Wikipedia:Village pump (WMF)

 Policy Technical Proposals Idea lab WMF Miscellaneous 
The WMF section of the village pump is a community-managed page. Editors or Wikimedia Foundation staff may post and discuss information, proposals, feedback requests, or other matters of significance to both the community and the foundation. It is intended to aid communication, understanding, and coordination between the community and the foundation, though Wikimedia Foundation currently does not consider this page to be a communication venue.

Threads may be automatically archived after 14 days of inactivity.


ABorba (WMF) blocked[]

I have blocked ABorba (WMF) (talk · contribs) for operating ([1]) the account Scungiliman with contributions such as [2] and [3]. ~ ToBeFree (talk) 21:53, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Since they didn't after being warned, what's the point of the block? Levivich 22:04, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Preventing further disruption from someone who needs a warning to not add "fuck shit" as the short description of biographical articles perhaps. I didn't check the warning's timestamp closely, though; I thought they had continued after a warning. Anyway, if these s have been paid by the WMF, I'd first like to see a statement from someone else than the blocked user that this has been seen by their employer. ~ ToBeFree (talk) 22:11, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That's not a valid use of the block tool. Levivich 22:23, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Preventing disruption is a valid use of the block tool. ~ ToBeFree (talk) 22:25, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes but these blocks obviously were not needed to prevent disruption because there were no bad s made after the warnings. The disruption had already stopped by the time you arrived at the scene, TBF, so there was no need for a block to stop it. I get you may not have realized the timeline when you made the blocks, but now that you know, you should unblock. Levivich 22:29, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have just read their UTRS appeal and remain convinced they should stay blocked for now. ~ ToBeFree (talk) 22:34, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Regardless of whether the block was too quick or hasty (or even unnecessary), I can understand why, in the heat of the situation, one would be inclined to block. What else would your reaction be if you saw a WMF account (or an account that looked like a WMF account) operating sock accounts for vandalism? If it's an actual vandal impersonating WMF, then problem solved; if it's a legitimate account, things can be clarified and the block can be removed later. But in the heat of the situation, seeing a seemingly-legitimate account vandalizing raises a lot of suspicions, and a block is absolutely on the table for stopping disruption, especially if the account really was a privileged account. I've been threatened for blocking an "unblockable" for vandalizing project pages which is not a good look: admins shouldn't hesitate to use their tools to exercise their judgement if they believe the project is in danger. —k6ka 🍁 (Talk · Contributions) 13:35, 1 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This block might have been too quick, and probably would have been better to see if the warnings to knock it off worked. This has the appearance of dumb and careless user interface testing rather than vandalism, and blocking all 3 accounts with no warning seems overkill. *All* warnings were given after the last : last --> warning 1 --> warning 2 --> block. If it were up to me, I'd unblock now, but if the block remains, I at least think that "making sure their employer knows" is not a valid reason to keep the block; they should be unblocked, at the latest, as soon as there is an assurance that such "testing" won't recur. --Floquenbeam (talk) 22:27, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
concur with Floquenbeam, this block seems premature. Andre🚐 22:31, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It took me a while after the first block to notice that a WMF account is behind this, and even when I saw that an WMF account's userspace was involved, I first thought I'm dealing with impersonation. There needs to be, at very least, proper disclosure of the account ownership for all involved accounts. ~ ToBeFree (talk) 22:31, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Looks like it's going to be handled thru UTRS: link. And I'd agree proper disclosure is need; not as a condition for unblocking, but as soon as they're unblocked. --Floquenbeam (talk) 22:33, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
From my side, it won't be handled through UTRS. On-wiki disruption paid by the WMF, on-wiki block appeal. ~ ToBeFree (talk) 22:35, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes. My assumption was impersonation. -- Deepfriedokra (talk) 16:26, 31 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@ToBeFree At the minimum they appear to also be using/have used:
plus Pineappleupsidedown (talk · contribs), though you've already blocked that one. How many testing accounts does one person need? 192.76.8.74 (talk) 09:23, 1 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This looks like another case of an employee who needs The Talk with management about on-wiki conduct & use of WMF accounts. Cabayi (talk) 13:32, 31 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
They are making an appeal via UTRS so not everything is public. If the appeal is not going to be public I would rather it be handled by Arbcom than by UTRS. No offence, but Arbcom is elected. ϢereSpielChequers 14:30, 31 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
(Non-administrator comment) I do not think ARBCOM is meant to be a political solution for the admin corps to hide behind. You have expressed your opinion about this twice and reiterating does not make it any more valid. Chris Troutman (talk) 14:34, 31 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Once I realized this really is A WMF employee, I closed the UTRS ticket. Had they proven not to be a WMF employee, the actions I would have taken would have been more than a redirect to the user talk. -- Deepfriedokra (talk) 16:21, 31 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
WereSpielChequers, repeating public information in a private forum does not make it private information. There's nothing in UTRS appeal #62492 which is not already known on-wiki on one WMF project or another. The UTRS appeal was redirected to the user's talk page. Any appeal to ArbCom would be bounced in the same way. Cabayi (talk) 17:05, 31 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
UTRS is not really a private forum. Just the place those w/o TPA can go to request unblock. While I signed the Confidentiality agreement, I believe all admins now have access to UTRS. -- Deepfriedokra (talk) 17:24, 31 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Section break 2[]

The following accounts are  Confirmed by checkuser:

The amount of password resets that I see on Pineappleupsidedown makes me think it may be shared. --Guerillero Parlez Moi 12:54, 1 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm glad this was resolved, however, I'm curious why my username showed up with checkuser? If there was any activity that led to it being flagged, or there is anything I need to change about my testing. I don't make any changes to articles except on testwiki or my sandbox, or my own test user talk pages. Please advise. EdTestCommons02 (talk) 21:13, 1 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@EdTestCommons02: Emailed -- Guerillero Parlez Moi 21:19, 1 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

section break 3[]

