the the WMF sw development
team and made a decisions, perhaps exacly what Eric now decided, perhaps
something different, but at least the dialog would have been better.

After just having left FDC I can not help comparing how tough decisions
was performed with FDC in place , and here without a steering group made
up of community members

I would like to urge the Board and the new ED of WMF to implement asap
such a group, which has already been discussed and proposed several
times, even by Eric in the yearly plan for 2014-2015

Anders







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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Federico Leva (Nemo)
In reply to this post by phoebe ayers-3
Anomie, if you have problems with how MediaWiki works and consider it
demagoguery,
the relevant venue is: <
https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Manual:Establishing_a_hierarchy_of_bureaucrats
>

Phoebe, it's a pity you don't see it, when it's as big as the Tarpeian
Rock. MZ, can you help documenting things better at
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Administrator to facilitate understanding?
I'll try to make it more obvious what MZ's post means.

In MediaWiki, while some specialised roles exist, sysops are designed to be
the most trusted group among editors. Similar to the plebeian tribunes,
their position is sacrosanct and they hold a ius intercessionis (veto) on
each other and on any other user. Overriding the power of the tribunes is
unholy, even if a senatus consultum ultimum has been emitted.

Rome close an eye when Cicero strangled Sura; but when he said aloud that
he'd also kill a senator, the optimates he was serving quickly exiled him.
Until a dictator rei publicae costituendae is proclaimed, even the best
citizens of the city are liable to be exiled when they insist being unholy.

Beware of the powers you wish for.

Nemo
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

svetlana
In reply to this post by MZMcBride-2
One more option: wait for WMF to make wiki unbreakable and scriptable *properly*, using something like Firefox's jetpack (which is fool proof)

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Chris Keating-2
In reply to this post by phoebe ayers-3
>
> I think the most helpful thing would be to not attempt to start wars, and
> particularly not on behalf of anyone or against individuals. We are all on
> the same side here: trying to make the projects (and the project
> interfaces, as a part of that) better. That includes, for instance, trying
> out a new way of viewing photographs.
>
> I assume of course and as always that you send your message from a place of
> also wanting the projects to be better and more usable. But it is hard to
> see how anything you suggest above gets us there.


I agree with everything Phoebe's said.

In particular, I find it difficult to take people seriously when they're
suggesting "solutions" like "disabling the German Wikipedia". I am more
than a little surprised this even needs to be said.

Chris
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

svetlana
On Mon, 11 Aug 2014, at 21:42, Chris Keating wrote:

> >
> > I think the most helpful thing would be to not attempt to start wars, and
> > particularly not on behalf of anyone or against individuals. We are all on
> > the same side here: trying to make the projects (and the project
> > interfaces, as a part of that) better. That includes, for instance, trying
> > out a new way of viewing photographs.
> >
> > I assume of course and as always that you send your message from a place of
> > also wanting the projects to be better and more usable. But it is hard to
> > see how anything you suggest above gets us there.
>
>
> I agree with everything Phoebe's said.



"That includes, for instance, trying out a new way of viewing photographs."
do you guys "try out" on the whole userbase?
that's not how people "try" things
it's not what actually happened wither

maybe say something more like "hi people, in the background we are writing a lot of wonderful code which will be used for refreshing the entire website in the long term"

"we're especially looking at how we fail to match project mission - we're people, we are making mistakes!"

"we're adding edit interface to media viewer ASAP and let everything else burn until we do that"

etc etc

and don't shy out, you ARE empowering the community already ;)

including jquery into list of what gadgets can use is already a huge plus, but i barely know any gadgets which use it

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Jackmcbarn/editProtectedHelper uses parsoidObj from i think parsoid itself
this potential was never exposed to developers, not to mention end users
this software is very scriptable and flexible

the world picture is ugly and awkward and the superprotected scandal is special as 1 staff didnt even know about this decision. need better documenting. delays > mistakes.

