Wikisource:News/2007-07-01

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Wikisource News (articles)
Wikisource News
June 2007 report
by Pathoschild, 01 July 2007

Wikisource[edit]

Illy loses administrator access[edit]

Illy (confirmation) lost administrator access due to his inactivity; Danny (confirmation) was confirmed. According to the Administrator policy, every administrator must be confirmed at least once per year. Shanel is being confirmed this July.

Reform month[edit]

With no featured text for July, Pathoschild proposed and implemented Reform month. The event, scheduled to end on 01 August, is a call to all readers and editors to "give us constructive suggestions and comments concerning any part of Wikisource". The page was advertised on the Main Page and in the sitenotice.[1]

Extensions enabled[edit]

Wikimedia Foundation[edit]

2007 Board of Trustee elections[edit]

The 2007 elections for the Board of Trustees are open, with three positions being filled for a two-year term. The 2007 elections introduced endorsements as a new requirement, which disqualified three candidates. Each eligible candidate was required to obtain 12 positive votes by an established editor on any project before the actual vote.

The final vote began on June 28, and was preceded by candidate submissions and endorsements. The vote will be hosted and administered by a neutral third party, Software in the Public Interest, which will also audit the tally. Any user having at least 400 edits as of 01 June 2007 on one project is eligible to vote in favour of any number of candidates. The three candidates with the greatest number of favourable votes will be appointed. [4][5][6][7]

Candidates[edit]

15 candidates met all the requirements before the deadline. A summary of each candidate's platform follows.

These summaries are unofficial, and may contain errors or omissions. While five candidates have corrected or approved their summaries, others haven't.

Ausir
(Paweł Dembowski)
Qualifications:
A 24-year-old Pole, he has been an editor since February 2004, a founding member of the Polish chapter of Wikimedia, a steward, a checkuser on pl-Wikipedia, a bureaucrat on Commons, and an administrator on pl-Wikipedia, en-Wikipedia, and Commons. He is studying management and marketing.

Platform:
He favours:

  • restricting fair use 'to a minimum';
  • multilingualism;
  • "supporting local communities";
  • giving some projects less attention than others, since some projects were "bad ideas". Some examples he lists include Wikiquote and Wikispecies.
Danny
(Danny Wool)
WM2006 0103.jpg
Qualifications:
A 43-year-old American, he has been an editor since February 2002. He was employed by the Wikimedia Foundation as Grants Coordinator between June 2004 and his resignation in March 2007, which included bookkeeping, fund raising, and participating in auditing. He is an administrator on Commons, en-Wikipedia, and en-Wikisource, and was a steward from June 2005 until his resignation in March 2006.

Platform:
He is concerned that members of the current board are behaving unethically and even illegally. He favours:

  • increased board responsibility and accountability, including:
    • hiring an independent financial ombudsman;
    • limiting and tracking all-expenses-paid travel;
    • holding annual performance reviews;
    • reviewing salaries with regards to actual market value;
    • introducing 'more professional' board members with no ties to relevant special interests;
    • increasing delegation to professionals for fundraising, accounting, et cetera.
  • restricting fair use and encouraging alternatives;
  • possibly reinstating foundation membership;
  • considering advertisements, but favours other options such as branding deals;
  • more equal board attention to non-Wikipedia projects.
DragonFire1024
(Jason Safoutin)
DragonFire1024.jpg
Qualifications:
A 26-year-old American, he has been an editor since January 2006. He is an administrator on Wikinews.

Platform:
He believes the board is already professional but needs more "people" candidates. He favours:

He opposes advertisements on Wikimedia projects.

Eloquence
(Erik Möller)
Citizen J Unconference0004.JPG
Qualifications:
A 28-year-old German, Erik served as Chief Research Coordinator from May 2005 until his resignation in August 2005, a member of the Program Committee for Wikimania 2005, and was elected to the board in late September 2006 to replace Angela Beesley. He was executive secretary for most of his term. He is the lead developer of OmegaWiki, a project that rivals Wiktionary.