I have a better analogy. Would you be willing to tell your Congressman (or Congresswoman) about the trends of property values on the block where you live? ok, now how about a random stranger? ok, now how about if a random stranger started asking you some pesky questions, and when you waved them away, you then found out that the erson was your local congressman? you'd run after him to have a friendly chat, right?
ok, so think of WMF as your local Congressman, or any local politician. almost everyone finds politicians annoying in some way; however, when a politician takes an actual interest in some local item, usually people prefer to cooperate.
I see the WMF as dirrectly analogous to one's local elected officials; in general, we would probably find them annoying, however, most people would agree that they still serve some useful purpose. I hope no one minds my small excursion into analogies here; however, I have used this analogy to explain the WMF quite a bit, and when the topic of general irritation with WMF comes up, this is one way that I like to view this whole topic, and this whole issue in general. thanks. --Sm8900 (talk) 21:05, 1 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree in general. I think though like any good politician, WMF needs to understand and cater to some public sensitivities. Admit the "mistakes were made" and put in place protocols and plans to avoid it in the future. It's a PR problem. Andre🚐 21:14, 1 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

At a minimum, all of these test accounts need to disclose:

  1. That they are running tests on behalf of the WMF
  2. Who owns them

To comply with WP:SOCKLEGIT. The owner needs to have an unlocked WMF account with a name and contact information. --Guerillero Parlez Moi 20:35, 1 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

(Non-administrator comment) Unless the project is about summaries and the testing needs to take over the entire summary field in order to have a valid test result, I would expect any such live testing to use the summary field to clearly label it (maybe with a bit of shouting) AS A TEST, and to include a link to a page on mw or meta or wherever the case may be, where one could find a project page describing the particular testing going on. The project page should also list previous project testing on test.wikipedia.org, and why stopping there wasn't sufficient, and it had to be continued live. Presumably, it would be accompanied by a Project talk page, where any Wikipedia ors who were discommoded or had other comments could register their thoughts and get feedback. Mathglot (talk) 03:40, 2 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement from Jan (WMF)[]

Moin. First, many thanks to @Guerillero:, who notified T&S. Let me briefly share an update on where we are at and to be transparent about my email reply to him earlier today, too:

I also promised Guerillero to circle back with an update after the upcoming meeting. I am happy to share that follow up here, too, if there is an interest. Best regards,--Jan (WMF) (talk) 17:06, 2 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi JEissfeldt (WMF), Thank you very much! In addition to account naming and notifications, I'd hope for an agreement not to insert obscene references to copulation or similar vandalism simulations into mainspace articles at all. There are surely less disruptive ways to test filters, and there's no reason to believe that the community would deny or object to the creation of a test filter for a custom keyword such as "WMFTESTFILTERBLOCK". As the team has agreed not to conduct further tests until the issues have been resolved, I'll remove the three blocks I have placed for now lacking a preventative need. ~ ToBeFree (talk) 17:38, 2 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thank you, ToBeFree, your proposal strikes me as very sensible and I will raise it on Wednesday. The team has done lots of good work helping to improve software before it reaches the community wikis. That wasn't always the case at the WMF before this team was created. So we should be able to work out a way for them to do their work without unnecessary disruptions, especially in the main space. Best regards, --Jan (WMF) (talk) 17:57, 2 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Agreed, and maybe the QA team needs to publish their test plans 24h or 48h in advance and allow experienced admins to object. And maybe they shouldn't do this kind of testing on prod at all but make a test environment. Andre🚐 17:58, 2 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@JEissfeldt (WMF): I think you're missing an important element here, which is that, putting all the issues with accounts and lack of disclosure aside, enwiki has a longstanding policy that says making disruptive s for research or testing purposes isn't acceptable; see WP:NOTLAB. We're a real encyclopaedia on the real life internet and we don't want our readers to open up a biography and see "fuck shit" under the heading, even if it's only for a few minutes. As several ors who work in tech have said above, running tests on your production environment is unprofessional. – Joe (talk) 07:29, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
re I also promised Guerillero to circle back with an update after the upcoming meeting. I am happy to share that follow up here, too, if there is an interest. – I would personally be grateful for that update after the meeting. Best, KevinL (aka L235 · t · c) 12:13, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@L235: Noted :)
@Joe Roe: We agree on both points. I have never met anyone in my nearly two decades here who thinks testing in production is a good pathway. That the testwikis themselves sit in the production cluster, too, just illustrates the larger problem of technical debt (of which our testing infrastructure itself is basically part). If you are interested in my personal views on the latter, I outlined them - including the caveat that I naturally don't speak for Product and Technology - during the Board's community office hour in April (the relevant community question gets read out at 1:00:22). Best regards, --Jan (WMF) (talk) 06:13, 5 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Moin, @L235, Joe Roe, Andrevan, Guerillero, and ToBeFree: thank you for your patience while I discussed your concerns with the Quality & Test Engineering team. They were very interested in your proposals how to improve their work here and agreed to:

  • Would the technical village pump be an acceptable home for brief announcements for local tests?
  • Would you be interested in joining them in a call to discuss the rules - and the technical limitations they work under that are forcing them to conduct some tests in production - before they take effect?