what i get from working with people is that one needs to make small steps, carefully, and take notes; otherwise big steps may be taken in wrong direction
and document things, go screaming and kicking, I did it! for every step made
this way people know what is going on

please keep working on documenting what on earth you're doing exactly, in public
it should be the base of the entire team
are you doing planning in your head? design? ;) definitely not
put it onto a public wiki, collaborate out in the open

svetlana

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

MZMcBride-2
In reply to this post by phoebe ayers-3
phoebe ayers wrote:
>I think the most helpful thing would be to not attempt to start wars, and
>particularly not on behalf of anyone or against individuals. We are all on
>the same side here: trying to make the projects (and the project
>interfaces, as a part of that) better. That includes, for instance, trying
>out a new way of viewing photographs.
>
>I assume of course and as always that you send your message from a place
>of also wanting the projects to be better and more usable. But it is hard
>to see how anything you suggest above gets us there.

A few weeks ago, Erik reverted on the English Wikipedia and created a
storm of drama in the process. Within the past few days, Erik hastily
pushed through a new protection level on the German Wikipedia, without any
consensus and as a means of inhibiting implementation of consensus. Due to
the haste and the fundamental flaw of trying to restrict the admin group,
Erik then had to double-down on trying to impose this feature on the
German Wikipedia by having the core MediaWiki software altered and hastily
deployed. He then re-reverted on the German Wikipedia.

If this issue related to online harassment or child protection or
biographies of living people or the ability of users to edit or something
else that matters, it might make sense for Erik to step in. But I'd be
curious to read whether you think Erik's behavior has been acceptable,
appropriate, or proportionate here.

It's easy, if not a bit trite, to call for peace and love on all sides and
claim that we're all in this together. But when I look at Erik forcing
supplementary software on a community that has clearly stated that it's
not interested, wasting developer, system administrator, and translator
resources in the process, I'm inclined to think that Erik is not looking
to make the projects better. Erik is actively and perhaps permanently
damaging the relationship between the Wikimedia Foundation and the German
Wikipedia (and other wikis as well). Unelected Erik has a shiny new toy
and everyone will experience it, or else.

Copied from Meta-Wiki:

---
Erik has decided to take a "might makes right" approach and I'm concerned
to see responsible and clueful users like yourself endorsing his actions
here. What do Erik's unilateral actions on the English and German
Wikipedias say about him? What does it say about the features he's forcing
on users? Users should want new features. Erik shouldn't be coercing
employees to try to ensure that new features are active everywhere.
---

MZMcBride



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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Gerard Meijssen-3
Hoi,
Please consider what the role of Erik is. He is responsible for the
technical infrastructure of the Wikimedia Foundation. The community has
wants and needs but does not have responsibility in the same manner.

When some people in the community want things that is not compatible with
implied requirements of the technical infrastructure, it is the job of Erik
to take this responsibility seriously.

It is fine when you do not appreciate this.
Thanks,
      GerardM


On 11 August 2014 13:40, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:

> phoebe ayers wrote:
> >I think the most helpful thing would be to not attempt to start wars, and
> >particularly not on behalf of anyone or against individuals. We are all on
> >the same side here: trying to make the projects (and the project
> >interfaces, as a part of that) better. That includes, for instance, trying
> >out a new way of viewing photographs.
> >
> >I assume of course and as always that you send your message from a place
> >of also wanting the projects to be better and more usable. But it is hard
> >to see how anything you suggest above gets us there.
>
> A few weeks ago, Erik reverted on the English Wikipedia and created a
> storm of drama in the process. Within the past few days, Erik hastily
> pushed through a new protection level on the German Wikipedia, without any
> consensus and as a means of inhibiting implementation of consensus. Due to
> the haste and the fundamental flaw of trying to restrict the admin group,
> Erik then had to double-down on trying to impose this feature on the
> German Wikipedia by having the core MediaWiki software altered and hastily
> deployed. He then re-reverted on the German Wikipedia.
>
> If this issue related to online harassment or child protection or
> biographies of living people or the ability of users to edit or something
> else that matters, it might make sense for Erik to step in. But I'd be
> curious to read whether you think Erik's behavior has been acceptable,
> appropriate, or proportionate here.
>
> It's easy, if not a bit trite, to call for peace and love on all sides and
> claim that we're all in this together. But when I look at Erik forcing
> supplementary software on a community that has clearly stated that it's
> not interested, wasting developer, system administrator, and translator
> resources in the process, I'm inclined to think that Erik is not looking
> to make the projects better. Erik is actively and perhaps permanently
> damaging the relationship between the Wikimedia Foundation and the German
> Wikipedia (and other wikis as well). Unelected Erik has a shiny new toy
> and everyone will experience it, or else.
>
> Copied from Meta-Wiki:
>
> ---
> Erik has decided to take a "might makes right" approach and I'm concerned
> to see responsible and clueful users like yourself endorsing his actions
> here. What do Erik's unilateral actions on the English and German
> Wikipedias say about him? What does it say about the features he's forcing
> on users? Users should want new features. Erik shouldn't be coercing
> employees to try to ensure that new features are active everywhere.
> ---
>
> MZMcBride
>
>
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Romaine Wiki-2
In reply to this post by MZMcBride-2
If it is true that the software deployment of the visual editor is again
going hastily and with negative repercussions as a result, it is
disappointing that apparently nothing has been learned from the largest
failure of any software implementation in the Wikimedia movement ever: the
implementation of the visual editor a year ago.There have been massively
protests going on, on various wiki's. Such must had a signal to WMF that
this way is totally unacceptable to the community, so why is this behaviour
continued?