He takes credit for organizing Wikimedia's first fund raiser, proposing Commons and foundation-l, and founding the IRC channels #wikipedia, #mediawiki, and #wikinews.

Platform:
His platform largely centers on his past achievement as part of the board. However, some users are concerned that his relation to OmegaWiki, a non-Wikimedia rival to Wiktionary, may lead to conflicts of interest. For a new term, he favours:

  • improving budgeting and tracking;
  • improving public relations by telling 'the real story of the Wikimedia Foundation';
  • developing 'a strategy for the rapid improvement of MediaWiki technology';
  • pursuing at least one large grant;
  • improving transparency and information-sharing.
  • He proposed and argued in favour of rebranding non-Wikipedia projects (ie, Wikisource to Wikipedia Sources). With heavy opposition on the mailing lists and little consensus on his Wikimedia brand survey, he later declared that "I don't personally consider it a viable option at this point".

He opposes:

  • routine technical background checks on administrators without their permission;
  • publicly releasing 'minutes' of board meetings (list of members present, statement of the various issues presented, and each members' responses). He suggests community reports and public resolutions instead.
Frieda
(Frieda Brioschi)
Qualifications:
A 30-year-old Italian, she has been an editor since May 2003. She is a cofounder and the president of the Italian Wikimedia chapter, an confessedly-inactive member of the Special Projects Committee, an email response volunteer, an Italian press contact, and a bureaucrat and administrator on the Italian Wikipedia, Wikinews, Wikisource, and Wiktionary.

Platform:
Her platform is based on very general concepts such as freedom and openness. She favours:

  • keeping wikis free and open, sharing knowledge, recognizing differences between communities, promoting and developing non-Wikipedia projects and disadvantaged-language wikis, strongly supporting and promoting Wikimedia chapters;
  • drafting a formal organization chart and financial plan;
  • increase delegation of current board duties;

She opposes:

  • advertisements on Wikimedia wikis;
  • rebranding Wikimedia projects.
Kate
(River Tarnell)
Qualifications:
A 23-year-old Briton, he has been an editor since May 2004. He is a MediaWiki developer and Wikimedia system administrator since 2004.

Platform:
He strongly believes that Wikipedia is the sole purpose of the Foundation. He favours:

  • disowning or shutting down all Wikimedia projects except Wikipedia;
  • prohibiting official publication of content in non-wiki forms like books;
  • limiting Foundation expenditures as much as possible to technical costs;
  • considering advertising on Wikimedia wikis;
  • hiring additional professional developers;
  • hiring paid administrative employees;

He opposes:

  • reinstating Foundation membership;
  • rebranding Wikimedia projects (but favours changing Wikimedia Foundation to Wikipedia Foundation).
Kim Bruning
Wcn2006-002.JPG
Qualifications:
A 29-year-old Dutch, he has been an editor since 2003. He is a developer for OmegaWiki.

Platform:
He favours (without specifics) improved crosswiki collaboration, communication with other organizations, and better management.

Kingboyk
(Stephen Kennedy)
No image
Qualifications:
A 34-year-old Briton, he has been an editor since September 2005 and is an administrator on en-Wikipedia. He was a member of Brunel University's Student Union Council and Finance Committee.

Platform:
He favours:

  • drafting a roadmap of future development;
  • making all Board positions elected;
  • closing inactive wikis;
  • respecting community autonomy;
  • hiring more staff;
  • more board legal advisement to communities.

He opposes:

  • advertising on Wikimedia projects, except as a financial last resort.
Michael Snow
No image
Qualifications:
A 33-year-old American, he has been an editor since December 2003, the chairman of the Communications committee since February 2006, and an administrator on en-Wikipedia. He is a lawyer by vocation. He is known for founding the English Wikipedia Signpost, a regular news source about news relevant to the English Wikipedia, and managing it as editor-in-chief January to August 2005.

Platform:
He favours:

  • finding new sources of donations;
  • hiring more staff and more clearly defining staff responsibilities;
  • further developing Wikimedia chapters;
  • community autonomy.

