How safe is Wikimedia Space?

The new Wikimedia Space forum is about to have the first test of its “safe space”.

Last month I wrote about the new feature: “WMF introduces moderation: “Wikimedia Space’“.

Unlike Wikipediocracy, which trashed Wikimedia Space with their usual stock anti-WMF bugbears, and unlike the mailing list, which for some reason responded with knee-jerk hostility, I tried to be reflective and fair. In short, this was not a puff piece. I don’t write those.  But I did find some positive things to say.

And now someone has posted a link to my review at Wikimedia Space.  And right away, someone else has proposed to censor me.

Who?

Ajraddatz.

Oh Adrian.  How could you.

And just when I thought you were starting to mature and mellow out a bit.

In all fairness, I think Adrian might be one of the better and more thoughtful stewards right now. But some of his past actions have raised some major, major questions.

In case anyone doesn’t know, I wrote about Ajraddatz a while back

  • Kumioko unchained…by the most curious admin Ajraddatz – in which I detail Adrian’s curation of Uncyclopedia pages related to raping children with tentacles, shooting blacks in the face, and how to beat your wife: “Anything can be used to smack the bitch down…”, also his nine years playing League of Legends, which teaches kids how to collaborate to kill unarmed bystanders.

Maybe he had some remorse though, because he vanished his user name and has done his best to scrub his presence there, as detailed with screenshots at the end of my report.

But he didn’t erase everything.   A few things did get archived before he went on his deletion spree.  It came up here, in this comment about the arbitration committee elections.

A “gay” forum

“Raped by gay Jew ponies”

  • There was also the matter of “Mr-ex777”.  This was a kid who had some trouble fitting in at Uncyclopedia.  He was bullied and picked on. The other kids created an Uncyclopedia article about him, “Mr-ex777 raped by Magic Ponies”,  featuring a cartoon of the child being sodomized by a “gay Jew pony”.  The other users, including Ajraddatz, then proceeded to vote to put this on the next Uncyclopdia front page.

Here, Ajraddatz votes in favor:  http://en.uncyclopedia.co/w/index.php?title=Uncyclopedia:VFH/Mr-ex777_raped_by_Magic_Ponies&diff=prev&oldid=5702569 [Archived.]



Here is the “featured” article in question (NSFW): https://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/Mr-ex777_raped_by_Magic_Ponies [Archived.]

Screenshot:


The rest of the (NSFW) cartoon is below the fold.

So we don’t know how Ajraddatz feels about all of this now, we only know he tried to hide it.

And now we also know he is trying to have me silenced.


So he thinks he knows who I am?  And he is trying to dox me in that venue?  How exactly is that “friendly and welcoming”.  We already know about the classy incels and Gamergaters and what they do with dox.   It has already happened with way too many women on Wikipedia, and elsewhere.

His second point is about harassment, and how it is defined. Is it harassment to promote a cartoon for sodomizing children – or one particular child – with “gay Jew ponies”, or is harassment to point out when someone has promoted such a cartoon.  Am I harassing someone when I point out, with links and screenshots, what they have done?  This goes to the very heart of the harassment problem on Wikipedia – the harassers are in high places, and they expect omertà, the code of silence.

If Wikipedia Space is going to be “friendly and welcoming to everyone”, is it going to be “friendly and welcoming” to me, and not publish personal attacks, undocumented accusations, and attempts to identify me, which bottom line, is just another attempt to silence me?  Or is it it only going to be “friendly and welcoming” to those who think raping children is funny, and who make unsupported accusations against other volunteers.

So let’s take our questions about Wikimedia Space one step further. If the moderators of Wikimedia Space get locked out of their Wikimedia accounts, who gets them back in?  Stewards, that’s who. If Jimmy Wales gets locked out of his Meta or en.wiki account, or his password gets compromised, who locks down his account, and gets it back to him safely? Stewards.  I seem to remember that happened not too long ago too.  Now, if any staffers get locked out of Wikimedia Space, who can get them back in?  I don’t know the answer to that one, but I would suggest that someone find out.  Because just maybe we have a new constitutional crisis here, where Stewards are allowed to flaunt the Safe Space rules, just because they can.

Now, how do we get our Stewards?  They aren’t stewards-for-life, like admins, are they?  They have to be elected every 2 years, right?  Wrong.  About two years ago, on an obscure back page, they voted themselves a change in the election process, since they decided they were all friends and there was nothing controversial about what they were doing.  The only person who noticed was Nemo Bis.  They are now in for good, and they have got all their friends in too, and all of them voted for each other, and you had better believe it is not a secret vote either, which is the foundation of freedom from tyranny. They communicate somewhere off-wiki, maybe IRC, more likely on Wikia.

