[Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Pete Forsyth-2
Sarah, thanks for the response -- but I find this puzzling. I don't want to
get into too many details here, as I think the comment thread on the
Signpost op-ed, or the poll on the letter's talk page, are more appropriate
venues for that; but briefly:

On Sat, Jan 9, 2016 at 12:30 PM, SarahSV <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Pete, it does seem that since Lila arrived a lot of the tension between
> the Foundation and community has gone. I've several times heard her talk of
> the need to respect the community because Wikipedia is nothing without it.
>

I am more interested in discussing actions than words.


> ​You wrote above: "​As I understand it, we are still very much in the
> 'Superprotect disaster' era -- one which began under the same Executive
> Director we have today."
>
> Superprotect was implemented just after Lila arrived, but it was a decision
> of Erik's.


I'd say "citation needed," but in this case I am highly confident that no
citation exists. We have had no formal statement whatsoever on which to
base speculation. Beyond that, Lila was Erik's boss; and people closer to
the situation than myself have actually (privately) asserted just the
opposite, that Lila was the driving force.

The tensions behind it were very much a product of the pre-Lila
> era, and had been growing for years.


I very much agree with this, yes.


> It appeared that Lila quickly understood that it needed to go.
>

I do not agree with this. She did acknowledge that the software feature had
been a problem, when she announced its removal. (Keep in mind, its
implementation happened on a Sunday afternoon, and its removal took a year
and a half -- so I'm not sure about "quickly.")

But more importantly, neither she nor the board have acknowledged, much
less moved to address, non-technical aspects of the letter.

-Pete
[[User:Peteforsyth]]
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Anders Wennersten-2
I used the word Superprotect but could just as well said the disastrous
implementation of Visual Editor, which definitely  was not the doing of
Lila. And the very positive response to Community Wishlist i have read
on this list (and on the talkpages), I have not co,me across any real
negative feedback.across

I am happy to read that there were several in the tech org who initiated
this, and that there is a positive feeling of it. I was 25 years ago for
seven years was a manager of a org developing sw tools for 3000 sw
developer (very similar the WMF setup)  and I went through the process
of going from inside-out.  And I learned that the setup of "wishlists"
etc was the easy part. I learned that when this was in place the
internal org and roles had to be redefined (it was not upwards you had
to look what to implement but to the community). And there were a lot of
squeaks before the org got sorted out, but then the people got very
stimulated working in a outside-in organisation.

And from this perspective I actually think the Board made a very good
work identifying the competence Geshuri has which I believe is just what
the Board and WMF needs just now. The problems associated with him is
already identified and I am not denying these, but please give the Board
also credit for their good work, not just blaming when (and if) they
make mistakes

Anders







Den 2016-01-09 kl. 21:46, skrev Pete Forsyth:

> Sarah, thanks for the response -- but I find this puzzling. I don't want to
> get into too many details here, as I think the comment thread on the
> Signpost op-ed, or the poll on the letter's talk page, are more appropriate
> venues for that; but briefly:
>
> On Sat, Jan 9, 2016 at 12:30 PM, SarahSV <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> Pete, it does seem that since Lila arrived a lot of the tension between
>> the Foundation and community has gone. I've several times heard her talk of
>> the need to respect the community because Wikipedia is nothing without it.
>>
> I am more interested in discussing actions than words.
>
>
>> ​You wrote above: "​As I understand it, we are still very much in the
>> 'Superprotect disaster' era -- one which began under the same Executive
>> Director we have today."
>>
>> Superprotect was implemented just after Lila arrived, but it was a decision
>> of Erik's.
>
> I'd say "citation needed," but in this case I am highly confident that no
> citation exists. We have had no formal statement whatsoever on which to
> base speculation. Beyond that, Lila was Erik's boss; and people closer to
> the situation than myself have actually (privately) asserted just the
> opposite, that Lila was the driving force.
>
> The tensions behind it were very much a product of the pre-Lila
>> era, and had been growing for years.
>
> I very much agree with this, yes.
>
>
>> It appeared that Lila quickly understood that it needed to go.
>>
> I do not agree with this. She did acknowledge that the software feature had
> been a problem, when she announced its removal. (Keep in mind, its
> implementation happened on a Sunday afternoon, and its removal took a year
> and a half -- so I'm not sure about "quickly.")
>
> But more importantly, neither she nor the board have acknowledged, much
> less moved to address, non-technical aspects of the letter.
>
> -Pete
> [[User:Peteforsyth]]
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Pete Forsyth-2
Anders, thank you for your thoughtful message; I understand your position
much better now, and see much to agree with:

On Sat, Jan 9, 2016 at 1:08 PM, Anders Wennersten <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> I used the word Superprotect but could just as well said the disastrous
> implementation of Visual Editor, which definitely  was not the doing of
> Lila. And the very positive response to Community Wishlist i have read on
> this list (and on the talkpages), I have not co,me across any real negative
> feedback.across
>

Yes, I agree -- the organization's software development processes are
improved under Lila's leadership. Significant positive steps have been
taken, no question -- and she certainly deserves some credit for that.

