Maggie explains the new Strategy sausagefest

I oversee the functions of Community Development, Trust & Safety Policy, Trust &
Safety Operations, Human Rights protection, and, now, Movement Strategy. – Maggie Dennis

The Wikimedia Foundation is about to enter a Twilight Zone.

I am talking about the departure of the CEO, Katherine Maher, effective April 15.  Her chief of staff,  Ryan Merkley, has also announced his departure.

Maggie continues on the mailing list:

Many of you are aware that our Chief of Staff, Ryan Merkley, has recently chosen to depart the Foundation. Movement Strategy was housed with him. A long time Wikimedian myself – user Moonriddengirl; pretty dormant right now but still very interested! – I am delighted to step in to do all I can to keep the momentum of this critical work going and to support however I can the movement and the Foundation in meeting these strategic goals. Kaarel Vaidla <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:KVaidla_(WMF)>, with whom many of you have connected during this process, will be part of my division, reporting to Quim Gil <https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Qgil-WMF>.

Where to even start. There is so much in this post, and that is only the first paragraph.

Shall we take a look at the organizational chart? https://wikimediafoundation.org/role/staff-contractors/ Just for reference, here it is on March 27 [archived], and here it is last year, in March 2020 [archived]. And considering Wikipedia’s close relationship with Internet Archive, maybe it is not a good idea to entrust the whole archiving thing to the Wayback Machine, so here is an additional save from today [archived].

So the first thing you notice about the organizational chart is that it has shrunk considerably from last year.

This is what it looks like now (at least the WMF Legal portion, where Trust & Safety lives):

Jan Eßfield is still there, but his entourage is now invisible, and his photo seems to have evaporated as well. .

(My shy twin over in the genderdesk statistics department says 1 picture = 2000 bytes, and has put this together as an aid to your contemplation of the mailing list post).

This is what it looked like a year ago, with 11 members in the Trust and Safety group. I’m pretty sure there are more than that now, but for some reason they have dropped off the organizational chart.  Perhaps they are hiding from the new CEO?


Count the Germans: Essfield, Sutherland, Steigenberger. Are they good at following orders?

In the top position, right under Legal, are Maggie Dennis and someone – a dude – named Quim Gil.

Now where have I heard that name before.

Ah yes, “Wikipedia Space”.

“How safe is Wikimedia Space?” https://genderdesk.wordpress.com/2019/07/16/how-safe-is-wikimedia-space/

Someone, a woman moderator, linked to the above piece I did about the now-defunct platform Wikimedia Space. At the time, Quim Gil was also a moderator, and shut her down, and the entire post was deleted. So you can see how he has used his male privilege in the past to make sure the concerns of women are silenced.

And looking that this followup post here, it seems that the archive to the discussion has disappeared, along with any evidence of their role in the matter. The only thing left is my synopsis of my adventures. Here is what I wrote at the time:

An individual was able to go to this supposedly moderated, official WMF platform and make unsubstantiated accusations against someone, a woman, and was immediately believed, simply for being male. In fact, rather than ask for proof, the WMF employee merely thanked him for “the context”. This is why women do not trust any of the processes on Wikipedia.

Whatever internal “safe space” processes there are on Wikimedia Space did not work. The staff had obvious examples of a dox attempt and personal attack sitting right in front of them, and did nothing. I had to put it right in the first paragraph of the article they linked to, in order to get them to see it. There does not seem to be any other way to get their attention, for instance, buttons for anonymous flagging of comments.

They removed the attacks against me by removing the whole post. As a result, I was silenced, deplatformed. This is the old Wikipedia definition of “safe”. A “safe” woman is one who does not speak out, who “lowers her profile” as they told Lightbreather, when she went after the user who was making “deep fake” porn about her. When Wikipedia makes a platform “safe”, they do so by eliminating the voices of women.

This was what Quim Gil did.

This is why we need women in these positions.

But “Quim”, …hmm…there is something else familiar about the name.

Oh dear, not this again…


How unfortunate.

(to be continued….)

 

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