The visual editor is the biggest change in software in years, the community
expects that such change is deployed in such way that fits: it has been
tested with care, it is communicated in a proper way, deployed in a good
way, and the community involved in a nice way. In 2013 it was too much
rushed, in 2014 it appears to be rushed again sadly. I heard that the
visual editor was deployed in 2013 because it was planned so, and a reason
given to deploy it, instead of waiting until it is actually ready, was that
it WMF thinks it is important to stick to how it was planned because people
expect that plans are to be followed. So it appears to be that sticking to
a plan is more important to WMF, than delivering a good product that has no
critical problems. Mistakes can be made, but ........... If a plan is
wrong, the plan should be changed, not rushing broken software, and not
putting the trust of the community at stake!

Watching the communities on several wikis for more than 5 years now, it
seems that they all like the idea of a visual editor very much. I think it
correct to say it is the most wanted software of the past 5 years. If then
such wide opposing rises up, alarm bells must go ringing: something is
terrible going wrong.


And I can add, at the Dutch Wikipedia we examined the working of the visual
editor on articles. In 2013 we found issues we consider critical, and
recently we examined them again and still several of these issues are
present. We had a voting about this with the result that as long as these
critical issues exist, the Dutch community is against that the visual
editor is switched on by default.

Greetings,
Romaine





2014-08-11 4:12 GMT+02:00 MZMcBride <[hidden email]>:

> Hi.
>
> The German Wikipedia has evaluated and decided against the default use of
> MediaViewer on its project (preferring opt-in, rather than opt-out). Erik
> has made it his mission to impose MediaViewer on the German Wikipedia
> using Wikimedia Foundation staff coercion (cf.
> <https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/153302> and
> <https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/153345>). Both changes have been pushed
> through hastily and have had negative repercussions as a result (missing
> translations, disrupted workflows, etc.). From a recent Bugzilla comment
> about the latter change, "it's clear this change was a kneejerk reaction
> without a lot of thought as to the effects."
>
> The security of the entire MediaWiki infrastructure, which in turn is the
> security of a large portion of Wikimedia wikis, heavily relies on the idea
> that local administrators can be trusted. With his provocative actions,
> Erik has declared war on the German Wikipedia.
>
> Given this, there are options for the German Wikipedians. This is a
> non-exhaustive list and may not reflect the latest waste of developer and
> system administrator resources coerced by Erik.
>
> * Local disruptive accounts (such as "User:Eloquence" and "User:JEissfeldt
> (WMF)") can be locally blocked by German Wikipedia administrators for
> conduct unbecoming.
>
> * Global accounts can have their privileges removed by stewards, who are
> intended to serve as the "root" users of Wikimedia wikis.
>
> * While the German Wikipedia's "MediaWiki:Common.js" has been
> super-protected, there are other pages such as "MediaWiki:Vector.js",
> "MediaWiki:Monobook.js", and "MediaWiki:Group-user.js" that can probably
> be used to achieve the same effect.
>
> * Importing edits on top of an existing page should replace the content
> and bypass any protection, though this theory needs additional testing.
>
> * Certain pages in the MediaWiki namespace such as "MediaWiki:Copyright"
> still allow raw HTML, which can be used for a direct "<script>" insertion.
>
> * JavaScript gadgets can be enabled by default across a wiki.
>
> * CentralNotice from Meta-Wiki can be used to deploy JavaScript to the
> German Wikipedia.
>
> There are also more extreme options available.
>
> * Using per-user CSS or JavaScript to forcibly hijack Erik's or another
> staff member's account. This can be done locally on any wiki, including
> sites such as Meta-Wiki.
>
> * Disabling editing and/or reading of the German Wikipedia, using a
> variety of tools. Erik's declaration of war makes this option viable, but
> it should likely be used only as a measure of last resort. If Erik is
> truly hell-bent on damaging or destroying the wiki model, perhaps the wiki
> should simply cease to be. Using the title blacklist, the AbuseFilter
> extension, site-wide JavaScript and CSS, and other techniques, it's
> possible to fully disable reading and/or editing of the German Wikipedia
> until an amicable solution can be found.
>
> * A Wikimedia-wide vote of no confidence for Erik. Again, this is an
> extreme option, but given Erik's behavior over the past few weeks
> (including his actions on the English Wikipedia, which resulted in an
> arbitration case involving him), beginning a vote of no confidence is an
> idea worthy of consideration.
>
> There are also alternate options.
>
> * Disabling the MediaViewer extension by default on the German Wikipedia,
> as requested by the German Wikipedia community.
>
> * Accepting Erik's authority over the technical infrastructure of
> Wikimedia wikis and allowing him to rule as a technical autocrat.
>
> I'm interested to read others' views about options and ways forward here.
>
> MZMcBride
>
>
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Nathan Awrich
In reply to this post by MZMcBride-2
On Sun, Aug 10, 2014 at 10:12 PM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
>
> * Disabling editing and/or reading of the German Wikipedia, using a
> variety of tools. Erik's declaration of war makes this option viable, but
> it should likely be used only as a measure of last resort. If Erik is
> truly hell-bent on damaging or destroying the wiki model, perhaps the wiki
> should simply cease to be. Using the title blacklist, the AbuseFilter
> extension, site-wide JavaScript and CSS, and other techniques, it's
> possible to fully disable reading and/or editing of the German Wikipedia
> until an amicable solution can be found.


My view is that this is a tempest in a teacup. Take a step back and look at
the stakes here - the implementation, or not, of a relatively minor change
in how images are viewed on a few websites. There is no need to use terms
like "declaration of war" in these circumstances.

There's a disturbing lack of reflection on the broader trends here; the
change aversion of the tech community, the desire of some to wrest control
from the WMF and to increase tension between communities and the WMF, and
the WMF's consistently disorganized approach to deployment and failure to
properly anticipate potential problems.

Instead of escalating individual incidents to the Wikimedia equivalent of
thermonuclear war (hijacking accounts and shutting down projects, which
will inevitably lead to the global permanent blocking of the offending
users and perhaps even referrals for criminal prosecution), let's focus on
process changes that can be made to reduce tension and conflict and address
the recent trends in development and deployment. A development steering
committee sounds like a good start.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Magnus Manske-2
In reply to this post by MZMcBride-2
On Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 3:12 AM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Using the title blacklist, the AbuseFilter
> extension, site-wide JavaScript and CSS, and other techniques, it's
> possible to fully disable reading and/or editing of the German Wikipedia
> until an amicable solution can be found.
>
>
> Strange. I seem to distinctly remember that, yesterday on Wikimania, many
(most) of us agreed that Wikipedia is an incredibly valuable resource to
the world, and that it is our mission, as a community, to protect and
improve it, and to make it available to even more people.

Your suggestion to sabotage that resource, even if it's just (!) in German,
because a few long-time editors there now have to (once) click a checkbox
to *not* see the Media viewer, strikes me as somewhat incompatible with
that mission.

The discussion about how the activation of the Media viewer on German
Wikipedia came to pass should not affect the reader, no matter what.