I am happy to read that there were several in the tech org who initiated
> this, and that there is a positive feeling of it. I was 25 years ago for
> seven years was a manager of a org developing sw tools for 3000 sw
> developer (very similar the WMF setup)  and I went through the process of
> going from inside-out.  And I learned that the setup of "wishlists" etc was
> the easy part. I learned that when this was in place the internal org and
> roles had to be redefined (it was not upwards you had to look what to
> implement but to the community).


I don't know for sure, but my impression is that in this case, much of this
has been done simultaneously; internal structures have been changing
alongside the processes for community engagement. I expect there is much
credit for that to be shared among various parties, including Lila.

And there were a lot of squeaks before the org got sorted out, but then the
> people got very stimulated working in a outside-in organisation.
>

Glad to hear of this experience.


> And from this perspective I actually think the Board made a very good work
> identifying the competence Geshuri has which I believe is just what the
> Board and WMF needs just now.


That very well may be the case. I do not have a strong opinion on Mr.
Geshuri's competencies, and am happy to defer to your more-informed
perspective. I am heartened to hear that the Board may have done good work
in identifying and addressing certain missing competencies (even if there
may be separate issues with the specific choice).

I do think there are two significant issues with Mr. Geshuri's appointment,
though -- the second of which has not been brought up yet:
(1) The Board did not apparently do basic due diligence in looking into his
background
(2) Mr. Geshuri himself did not highlight the Google firing issue to the
board prior to his appointment, which makes me wonder about his judgment.

The problems associated with him is already identified and I am not denying
> these, but please give the Board also credit for their good work, not just
> blaming when (and if) they make mistakes


I am happy to do so, but I must say -- so much of the board's work is
invisible to me, that I rarely have enough information to do so.

-Pete
[[User:Peteforsyth]]
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Kevin Gorman
Though I'm trying to cut back on the number of posts I make to this list, I
want to respond to a couple points made in this thread.

First I totally understand - and agree - that we can't expect immediate
board comment on Arnnon's appointment.  Although I think the degree of the
issue should've been discovered in pre-appointment due diligence, it seems
like the issue and it's degree has caught many of the trustees by surprise
- even if figuring out how to respond to issues like this was their full
time (and since even the trustees are volunteers, it's certainly not,) it
would take some time to come up with a reasonable response, and they should
certainly be given the time they need to form an appropriate response.

However, I also want to respond to the suggestion that people are bringing
out their pitchforks based solely on media coverage of Arnnon's actions.
Although there are still shareholder lawsuits underway and there has
certainly been gossipy media coverage, the employee settlement has already
been agreed to upon by the companies (and class representatives) involved,
many of the documents involved have been released by order of the federal
judge involved, etc.  Arnnon's emails that I sent a copy of out earlier on
this thread don't come from someone leaking to Gawker - they were given by
Google to a federal judge, and then unsealed by her order.  We're not in a
situation where there's just media gossip that Arnnon was involved in some
way in setting up an illegal and unethical anti-solicitation agreement
between tech companies - rather, he was found to play a fairly integral
role in it's creation by a federal judge.  Some lawsuits are settled to
make them go away, but nearly half a billion dollars is not "This is a
groundless lawsuit, but it'll cost less to settle it than to make it go
away" territory - even for the companies involved, as large as they are.

