philippe at wikimedia
Apr 22, 2012, 3:28 PM
Post #9 of 50
On Sat, Apr 21, 2012 at 8:10 PM, Béria Lima <berialima [at] gmail> wrote:
> Can you explain why you request another year from them instead of running
> a new process, Philippe?
> *Béria Lima*
Hi Beria -
It's a good question, and a fair one.
The truth is, there were a couple of factors: first, did I believe the
current commission was doing a good job? No, I actually think they're
doing an *exceptional* job. Second, was there a desire from among
themselves for change? Yes, Pundit wanted to be a steward, but when
Christine and I were scouting for this committee, we had anticipated
someone rotating off and had another commissioner who was already trained
and participating. So the commission was stable.
Then, what is the cost and benefit of the search? On the benefit side,
there's the ability to form a new commission with all the myriad benefits
that flow from that. But on the contra side, I sort of felt like stability
is something good right now: systems are changing everywhere, and maybe
keeping this one with a core group of stable people who are doing a good
job is a good idea. I continue to believe that is true.
In addition, running a search is costly: in time for volunteers and staff.
This is a secondary consideration - obviously, if the preceding had not
been true, we'd have made the staff time to run the search. But when I
looked at the realities of my transition to a new team, to not having
Christine to help, and at Maggie's workload, there was a definite savings
in "time beyond the norm" that would have been used to run this search.
They're hard: it's more than just asking for volunteers. We put together
the commission with an eye toward diversity of gender, project, language,
and geography, and we needed Wikimedians who are above reproach: this folks
are the ultimate arbiters of the checkuser tool, and they have to be
unblemished. So much as a whiff of an issue around privacy, and things
could get very uncomfortable... so we did a lot of deep diving into
backgrounds. It's a very very time intensive process, and we could frankly
use the time other places.
Finally, I continue to believe that we should stick with traditions that
make sense, but give them enough flexibility to change with circumstances:
so re-appointing the commission this time was partially intended to set
that as a possible solution going forward. That said, in order to prevent
a "permanent committee", I can't imagine a circumstance in which I would
ever reappoint a full commission more than one time. But, I wanted to have
reappointment in my (or whomever's) list of tools for the future if need
Hope that gives you some insight into my thinking.
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