[Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

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[Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Fæ
The WMF grants special rights to employees on a case-by-case basis,
by-passing the normal community driven process to grant admin,
developer and other rights. A few years ago the WMF officially
committed to making this process transparent, and maintains a public
Google Spreadsheet [1] so that anyone can check exactly when rights
are granted, why they are given and when they are withdrawn.
Previously these were mirrored on-wiki but this process broke due to
Google changing its proprietary spreadsheet code.

Checking the latest version of the Google spreadsheet, the use cases
have been hidden, so non-employees no longer can read the reasons why
special rights have been granted. Can a WMF representative please
explain why, or restore the use cases to public view?

Thanks,
Fae
--
[hidden email] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Fæ
I missed the link, for those wanting to refer to it, I suggest you
keep a bookmark as it's very non-obvious and cannot be found by normal
on-wiki searching.

Link
1. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1DruVc7T9ZqTcfGwFAlxQrBMR4QBSD_DtjpDtGqMAAi0/pub

On 14 February 2017 at 13:11, Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:

> The WMF grants special rights to employees on a case-by-case basis,
> by-passing the normal community driven process to grant admin,
> developer and other rights. A few years ago the WMF officially
> committed to making this process transparent, and maintains a public
> Google Spreadsheet [1] so that anyone can check exactly when rights
> are granted, why they are given and when they are withdrawn.
> Previously these were mirrored on-wiki but this process broke due to
> Google changing its proprietary spreadsheet code.
>
> Checking the latest version of the Google spreadsheet, the use cases
> have been hidden, so non-employees no longer can read the reasons why
> special rights have been granted. Can a WMF representative please
> explain why, or restore the use cases to public view?
>
> Thanks,
> Fae
> --
> [hidden email] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Pine W
In reply to this post by Fæ
I'm curious about what is meant by "advanced permissions" here. If that
refers to translation administrator permissions, I have fewer concerns
about that than I would about admin or CU/OS permissions.

In general, I'm wary of WMF encroachment on Meta. Placing resources on Meta
that the community will use is fine and good, but WMF taking unilateral
actions that circumvent community processes may be inappropriate. For that
reason, I would like to see most requests for WMF accounts to get
permissions of admin or higher for community wikis go through the same
community vetting process as community members do.

Pine


On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 5:11 AM, Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:

> The WMF grants special rights to employees on a case-by-case basis,
> by-passing the normal community driven process to grant admin,
> developer and other rights. A few years ago the WMF officially
> committed to making this process transparent, and maintains a public
> Google Spreadsheet [1] so that anyone can check exactly when rights
> are granted, why they are given and when they are withdrawn.
> Previously these were mirrored on-wiki but this process broke due to
> Google changing its proprietary spreadsheet code.
>
> Checking the latest version of the Google spreadsheet, the use cases
> have been hidden, so non-employees no longer can read the reasons why
> special rights have been granted. Can a WMF representative please
> explain why, or restore the use cases to public view?
>
> Thanks,
> Fae
> --
> [hidden email] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Fæ
Usecases are appearing, thanks to whomever is intervening, though in a
narrow column so hard to read.

Now I can read it, I see that it is out of date. As a test sample, I
JethroBT (WMF) was granted m:admin rights in June, these expired by
August 2016 and were eventually removed by a volunteer steward in
October 2016. Though I JethroBT is an admin on meta right now, this
was via a separate use case dated "42676", which I presume is
November. Could the spreadsheet be properly reviewed and updated
please, including reformatting the date field so it's easy to
understand?

Pine - yes this process of "WMF Advanced Permissions" includes admin
rights for any WMF website and so by-passes the community procedures.

Fae

On 14 February 2017 at 17:48, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I'm curious about what is meant by "advanced permissions" here. If that
> refers to translation administrator permissions, I have fewer concerns
> about that than I would about admin or CU/OS permissions.
>
> In general, I'm wary of WMF encroachment on Meta. Placing resources on Meta
> that the community will use is fine and good, but WMF taking unilateral
> actions that circumvent community processes may be inappropriate. For that
> reason, I would like to see most requests for WMF accounts to get
> permissions of admin or higher for community wikis go through the same
> community vetting process as community members do.
>
> Pine
>
>
> On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 5:11 AM, Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> The WMF grants special rights to employees on a case-by-case basis,
>> by-passing the normal community driven process to grant admin,
>> developer and other rights. A few years ago the WMF officially
>> committed to making this process transparent, and maintains a public
>> Google Spreadsheet [1] so that anyone can check exactly when rights
>> are granted, why they are given and when they are withdrawn.
>> Previously these were mirrored on-wiki but this process broke due to
>> Google changing its proprietary spreadsheet code.
>>
>> Checking the latest version of the Google spreadsheet, the use cases
>> have been hidden, so non-employees no longer can read the reasons why
>> special rights have been granted. Can a WMF representative please
>> explain why, or restore the use cases to public view?
>>
>> Thanks,
>> Fae
>> --
>> [hidden email] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
>> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
>> wiki/Wikimedia-l
>> New messages to: [hidden email]
>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
>> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>

--
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Adrian Raddatz
Not for any wiki; only Meta had wmf staff with admin rights, and only for
use within their specific work-related areas.

