[Wikimedia-l] how big the foundation should be, was: Why take grants?

classic Classic list List threaded Threaded
3 messages Options
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

[Wikimedia-l] how big the foundation should be, was: Why take grants?

rupert THURNER-2
ha, i read the thread and i did not notice the core question :) lets
start from the annual plan then:
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Annual_Plan/2015-16

there are 280 persons working for the WMF, all departments are
growing. money given to somebody else is shrinking below 10%. the word
"fun" is mentioned zero time, and innovation gets one important
sentence:
"We will create spaces for future community-led innovations and new
knowledge creation."
and after that innovation is mentioned in the *legal* and
*communications* paragraph. but - there is no money attached to it.
except maybe paying employees.

one could strive to allocate money differently, in the line of "30%
goes into grants to improve or develop new technology". making sure
that the innovation money is going to all regions of this planet
should be self evident. or one could clearly define that community
money is spent through local organisations, not central. one could
also suppose community money goes to members of the community, not
employees taking care about the community. this btw is also a major
fundraising problem - people have no problem to give money to
community members. but they have a problem if such money is spent on
employees.

to play the devils advocate, this increasing money spent not within
the WMF from <10% to 50% means, in reverse, WMF needs to shrink from
280 persons to 180 persons. one could even advocate for an upper limit
of 200 persons for central functions no matter of the income. as food
for thought, FIFA has a staff of 300. there are 250 million people
playing association football worldwide.

best,
rupert


On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 9:33 PM, Lodewijk <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Potato potato - availability can be interpreted in many different ways.
> Thanks to the free license, we've covered a big part of that by design.
>
> What activities the WMF should be doing wasn't quite the core of the
> discussion though, but rather how big the WMF should be.
>
> Lodewijk
>
> On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 5:00 PM, Tim Landscheidt <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
>> (anonymous) wrote:
>>
>> > […]
>>
>> > But 'getting big' is maybe not the most important thing in the world.
>> > Working on our mission, is. And part of that, is security. The WMF is not
>> > in this world to play the odds, but rather to ensure that knowledge is
>> > freed, and stays free - most specifically by securing Wikipedia's
>> continued
>> > availability (at least, that is what our deck of cards looks like now).
>>
>> > Fully focussing on one sigle stream of money may indeed allow you to get
>> > more out of it. But the question here is rather, how to you tackle the
>> > situation when that stream dries up? And for that question,
>> diversification
>> > is actually key.
>>
>> > […]
>>
>> I don't agree with that.  From the Library of Alexandria to
>> the Duchess Anna Amalia Library it has always been a mistake
>> to keep knowledge in one place and try really hard to keep
>> it from falling apart.  The biggest advancement in that
>> field probably came from Gutenberg's press which allowed
>> knowledge to be spread around and resist attempts of censor-
>> ship.
>>
>> When cinema and television came along, the ancient pattern
>> repeated: Cultural goods are lost today because the broad-
>> casters put them in one vault and then did not maintain the
>> fire alarm properly.
>>
>> We have the same issue now with streaming services: During
>> dictatorships, you could hide books and jazz records.  Net-
>> flix or YouTube just stops serving videos some entity does
>> not like, and Amazon can wipe your Kindle clean of anything.
>>
>> So the diversification for the purpose of the advancement of
>> knowledge should not lie in making WMF immortal, but ensur-
>> ing that it survives WMF's death.
>>
>> Tim
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> 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>

_______________________________________________
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>
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: [Wikimedia-l] how big the foundation should be, was: Why take grants?

Pine W
I'm thinking similarly in terms of distributing tasks broadly among an
array of Wikimedia affiliates instead of concentrating so many of them in a
single entity. Recent events have highlighted the systemic problems that
happen when WMF takes a stance against its volunteer communities (such as
with VisualEditor and Superprotect) or has governance, management, or
integrity issues (as with the situations with James, Jimbo, and Arnnon).

Transitioning to a federated model of Wikimedia infrastructure and funding
may be tricky. I the long term I am thinking that a federated model would
increase the resilience of the ecosystem as a whole because the systemic
risk from a problem in any one affiliate would be much lower than the risks
that we have with so much centralization in a single organization,
particularly when I personally feel that its WMF Board is misaligned with
the values of the movement that it was intended so support.