[Disclaimer: I am an editor on German Wikipedia (user ID 12), and I don't
really like the Media viewer, as it is.]

Cheers,
Magnus
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Todd Allen
In reply to this post by phoebe ayers-3
On Aug 11, 2014 1:57 AM, "phoebe ayers" <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> On Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 3:12 AM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Hi.
> >
> ....
>
> > I'm interested to read others' views about options and ways forward
here.

>
>
>
> I think the most helpful thing would be to not attempt to start wars, and
> particularly not on behalf of anyone or against individuals. We are all on
> the same side here: trying to make the projects (and the project
> interfaces, as a part of that) better. That includes, for instance, trying
> out a new way of viewing photographs.
>
> I assume of course and as always that you send your message from a place
of
> also wanting the projects to be better and more usable. But it is hard to
> see how anything you suggest above gets us there.
>
> best,
> -- phoebe
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Helpful to not start wars? Well, yes, that would be helpful. But the war is
already underway, started by the shots Erik has fired.

The question now is how we restore peace. But "Shut up and give up local
control" is not the answer to that question. As with any conflict, hard
lines will lead to escalation and digging in.

There are steps we could take to ensure changes are desired and welcomed by
local communities. Some need to take place on the community side, many on
the WMF side. But ramming unwanted stuff in is not the way there.

If Erik will not step back from this brink, I fear we will see more
escalation. This isn't just about Media Viewer, or Visual Editor, or
ACTRIAL. It is about WMF being seen as usurping local project control to
deploy its pet projects. Whether that perception is right or not,
perception is reality here.

Your move, Erik. Please don't continue on this road. We're supposed to be
on the same side.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Richard Symonds-3
Guys,

This isn't a war, it's an argument on the internet.  No-one is dying and
no-one is being shot at. No-one is even being arrested and I doubt anyone
has even been shouted at in person.

Can we please view this as what it is - a technical issue which can be
resolved - rather than throwing around words like "war" and "firing shots"
and "thermonuclear"?

Once again: This isn't a war, it's an argument on the internet, and it can
be solved if we all act pleasantly.

Richard Symonds
Wikimedia UK
0207 065 0992

Wikimedia UK is a Company Limited by Guarantee registered in England and
Wales, Registered No. 6741827. Registered Charity No.1144513. Registered
Office 4th Floor, Development House, 56-64 Leonard Street, London EC2A 4LT.
United Kingdom. Wikimedia UK is the UK chapter of a global Wikimedia
movement. The Wikimedia projects are run by the Wikimedia Foundation (who
operate Wikipedia, amongst other projects).

*Wikimedia UK is an independent non-profit charity with no legal control
over Wikipedia nor responsibility for its contents.*


On 11 August 2014 15:35, Todd Allen <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Aug 11, 2014 1:57 AM, "phoebe ayers" <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > On Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 3:12 AM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > > Hi.
> > >
> > ....
> >
> > > I'm interested to read others' views about options and ways forward
> here.
> >
> >
> >
> > I think the most helpful thing would be to not attempt to start wars, and
> > particularly not on behalf of anyone or against individuals. We are all
> on
> > the same side here: trying to make the projects (and the project
> > interfaces, as a part of that) better. That includes, for instance,
> trying
> > out a new way of viewing photographs.
> >
> > I assume of course and as always that you send your message from a place
> of
> > also wanting the projects to be better and more usable. But it is hard to
> > see how anything you suggest above gets us there.
> >
> > best,
> > -- phoebe
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>
> Helpful to not start wars? Well, yes, that would be helpful. But the war is
> already underway, started by the shots Erik has fired.
>
> The question now is how we restore peace. But "Shut up and give up local
> control" is not the answer to that question. As with any conflict, hard
> lines will lead to escalation and digging in.
>
> There are steps we could take to ensure changes are desired and welcomed by
> local communities. Some need to take place on the community side, many on
> the WMF side. But ramming unwanted stuff in is not the way there.
>
> If Erik will not step back from this brink, I fear we will see more
> escalation. This isn't just about Media Viewer, or Visual Editor, or
> ACTRIAL. It is about WMF being seen as usurping local project control to
> deploy its pet projects. Whether that perception is right or not,
> perception is reality here.
>
> Your move, Erik. Please don't continue on this road. We're supposed to be
> on the same side.
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Brandon Harris-4
In reply to this post by MZMcBride-2

        Your responses here are coming across as very personally targeted and focused.