Best,
Kevin Gorman

On Sat, Jan 9, 2016 at 1:21 PM, Pete Forsyth <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Anders, thank you for your thoughtful message; I understand your position
> much better now, and see much to agree with:
>
> On Sat, Jan 9, 2016 at 1:08 PM, Anders Wennersten <
> [hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
> > I used the word Superprotect but could just as well said the disastrous
> > implementation of Visual Editor, which definitely  was not the doing of
> > Lila. And the very positive response to Community Wishlist i have read on
> > this list (and on the talkpages), I have not co,me across any real
> negative
> > feedback.across
> >
>
> Yes, I agree -- the organization's software development processes are
> improved under Lila's leadership. Significant positive steps have been
> taken, no question -- and she certainly deserves some credit for that.
>
> I am happy to read that there were several in the tech org who initiated
> > this, and that there is a positive feeling of it. I was 25 years ago for
> > seven years was a manager of a org developing sw tools for 3000 sw
> > developer (very similar the WMF setup)  and I went through the process of
> > going from inside-out.  And I learned that the setup of "wishlists" etc
> was
> > the easy part. I learned that when this was in place the internal org and
> > roles had to be redefined (it was not upwards you had to look what to
> > implement but to the community).
>
>
> I don't know for sure, but my impression is that in this case, much of this
> has been done simultaneously; internal structures have been changing
> alongside the processes for community engagement. I expect there is much
> credit for that to be shared among various parties, including Lila.
>
> And there were a lot of squeaks before the org got sorted out, but then the
> > people got very stimulated working in a outside-in organisation.
> >
>
> Glad to hear of this experience.
>
>
> > And from this perspective I actually think the Board made a very good
> work
> > identifying the competence Geshuri has which I believe is just what the
> > Board and WMF needs just now.
>
>
> That very well may be the case. I do not have a strong opinion on Mr.
> Geshuri's competencies, and am happy to defer to your more-informed
> perspective. I am heartened to hear that the Board may have done good work
> in identifying and addressing certain missing competencies (even if there
> may be separate issues with the specific choice).
>
> I do think there are two significant issues with Mr. Geshuri's appointment,
> though -- the second of which has not been brought up yet:
> (1) The Board did not apparently do basic due diligence in looking into his
> background
> (2) Mr. Geshuri himself did not highlight the Google firing issue to the
> board prior to his appointment, which makes me wonder about his judgment.
>
> The problems associated with him is already identified and I am not denying
> > these, but please give the Board also credit for their good work, not
> just
> > blaming when (and if) they make mistakes
>
>
> I am happy to do so, but I must say -- so much of the board's work is
> invisible to me, that I rarely have enough information to do so.
>
> -Pete
> [[User:Peteforsyth]]
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

SarahSV
In reply to this post by Pete Forsyth-2
On Sat, Jan 9, 2016 at 2:21 PM, Pete Forsyth <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I do think there are two significant issues with Mr. Geshuri's appointment,
> though -- the second of which has not been brought up yet:
> (1) The Board did not apparently do basic due diligence in looking into his
> background
> (2) Mr. Geshuri himself did not highlight the Google firing issue to the
> board prior to his appointment, which makes me wonder about his judgment.
>

Do we know who suggested ​
Arnnon Geshuri
​ for a board seat?

Sarah
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Milos Rancic-2
On Sun, Jan 10, 2016 at 12:02 AM, SarahSV <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Do we know who suggested
> Arnnon Geshuri
> for a board seat?

Spoiler: As "trust and honesty" are highly valued, his name likely
appeared inside of a list "we compiled in the past".

--
Milos

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

theo10011
In reply to this post by Fæ
Hey Fae

On Sat, Jan 9, 2016, Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> LOL.


> Jeez, this board are complacent beyond the point of incompetence. We
> are well overdue for a major turnover of board members. For goodness
> sake, what a bunch of clowns we have put in charge of the cash cow.


I know there is a good bit of frustration and disappointment around, but
language like that is not helpful. I say this with appreciation for all the
research and relevant comments you've made so far. You are doing yourself
and the conversation a disservice by comments like that. A "bunch of clowns
we have put in charge of the cash cow" is wrong on so many levels, and I
know you realise it too.

Don't reduce the level of conversation here, you have been doing well here.
It will only make it easier to marginalise and ignore all your effort.

Kind Regards
Theo
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Todd Allen
I think Fae's frustration (and everyone else's) is quite understandable. I
understand your concern with keeping the discussion civil, but there does
come a time to move from "Please provide more information about this" to
"Stop stonewalling and giving nonanswers, and tell us what in the hell is
actually going on here." If we're not at that point, we're sure close to
it. I think we passed it on the first non-answer-answer about James
Heilman, not to mention the deafening silence about the accusation that he
was denied access to documents. It's time for some answers that actually
provide information.

Todd
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Austin Hair
In reply to this post by Fæ
On Sat, Jan 9, 2016 at 5:21 PM, Fæ <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hello everyone, I would like to put out a friendly reminder that good
> practice is to keep threads on topic within reason, and to create new
> discussion threads for distinct tangents or complete spin off
> discussions.
>
> "Community Tech Team" and "Lila's performance" are interesting, and to
> be fair they deserve their own threads. If your email to this thread
> does not mention the appointment of Arnnon Geshuri as a new WMF
> trustee (see thread title), it is worth considering which thread it
> ought to be posted under, or whether it is time to create a new
> subject line.