I am totally unconcerned with WMF staff having the necessary permissions to
do their job. They can easily be held accountable as paid employees.

On Feb 14, 2017 11:53 AM, "Fæ" <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Usecases are appearing, thanks to whomever is intervening, though in a
> narrow column so hard to read.
>
> Now I can read it, I see that it is out of date. As a test sample, I
> JethroBT (WMF) was granted m:admin rights in June, these expired by
> August 2016 and were eventually removed by a volunteer steward in
> October 2016. Though I JethroBT is an admin on meta right now, this
> was via a separate use case dated "42676", which I presume is
> November. Could the spreadsheet be properly reviewed and updated
> please, including reformatting the date field so it's easy to
> understand?
>
> Pine - yes this process of "WMF Advanced Permissions" includes admin
> rights for any WMF website and so by-passes the community procedures.
>
> Fae
>
> On 14 February 2017 at 17:48, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > I'm curious about what is meant by "advanced permissions" here. If that
> > refers to translation administrator permissions, I have fewer concerns
> > about that than I would about admin or CU/OS permissions.
> >
> > In general, I'm wary of WMF encroachment on Meta. Placing resources on
> Meta
> > that the community will use is fine and good, but WMF taking unilateral
> > actions that circumvent community processes may be inappropriate. For
> that
> > reason, I would like to see most requests for WMF accounts to get
> > permissions of admin or higher for community wikis go through the same
> > community vetting process as community members do.
> >
> > Pine
> >
> >
> > On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 5:11 AM, Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> >> The WMF grants special rights to employees on a case-by-case basis,
> >> by-passing the normal community driven process to grant admin,
> >> developer and other rights. A few years ago the WMF officially
> >> committed to making this process transparent, and maintains a public
> >> Google Spreadsheet [1] so that anyone can check exactly when rights
> >> are granted, why they are given and when they are withdrawn.
> >> Previously these were mirrored on-wiki but this process broke due to
> >> Google changing its proprietary spreadsheet code.
> >>
> >> Checking the latest version of the Google spreadsheet, the use cases
> >> have been hidden, so non-employees no longer can read the reasons why
> >> special rights have been granted. Can a WMF representative please
> >> explain why, or restore the use cases to public view?
> >>
> >> Thanks,
> >> Fae
> >> --
> >> [hidden email] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae
> >>
> >> _______________________________________________
> >> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> >> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> >> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> >> New messages to: [hidden email]
> >> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> >> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>
> --
> [hidden email] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

James Alexander-4
In reply to this post by Fæ
On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 11:53 AM Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:

Usecases are appearing, thanks to whomever is intervening, though in a
narrow column so hard to read.

Now I can read it, I see that it is out of date. As a test sample, I
JethroBT (WMF) was granted m:admin rights in June, these expired by
August 2016 and were eventually removed by a volunteer steward in
October 2016. Though I JethroBT is an admin on meta right now, this
was via a separate use case dated "42676", which I presume is
November. Could the spreadsheet be properly reviewed and updated
please, including reformatting the date field so it's easy to
understand?

Pine - yes this process of "WMF Advanced Permissions" includes admin
rights for any WMF website and so by-passes the community procedures.

Fae


Hi Fae,

As I’ve mentioned on previous occasions when you’ve brought up this
spreadsheet on the mailing list, it occasionally breaks. That was the case
here. If you send me a quick note if you see the issues, we can fix it, as
we did today with the use case query (including make sure that it’s
multiple columns again.) Pointing that out so it can be quickly fixed is
much better done via a private poke that we'll see quickly rather than a
public mailing list post that we may not see until after hours or until
somebody lets us know about it. Obviously if we ignore your emails or
refuse to fix it, then the math changes, and a post to this list makes more
sense. I do not, however, think breakage (or overlooking notes about
breakage) has been a frequent problem over the past couple years (though we
have certainly had a couple breakages).

The public sheet is up to date to the internal version of the data (which
is done automatically). However, the automated data collection is better at
“adding new” than “removing old.” A member of the team does annual audits
of the data to ensure that defunct entries are removed and that everything
else matches reality. The time for the next one is coming up.