T&S can help put a call together if you are interested in the conversation. Best regards, -–Jan (WMF) (talk) 07:25, 8 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

That's good enough for me as a step in the right direction, I'll let others chime in. No need to join the call, I already have enough on my plate to manage on my actual job. Andre🚐 15:12, 8 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
From my point of view the technical pump makes sense as an announcement place. But I think there needs to be broader onwiki documentation about why production testing is sometimes necessary rather than just discussing it on a call. This could live here, on meta, or mediawiki, and then linked to as appropriate. If a call does end up being organized I would be interested in joining. Best, Barkeep49 (talk) 15:29, 8 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm not completely sure how this became a T&S issue, but yes, I'd be happy to be on a call to discuss this sort of testing. -- RoySmith (talk) 15:36, 8 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks again 🙂 The upcoming renames and userpage disclosures are probably the most important step; I'm happy to see them on a tangible timeline supported by the T&S team. Regarding the announcements/explanations/discussions, I guess as much as possible of them should be held on-wiki (too), where I'd happily participate. I'm also happy to see Barkeep49 and RoySmith, both of whom have programmed userscripts implying noticeable technical competence, joining the call if there is one. I'm thankful for the kind invitation, but I'll stick to written English. ~ ToBeFree (talk) 18:34, 8 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@JEissfeldt (WMF); I would be more than happy to jump on a call with you and them to workshop a proposal -- Guerillero Parlez Moi 07:03, 9 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hey folks, circling back on this with an update. Anthony has provided a list of 10 test accounts to the T&S team. We have just renamed to have them standardized and dropped a disclaimer on each of their userpage. The accounts are User:QTE-Test1-WMF,...and User:QTE-Test10-WMF. We will send out a doddle to Barkeep49, RoySmith, Guerillero and folks who are interested to the call together with Jean-Rene Branaa, Engineering Manager for the Quality and Test Engineering team and Jan from the T&S to discus the rules and where to post. Thank you.--Wikimedia Foundation office (talk) 11:33, 12 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks for that. Are these logins for individuals, or role accounts? Certes (talk) 11:45, 12 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The disclosures on their user page say they are "role accounts", so I would presume the latter. Dreamy Jazz talk to me | my contributions 13:53, 12 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hello, I looked at the page history of user talk pages of the accounts which are being renamed. I found that there are still several accounts which looks like test accounts. They are Scblr (talk · contribs), UserTesting1 (talk · contribs), Viladedoggo (talk · contribs), Talktest2 (talk · contribs), Tannerjs91 (talk · contribs), HeyDimpz (talk · contribs). Some of these accounts also s other user talk pages which those accounts also looks like test accounts. They include WikiEditorSam (talk · contribs), JoNewbie (talk · contribs), Climadeo (talk · contribs) (see its user talk page history, there are test accounts and a staff ing its user talk page), UserTalkTest (talk · contribs), Dbrant testing (talk · contribs), Scblrtest (talk · contribs), Scblrtest2 (talk · contribs), Scblrdev (talk · contribs). I don't know whether those accounts are being created by other staffs but I believe that they are likely test accounts. 132.234.228.55 (talk) 08:44, 15 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Some of these accounts have disclaimer for working with the WMF in their user pages. Are those accounts required to be renamed? 132.234.229.33 (talk) 09:16, 15 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
At first glance for most of the accounts: yes, I suspect. My folks will be sorting them together with that (different) team based on the rules and the results of the upcoming conversation with Barkeep49, RoySmith, and Guerillero. Best regards, --Jan (WMF) (talk) 07:20, 16 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have a suggestion on the test accounts to be created in the future by staffs. As accounts owned by staff should have the "WMF" tag, which is in the title blacklist, I suggest to grant some staffs an account creator flag to override the antispoof. It also allows to check which staff created the test accounts. 132.234.229.28 (talk) 02:57, 19 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I would hope that this is essentially unnecessary, since staff already have the ability to override the title blacklist through the Staff global group. stwalkerster (talk) 14:32, 19 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Comment by a Community Member[]

I have a few comments. First, in looking over the election materials, I think that there is some insight into what is wrong with the Foundation's attitude. They ask the candidates what radical changes should be made to the Foundation or the Movement. Some of us didn't sign on to a Movement. Some of us think that the Foundation is the corporate structure for managing a large data center in support of various stakeholders. Maybe the fact that the Foundation thinks that it is the vanguard of a Movement is part of the problem.

Second, it appears that, perhaps because it thinks that there is a Movement that will change the world, the Foundation hasn't tried to stay in touch with its stakeholders. Each of the wikis has at least two communities of stakeholders, the readers and the ors. We are the largest and most active community of ors, and we might be similar to some of the other communities of ors and might also be able to provide insight into the largest community of readers. The live English Wikipedia is on servers that belong to the Foundation, but the encyclopedia belongs to its communities. (So go and test somewhere else.)