Not exactly coming from the source I would expect, but indeed, please
keep your comments germane to subject line. (Starting new threads is
entirely appropriate, and welcomed.)

Austin

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Steinsplitter Wiki
In reply to this post by Pete Forsyth-2
I think Mr. Geshuri schould comment on the issue.


And....
I don't know Mr. Geshuri, have never seen editing him.  So i can't trust him, especially after the google scandal.

> Date: Sat, 9 Jan 2016 13:21:03 -0800
> From: [hidden email]
> To: [hidden email]
> Subject: Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google
>
> Anders, thank you for your thoughtful message; I understand your position
> much better now, and see much to agree with:
>
> On Sat, Jan 9, 2016 at 1:08 PM, Anders Wennersten <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
> > I used the word Superprotect but could just as well said the disastrous
> > implementation of Visual Editor, which definitely  was not the doing of
> > Lila. And the very positive response to Community Wishlist i have read on
> > this list (and on the talkpages), I have not co,me across any real negative
> > feedback.across
> >
>
> Yes, I agree -- the organization's software development processes are
> improved under Lila's leadership. Significant positive steps have been
> taken, no question -- and she certainly deserves some credit for that.
>
> I am happy to read that there were several in the tech org who initiated
> > this, and that there is a positive feeling of it. I was 25 years ago for
> > seven years was a manager of a org developing sw tools for 3000 sw
> > developer (very similar the WMF setup)  and I went through the process of
> > going from inside-out.  And I learned that the setup of "wishlists" etc was
> > the easy part. I learned that when this was in place the internal org and
> > roles had to be redefined (it was not upwards you had to look what to
> > implement but to the community).
>
>
> I don't know for sure, but my impression is that in this case, much of this
> has been done simultaneously; internal structures have been changing
> alongside the processes for community engagement. I expect there is much
> credit for that to be shared among various parties, including Lila.
>
> And there were a lot of squeaks before the org got sorted out, but then the
> > people got very stimulated working in a outside-in organisation.
> >
>
> Glad to hear of this experience.
>
>
> > And from this perspective I actually think the Board made a very good work
> > identifying the competence Geshuri has which I believe is just what the
> > Board and WMF needs just now.
>
>
> That very well may be the case. I do not have a strong opinion on Mr.
> Geshuri's competencies, and am happy to defer to your more-informed
> perspective. I am heartened to hear that the Board may have done good work
> in identifying and addressing certain missing competencies (even if there
> may be separate issues with the specific choice).
>
> I do think there are two significant issues with Mr. Geshuri's appointment,
> though -- the second of which has not been brought up yet:
> (1) The Board did not apparently do basic due diligence in looking into his
> background
> (2) Mr. Geshuri himself did not highlight the Google firing issue to the
> board prior to his appointment, which makes me wonder about his judgment.
>
> The problems associated with him is already identified and I am not denying
> > these, but please give the Board also credit for their good work, not just
> > blaming when (and if) they make mistakes
>
>
> I am happy to do so, but I must say -- so much of the board's work is
> invisible to me, that I rarely have enough information to do so.
>
> -Pete
> [[User:Peteforsyth]]
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> 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 trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Tobias
Apologies for a slightly off-topic reply, but:

On 01/10/2016 01:21 PM, Steinsplitter Wiki wrote:
> I don't know Mr. Geshuri, have never seen editing him.  So i can't
> trust him, especially after the google scandal.

I don't think board members need to be active editors.

The board is supposed to have expert knowledge. And expertise is not
just editing Wikipedia, but also overseeing a large organization such as
WMF. It's good to have both board members who are expert on wikis, and
to have experts on financial management and administration.

(The Google scandal is an entirely different thing of course, and a much
better reason to question the decision to make Arnnon a board member)

Tobias

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Craig Franklin
In reply to this post by David Gerard-2
I don't disagree that we need an explanation not only of his actions, but
also on how he was selected without this being disclosed to existing
trustees, but even at a show trial it's usually considered necessary to
allow the accused to say a few words in their own defense.  I'll be
reserving my judgement until I hear his side of the story (or he declines
to provide one).