James

*James Alexander*
Manager, Trust & Safety
Wikimedia Foundation

PS: I also fixed the weird date thing you were seeing on some of them...
not sure what caused that (was just a format display thing).
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

James Alexander-4
In reply to this post by Adrian Raddatz
Hi Pine,

I know we’ve touched on this in past discussions related to this list.
Staff frequently need on wiki user rights to do their work, which can range
all over the map from Meta admin/translate admin to central notice admin or
Checkuser/Oversight and everything in between. Many of these rights are
sensitive in their nature (for example I could make an argument that
central notice admin and its raw crosswiki javascript capabilities are on
par with Checkuser in some cases), and we work to ensure that users only
have rights they need for the time they need it.

Given that these tools are being used on the public wikis, it is natural
(and expected) that the community keeps an eye out and alerts us to issues,
but in the end the staff needs and requirements for those rights are
different and separate from the community ones and they have to be overseen
by staff. As part of that we ensure they go through a multistep (and
multi-person) process involving reaching out to SuSa with a use case,
seeking written approval from their manager, and then getting approval from
a SuSa Manager (and the Director for especially sensitive user rights).
Given the natural oversight and review we have before hiring staff, along
with the ongoing oversight from both their managers and SuSa, we believe
this strikes the right balance.

James

*James Alexander*
Manager, Trust & Safety
Wikimedia Foundation

On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 1:48 PM Adrian Raddatz <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Not for any wiki; only Meta had wmf staff with admin rights, and only for
> use within their specific work-related areas.
>
> I am totally unconcerned with WMF staff having the necessary permissions to
> do their job. They can easily be held accountable as paid employees.
>
> On Feb 14, 2017 11:53 AM, "Fæ" <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Usecases are appearing, thanks to whomever is intervening, though in a
> > narrow column so hard to read.
> >
> > Now I can read it, I see that it is out of date. As a test sample, I
> > JethroBT (WMF) was granted m:admin rights in June, these expired by
> > August 2016 and were eventually removed by a volunteer steward in
> > October 2016. Though I JethroBT is an admin on meta right now, this
> > was via a separate use case dated "42676", which I presume is
> > November. Could the spreadsheet be properly reviewed and updated
> > please, including reformatting the date field so it's easy to
> > understand?
> >
> > Pine - yes this process of "WMF Advanced Permissions" includes admin
> > rights for any WMF website and so by-passes the community procedures.
> >
> > Fae
> >
> > On 14 February 2017 at 17:48, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > > I'm curious about what is meant by "advanced permissions" here. If that
> > > refers to translation administrator permissions, I have fewer concerns
> > > about that than I would about admin or CU/OS permissions.
> > >
> > > In general, I'm wary of WMF encroachment on Meta. Placing resources on
> > Meta
> > > that the community will use is fine and good, but WMF taking unilateral
> > > actions that circumvent community processes may be inappropriate. For
> > that
> > > reason, I would like to see most requests for WMF accounts to get
> > > permissions of admin or higher for community wikis go through the same
> > > community vetting process as community members do.
> > >
> > > Pine
> > >
> > >
> > > On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 5:11 AM, Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > >
> > >> The WMF grants special rights to employees on a case-by-case basis,
> > >> by-passing the normal community driven process to grant admin,
> > >> developer and other rights. A few years ago the WMF officially
> > >> committed to making this process transparent, and maintains a public
> > >> Google Spreadsheet [1] so that anyone can check exactly when rights
> > >> are granted, why they are given and when they are withdrawn.
> > >> Previously these were mirrored on-wiki but this process broke due to
> > >> Google changing its proprietary spreadsheet code.
> > >>
> > >> Checking the latest version of the Google spreadsheet, the use cases
> > >> have been hidden, so non-employees no longer can read the reasons why
> > >> special rights have been granted. Can a WMF representative please
> > >> explain why, or restore the use cases to public view?
> > >>
> > >> Thanks,
> > >> Fae
> > >> --
> > >> [hidden email] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae
> > >>
> > >> _______________________________________________
> > >> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > >> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > >> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > >> New messages to: [hidden email]
> > >> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l
> ,
> > >> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> >
> > --
> > [hidden email] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
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> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Pine W
Hi James,

Thanks for the explanation. I am less on edge now that I see the
specificity of the use cases that are outlined in that spreadsheet. (I have
rather strong memories of Superprotect and am keen to deter anything
resembling a repeat.) Is it possible to have the records moved from the
spreadsheet to Meta? I thought I once saw a record of these actions on
Meta, but can't remember exactly where.