Third, you aren't showing that you have a clue as to how to change the world if you don't know how to manage your own data center, but are in the data center business. (So go and test somewhere else.) Robert McClenon (talk) 05:33, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I agree with the general thrust of the comments by Robert McClenon. The monetary value of the Wikimedia Movement has been created entirely by the volunteer ors, especially the diligent, long term ors who contribute to Wikipedia in English. German, French. Japanese. Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Portuguese and Italian. Not to criticize the ors who contribute in other languages, but the ors working in these languages I have mentioned contribute the vast majority of the useful content, and the English version in paricular is heavily viewed in countless countries worldwide, since English is consided the lingua franca of business and academia in countless countries. To summarize, the volunteers who are actually creating the monetary value are solely responsible for the financial clout that enables the WMF staffers to receive their generous San Francisco based salary and fringe benefit packages. If the staffers were responsible for creating excellent encyclopedic content, the entire project would fail in short order, because the majority of the staffers have shown little interest and less expertise in actually creating encyclopedic content in multiple languages. That would be OK if the WMF staffers showed respect for the people who volunteer (in part) to allow them to receive their generous salary and fringe benefit packages. Based on my 13 years of trying to interact with WMF staffers, my experience is that the more cash that the WMF hoards, the less interested the WMF staffers are in meaningful collaboration with the various volunteer communities, and the more inclined they are to focus on interaction with fake community representatives who are all about grant programs instead of genuine support for the broad communities of ors. It is really sad to see how badly WMF money is misallocated, and what poor results there are for their paid outreach efforts. The bottom line is that financial incentives attract careerists, not genuine encyclopedia ors. Cullen328 (talk) 06:37, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Agree in general. The more money there is, brought in by fundraising campaigns widely thought to be misleading, the more it becomes the glue that keeps the movement (!) together, and the priorities and ethics and mindsets change beyond recognition.
The availability of "easy money" earned in large part off the work of others has a corrupting influence all round. The other day I compared the top salaries in the Wikimedia Foundation's 2018 Form 990 versus the 2020 Form 990. I found (please check ...) that from 2018 to 2020 –
  • the CEO's total compensation incl. benefits increased by 7% (to $423,318),
  • the DGC's and GC's by 10%,
  • the CFO's by 11%,
  • the CTO's by 17%,
  • the CAO's by 22%,
  • the CCO's by 25%,
  • the CT/CO's by 28%, and
  • the CPO's by 32%
– all over a two-year period when the annual US inflation rate was reportedly at 2%. All but three (the GC, CTO and CT/CO) were the same person in 2020 as in 2018. I'm pretty sure those are better raises than most donors got – including this pensioner last year with $18 to his name, who promised he'd donate as soon as his social security check would clear. Andreas JN466 07:05, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The questions for the videos were proposed and voted for by community members here: m:Wikimedia Foundation elections/2022/Community Voting/Questions for Candidates#Proposed Questions. So the phrasing in this case was down to a volunteer. This said, I'm not sure who first started speaking of a "movement". I'm not overly fond of the term. People used to refer to the "project(s)"; that seems to have become less common as references to a "movement" have increased. Andreas JN466 06:47, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Robert McClenon: Is this supposed to be under the thread about ABorba? – Joe (talk) 07:33, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
User:Joe Roe - Yes. I put it here on purpose. It was brought by their testing on the live English Wikipedia, which is why I told them to go and test somewhere else. Yes. That test is indicative of a grandiose attitude by the WMF. Robert McClenon (talk) 07:49, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Robert McClenon: I'm a little confused for how the board election and the idea of a Wikimedia Movement(TM) relate to the attitudes of the staff members on the Quality and Test Engineering team. I mean, they all feel like very separate issues? –MJLTalk 05:24, 4 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This has a high degree of pot calling out elitism of kettle. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 10:29, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's nice to finally see Cullen328, Robert McClenon, and others now using the very argument I've used a hundred times over the past 4 years that goes something like: "The WMF is more interested in its pursuits of becoming a socio-political movement than supporting its volunteers with necessary software that makes the whole thing work. It's not what I signed up for" Be careful what y'all say though about these WMFers on their celebrity salaries and junkets, it was my repeating a totally innocent but extremely accurate comment of Cullen's that was 40% of what led to me being desysopped. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 07:31, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Many of the WMF's socio-political goals are reasonable ones which I share, but diverting readers' donations to them is as immoral as lining their own pockets. The WMF continues to grab so much power from the communities, one inch at a time, that it can dictate whatever terms and conditions it likes. Our only recourse is to stop ing. At least Wikipedia is safe in one way: The WMF can now afford to hire paid ors to replace the volunteers it seems hellbent on driving away. Certes (talk) 19:05, 3 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Community members meeting about QA[]

RoySmith, Guerillero, and I took up Jan (WMF)'s invitation above to have a meeting where we could discuss changes to avoid this kind of situation happening again. We met earlier today. It was, from my perspective, a very productive meeting. Coming out of the meeting there was a commitment to (among other things):

I expect some of these to happen quickly - Jan has already begun working on elements to be hosted here on enwiki - while the last two pieces might be more medium term projects. But on the whole I found the foundation staffers we talked with to be open to hearing the community perspective and eager to be productive collaborators. If I missed anything I hope someone else fills it in. Best, Barkeep49 (talk) 21:48, 20 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

My take on things is pretty much the same as Barkeep's, and his bullet list jives with my own notes. I'm happy with the way the meeting went and I'm fully confident that WMF will soon have improved processes in place to make things run smoother in the future. On the enwiki side, I think we all came away with a better understanding of the constraints under which the WMF QT&E group works and how they will on occasion require testing in a live environment. And I think the WMF folks now have a better understanding of what particular issues got enwiki folks so excited. -- RoySmith (talk) 22:31, 20 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree with what Barkeep and Roy said. I came away from this meeting thinking that JBranaa (WMF), from the testing team, was extremely open to our input and wanted to get it right. If anything, he was less thrilled about future testing being done on enwiki than Barkeep, Roy, and myself were. -- Guerillero Parlez Moi 07:34, 21 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thank you again @RoySmith, @Guerillero, and @Barkeep49 for taking the time to meet with us. I found the discussion very informative and as Guerillero noted above, I want to use what we learned during this situation to improve how we do things in the Quality and Test Engineering team as well as influence how development teams do things as well. Looking forward to working more with you and other members of the community. JBranaa (WMF) (talk) 16:21, 22 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Wikimedia Foundation English fundraising campaign - October pre-tests[]

Hi everyone,

As previously mentioned here, I will continuously inform you of pre-tests on English Wikipedia as the Wikimedia Foundation prepares for the English fundraising campaign later this year. As part of the English campaign we test our infrastructure on a regular basis throughout the next few months and you might see banners every now and then on Wikipedia if you are not logged in.