He opposes:

  • replacing the board with professionals from outside the Wikimedia community.
Mindspillage
(Kathleen Walsh)
Kwalsh 5954 small.jpg
Qualifications:
A 24-year-old American, she has been an editor since June 2004. She is an appointed member of the board of trustees running for re-election, a member of the Communications committee, a press contact, an email response volunteer, a former member of the en-Wikipedia arbitration committee, and an administrator on Meta, en-Wikinews, and en-Wikipedia. She is studying law and is an intern at 'a nonprofit online legal education project'.

Platform:
She favours:

  • encouraging volunteer task forces (such as the election committee);
  • having both community and outside voices on the board;
  • upholding free content ideals, allowing fair use only where necessary, and using only free software;
  • cooperation with like-minded organizations.

She opposes:

  • advertising as a first choice before exploring other options, but is not opposed to it in principle;
  • board involvement in local policy or daily office tasks;
  • direct community representation from chapters (until chapters are more fairly distributed);
  • rebranding Wikimedia projects;
  • spending more money for more environmentally-friendly hardware (but supports environmental friendliness in general);
  • replacing the board with professionals from outside the Wikimedia community.
Oscar
(Oscar van Dillen)
Oscar van Dillen.gif
Qualifications:
A 49-year-old Dutch, he has been an editor since February 2004. He is an appointed member of the board of trustees running for re-election, founding member and former president of the Dutch chapter of Wikimedia (Wikimedia Nederlands), chairman of the audit committee, member of the Special Projects Committee, and Steward. He is a bureaucrat on Meta and the Dutch Wikipedia, Wikinews, Wikibooks, Wiktionary, and Wikiquote; and an administrator on nl-Wikipedia and Meta.

Platform:
He favours:

  • setting up an advisory council made up of members elected from each Wikimedia project;
  • community autonomy;
  • equal development of all Wikimedia projects;
  • better reporting of management activities (such as financial reports and statistics).

He opposes:

  • rebranding Wikimedia projects;
  • spending more money for more environmentally-friendly hardware (but supports environmental friendliness in general);
  • advertising on Wikimedia projects.
UninvitedCompany
(Steve Dunlop)
Uninvited-Console.jpg
Qualifications:
A 41-year-old American, he has been an editor since late March 2007. He is an email response volunteer, a member of the en-Wikipedia arbitration committee, a m:checkuser, bureaucrat, and administrator on en-Wikipedia, and an administrator on Meta. He was a member of the board of trustees for the non-profit Wesleyan Broadcast Association 1985–1986 (a 80,000$/year radio station), director of product marketing at Racotek in the mid 1990s (a 100-employee company), and vice president of technology at Controls AnyWare (a software startup) 1998–2003.

Platform:
He favours:

  • attracting large donors with professional and responsible leadership, including:
    • delegating board tasks;
    • increasing transparency;
    • allocating board positions for specific tasks (attorney, treasurer, et cetera);
    • lengthening and standardize board terms to improve stability;
    • fixing board size and elections procedure;
    • requesting feedback from donors, counsel, and other nonprofit organizations;
    • and making the corporate bylaws more difficult to modify;
  • closing inactive projects;
  • disowning or shutting down Wikiquote.

He opposes:

  • routine technical background checks on administrators;
  • advertising on Wikimedia projects;
  • replacing the board with professionals from outside the Wikimedia community.
WarX
(Artur Jan Fijałkowski)
Wikipedysta WarX.JPG
Qualifications:
A 23-year-old Pole, he has been an editor since January 2005, and an elected trustee of the Polish Chapter of Wikimedia (Wikimedia Polska Association) sice December 2006.

Platform:
He favours:

  • limiting fair use to a minimum (except on Wikinews);
  • promoting Wikipedia's openness to edits to attract editors.
Yann
(Yann Forget)
Yann.jpg
Qualifications:
A 42-year-old Frenchman, he has been an editor since December 2002, a steward since June 2005, and was a founding member and secretary of the French chapter of Wikimedia (Wikimédia France) 2004–2005. He was the director of a technical school in India, and worked for the Fédération des œuvres laïques (Foundation for secular works) teaching computer basic to children, and Partenaires (Partners) working on development and humanitarian assistance in India. He worked 6 months as a full-time volunteer for Peace Brigades International in Sri Lanka, and 2 years part-time with Friends of All, an Indian organization dedicated to improving education in rural India.