Thanks,

Pine


On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 3:46 PM, James Alexander <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> Hi Pine,
>
> I know we’ve touched on this in past discussions related to this list.
> Staff frequently need on wiki user rights to do their work, which can range
> all over the map from Meta admin/translate admin to central notice admin or
> Checkuser/Oversight and everything in between. Many of these rights are
> sensitive in their nature (for example I could make an argument that
> central notice admin and its raw crosswiki javascript capabilities are on
> par with Checkuser in some cases), and we work to ensure that users only
> have rights they need for the time they need it.
>
> Given that these tools are being used on the public wikis, it is natural
> (and expected) that the community keeps an eye out and alerts us to issues,
> but in the end the staff needs and requirements for those rights are
> different and separate from the community ones and they have to be overseen
> by staff. As part of that we ensure they go through a multistep (and
> multi-person) process involving reaching out to SuSa with a use case,
> seeking written approval from their manager, and then getting approval from
> a SuSa Manager (and the Director for especially sensitive user rights).
> Given the natural oversight and review we have before hiring staff, along
> with the ongoing oversight from both their managers and SuSa, we believe
> this strikes the right balance.
>
> James
>
> *James Alexander*
> Manager, Trust & Safety
> Wikimedia Foundation
>
> On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 1:48 PM Adrian Raddatz <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
> > Not for any wiki; only Meta had wmf staff with admin rights, and only for
> > use within their specific work-related areas.
> >
> > I am totally unconcerned with WMF staff having the necessary permissions
> to
> > do their job. They can easily be held accountable as paid employees.
> >
> > On Feb 14, 2017 11:53 AM, "Fæ" <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > > Usecases are appearing, thanks to whomever is intervening, though in a
> > > narrow column so hard to read.
> > >
> > > Now I can read it, I see that it is out of date. As a test sample, I
> > > JethroBT (WMF) was granted m:admin rights in June, these expired by
> > > August 2016 and were eventually removed by a volunteer steward in
> > > October 2016. Though I JethroBT is an admin on meta right now, this
> > > was via a separate use case dated "42676", which I presume is
> > > November. Could the spreadsheet be properly reviewed and updated
> > > please, including reformatting the date field so it's easy to
> > > understand?
> > >
> > > Pine - yes this process of "WMF Advanced Permissions" includes admin
> > > rights for any WMF website and so by-passes the community procedures.
> > >
> > > Fae
> > >
> > > On 14 February 2017 at 17:48, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > > > I'm curious about what is meant by "advanced permissions" here. If
> that
> > > > refers to translation administrator permissions, I have fewer
> concerns
> > > > about that than I would about admin or CU/OS permissions.
> > > >
> > > > In general, I'm wary of WMF encroachment on Meta. Placing resources
> on
> > > Meta
> > > > that the community will use is fine and good, but WMF taking
> unilateral
> > > > actions that circumvent community processes may be inappropriate. For
> > > that
> > > > reason, I would like to see most requests for WMF accounts to get
> > > > permissions of admin or higher for community wikis go through the
> same
> > > > community vetting process as community members do.
> > > >
> > > > Pine
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 5:11 AM, Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > > >
> > > >> The WMF grants special rights to employees on a case-by-case basis,
> > > >> by-passing the normal community driven process to grant admin,
> > > >> developer and other rights. A few years ago the WMF officially
> > > >> committed to making this process transparent, and maintains a public
> > > >> Google Spreadsheet [1] so that anyone can check exactly when rights
> > > >> are granted, why they are given and when they are withdrawn.
> > > >> Previously these were mirrored on-wiki but this process broke due to
> > > >> Google changing its proprietary spreadsheet code.
> > > >>
> > > >> Checking the latest version of the Google spreadsheet, the use cases
> > > >> have been hidden, so non-employees no longer can read the reasons
> why
> > > >> special rights have been granted. Can a WMF representative please
> > > >> explain why, or restore the use cases to public view?
> > > >>
> > > >> Thanks,
> > > >> Fae
> > > >> --
> > > >> [hidden email] https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Fae
> > > >>
> > > >> _______________________________________________
> > > >> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > > >> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> > > >> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> > > >> New messages to: [hidden email]
> > > >> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/
> mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Fæ
In reply to this post by James Alexander-4
James,

The reason why I have no intention of entering into private
correspondence was made obvious last year based on your statements
[1].

I have no wish to put myself at risk of becoming globally banned with
no chance of appeal, and with no right to examine evidence, based on
bad faith presumptions of one WMF employee who has this unelected
power over volunteer contributors. I feel I have more protection from
this happening by always sticking 100% to open public discussion
rather than indulging your requests for private and unaccountable
correspondence. I take the same approach with "banned users" who I
also avoid any private correspondence with, out of fear of their use
of free speech becoming grounds for a WMF ban against my accounts.
Until this situation changes, I see no benefit to the community or
myself in changing this approach taken to protect my interests.