The scheduled dates for October are (you can find the September ones in this post):

Generally, before and during the campaign, you can contact us:

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thanks you and regards,


JBrungs (WMF) (talk) 11:08, 14 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Copied from Wikipedia:Village pump (miscellaneous) by * Pppery * it has begun... 22:54, 14 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@JBrungs (WMF): Can you provide a list of banners that you plan to run? BilledMammal (talk) 04:39, 15 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes I will share those closer to the time - most likely in early November. Best, JBrungs (WMF) (talk) 06:15, 15 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@JBrungs (WMF): Thank you, but I was referring to the ones being run in October. BilledMammal (talk) 09:45, 15 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@JBrungs (WMF): Is there a list of all banners that were run in September? Looking at m:Special:CentralNotice, only the current campaign is shown, not the ones that were scheduled to run earlier in the month. BilledMammal (talk) 14:32, 25 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hi @BilledMammal,
I just saw this message (I was on holiday for a week). The test banners are clearly a lot in volume so let me check with the team to see what they say and could potentially do. I will get back to you next week. Best, JBrungs (WMF) (talk) 11:30, 27 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hi,
Getting back to you on this point. Currently we are not able to share all the test banners we run as there are just too many. If you are interested, you can search for them in the Central Notice logs. As said before, I will share the control banners on the en VP as well as on the Fundraising meta page, ca. 2 weeks before the campaign starts or whenever the control banners are ready. Best, JBrungs (WMF) (talk) 09:16, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@JBrungs (WMF): "You are not authorized to preview banners, or your token has expired. Please try logging in again or reloading the page." Well, that didn't work. Perhaps the WMF can post links to the banners directly instead of sending us on a wild goose chase to see what they will post on enwiki? It's not as if these banners are uncontroversial... Fram (talk) 09:38, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

That refers to the live preview but if you click on Preview last saved version under the banner title you can preview. Seddon talk 10:46, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks, that wasn't really intuitive, but works indeed! Fram (talk) 11:13, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

So, the first one I looked at[6] has:

"To all our readers in Belgium, Please don’t scroll past this. This Tuesday we interrupt your reading to humbly ask you to defend Wikipedia’s independence. 98% of our readers don’t give; they simply look the other way. If you are an exceptional reader who has already donated, we sincerely thank you. If you donate just €2, or whatever you can this Tuesday, Wikipedia could keep thriving for years. We ask you, humbly: please don’t scroll away. If Wikipedia has given you €2 worth of knowledge this year, take a minute to donate. Show the world that access to reliable, neutral information matters to you. Thank you."

Which is the same objectionable text that was already dissected. 98% of our readers don’t give; they simply look the other way., yuck. Perhaps, like me, they don't give "money" but lots of time? Perhaps they can't give? Don't shame people into giving to a rich free encyclopedia. defend Wikipedia’s independence. from what? Why are these banners still being used? Fram (talk) 11:13, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

In January, in response to similar objections, JBrungs said they were listening and collecting the feedback we saw around the Helpdesk, the Teahouse, the general VP boards on English Wikipedia, and here and that they will also share the banners we are testing prior to the next English campaign on the meta page and will highlight changes that are made in response to community feedback.
Looking at the archives of that page, the only change publicized was the addition of an "I already donated" button. JBrungs, are there any other changes? BilledMammal (talk) 12:17, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I listed the changes that were made here before they went live and operational with the Italy fundraising campaign earlier in the year. Best, JBrungs (WMF) (talk) 12:35, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That's an extremely limited set of changes compared to the many complaints about the language last year and this year. Has there been any feedback about things which were widely criticized but which haven't been changed, with perhaps a reason why? Because this is really insufficient (I was going to say disappointing, but, well, I didn't hive high hopes to begin with). Fram (talk) 12:46, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Banners[]

September[]

The banners ran between 2022-09-23 20:00 (UTC) and 2022-09-25 20:00 (UTC) on enwiki for readers from Australia, Canada, Britain, Ireland, New Zealand and the United States. 10% of pageviews for logged-out readers included a banner, up to ten times per reader.

September banners
Platform Example Banner
Desktop B2223_092423_en6C_dsk_p1_lg_txt_cnt To all our readers in Country,

Please don’t scroll past this. This Day we interrupt your reading to humbly ask you to defend Wikipedia’s independence. 98% of our readers don’t give; they simply look the other way. If you are an exceptional reader who has already donated, we sincerely thank you. If you donate just $2.75, or whatever you can this Day, Wikipedia could keep thriving for years. We ask you, humbly: please don’t scroll away. If Wikipedia has given you $2.75 worth of knowledge this year, take a minute to donate. Show the world that access to reliable, neutral information matters to you. Thank you.

B2223_092423_en6C_dsk_p1_lg_txt_mLgOpening To all our readers in Country,

Please don’t scroll past this. We know we're interrupting your reading, so we'll get straight to the point: This Day we ask you to protect Wikipedia's independence. 98% of our readers don't give; they simply look the other way. If you are one of our rare donors, we warmly thank you. If you donate just $2.75, or whatever you can this Day, Wikipedia could keep thriving for years. We ask you, humbly: please don’t scroll away. If Wikipedia has given you $2.75 worth of knowledge this year, take a minute to donate. Show the world that access to reliable, neutral information matters to you. Thank you.

B2223_0923_en6C_dsk_p2_sm_dsn_cnt We ask you, humbly: don't scroll away

Hi. This isn’t the first time we’ve interrupted your reading recently, but only 2% of our readers give. Many think they’ll give later, but then forget. This Day we ask you to protect Wikipedia. All we ask is $2.75, or what you can afford, to secure our future. We ask you, humbly: Please don’t scroll away. If you are one of our rare donors, we warmly thank you.