Pine

On Thu, Feb 4, 2016 at 1:21 AM, rupert THURNER <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> ha, i read the thread and i did not notice the core question :) lets
> start from the annual plan then:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Annual_Plan/2015-16
>
> there are 280 persons working for the WMF, all departments are
> growing. money given to somebody else is shrinking below 10%. the word
> "fun" is mentioned zero time, and innovation gets one important
> sentence:
> "We will create spaces for future community-led innovations and new
> knowledge creation."
> and after that innovation is mentioned in the *legal* and
> *communications* paragraph. but - there is no money attached to it.
> except maybe paying employees.
>
> one could strive to allocate money differently, in the line of "30%
> goes into grants to improve or develop new technology". making sure
> that the innovation money is going to all regions of this planet
> should be self evident. or one could clearly define that community
> money is spent through local organisations, not central. one could
> also suppose community money goes to members of the community, not
> employees taking care about the community. this btw is also a major
> fundraising problem - people have no problem to give money to
> community members. but they have a problem if such money is spent on
> employees.
>
> to play the devils advocate, this increasing money spent not within
> the WMF from <10% to 50% means, in reverse, WMF needs to shrink from
> 280 persons to 180 persons. one could even advocate for an upper limit
> of 200 persons for central functions no matter of the income. as food
> for thought, FIFA has a staff of 300. there are 250 million people
> playing association football worldwide.
>
> best,
> rupert
>
>
> On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 9:33 PM, Lodewijk <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> > Potato potato - availability can be interpreted in many different ways.
> > Thanks to the free license, we've covered a big part of that by design.
> >
> > What activities the WMF should be doing wasn't quite the core of the
> > discussion though, but rather how big the WMF should be.
> >
> > Lodewijk
> >
> > On Wed, Feb 3, 2016 at 5:00 PM, Tim Landscheidt <[hidden email]>
> > wrote:
> >
> >> (anonymous) wrote:
> >>
> >> > […]
> >>
> >> > But 'getting big' is maybe not the most important thing in the world.
> >> > Working on our mission, is. And part of that, is security. The WMF is
> not
> >> > in this world to play the odds, but rather to ensure that knowledge is
> >> > freed, and stays free - most specifically by securing Wikipedia's
> >> continued
> >> > availability (at least, that is what our deck of cards looks like
> now).
> >>
> >> > Fully focussing on one sigle stream of money may indeed allow you to
> get
> >> > more out of it. But the question here is rather, how to you tackle the
> >> > situation when that stream dries up? And for that question,
> >> diversification
> >> > is actually key.
> >>
> >> > […]
> >>
> >> I don't agree with that.  From the Library of Alexandria to
> >> the Duchess Anna Amalia Library it has always been a mistake
> >> to keep knowledge in one place and try really hard to keep
> >> it from falling apart.  The biggest advancement in that
> >> field probably came from Gutenberg's press which allowed
> >> knowledge to be spread around and resist attempts of censor-
> >> ship.
> >>
> >> When cinema and television came along, the ancient pattern
> >> repeated: Cultural goods are lost today because the broad-
> >> casters put them in one vault and then did not maintain the
> >> fire alarm properly.
> >>
> >> We have the same issue now with streaming services: During
> >> dictatorships, you could hide books and jazz records.  Net-
> >> flix or YouTube just stops serving videos some entity does
> >> not like, and Amazon can wipe your Kindle clean of anything.
> >>
> >> So the diversification for the purpose of the advancement of
> >> knowledge should not lie in making WMF immortal, but ensur-
> >> ing that it survives WMF's death.
> >>
> >> Tim
> >>
> >>
> >> _______________________________________________
> >> 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>
>
> _______________________________________________
> 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>
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|

Re: [Wikimedia-l] how big the foundation should be, was: Why take grants?

Philippe Beaudette-4
On Thu, Feb 4, 2016 at 12:50 PM,
​Rupert wrote:

as food
>
> > for thought, FIFA has a staff of 300. there are 250 million people
> > playing association football worldwide.
> >
> > best,
> > rupert
> >
> >
>

--
​I'm not really sure what you're trying to prove with that example.  During
the time period from 2011 to 2014, FIFA had a net revenue of
$5,718,000,000.  That's right, five billion dollars.  Their budget surplus
during the same time period was 338,000,000.  (
http://www.fifa.com/mm/document/affederation/administration/02/56/80/39/fr2014weben_neutral.pdf
)

They may have a small staff, but they certainly are rolling in financial
resources...​ so, what exactly IS the point of that example?  It seems
rather apples to oranges to me.  FIFA is a direct support organization in
support of a particular fandom (and a poorly managed one at that).


Philippe Beaudette

[hidden email]
415-275-1424
_______________________________________________
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>