Cheers,
Craig

On 10 January 2016 at 03:51, David Gerard <[hidden email]> wrote:

> ... and the court papers, and the smoking gun documents, and ...
>
> This is the sort of thing that needs some serious explaining. Assume
> good faith, but we're starting from some pretty *startling*
> circumstances and evidence here.
>
>
> - d.
>
> On 9 January 2016 at 09:19, Craig Franklin <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> > Chris,
> >
> > Thanks for saying that.  I'd also add that while the situation with
> Arrnon
> > looks damning on the face of it, I'm a little disappointed that people
> are
> > breaking out the pitchforks based purely on media reports, before he has
> a
> > chance to present his own side of the story and before Dariusz and the
> > others can properly look into the matter.  I also think that some of the
> > more 'excitable' commentary on this list in the past couple of weeks is
> > more likely to push the trustees away than get us the explanations we
> > want.  Yes, what is happening is deeply concerning, but lets not all lose
> > our heads.
> >
> > Cheers,
> > Craig
> >
> > On 9 January 2016 at 19:06, Chris Keating <[hidden email]>
> > wrote:
> >
> >> > I suspect they need a few days, based on past experiences. To dig into
> >> the
> >> > matter, and prepare an answer
> >>
> >> Quite, and thanks for saying that Lodewijk.
> >>
> >> In my view, the WMF board's top priority has to be the issues about
> >> strategy, leadership and staff morale that are being made public now.
> It is
> >> in everyone's interests that these issues get sorted out and some key
> parts
> >> of the solution have to happen in private.
> >>
> >> I am sure that the Board have invested a huge amount of time and energy
> in
> >> these issues already. Unless you have been on the board of an
> organisation
> >> that's gone through a serious problem it's difficult to appreciate the
> >> pressure this creates. I have, and I would urge everyone to take a deep
> >> breath and  think before emailing. It's worth repeating that Board
> members
> >> are all volunteers with jobs and families and what's more are trying to
> >> coordinate between three different continents.
> >>
> >> In particular hundred-email threads on this list where everyone
> speculates
> >> and demands answers to their particular questions  (and some people
> >> downright stir the shit) are less than helpful - a board member who
> spends
> >> 5 hours a week on WMF business could easily spend that just reading all
> the
> >> emails....
> >>
> >> Dariusz has said the Board is looking into the situation with Arnnon,
> which
> >> they were clearly not aware of - that is what needs to happen and yet
> more
> >> emails on this list won't mean that happens any more quickly.
> >>
> >> Regards,
> >>
> >> Chris Keating
> >> _______________________________________________
> >> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> >> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> >> New messages to: [hidden email]
> >> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> >> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> >>
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> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Newyorkbrad (Wikipedia)
It would be great if we could have Arrnon's input and perspective on
the events that have caused the concern raised in this thread.
However, it's been stated that major shareholder litigation involving
the issue is still pending.  If that is so, it is very unlikely that
he's going to be able to make any public statement about the subject.

Newyorkbrad/IBM


On 1/10/16, Craig Franklin <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I don't disagree that we need an explanation not only of his actions, but
> also on how he was selected without this being disclosed to existing
> trustees, but even at a show trial it's usually considered necessary to
> allow the accused to say a few words in their own defense.  I'll be
> reserving my judgement until I hear his side of the story (or he declines
> to provide one).
>
> Cheers,
> Craig
>
> On 10 January 2016 at 03:51, David Gerard <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> ... and the court papers, and the smoking gun documents, and ...
>>
>> This is the sort of thing that needs some serious explaining. Assume
>> good faith, but we're starting from some pretty *startling*
>> circumstances and evidence here.
>>
>>
>> - d.
>>
>> On 9 January 2016 at 09:19, Craig Franklin <[hidden email]>
>> wrote:
>> > Chris,
>> >
>> > Thanks for saying that.  I'd also add that while the situation with
>> Arrnon
>> > looks damning on the face of it, I'm a little disappointed that people
>> are
>> > breaking out the pitchforks based purely on media reports, before he has
>> a
>> > chance to present his own side of the story and before Dariusz and the
>> > others can properly look into the matter.  I also think that some of the
>> > more 'excitable' commentary on this list in the past couple of weeks is
>> > more likely to push the trustees away than get us the explanations we
>> > want.  Yes, what is happening is deeply concerning, but lets not all
>> > lose
>> > our heads.
>> >
>> > Cheers,
>> > Craig
>> >
>> > On 9 January 2016 at 19:06, Chris Keating <[hidden email]>
>> > wrote:
>> >
>> >> > I suspect they need a few days, based on past experiences. To dig
>> >> > into
>> >> the
>> >> > matter, and prepare an answer
>> >>
>> >> Quite, and thanks for saying that Lodewijk.
>> >>
>> >> In my view, the WMF board's top priority has to be the issues about
>> >> strategy, leadership and staff morale that are being made public now.
>> It is
>> >> in everyone's interests that these issues get sorted out and some key
>> parts
>> >> of the solution have to happen in private.
>> >>
>> >> I am sure that the Board have invested a huge amount of time and energy
>> in
>> >> these issues already. Unless you have been on the board of an
>> organisation
>> >> that's gone through a serious problem it's difficult to appreciate the
>> >> pressure this creates. I have, and I would urge everyone to take a deep
>> >> breath and  think before emailing. It's worth repeating that Board
>> members
>> >> are all volunteers with jobs and families and what's more are trying to
>> >> coordinate between three different continents.
>> >>
>> >> In particular hundred-email threads on this list where everyone
>> speculates
>> >> and demands answers to their particular questions  (and some people
>> >> downright stir the shit) are less than helpful - a board member who
>> spends
>> >> 5 hours a week on WMF business could easily spend that just reading all
>> the
>> >> emails....
>> >>
>> >> Dariusz has said the Board is looking into the situation with Arnnon,
>> which
>> >> they were clearly not aware of - that is what needs to happen and yet
>> more
>> >> emails on this list won't mean that happens any more quickly.
>> >>
>> >> Regards,
>> >>
>> >> Chris Keating
>> >> _______________________________________________
>> >> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
>> >> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
>> >> 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
>> > New messages to: [hidden email]
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>> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Matthew Flaschen
In reply to this post by Dariusz Jemielniak-3
On 01/08/2016 12:43 PM, Dariusz Jemielniak wrote:

> On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 3:16 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> Dariusz, you said in your statement that was published in the Wikimedia
>> Blog that WMF "considered dozens of candidates from all over the world,
>> with not-for-profit and technology experience, and the highest professional
>> standards.” I would be interested to hear how you reconcile "highest
>> professional standards" with the prior actions of Arnnon,
>>
>
> I have read about these allegations today, and I am going to follow up on
> that.

WMF doesn't have the excuse of ignorance, or that the case is in
progress.  When you appointed him:

1. The documents were unsealed.
2. The Department of Justice case was fully complete.
3. The civil case by employees was fully complete and payouts had either
started or were fully complete.

Saying you learned about this *after* voting to appoint him is
incredibly frustrating and disappointing.

Being ignorant of the allegations is even worse than coming up with some
dubious reason why we should forgive him, and he's still high-integrity
enough to represent a non-profit backing movement with strong values.

The board had an obligation to fully research both candidates, and
insist on more time as needed to do so.

There is nothing to wait for (the shareholder lawsuit will probably also
be settled, but there is no need to wait for it given the released
documents and fully complete cases above).

See
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-Tech_Employee_Antitrust_Litigation 
for details (though I'm sure someone has linked this from the list).

Matt Flaschen

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Robert Rohde
Can someone on the Board comment on the Board's general approach to vetting
Trustee candidates?

I would hope that someone neutral is explicitly responsible for reviewing
candidates and providing at least a cursory report to the Board on their
background, qualifications, and any potential liabilities.  Such a
responsible person might be WMF staff, though an independent HR agency
might be even better.

It wouldn't have taken a lot effort to identify and highlight the potential
issues with Arrnon.  The fact that some people are now expressing a degree
of ignorance about these issues suggests that the recent candidates didn't
receive much in the way of scrutiny.

Obviously one hopes each member of the board would also take the time to
learn about each candidate and make an informed decision before voting on a
new appointment.  However, Board members are busy people which is one of
the reasons why also having a third-party report seems worthwhile.

If the Board knew about Arrnon's past and made an informed decision to
appoint him anyway, then that is at least a decision that could be argued
and defended.  However, if the Board is overlooking such things due
primarily to a lack of scrutiny then that suggests the process of vetting
Board candidates is in serious need of improvement.

-Robert Rohde


On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 6:43 PM, Matthew Flaschen <
[hidden email]> wrote:

> On 01/08/2016 12:43 PM, Dariusz Jemielniak wrote:
>
>> On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 3:16 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> Dariusz, you said in your statement that was published in the Wikimedia
>>> Blog that WMF "considered dozens of candidates from all over the world,
>>> with not-for-profit and technology experience, and the highest
>>> professional
>>> standards.” I would be interested to hear how you reconcile "highest
>>> professional standards" with the prior actions of Arnnon,
>>>
>>>
>> I have read about these allegations today, and I am going to follow up on
>> that.
>>
>
> WMF doesn't have the excuse of ignorance, or that the case is in
> progress.  When you appointed him:
>
> 1. The documents were unsealed.
> 2. The Department of Justice case was fully complete.
> 3. The civil case by employees was fully complete and payouts had either
> started or were fully complete.
>
> Saying you learned about this *after* voting to appoint him is incredibly
> frustrating and disappointing.
>
> Being ignorant of the allegations is even worse than coming up with some
> dubious reason why we should forgive him, and he's still high-integrity
> enough to represent a non-profit backing movement with strong values.
>
> The board had an obligation to fully research both candidates, and insist
> on more time as needed to do so.
>
> There is nothing to wait for (the shareholder lawsuit will probably also
> be settled, but there is no need to wait for it given the released
> documents and fully complete cases above).
>
> See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-Tech_Employee_Antitrust_Litigation
> for details (though I'm sure someone has linked this from the list).
>
> Matt Flaschen
>
>
> _______________________________________________
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> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
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>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Kevin Gorman
In reply to this post by Newyorkbrad (Wikipedia)
@NYB: at least one major pension fund has ongoing litigation related to the
nonsolicit, so I agree with you Arnnon is unlikely to be able to comment
publicly.

Best,
KG

On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 9:29 AM, Newyorkbrad <[hidden email]> wrote:

> It would be great if we could have Arrnon's input and perspective on
> the events that have caused the concern raised in this thread.
> However, it's been stated that major shareholder litigation involving
> the issue is still pending.  If that is so, it is very unlikely that
> he's going to be able to make any public statement about the subject.
>
> Newyorkbrad/IBM
>
>
> On 1/10/16, Craig Franklin <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > I don't disagree that we need an explanation not only of his actions, but
> > also on how he was selected without this being disclosed to existing
> > trustees, but even at a show trial it's usually considered necessary to
> > allow the accused to say a few words in their own defense.  I'll be
> > reserving my judgement until I hear his side of the story (or he declines
> > to provide one).
> >
> > Cheers,
> > Craig
> >
> > On 10 January 2016 at 03:51, David Gerard <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> >> ... and the court papers, and the smoking gun documents, and ...
> >>
> >> This is the sort of thing that needs some serious explaining. Assume
> >> good faith, but we're starting from some pretty *startling*
> >> circumstances and evidence here.
> >>
> >>
> >> - d.
> >>
> >> On 9 January 2016 at 09:19, Craig Franklin <[hidden email]>
> >> wrote:
> >> > Chris,
> >> >
> >> > Thanks for saying that.  I'd also add that while the situation with
> >> Arrnon
> >> > looks damning on the face of it, I'm a little disappointed that people
> >> are
> >> > breaking out the pitchforks based purely on media reports, before he
> has
> >> a
> >> > chance to present his own side of the story and before Dariusz and the
> >> > others can properly look into the matter.  I also think that some of
> the
> >> > more 'excitable' commentary on this list in the past couple of weeks
> is
> >> > more likely to push the trustees away than get us the explanations we
> >> > want.  Yes, what is happening is deeply concerning, but lets not all
> >> > lose
> >> > our heads.
> >> >
> >> > Cheers,
> >> > Craig
> >> >
> >> > On 9 January 2016 at 19:06, Chris Keating <[hidden email]
> >
> >> > wrote:
> >> >
> >> >> > I suspect they need a few days, based on past experiences. To dig
> >> >> > into
> >> >> the
> >> >> > matter, and prepare an answer
> >> >>
> >> >> Quite, and thanks for saying that Lodewijk.
> >> >>
> >> >> In my view, the WMF board's top priority has to be the issues about
> >> >> strategy, leadership and staff morale that are being made public now.
> >> It is
> >> >> in everyone's interests that these issues get sorted out and some key
> >> parts
> >> >> of the solution have to happen in private.
> >> >>
> >> >> I am sure that the Board have invested a huge amount of time and
> energy
> >> in
> >> >> these issues already. Unless you have been on the board of an
> >> organisation
> >> >> that's gone through a serious problem it's difficult to appreciate
> the
> >> >> pressure this creates. I have, and I would urge everyone to take a
> deep
> >> >> breath and  think before emailing. It's worth repeating that Board
> >> members
> >> >> are all volunteers with jobs and families and what's more are trying
> to
> >> >> coordinate between three different continents.
> >> >>
> >> >> In particular hundred-email threads on this list where everyone
> >> speculates
> >> >> and demands answers to their particular questions  (and some people
> >> >> downright stir the shit) are less than helpful - a board member who
> >> spends
> >> >> 5 hours a week on WMF business could easily spend that just reading
> all
> >> the
> >> >> emails....
> >> >>
> >> >> Dariusz has said the Board is looking into the situation with Arnnon,
> >> which
> >> >> they were clearly not aware of - that is what needs to happen and yet
> >> more
> >> >> emails on this list won't mean that happens any more quickly.
> >> >>
> >> >> Regards,
> >> >>
> >> >> Chris Keating
> >> >> _______________________________________________
> >> >> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> >> >> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> >> >> 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
> >> > 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 trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