Links
1. https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User_talk:WMFOffice#Working_with_banned_users

Fae

On 14 February 2017 at 23:44, James Alexander <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 11:53 AM Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Usecases are appearing, thanks to whomever is intervening, though in a
> narrow column so hard to read.
>
> Now I can read it, I see that it is out of date. As a test sample, I
> JethroBT (WMF) was granted m:admin rights in June, these expired by
> August 2016 and were eventually removed by a volunteer steward in
> October 2016. Though I JethroBT is an admin on meta right now, this
> was via a separate use case dated "42676", which I presume is
> November. Could the spreadsheet be properly reviewed and updated
> please, including reformatting the date field so it's easy to
> understand?
>
> Pine - yes this process of "WMF Advanced Permissions" includes admin
> rights for any WMF website and so by-passes the community procedures.
>
> Fae
>
>
> Hi Fae,
>
> As I’ve mentioned on previous occasions when you’ve brought up this
> spreadsheet on the mailing list, it occasionally breaks. That was the case
> here. If you send me a quick note if you see the issues, we can fix it, as
> we did today with the use case query (including make sure that it’s
> multiple columns again.) Pointing that out so it can be quickly fixed is
> much better done via a private poke that we'll see quickly rather than a
> public mailing list post that we may not see until after hours or until
> somebody lets us know about it. Obviously if we ignore your emails or
> refuse to fix it, then the math changes, and a post to this list makes more
> sense. I do not, however, think breakage (or overlooking notes about
> breakage) has been a frequent problem over the past couple years (though we
> have certainly had a couple breakages).
>
> The public sheet is up to date to the internal version of the data (which
> is done automatically). However, the automated data collection is better at
> “adding new” than “removing old.” A member of the team does annual audits
> of the data to ensure that defunct entries are removed and that everything
> else matches reality. The time for the next one is coming up.
>
> James
>
> *James Alexander*
> Manager, Trust & Safety
> Wikimedia Foundation
>
> PS: I also fixed the weird date thing you were seeing on some of them...
> not sure what caused that (was just a format display thing).
> _______________________________________________
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Fæ
In reply to this post by Pine W
On 15 February 2017 at 06:21, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
...
> Is it possible to have the records moved from the
> spreadsheet to Meta? I thought I once saw a record of these actions on
> Meta, but can't remember exactly where.

The unmaintained old wikitable is at:
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/WMF_Advanced_Permissions

The process broke due to WMF staff edits changing the naming/format of
the table and the underlying copying script having no flexibility to
cater for this. For this reason I decided to stop investing my
volunteer time maintaining the transfer using my own scripts.

The Google API can be used, but someone would need to take on longer
term maintenance as the API has a history of changing -
https://developers.google.com/sheets/. As far as I am aware there is
not much appetite to produce tools to integrate the use of Google
products into the way Wikimedians work. It would be great if the WMF
could avoid the temptation of relying on Google, rather than
encouraging employees to use WMF developed software that can do the
same job; in this case using the Visual Editor to maintain a wikitable
directly on Meta would be a pretty easy alternative.

Fae

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Pine W
In reply to this post by Fæ
Hi Fae,

A few points:

* Thank you for trying to get and maintain a public list of WMF accounts
with special permissions. I think that this is helpful for the community to
know. I also think that WMF should actively maintain the list of WMF
accounts with special permissions, and the reasons for granting those
permissions, on Meta.

* Based on what I currently know, I disagree with WMF's choice to site-ban
individuals instead of leaving that decision to the community, particularly
when the evidence is not public. It seems to me that this practice is
incompatible with transparency, due process, and community governance of
Wikimedia content sites (which notably excludes the Foundation wiki).

* I understand that you are cautious about taking actions that you feel put
you at risk of being banned by WMF, particularly given WMF's current
practices. At the same time, while I have views that differ from James
Alexander's on some points (sometimes strongly so), there's an important
distinction between good-faith disagreements and bad-faith actions. I would
guess that if anyone in SuSa wanted you banned for any reason and was
willing to act in bad faith or vindictively, then they would have already
found a justification and made a ban. Since you are still here, I tend to
think that people in SuSa are trying to do their jobs properly. I can be
persuaded that there is a problem, but at this point my impression that an
allegation that anyone at SuSa is acting in bad faith isn't supported by
the evidence. If you have evidence to the contrary, I'm willing to hear you
out (preferably not in this thread with the topic "WMF advanced permissions
for employees"), but I'm going to assume good faith of everyone in SuSa
unless I become aware of persuasive evidence to the contrary.