B2223_0923_en6C_dsk_p2_sm_dsn_Opacity100
B2223_0923_en6C_dsk_p2_sm_dsn_Opacity75
B2223_0923_en6C_dsk_p2_sm_dsn_Grayscale
Mobile B2223_092423_en6C_m_p1_lg_txt_cnt To all our readers,

Please don’t scroll past this. This Day we interrupt your reading to humbly ask you to defend Wikipedia’s independence. 98% of our readers don’t give; they simply look the other way. If you are an exceptional reader who has already donated, we sincerely thank you.

If everyone reading this donated $2.75, we could keep Wikipedia thriving for years. The price of a cup of coffee is all we need. We’re a nonprofit, and the 58 million articles that compose Wikipedia are free.

We don’t charge a subscription fee, and Wikipedia is sustained by the donations of only 2% of our readers. Without reader contributions, big or small, we couldn’t run Wikipedia the way we do.

That’s why we still need your help. We are passionate about our model because at its core, Wikipedia belongs to you. We want to make sure everyone on the planet has equal access to knowledge.

If Wikipedia provided you $2.75 worth of knowledge this year, please take a minute to secure its future by making a donation. Thank you.

B2223_092423_en6C_m_p1_lg_txt_dskLgOpening
B2223_0923_en6C_m_p2_sm_amt_DoubleCTAs275and25 Hi. This isn’t the first time we’ve interrupted your search recently, but 98% of our readers don't give; they keep reading. This Day we ask you to help us sustain Wikipedia. All we ask is $2.75 if you can afford $2.75, or $25 if you can afford $25. We ask you, humbly: Please don’t scroll away.
B2223_0923_en6C_m_p2_sm_amt_cnt
B2223_0923_en6C_m_p2_sm_amt_NoCTAamt
B2223_0923_en6C_m_p2_sm_amt_4then2 Hi. This isn’t the first time we’ve interrupted your search recently, but 98% of our readers don't give; they keep reading. This Day we ask you to help us sustain Wikipedia. All we ask is $25 if you can afford $25, or $2.75 if you can afford $2.75. We ask you, humbly: Please don’t scroll away.

October[]

The banners run between 2022-10-03 20:00 (UTC) and 2022-10-10 20:00 (UTC) on enwiki for readers from Australia, Canada, Britain, Ireland, New Zealand and the United States. 7% of pageviews for logged-out readers include a banner, up to ten times per reader.

October banners
Platform Example Banner
Desktop B2223_1003_en6C_dsk_p1_lg_dsn_BubbleMessage To all our readers in Country,
Please don’t scroll past this. This Day we interrupt your reading to humbly ask you to defend Wikipedia’s independence.
98% of our readers don’t give; they simply look the other way. If you are an exceptional reader who has already donated, we sincerely thank you.
If you donate just $2.75, or whatever you can this Day, Wikipedia could keep thriving for years. We ask you, humbly: please don’t scroll away. If Wikipedia has given you $2.75 worth of knowledge this year, take a minute to donate.
Show the world that access to reliable, neutral information matters to you. Thank you.
B2223_1003_en6C_dsk_p1_lg_dsn_BubbleMessageFrmBkg
B2223_1003_en6C_dsk_p1_lg_dsn_cnt To all our readers in Country,
Please don’t scroll past this. This Day we interrupt your reading to humbly ask you to defend Wikipedia’s independence. 98% of our readers don’t give; they simply look the other way. If you are an exceptional reader who has already donated, we sincerely thank you. If you donate just $2.75, or whatever you can this Day, Wikipedia could keep thriving for years. We ask you, humbly: please don’t scroll away. If Wikipedia has given you $2.75 worth of knowledge this year, take a minute to donate. Show the world that access to reliable, neutral information matters to you. Thank you.
B2223_1003_en6C_dsk_p1_lg_dsn_FrmBkg
B2223_1003_en6C_dsk_p2_sm_amt_cnt We ask you, humbly: don't scroll away.
Hi. This isn’t the first time we’ve interrupted your reading recently, but only 2% of our readers give. Many think they’ll give later, but then forget. This Day we ask you to protect Wikipedia. All we ask is $2.75, or what you can afford, to secure our future. We ask you, humbly: Please don’t scroll away. If you are one of our rare donors, we warmly thank you.
B2223_1003_en6C_dsk_p2_sm_amt_CTAGiveNow
Mobile B2223_1003_en6C_m_p1_lg_rml_cnt To all our readers,

Please don’t scroll past this. This Day we interrupt your reading to humbly ask you to defend Wikipedia’s independence. 98% of our readers don’t give; they simply look the other way. If you are an exceptional reader who has already donated, we sincerely thank you.

If everyone reading this donated $2.75, we could keep Wikipedia thriving for years. The price of a cup of coffee is all we need. We’re a nonprofit, and the 58 million articles that compose Wikipedia are free.

We don’t charge a subscription fee, and Wikipedia is sustained by the donations of only 2% of our readers. Without reader contributions, big or small, we couldn’t run Wikipedia the way we do.

That’s why we still need your help. We are passionate about our model because at its core, Wikipedia belongs to you. We want to make sure everyone on the planet has equal access to knowledge.

If Wikipedia provided you $2.75 worth of knowledge this year, please take a minute to secure its future by making a donation. Thank you.

We ask you, humbly: don’t scroll away.

B2223_1003_en6C_m_p1_lg_rml_RMLOptions
B2223_1003_en6C_m_p2_sm_amt_cnt] Hi. This isn’t the first time we’ve interrupted your search recently, but 98% of our readers don't give; they keep reading. This Day we ask you to help us sustain Wikipedia. All we ask is $2.75 if you can afford $2.75, or $25 if you can afford $25. We ask you, humbly: Please don’t scroll away.
B2223_1003_en6C_m_p2_sm_amt_NoCTAamtRetest

English Wikipedia user group?[]

It's rather difficult to miss the underlying feeling in some areas of the English Wikipedia that the Wikimedia Foundation is perhaps not listening as closely as it should to y'all — most recently, this has surfaced in topics such as PageTriage and the fundraising campaigns. I can certainly share some aspects of this feeling, and try to surface this constructively where I can.