Platform:
He favours:

  • diversifying sources of funding, and creating an emergency fund for long-term stability;
  • giving more help and funding to smaller projects;
  • drafting detailed legal guidelines on subjects like copyright;
  • drafting a MediaWiki roadmap, and fast-tracking unified login;
  • limiting fair use to a minimum;
  • community autonomy, with advisement from the board;

He opposes:

  • advertising on Wikimedia projects;
  • rebranding Wikimedia projects;
  • replacing the board with professionals from outside the Wikimedia community.
^demon
(Michael "Chad" Horohoe)
User insertdemon.jpg
Qualifications:
A 19-year-old American, he has been an editor since late February 2005, an administrator on en-Wikipedia, and chaired the unofficial en-Wikipedia mediation committee.

Platform:
He favours:

  • reviewing the policy governing open proxies (to decide whether registered users should be allowed to use them);
  • hiring additional staff;
  • making the board respond more quickly while simultaneously taking on more issues, participating in debates and policy discussions, embarking on a PR campaign, and investigating new publication methods;
  • locking inactive wikis.

He opposes:

[8][9]

Current and former board[edit]


[10]

Board resolutions[edit]

Unofficial brand survey[edit]

This is an ongoing event since the last news report.

Erik Moeller (board member) unofficially suggested that every Wikimedia project be renamed to use the Wikipedia trademark, renaming Wikisource to Wikipedia Sources. However, this proposal met with strong opposition from users who offered such reasons as the dilution of the Wikipedia trademark, damage to the smaller projects' potential and individuality, and the possibility that this would make them 'subprojects' of Wikipedia.

Later this month, after discussion had died down with little or no support for the idea, Erik has launched an official brand survey to gather wider opinion. The survey asks several questions related to branding, including ‘Would you support or oppose rebranding the projects as "Wikipedia Sources", "Wikipedia Quotes", "Wikipedia Textbooks", and so on?’ The survey can be found at m:Wikimedia brand survey. [11][12]

Debate over Creative Commons 3.0 licenses[edit]

Creative Commons has announced versions 3.0 of its licenses, earlier versions of which are heavily used on several Wikimedia projects (though nearly inexistent on Wikisource). However, a new clause about moral rights (quoted below) has become very controversial, and it is uncertain whether the version 3.0 licenses should be permitted on Wikimedia projects. These are currently prohibited on the Wikimedia Commons.

The debate concerns the enforcement of moral rights through the copyright license. Moral rights are normally separate from copyright, and do not exist in some countries such as the United States. The change allows authors to enforce their moral rights in any country that recognizes copyright licenses, and critics argue that it allows the copyright holder to unilaterally control the use of their work. For example, this would allow an author to release a work on Wikisource, then sue a redistributor for modifying the work in a way the author does not like.

Mike Linksvayer, the Vice President of Creative Commons, stated that the new clause is not intended to introduce moral rights where none previously existed, but acknowledged that the wording is vague.

The clause states:

  1. [...]
    1. Except as otherwise agreed in writing by the Licensor or as may be otherwise permitted by applicable law, if You Reproduce, Distribute or Publicly Perform the Work either by itself or as part of any Adaptations or Collections, You must not distort, mutilate, modify or take other derogatory action in relation to the Work which would be prejudicial to the Original Author's honor or reputation. Licensor agrees that in those jurisdictions (e.g. Japan), in which any exercise of the right granted in Section 3(b) of this License (the right to make Adaptations) would be deemed to be a distortion, mutilation, modification or other derogatory action prejudicial to the Original Author's honor and reputation, the Licensor will waive or not assert, as appropriate, this Section, to the fullest extent permitted by the applicable national law, to enable You to reasonably exercise Your right under Section 3(b) of this License (right to make Adaptations) but not otherwise.