Thanks again for your work on bringing transparency to the permissions of
WMF staff.

Pine
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

John Mark Vandenberg
In reply to this post by James Alexander-4
Hi James,

I agree these types of breakages, if unintentional and not regular,
should be raised elsewhere first.

Given Fae's reluctance to use private correspondence,...

Is there a public wiki page which can be used to alert the relevant
team to any future breakages, in the first instance?

Or can this be managed through Phabricator? an existing tag?

Fae, you said you have your own scripts, which you are no longer
maintaining due to changes by Google.
Is your code in a public repository somewhere?
We do not need to use the Google apis for accessing this data.
Google allows spreadsheets to be exported as csv.
here is the CSV link for the Advanced Permissions data.
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1DruVc7T9ZqTcfGwFAlxQrBMR4QBSD_DtjpDtGqMAAi0/pub?output=csv

With a small script, we could re-publish this dataset as csv into a
git repository, and then another script could read the csv and
re-publish the data as wikitext onto a Wikimedia site.

On Wed, Feb 15, 2017 at 6:44 AM, James Alexander
<[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 11:53 AM Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Usecases are appearing, thanks to whomever is intervening, though in a
> narrow column so hard to read.
>
> Now I can read it, I see that it is out of date. As a test sample, I
> JethroBT (WMF) was granted m:admin rights in June, these expired by
> August 2016 and were eventually removed by a volunteer steward in
> October 2016. Though I JethroBT is an admin on meta right now, this
> was via a separate use case dated "42676", which I presume is
> November. Could the spreadsheet be properly reviewed and updated
> please, including reformatting the date field so it's easy to
> understand?
>
> Pine - yes this process of "WMF Advanced Permissions" includes admin
> rights for any WMF website and so by-passes the community procedures.
>
> Fae
>
>
> Hi Fae,
>
> As I’ve mentioned on previous occasions when you’ve brought up this
> spreadsheet on the mailing list, it occasionally breaks. That was the case
> here. If you send me a quick note if you see the issues, we can fix it, as
> we did today with the use case query (including make sure that it’s
> multiple columns again.) Pointing that out so it can be quickly fixed is
> much better done via a private poke that we'll see quickly rather than a
> public mailing list post that we may not see until after hours or until
> somebody lets us know about it. Obviously if we ignore your emails or
> refuse to fix it, then the math changes, and a post to this list makes more
> sense. I do not, however, think breakage (or overlooking notes about
> breakage) has been a frequent problem over the past couple years (though we
> have certainly had a couple breakages).
>
> The public sheet is up to date to the internal version of the data (which
> is done automatically). However, the automated data collection is better at
> “adding new” than “removing old.” A member of the team does annual audits
> of the data to ensure that defunct entries are removed and that everything
> else matches reality. The time for the next one is coming up.
>
> James
>
> *James Alexander*
> Manager, Trust & Safety
> Wikimedia Foundation
>
> PS: I also fixed the weird date thing you were seeing on some of them...
> not sure what caused that (was just a format display thing).
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>



--
John Vandenberg

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Vi to
In reply to this post by Pine W
2017-02-16 5:57 GMT+01:00 Pine W <[hidden email]>:

> Hi Fae,
>
> A few points:
>
> * Thank you for trying to get and maintain a public list of WMF accounts
> with special permissions. I think that this is helpful for the community to
> know. I also think that WMF should actively maintain the list of WMF
> accounts with special permissions, and the reasons for granting those
> permissions, on Meta.
>
>
I concur, this should be WMF's full responsibility.


> * Based on what I currently know, I disagree with WMF's choice to site-ban
> individuals instead of leaving that decision to the community, particularly
> when the evidence is not public. It seems to me that this practice is
> incompatible with transparency, due process, and community governance of
> Wikimedia content sites (which notably excludes the Foundation wiki).
>

From a legal perspective WMF is the sole owner of these webspaces, then WMF
can ban anyone at any time for any (or no) reason. On the other hand WMF
without an active community is just a non-profit owning four small
datacenters and (dunno, maybe) a floor in a building in SF. So no ban would
be issued on a whim but still WMF must "prove" this.

Dealing with staffs they are way so close to more serious stuffs than the
mediawiki user interface, so I wouldn't care about their on site accesses.
Root access to db, squid data, mailman, physical access to residuals of old
identification system, subpoena etc (even random paper sheets left on the
top of a desktop) is, to me, way more serious than being able to make some
noise in a fairly controlled environment
<https://meta.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Special%3ALog&type=&user=&page=User%3APreilly&year=&month=-1&tagfilter=&hide_thanks_log=1&hide_patrol_log=1&hide_tag_log=1>
.