So now, what about our current “constitutional crisis”, as has been unfolding at WP:FRAMBAN, which is a proxy for whether women, gays, blacks, and Jews are real Wikipedians, and will have a seat at the table, or whether Wikipedia will be held hostage by those with traditional Male Privilege. The strike, or revolution, or whatever you want to call it, that was declared by our resident Marxist, Tim Davenport (user:Carrite), may have failed, but there were a few individuals who followed him blindly. See Wikipedia Signpost/List of Fram related strikes. Fortunately most of these users and admins were not very active, they were just ones who like to stir the pot.  There was a bot owner as well, but the bot actually makes a lot of errors, so Wikipedia may have come out ahead on the resignation game.

Still, you have to wonder, what if all the Stewards got together in their Secret Place and decided to lock out all the WMF employees.  Seriously, the Foundation needs to find out who has the keys to the moat, and have some copies made. And while they’re at it, do an inventory of critical bots and other functions.  The Superprotect crisis is over, the community did well with that, in the absence of leadership and common sense from the Foundation, but that was in the now-distant past.  I fear “the community” — as they style themselves — is not suited for the new challenges ahead. At this point they are just a mob, and a very destructive one at that.   The Wikimedia Foundation needs to get control of their platform.  Soon.

The WMF has accused Fram of harassment.  “The community” has asked to see the evidence.

Ajraddatz has accused *me* of harassment: “frequently engages in off-wiki harassment of Wikimedia users”  So where is your evidence, Adrian?  Or are you above the law.

And when are you going to disclose your own Conflict Of Interest in making attacks against me.

Below the fold: the rest of the “featured” Uncyclopedia article, a child sodomized by “GAY JEW PONIES FTW” (for the win).  The one that Ajraddatz voted for.

NSFW:

Continue reading “How safe is Wikimedia Space?”

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Did GenderDesk break WikiSpace?

If you go and look at the discussion section for Wikimedia Space, you get an “oops” message.

wikispace discussion forum down oops screenshot 1
Earlier today, it was working.

The reason I know this is that they linked to me from their “discuss” forum.It was posted shortly before 5 am, and by 7 am it already had two “likes”. So a big “buongiorno” to user:Elitre-WMF for the link love. And in just a few hours, I got more traffic from that link than I  get from Sucks, WikiRev and Wikipediocrazy combined. So people are definitely reading it.

Then it stopped.  No way to make a query on the site itself – it is the comments that are down.  Nothing on the meta talk page about it either.  Just some kid venting about Safe Space.  He must be sad, sad, sad that he doesn’t get to make rapey comments to the women there, as if there aren’t plenty of venues for that already.


Because nothing says “I am not a virgin” quite like filling up public spaces with vulgar words for reproduction.

And I bet you didn’t see this one coming either, his user page is a sexualized anime child in a French maid outfit.


I hope he doesn’t expect to get dates with that.

Really Alexis, get with the program.

Note: they’re back up, and no, it wasn’t me.

https://discuss-space.wmflabs.org/t/testing-images-copied-automatically/455/8

Wikispace broken image icon with red circle and arrow

Looks like the problem was with images copied automatically from the WordPress photo library instead of Commons, but if I’m understanding this correctly, sometimes it does work with Discourse, it is only the cellphone (?) applications that don’t work.  But I thought all of Discourse was by cellphone.

Also, this doesn’t explain why it would crash the whole discussion forum, and without touching the blog.

WMF introduces moderation: “Wikimedia Space”

Gayjewponies 1
Sodomy cartoon: “Gay Jew ponies”

[Note: Ajraddatz is now using the new Wikimedia Space forum to publicly accuse me of “harassment”. No diffs, no links, no proof.

 What he does not mention is his own role as an admin of a site that advocates hitting blacks in the face with a bat, beating women, and raping children (“hentai”).

Ajraddatz also does not mention his approval of a cartoon of a volunteer being sodomized, with the caption “Gay Jew ponies FTW”.  “Harassment”, indeed.  

For details, see “How safe is Wikimedia Space?”]

Anyone who has been holding their breath waiting for Wikipedia to introduce paid moderators can now exhale, because the Wikimedia movement has just announced “Wikimedia Space”.

https://space.wmflabs.org/

Like MySpace, it will probably be supplanted by something else in the long run, but for the moment it is there for anyone to take a test drive.