The formation of a Wikimedia user group for the English Wikipedia would, among other things, allow for a delegate to attend the Wikimedia Summit and voice concerns directly to decision makers. I'm no fan of complex bureaucracy, and as such can offer no suggestions as to how a delegate would be selected/how the user group should run etc, but I did want to surface the idea and see if this is a direction y'all would consider investigating — providing the "message" doesn't get spread too thin, more opportunities for discussion can't be a bad thing.

For transparency, I am employed by the Wikimedia Foundation, but consider myself a volunteer first and foremost and make this suggestion as such. I think this is the most appropriate village pump for the topic, but please do feel free to move it if not. — TheresNoTime (talk • they/them) 13:22, 20 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Potentially this is "too much and not enough". If the Wikimedia Summit winds up as an influential forum within the movement then one delegate from this community would be a tad farcical given the proportion of Wikimedians who are active here and how we differ on several key things, but having that one delegate risks people thinking that that forum somehow represents this community. I'm fairly confident that a number of attendees will be active on this wiki, but they won't be there to represent us and may not have views that would be mainstream here. I detect something of a governance flaw in this project, user groups thematic orgs and chapters all have their roles, but if they each start sending people to a meaningful summit then we risk some people realising that they potentially have multiple routes to the summit; (the chapter where you live, a couple of subject based ones and now a project based one or two). The more attractive being at that summit becomes the more we risk a proliferation of such orgs, some of which won't do much other than send one of their own to an annual jolly. ϢereSpielChequers 19:57, 20 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It’s not there for the same reason as that the en.wp ors don’t have a conference of their own. No one wants to organize it. The ppl who want to organize things are all already doing that. All the ppl who don’t want to organize things are the ones complaining all the time. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 20:06, 20 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think a single user group for all of the English Wikipedia is the wrong size. I think smaller subgroups of the English Wikipedia, say functionaries, NPP, AbuseFilter rule helpers/maintainers, DYK enthusiasts, WikiProject <whatever>, etc. would be a much better fit for the user group model. Legoktm (talk) 05:02, 21 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Legoktm: The meta:English Wikipedia Functionaries User Group is in the works. -- Guerillero Parlez Moi 07:38, 21 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That is fantastic. Legoktm (talk) 17:45, 21 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Open letter to the WMF about Wikimedia Commons[]

Hello, there is an open letter in preparation, directed to the WMF. We want to improve Wikimedia Commons. Please have a look at the draft text here, and please comment on the talk page. Ziko (talk) 11:33, 21 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Ziko, total waste of time like this. WMF will just spend a couple grand and fart another Human Rights Policy.Alexis Jazz (talk or ping me) 12:13, 23 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You're probably right. If they can spend their time drawing up elaborate plans for the future and UCOCs to pretend to be busy instead of doing some concrete work, they will. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 02:23, 30 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Open letter to the WMF and the BoT about NPP[]

Signed by over 400 ors and admins, the NPP team officially launched their appeal yesterday to the WMF and the Board of Trustees to do something about the unaddressed bugs and feature requests for the suite of PageTriage software. It has been signed by over 400 ors and admins. Unable to cope with the increasing flood of inappropriate new articles due mainly to the expansion in the use of Internet and smart phones, the reviewers can no longer guarantee the claims of accuracy, neutrality, and free of spam that the WMF is otherwise so proud of in its flagship encyclopedia. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 17:46, 21 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Board of Trustees election results[]

The results of the recent Board of Trustees election have been announced at m:Wikimedia Foundation elections/2022/Results. Certes (talk) 11:46, 22 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thanks for giving the link :) Dreamy Jazz talk to me | my contributions 21:37, 22 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Cabals, stonewalling and the WMF is A-okay with that[]

WP:Cabals are a running gag, but in my experience they are quite real. Here are two cases where I was the target and got stonewalled by them. One on Commons, one on Phabricator. Neither is English Wikipedia, but both impact all projects which includes English Wikipedia. And I'm not sure there's any reason this couldn't happen here.
Now whatever you think of me, what I did or what I deserve doesn't really matter. I'm not here to complain about that, I have no open sanctions against me. The problem is communication, or lack thereof.


In March 2020 I used an alternative account to make some comments that, in hindsight, weren't productive. They weren't harmful, they just didn't contribute to the project, but hindsight is always 20/20. So it was stupid. I used an alternative account to avoid legal harassment from a party known for dubious behavior in that area. The account was a screaming DUCK for anyone who knows me at all (which I did on purpose), but I figured it should be sufficient to avoid legal harassment.
One of the things I said using the alternative account was "I'm afraid me and ol' Betsy will have to 'interrogate' some people in relation to this matter." which may seem somewhat threatening out of context, but in context it was word salad. The "ol' Betsy" (which to the best of memory, to the degree there was any coherence at all, referred to my imaginary horse) was keeping with the theme of the Wild West as set by the party I was commenting on, Web Sheriff. What it ultimately meant was "I'll have to ask the photographer", which I did. Which was helpful.
A simple "what the hell?" mail could have straightened all that out. Instead, I was blocked out of the blue 4 days after the fact by the Commons checkuser team. The rationale given was "this is a group action/decision by the Commons CU team" which notably isn't a rationale. The CU team never actually bothered to tell me personally what it was about, causing User:1989 to ask at c:User talk:Trijnstel/Archive/2020#Alexis Jazz.
As things kept going, the checkuser team implied I made off-wiki death threats towards them: Diff 407320695. When AFBorchert asked as directly as it gets "Were these personal threats made off-wiki?", Krd answered saying "Please allow me to not further comment on the case. There is nothing to add from my side. Thank you." Good job dodging the question, he could have saved some time by just saying "no". I hadn't contacted them off-wiki. Admin Magog the Ogre said "AJ has made physical threats of violence against community members and has several times now threatened all of the checkusers. This is no longer a matter of polite discussion. We've moved into legally actionable territory." which I can't classify as anything but fantasy.
Long story short: wheel warring, admins Zhuyifei1999 and Majora resigned as admins and this is the one case over 1 year old in the m:Ombuds commission/2022/Report Feb-Apr. WMF legal had no interest, as far as I can tell/guess because technically nothing illegal happened. Legally speaking, Commons checkusers were forced to make thoughts about their physical safety during this case after personal threats. is opinion. Nobody knows what goes through anyone's head and it doesn't specify who made the personal threats, many admins receive some on a regular basis from random LTAs so that's plausible.
The shocking part is that it's all a charade. The "ol' Betsy" comment was never revision deleted, was only blanked at my own request after the block and the checkuser team, as far as anyone knows (and inquiries were made, but again, stonewalling), never got in touch with m:Trust and Safety nor reported me to the authorities. Simply put: nobody ever took "ol' Betsy" as a serious threat, or if they did, they ignored every guideline in existence.