SarahSV
In reply to this post by Matthew Flaschen
On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 10:43 AM, Matthew Flaschen <
[hidden email]> wrote:


> The board had an obligation to fully research both candidates, and insist
> on more time as needed to do so.
>
> Boryana Dineva, the Foundation's Vice-President of Human Resources
​, wrote [1] to this mailing list in October 2015:

"Having narrowed down the number in several rounds of review​ ... we are
meeting with finalists to collect more information and get acquainted over
this week and next. After that, all finalists will interview with Lila, and
finally with our panel comprised by the BGC ​[Board Governance Committee]
​(and likely also the Board Chair). The BGC will decide and present
recommendations of chosen candidates to the whole Board. ... I am copying
Dariusz, our BGC chair, in case he would like to add anything also."

But a few days ago Dariusz said on this list that he wasn't aware of the
background of Geshuri's that is causing concern, even though it was fourth
in a Google search for Geshuri's name.

Sarah

[1]
https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2015-October/079583.html
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Nathan Awrich
On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 5:42 PM, SarahSV <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 10:43 AM, Matthew Flaschen <
> [hidden email]> wrote:
>
>
> > The board had an obligation to fully research both candidates, and insist
> > on more time as needed to do so.
> >
> > Boryana Dineva, the Foundation's Vice-President of Human Resources
> ​, wrote [1] to this mailing list in October 2015:
>
> "Having narrowed down the number in several rounds of review​ ... we are
> meeting with finalists to collect more information and get acquainted over
> this week and next. After that, all finalists will interview with Lila, and
> finally with our panel comprised by the BGC ​[Board Governance Committee]
> ​(and likely also the Board Chair). The BGC will decide and present
> recommendations of chosen candidates to the whole Board. ... I am copying
> Dariusz, our BGC chair, in case he would like to add anything also."
>
> But a few days ago Dariusz said on this list that he wasn't aware of the
> background of Geshuri's that is causing concern, even though it was fourth
> in a Google search for Geshuri's name.
>
> Sarah
>
>
It sounds like Boryana and Lila manage the search until after the finalists
are vetted by staff, and then the last slate of candidates is provided for
the BGC to review. I wonder how many candidates the BGC reviewed directly -
hopefully the number was greater than two. This model suggests that the
failure of vetting rests with the staff and the reliance of the Board on
the staff.

The fact that Dariusz was unaware of the Google issue suggests that the
vetting failure wasn't in not realizing the magnitude of the problem - it
seems the staff missed it entirely. If they were doing even a cursory
review and reference check of the candidates through the very last stage,
it's hard to imagine how that could happen. Perhaps more likely is that the
staff happened upon the issue but didn't forward it to the Board?

~Nathan
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

Dariusz Jemielniak-3
In reply to this post by SarahSV
11.01.2016 5:42 PM "SarahSV" <[hidden email]> napisał(a):
>
>
> But a few days ago Dariusz said on this list that he wasn't aware of the
> background of Geshuri's that is causing concern, even though it was fourth
> in a Google search for Geshuri's name.

It was tenth several days ago, in Google.com. unfortunate and silly as it
may sound, it was not in top ten on Google.pl or .de / .it for that matter.
I'm not making excuses, just stating the fact.

I'm investigating with the BGC what went wrong with the whole process (that
some Board members did not have full information) and we're hoping to come
back with learning from this failure, as it was just one point of several
that were suboptimal.
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] WMF trustee Arnnon Geshuri and part in anticompetitive agreements in Google

SarahSV
On Mon, Jan 11, 2016 at 5:29 PM, Dariusz Jemielniak <[hidden email]>
wrote:

>
> It was tenth several days ago, in Google.com. unfortunate and silly as it
> may sound, it was not in top ten on Google.pl or .de / .it for that matter.
> I'm not making excuses, just stating the fact.
>
> I'm investigating with the BGC what went wrong with the whole process (that
> some Board members did not have full information) and we're hoping to come
> back with learning from this failure, as it was just one point of several
> that were suboptimal.
>
> ​Okay, thank you, ​
Dariusz
​, I appreciate that you're responding and trying to find out what happened.

Sarah​
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