It not that surprising, really.  A lot of ideas have been kicking around the wikistans lately, for one, moderators who are paid staff. Some are saying moderation can’t work because scale, language, yadda yadda yadda.  But others say the number of disruptors is so small that it can be done with a small number of moderators.  So here is a chance to try it on a small scale.

There has also been some kind of recent talk page consultation. Not sure why, but for once the tech folk are actually asking teh communiteh before they implement something.  Talk pages are actually a mess across the projects, each one implements its own system – Wiki markup, Visual Editor, the Flow thing (on WikiData) – and may or may not have the templates and shortcuts you are used to on a different project. So if you have to communicate with someone on a different project, you are lost.  Also you are subject to the blocking whims of their admins and bureaucrats, who may or may not be corrupt, lazy, etc., and may just decide to disappear you if they don’t want to engage (think Ethiopian wiki).

So, what is it, and what is it not.

  

Like the Wikipedia Weekly group on Facebook, it is moderated. That group was started by a group of die-hard Wikipedians – Fuzheado, Keilana, and others who did a weekly podcast.  People joined because they wanted to listen to conversations between those type of people. No one knows the moderators on Space, these are staffers no one has ever heard of (okay, maybe Ckoerner-WMF Chris Koerner, but what does he do?). The Facebook group is well moderated, conflicts are allowed to play out, but stopped on the rare occasions when they became non-productive. The moderators on the Facebook group understand the current issues on Wikipedia only too well, and are not going to be fooled by trolling, dog-whistles, or false narratives.  The quality of moderation on Space has yet to be seen.

Where Wikipedia is “the encyclopedia anyone can edit”, including IPs, Facebook is not anonymous. You must use your real identity.  This means no user names. This also means women who do not want to be harassed and women in sensitive and/or public positions will not participate. If you look at the registration for Facebook, and start making a tally of the names, there are a good percentage of women, quite a bit higher than the 9% usually cited for Wikipedia.  But who actually participates?  Just a few, the ones who are doing some kind of Wikipedia-related research under their real names, and want to ask questions of seasoned Wikipedians, or those who get on the event scholarship lists, in other words, those who are willing to lend their personal “brand” to Wikipedia.

Wikimedia Space is somewhere in between. Log-in is required, and you can use your Wikimedia user account (so far only on Phabricator), which you can optionally link to your real life identity or you can use your Discourse account, whatever that it, which (correct me if I am wrong) is linked to your real life identity (but not necessarily your user name) via whatever credit card or bank account you use to pay your phone bill. (?)

Unlike Wikipedia, Space has a code of conduct, similar to the TCoC.

How many Space accounts can you have?  Maybe two, the WP account and the Discourse one. But why would you need more than one, there is nothing there to see.

Unanswered questions:

  • What about socks? Can you create a new account to make an “IP” comment?
  • What about globally banned users? ( I would imagine this is part of WMF and as such banned users are not allowed, but there is no real way to keep them out.)
  • Can you be sanctioned on other projects for edits here.
  • Does the Space blog replace the Wikimedia blog?

   
Other curious things

  • According to discussion on the mailing list, the code for this is not available for public viewing, so as such cannot be highjacked by the “community” in the same way that Superprotect was defeated by a community generated patch. It’s really too bad, but at this point it’s pretty obvious the “community” has surrendered the high ground, by advocating sabotage, and is no longer protecting the interests of the project so much as their own privilege.
  • So far you cannot subscribe by email (?)
  • If for some reason (like moderator action) you get locked out of the site, you probably lose access to your correspondence/messages there as well (there are private messages, aren’t there?)
  • This is supposed to act like a blog where you can post news about your organization, after a mysterious vetting process, but there is already Outreach, which has the capability to deliver newsletters to your user page.  If I am not mistaken, this is largely maintained by user:Romaine. (Hmm.)
  • There is no way to track edits or see who wrote what, no revision control unless you do external archiving .
  • How do you even have a conversation here?
  • Unlike the mailing list, there is probably a way to revdelete.
  • Users can accumulate trust levels.  This is similar to social networking principles in the social media sites developed by Wikimedia foundation board member Esra’a Al Shafei, who has the distinction of being Arab, gay, and alive, all at the same time.
  • There is a discussion page on meta. https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Wikimedia_Space
  • LOL, “Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act Compliance: Our site, products and services are all directed to people who are at least 13 years old or older. If this server is in the USA, and you are under the age of 13, per the requirements of COPPA (Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act), do not use this site.”
  • It talks a little bit like Clippy:


Remember Clippy?
No, I am not.  And why am I talking to computer-generated pixels.