[13][14][15]

MediaWiki[edit]

Fixed bugs[edit]

  • When blocking a user, the summary box is now limited to the number of characters accepted. Such summaries were previously truncated.
  • When a user attempts to log in with an incorrect name or password, the password filled in on the previous page is no longer automatically re-entered into the form.

[16][17]

New features[edit]

  • Administrators
    • When changing the protection level of a page, administrators can now check a box to watchlist it.
    • When blocking a user, administrators can now prevent them from sending email through Special:Emailuser.
  • Watching and unwatching a page uses AJAX to avoid loading a new page in compatible browsers.
  • Deletion logs are now shown when editing an inexistent or deleted page. Previously, this was only accessible by searching the deletion log (Wikisource's message linked to it).
  • Image syntax was expanded with new parameters for thumbnailing. They can now be thumbnailed by the height measure using the 'upright' parameter, and thumbnailed without a frame with the 'frameless' parameter.
  • A new parameter ($7) has been added to MediaWiki:Blockedtext which contains the user, IP, or range actually blocked.
  • Each entry on Special:Whatlinkshere now links to the whatlinkshere for that entry.
  • Local image pages for images on the Wikimedia Commons now show the Commons' image history.

[18][5][19][20]

Server problems[edit]

A fire alarm in a Wikimedia server facility turned off air conditioning in one area on Monday, which let several servers overheat. These were disabled by automated safeguards, and the developers made all Wikimedia wikis read-only (no edits, uploads, new accounts, et cetera) for a few hours. The increased load on the remaining servers also significantly slowed Wikipedia until the servers were brought back online.

The fire alarm was apparently false.[16][18][21]

Page view statistics[edit]

Brion Vibber (Wikimedia developer) has released statistics derived from the new 'sampled logs', which gather data about one in 1000 page views (excluding images, style sheets, et cetera). The extrapolated date estimates 233.6 million visits per day.[22][23]

References[edit]

  1. "Reform month" (Scriptorium, 27 June 2007)
  2. "proofreadpage" (Wikisource-l, 12 June 2007)
  3. "LabeledSectionTransclusion on WIkiSource" (Wikisource-l, 22 June 2007)
  4. "[Election 2007] Announcement" (Translators-l, 09 June 2007)
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Wikizine #74, 13 June 2007
  6. "Elections: a new board for the future (revisited with no edit button)" (Foundation-l, 17 June 2007)
  7. "The Wikimedia Foundation will be conducting its Board of Trustees elections" [archived link needed] (Foundation-l, 27 June 2007)
  8. "An interview with the candidates" (Wikipedia Signpost, 25 June 2007)
  9. Candidate platforms:
  10. Wikimedia articles:
  11. "Rethinking brands" (Foundation-l, May 2007)
  12. "Wikimedia brand survey open" (Foundation-l, May 2007)
  13. "Decision on Creative Commons 3.0" (Foundation-l, June 2007)
  14. "Commons talk:Licensing/Creative Commons 3.0" (Wikimedia Commons, February–June 2007)
  15. Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported legal code
  16. 16.0 16.1 Bugs, Repairs, and Internal Operational News" (Wikipedia Signpost, 04 June 2007)
  17. Bug reports:
    • bug 10036: "Add Special:Blockip summary trimming enforcement"
    • bug 8931: "Password repeated in HTML page if login unsucessful"
  18. 18.0 18.1 Wikizine #73 (06 June 2007)
  19. "Bugs, Repairs, and Internal Operational News (Wikipedia Signpost, 25 June 2007)
  20. Bug reports:
    • bug 7003: "Allow percentage values for thumbnail sizes relative to default thumbnail width"
    • bug 7960: ‘Link to "what links here" for each entry on "what links here"
    • bug 7691: "List relevant deletion log entries on deleted pages"
    • bug 10076: "Make blockIDs searchable in the block log"
    • bug 10306: "Show username on Special:Contributions/newbies"
    • bug 10326: "Clean up AJAX watch for production use"
  21. "Number of servers out" (Wikitech-l, 04 June 2007)
  22. "Wikimedia page views (leŭksman blog, 07 June 2007)
  23. "Page view statistics roughly broken down by referrer, (Wikitech-l, 07 June 2007)