Vito


Vito
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Robert Fernandez
In reply to this post by Pine W
I don't see the point of paying for legal and community safety experts
if we aren't going to allow them to engage in their area of
professional expertise.  Transparency, due process, and community
governance are important values, but they are not the skills you need
to bring to bear when it comes to issues such as, for example,
predatory individuals victimizing underage editors.   I know this
sounds like "won't somebody think of the children!" but the thought of
untrained volunteers, however sensitive and well meaning they are,
attempting to deal with an issue like this frightening, and the
thought of what passes for community governance on the English
Wikipedia attempting to deal with this is positively bonechilling.  It
has very real consequences for the real, offline lives of victims and
opens volunteers and projects to significant legal jeopardy.


On Wed, Feb 15, 2017 at 11:57 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> * Based on what I currently know, I disagree with WMF's choice to site-ban
> individuals instead of leaving that decision to the community, particularly
> when the evidence is not public. It seems to me that this practice is
> incompatible with transparency, due process, and community governance of
> Wikimedia content sites (which notably excludes the Foundation wiki).

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Yaroslav Blanter
Still, in some cases the WMF global ban sounds like a revenge to an
individual, and when (understandably) WMF refuses to elaborate what was the
motivation for a global ban this impression gets even stronger.

Cheers
Yaroslav

On Thu, Feb 16, 2017 at 3:21 PM, Robert Fernandez <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> I don't see the point of paying for legal and community safety experts
> if we aren't going to allow them to engage in their area of
> professional expertise.  Transparency, due process, and community
> governance are important values, but they are not the skills you need
> to bring to bear when it comes to issues such as, for example,
> predatory individuals victimizing underage editors.   I know this
> sounds like "won't somebody think of the children!" but the thought of
> untrained volunteers, however sensitive and well meaning they are,
> attempting to deal with an issue like this frightening, and the
> thought of what passes for community governance on the English
> Wikipedia attempting to deal with this is positively bonechilling.  It
> has very real consequences for the real, offline lives of victims and
> opens volunteers and projects to significant legal jeopardy.
>
>
> On Wed, Feb 15, 2017 at 11:57 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> >
> > * Based on what I currently know, I disagree with WMF's choice to
> site-ban
> > individuals instead of leaving that decision to the community,
> particularly
> > when the evidence is not public. It seems to me that this practice is
> > incompatible with transparency, due process, and community governance of
> > Wikimedia content sites (which notably excludes the Foundation wiki).
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Fæ
In reply to this post by Robert Fernandez
Were I a "predatory individuals victimizing underage editors" there would
be a reason to threaten me with a ban for replying to questions from other
editors on my home talk page. But I am not. James' bad faith is
unacceptable.

Fae

On 16 Feb 2017 14:22, "Robert Fernandez" <[hidden email]> wrote:

I don't see the point of paying for legal and community safety experts
if we aren't going to allow them to engage in their area of
professional expertise.  Transparency, due process, and community
governance are important values, but they are not the skills you need
to bring to bear when it comes to issues such as, for example,
predatory individuals victimizing underage editors.   I know this
sounds like "won't somebody think of the children!" but the thought of
untrained volunteers, however sensitive and well meaning they are,
attempting to deal with an issue like this frightening, and the
thought of what passes for community governance on the English
Wikipedia attempting to deal with this is positively bonechilling.  It
has very real consequences for the real, offline lives of victims and
opens volunteers and projects to significant legal jeopardy.


On Wed, Feb 15, 2017 at 11:57 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> * Based on what I currently know, I disagree with WMF's choice to site-ban
> individuals instead of leaving that decision to the community,
particularly
> when the evidence is not public. It seems to me that this practice is
> incompatible with transparency, due process, and community governance of
> Wikimedia content sites (which notably excludes the Foundation wiki).

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Dariusz Jemielniak-3
Hi Fae,

I don't think the argument was that you were a "predatory individual
victimizing underage editors", but that the rules and practices should
recognize that such people exist and our projects need protection from
them. This is at least my reading of this.