I am going to predict that the mailing list for the arbcom, or whatever body replaces it, is going to be on this, or a similar platform, once all the issues have been worked out. Maybe all the mailing lists, it really is an archaic system.

I am also going to predict that bans and blocks, if they still exist in the future,  will be discussed in this platform, since it has a private option.  You may recall that in the case of Jimbo blocking Bishonen, a special wiki was created for the two of them to discuss the block, and as a result, Bishonen emerged as the new god-king of Wikipedia. (see meatball wiki “GodKing”)

Oh looky here, it has its own Flowchart:

(Is this cc-by-sa 3.0 like the rest of WP?) (Uh, say what? The voluminous “attributions” only cover the text.)

All FRAM all the time

After 20-odd pages of cruft on the ongoing Fram dude-bro hissy-fit, Crowsnest, over at Sucks, has finally started hitting his stride, tracking everything from resignations of admins (who quite frankly have not been particularly active lately), to the inevitable upcoming Signpost coverage.  If you have nothing constructive to do with your time, you might want to check out the ongoing rant. https://www.wikipediasucks.co/forum/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=472&start=190

A sample:

crow rants on Fram

This extraordinary statement advocating intentional disruption might be something you expect to find coming from the hasten-the-day crowd, instead it is from a powerful insider afraid of losing his status and privilege.

… On a specified date, the editors who agree to the proposal will begin to report every violation of the terms of use to Trust & Safety. And a lot of things are: Vandalism is against the TOU. Copyright violations are against the TOU. BLP violations, spamming/advertising, suspected undisclosed paid editing, block or ban evasion? All a TOU violation. Send them a report each and every time one of those things happens. Even if it’s already been handled by someone not participating, make sure they get a report, so T&S can make sure the rubes didn’t screw it up. I say we let T&S handle all of it, and see just how much work the volunteers who have kept this project running for nearly two decades deal with every day. If they think they can do it better than we do, let’s send them a message: Prove it. Seraphimblade Talk to me 02:26, 24 June 2019 (UTC)

Todd Allen (Seraphimblade): “I’m autistic myself.”

Seraphimblade (Todd Allen) is either a former or current arbitrator, I forget which. This is extraordinary, grown men charged with protecting the project are now essentially advocating vandalism against it if they can’t run it as their own private brotopia. Crow quotes him from the mailing list here, un-ironically protesting “secret Star Chamber-style proceedings, where apparently even the accused is not permitted to know all the evidence against them” : https://lists.wikimedia.org/pipermail/wikimedia-l/2019-June/092686.html Can you say “honeypot“?

Another interesting viewpoint comes from Boing said Zebedee, someone who is both deeply embedded in Manchester politics but has carved out his own niche:

“Whatever might happen in the coming days and weeks, it remains a fact that we are in the midst of a governance change and a shift in the balance of power….Should I ever consider re-applying to become an administrator, it would not be until the current power shift is complete, until the new rules and enforcement regime are finalized and made clear, and until I see the new enforcement structure working sufficiently well and sufficiently fairly to consider becoming a part of it…. “

Two comments on that, (1) yes I think “shift of power” is about right, it is a realistic evaluation and (2) this is how it has *always* been for women. But when it happens to men, they down the tools and walk away, muttering “fairness”.  And so far, none of them has been mocked as a “social justice warrior”, or told to develop a “tougher skin” or not to be such a “special snowflake”.  Shall we have no more of those head-scratching “why don’t women edit Wikipedia” articles?

[Note: the above statement by an identifiable person (Todd Allen) is so extraordinary, I have gone looking for the diff which Crow has neglected to provide us with.  Here ya go:

https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikipedia:Community_response_to_the_Wikimedia_Foundation%27s_ban_of_Fram&diff=prev&oldid=903174834 ]

[UPDATE]

Oh wow, just….speechless, User:Seraphimblade:

“…Especially serious are the allegations that the WMF sanctioned someone at least in part because he stood close to people to compensate for a hearing impairment, and mistreated people who had autism. (The latter especially hits home; I’m autistic myself.) …”

This is who the brotopia cult wants to make judgments on behalf of Wikipedia.