You'd think that was an isolated case. So did I. Until User talk:Alexis Jazz#So I got this mail from User:TechConductCommittee.
I got a warning from mw:Code of Conduct/Committee/Members which includes several people who work for the WMF. This is the textbook definition of a cabal. They vote for their own members, no community input, they make their own rules (the committee determines its own procedures) and sanction people based on those rules. Cabal. The mail didn't specify what I was being warned for exactly. It said "We recently received a report regarding several of your recent comments at Wikimedia Phabricator, related to VisualEditor." but didn't link any of them. So over time, I pinged all the members of the committee to ask for -at least- some links. The one who delivered the message I pinged more than once. Nobody ever responded. I still have no clue which comments they were talking about or why some anonymous reporter had a problem with them. Not knowing who reported it made me rather paranoid. I can't talk to anyone I was in discussion with at the time without thinking "was it you who didn't have the guts to just engage in a constructive conversation?". In the same period I received a request from PPelberg (WMF) to join a voice chat about development issues. I was considering it, quite excited even, but after that mail I had to decline. I have discovered various bugs since that mail which I no longer bother to report on Phabricator. I can't imagine that to be a good thing for the project overall. Some are just waiting to hit production as I often discover bugs on beta cluster. All that because the TechConductCommittee can't be arsed so cough up some links. That's just pathetic.


This wasn't on enwiki (though it does affect enwiki indirectly), but is there any reason it couldn't happen here? Somehow, the WMF is totally A-okay with all this. And the community effectively has no instruments whatsoever to deal with it.

As illusive as a stonewalling cabal

I wish I had a solution, but I got nothing. Cabals that resort to stonewalling are untouchable. To balance the sadness of this post, here's an unrelated video of a cat trying to catch the red dot of a laser pointer.Alexis Jazz (talk or ping me) 14:32, 23 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

WMF staff hierarchy[]

As far as I can make out, there are dozens of different job titles above the rank and file in the WMF, but in the absence of an organigramme, there are no relative lines of authority. Can anyone throw any light on these job titles and relate them to pay grades?

Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 14:03, 29 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Kudpung: Re pay grades, some of that can be roughly derived from m:Wikimedia Foundation salaries. --Yair rand (talk) 23:13, 29 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks for that Yair rand. Probably when I said 'pay grade' I said the wrong thing, because the salaries seem to be arbitrarily fixed. Pay grades alone often reflect competency rather than responsibility. Although at or very near the top it's fairly clear who reports to whom, what I'm trying to establish are the lines of actual responsibility, particularly in Product/Engineering, such as who are the deciders of which development projects are defined and created, how they are prioritised, and how budgets are accorded for them and by whom. The arborescence of a proper organigramme would show this and how the different departments overlap. That is not clear at all for example at Staff & Contractors. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 00:10, 30 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Most (not all) of these are standard job titles in the industry and not WMF specific (Look at https://levels.fyi to see what other places do). Some of these do not denote responsibility over others but simply how much someone is getting paid (e.g. Principle engineer gets more money than a senior engineer, but it doesn't mean that they neccessarily get to tell the senior engineer what to do. It usually but not always means that the principle engineer has more "respect" in the org, so it might be easier for their ideas to get traction). Generally in terms of responsibility, an engineer does the work, they report to a manager, the managers report to a director who is a manager of the managers, and the directors report to the c-level, who reports to the CEO. There's probably exceptions though. Bawolff (talk) 14:24, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That's pretty much what I said: Pay grades alone often reflect competency rather than responsibility, for example it's perfectly possible in the army for a highly skilled corporal to be earning as much as a major. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 15:13, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My big question here is why does anybody care? If we have issues with the WMF, we should be discussing the issues. I can't see how any analysis of who reports to whom, or how much individual people earn, is relevant to our purpose of building an encyclopedia. -- RoySmith (talk) 15:37, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I can't see how any analysis of who reports to whom [...] is relevant to our purpose of building an encyclopedia. It becomes important when concerned Wikipedians attempt to talk to or lobby the WMF to allocate more resources to the development of certain software. It's important to be able to talk to decision makers. The top decision makers are obvious. The middle and bottom decision makers are not well publicized. The best public org chart I've found doesn't make the bottom-to-top decision-making hierarchy clear. –Novem Linguae (talk) 20:10, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Grades also relate to scope and the level of abstraction they are working at, which is probably a better framing than authority. Seddon talk 19:17, 4 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]