        Attempting to demonize Erik is a mistake and clouds the issue.  Erik is acting as an officer, not as an individual.

On Aug 11, 2014, at 1:40 PM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Erik has decided to take a "might makes right" approach and I'm concerned
> to see responsible and clueful users like yourself endorsing his actions
> here. What do Erik's unilateral actions on the English and German
> Wikipedias say about him? What does it say about the features he's forcing
> on users? Users should want new features. Erik shouldn't be coercing
> employees to try to ensure that new features are active everywhere.

---
Brandon Harris, Senior Designer, Wikimedia Foundation

Support Free Knowledge: http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Todd Allen
Brandon,

Are you stating that Erik is not calling the shots here? If that's the
case, could someone please clarify who is in charge and asked for the new
right to be enabled?
On Aug 11, 2014 10:13 AM, "Brandon Harris" <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
>         Your responses here are coming across as very personally targeted
> and focused.
>
>         Attempting to demonize Erik is a mistake and clouds the issue.
>  Erik is acting as an officer, not as an individual.
>
> On Aug 11, 2014, at 1:40 PM, MZMcBride <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Erik has decided to take a "might makes right" approach and I'm concerned
> > to see responsible and clueful users like yourself endorsing his actions
> > here. What do Erik's unilateral actions on the English and German
> > Wikipedias say about him? What does it say about the features he's
> forcing
> > on users? Users should want new features. Erik shouldn't be coercing
> > employees to try to ensure that new features are active everywhere.
>
> ---
> Brandon Harris, Senior Designer, Wikimedia Foundation
>
> Support Free Knowledge: http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
>
>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Brandon Harris-4

        I'm stating that the tone here implies that Erik is some weird overlord who orders everyone around and we cower in fear and do His Bidding.

        It's not true.  If you want to be angry, be angry at the Foundation.  Targeting Erik (or Jan) specifically is a mistake.


On Aug 11, 2014, at 5:29 PM, Todd Allen <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Are you stating that Erik is not calling the shots here? If that's the
> case, could someone please clarify who is in charge and asked for the new
> right to be enabled?

---
Brandon Harris, Senior Designer, Wikimedia Foundation

Support Free Knowledge: http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Options for the German Wikipedia

Pete Forsyth-2
In reply to this post by Brandon Harris-4
On Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 9:12 AM, Brandon Harris <[hidden email]>
wrote:

>
> Erik is acting as an officer, not as an individual.


Brandon, it is not as clear-cut as you suggest, and the lack of clarity
originates at the Wikimedia Foundation.

The most explicit statement I've seen on this topic is then-Executive
Director Sue Gardner, in April 2014:

"When WMF staff edit the projects, they (we) are subject to the same policies
and guidelines as everybody else. That means that if a staff person breaks
a rule on the projects, that person risks being warned or reverted or
sanctioned by the community, the same as everybody. There are no special
WMF policies related to this. ... Editorial policies are developed, and
therefore also best-understood and best-enforced, not by the WMF but by the
community."

http://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2014-April/071161.html

A decision about how the public consumes Wikipedia content (e.g., Media
Viewer) is an editorial decision, and it's one that the WMF has chosen to
make unilaterally. WMF has furthermore moved to give its staff rights that
facilitate unilateral behavior in the future. But to the degree that Sue
Gardner's policy remains in place (and I'm assuming it does), the WMF's
position is that any problematic actions taken by individual staff should
be subject to community processes.

As I explained in the email thread linked above, I do think this is the
wrong policy, and very unsuited to the way Wikimedia works or should work.
But it is the policy, nonetheless. Individual WMF staff have crossed
important lines, fundamentally challenging our decision-making structure
without seeking, much less securing, important buy-in. The WMF will
ultimately be accountable for the consequences; but in the meantime, the
individuals involved in the decision must be treated as responsible for
their actions, specifically because that is what the Office of the
Executive Director has stated as its expectation.

Pete
[[User:Peteforsyth]]
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12