best,

dariusz



On Thu, Feb 16, 2017 at 10:02 AM, Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Were I a "predatory individuals victimizing underage editors" there would
> be a reason to threaten me with a ban for replying to questions from other
> editors on my home talk page. But I am not. James' bad faith is
> unacceptable.
>
> Fae
>
> On 16 Feb 2017 14:22, "Robert Fernandez" <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> I don't see the point of paying for legal and community safety experts
> if we aren't going to allow them to engage in their area of
> professional expertise.  Transparency, due process, and community
> governance are important values, but they are not the skills you need
> to bring to bear when it comes to issues such as, for example,
> predatory individuals victimizing underage editors.   I know this
> sounds like "won't somebody think of the children!" but the thought of
> untrained volunteers, however sensitive and well meaning they are,
> attempting to deal with an issue like this frightening, and the
> thought of what passes for community governance on the English
> Wikipedia attempting to deal with this is positively bonechilling.  It
> has very real consequences for the real, offline lives of victims and
> opens volunteers and projects to significant legal jeopardy.
>
>
> On Wed, Feb 15, 2017 at 11:57 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> >
> > * Based on what I currently know, I disagree with WMF's choice to
> site-ban
> > individuals instead of leaving that decision to the community,
> particularly
> > when the evidence is not public. It seems to me that this practice is
> > incompatible with transparency, due process, and community governance of
> > Wikimedia content sites (which notably excludes the Foundation wiki).
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines and https://meta.wikimedia.org/
> wiki/Wikimedia-l
> New messages to: [hidden email]
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--

__________________________
prof. dr hab. Dariusz Jemielniak
kierownik katedry Zarządzania Międzynarodowego
i grupy badawczej NeRDS
Akademia Leona Koźmińskiego
http://n <http://www.crow.alk.edu.pl/>wrds.kozminski.edu.pl

członek Akademii Młodych Uczonych Polskiej Akademii Nauk

Wyszła pierwsza na świecie etnografia Wikipedii "Common Knowledge? An
Ethnography of Wikipedia" (2014, Stanford University Press) mojego
autorstwa http://www.sup.org/book.cgi?id=24010

Recenzje
Forbes: http://www.forbes.com/fdc/welcome_mjx.shtml
Pacific Standard:
http://www.psmag.com/navigation/books-and-culture/killed-wikipedia-93777/
Motherboard: http://motherboard.vice.com/read/an-ethnography-of-wikipedia
The Wikipedian:
http://thewikipedian.net/2014/10/10/dariusz-jemielniak-common-knowledge
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Rogol Domedonfors
In reply to this post by Pine W
Pine


> * Thank you for trying to get and maintain a public list of WMF accounts
> with special permissions. I think that this is helpful for the community to
> know. I also think that WMF should actively maintain the list of WMF
> accounts with special permissions, and the reasons for granting those
> permissions, on Meta.
>

I am all in favour of transparency.  But in what way will this be helpful
to the community?  Do you really expect WMF staff accounts to have their
advanced permissions removed by the community if they do not agree with the
reasons advanced?

"Rogol"
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Robert Fernandez
In reply to this post by Yaroslav Blanter
If WMF staff members are blocking volunteers out of revenge, we have much
larger problems than transparency.

On Thu, Feb 16, 2017 at 9:57 AM, Yaroslav Blanter <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Still, in some cases the WMF global ban sounds like a revenge to an
> individual, and when (understandably) WMF refuses to elaborate what was the
> motivation for a global ban this impression gets even stronger.
>
> Cheers
> Yaroslav
>
> On Thu, Feb 16, 2017 at 3:21 PM, Robert Fernandez <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
> > I don't see the point of paying for legal and community safety experts
> > if we aren't going to allow them to engage in their area of
> > professional expertise.  Transparency, due process, and community
> > governance are important values, but they are not the skills you need
> > to bring to bear when it comes to issues such as, for example,
> > predatory individuals victimizing underage editors.   I know this
> > sounds like "won't somebody think of the children!" but the thought of
> > untrained volunteers, however sensitive and well meaning they are,
> > attempting to deal with an issue like this frightening, and the
> > thought of what passes for community governance on the English
> > Wikipedia attempting to deal with this is positively bonechilling.  It
> > has very real consequences for the real, offline lives of victims and
> > opens volunteers and projects to significant legal jeopardy.
> >
> >
> > On Wed, Feb 15, 2017 at 11:57 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > >
> > > * Based on what I currently know, I disagree with WMF's choice to
> > site-ban
> > > individuals instead of leaving that decision to the community,
> > particularly
> > > when the evidence is not public. It seems to me that this practice is
> > > incompatible with transparency, due process, and community governance
> of
> > > Wikimedia content sites (which notably excludes the Foundation wiki).
> >
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF advanced permissions for employees

Marc-Andre
On 2017-02-16 14:01, Robert Fernandez wrote:
> If WMF staff members are blocking volunteers out of revenge{{cn}}

We would indeed [have bigger problems].  Thankfully, there is
absolutely no indication that this ever happened beyond vague musings
and specious allegations made on the basis of "I don't know why that
person was banned, so it must be because WMF is Evil".

-- Coren / Marc


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