Link: https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikipedia:Community_response_to_the_Wikimedia_Foundation%27s_ban_of_Fram&diff=prev&oldid=902583804 ]

[Another update]

lots of revelations of autism/spectrum disorders on this recently archived thread, this is amazing:

spectrum disorder screenshots
Links>>>

*As someone who has a [[Autism spectrum|spectrum]] [[Asperger Syndrome|disorder]] this is absolutely appalling for me, and demonstrates that T&S [[WP:Our social policies are not a suicide pact|aren’t trustworthy for their role]]. Being able to separate a legitimate complaint from a spurious one should be a ”requirement” for that position. —[[User:Jéské Couriano|A little blue Bori]] [[User talk:Jéské Couriano|v^_^v]] [[Special:Contributions/Jéské Couriano|Bori!]] 19:57, 19 June 2019 (UTC)
** As someone who has both hearing loss *and* an autism spectrum disorder, I share your feelings. That’s really gross on behalf of the WMF if true. [[User:Rockstone35|Rockstone]][[User talk:Rockstone35|talk to me!]] 20:34, 19 June 2019 (UTC)

The Dunning–Kruger is strong with this one.

Atlas AI

Atlas AI (red link) is a non-profit that uses satellite imagery and artificial intelligence to predict/assist/globally economically something something African farmers.  It is sponsored by the Rockefeller Foundation,  some Stanford University professors, and/or Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA).

The CEO is Victoria Coleman — former CTO of the Wikimedia Foundation.

That’s all I have time to figure out b/c I’m supposed to be at the beach.

Video here with a presentation at Berkeley, plus a profile:

In case you have misplaced your bookmarks, the super-seekrit Victoria Colman paper doll (with the Beyonce robot leggings) is here: https://genderdesk.wordpress.com/2017/09/21/moar-coloring-book/

You rang? The Fram thing…

[Do NOT let my Evil Twin find out I am writing this. I am supposed to be at the beach relaxing, which means NO ACCESS TO WIKIPEDIAZ DRAMAHZ.]

Ok I am being paged by someone at Wikipediocracy to comment on the Fram thing, so no, I do not have any answers but will make these observations.

I have been hearing rumblings about Fram for a looong time.  That Something Would Have To Be Done. Why, I do not know, but you may recall it was Fram who dragged Dr Blofield off to arbcom just when he should have been getting a gold watch instead.  I believe it was Fram who had something to do with the Rich Farmbrough thing. Also wasn’t he (she?) involved with the more recent Kudpung fiasco and the blocking of Gorilla Warfare?  That should NEVER have happened. The fact that “The Community”, including arbcom, has not been able to establish a safe editing environment for both garden variety editors and female admins is a direct threat to the WMF business model.  Also just noting that neither the presumed “Mario effect” or the “honor among thieves” theory of admins protecting each other was applied to GorillaWarfare, who has considerably more talent than most of them combined.

Wikipedia “governance” is vicious, and totally without checks and balances. That the WMF has had to step in is not surprising, but that system also lacks checks and balances.  That said, people trust the WMF more than they trust arbcom and the admins.

While I haven’t read all the associated threads in detail, just judging by the multiple F-bombs in the discussion, there is more heat than light, and at this point it is just another pitchforks and tiki-torches parade on the part of teh communiteh.

Floqenbeam and Bishonen, lol.  Bishonen “I got your back”.  Also Bishonen: *disappears at the critical moment*.

I did not see a consensus to unblock. There was “support” “oppose” and “mu”, which if you google it, turns out to be the correct answer to “when did you stop beating your wife”.

Supposedly Fram was banned for saying “fuck arbcom”, so this also gives the WMF the appearance of supporting community governance structures and protecting arbcom while enforcing a division of powers and saying this particular situation is not in the remit of the arbcom.  But this was only the one diff they were able to give Fram, and presumably there were others.  This does raise troubling questions about the possibilities of being wrongfully accused and the ability of people to defend themselves against false accusations, but the arbcom also fails this issue.  In addition, targets of harassment that speak out publicly have always had to face retaliation.

Wikipediocracy is busy trying to nail Laura Hale. For context see Hale’s curious research from 2014

Communicating on Wikipedia while female: A discursive analysis of the use of the word cunt on English Wikipedia user talk pages https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Research:Communicating_on_Wikipedia_while_female

I don’t think much of posting pictures of people standing next to each other in order to “prove” they are or have been intimate. I have sat a lot closer to Maria Sefidari than that, but fortunately no one took a picture of it.  She is not the type of person you feel uncomfortable near, for instance she does not give off a touchy-feely vibe, or anything less than professional.  I don’t think such photos are uncommon among the wiki women crowd, or that they say anything other than the women – gay or straight – tend to be very enthusiastic about the Wikiwomen thing. Hale has been mixed up in local wiki-politics before, and on a fairly high level, so again no surprise if she is collaborating with a board member. She was an admin on Wikinews, and one of its least bizarre members, although that is not a particularly high bar. The Spanish thing I am not overly excited about, she translated “su” as “their” instead of “his” or some such typo (a correct translation but not in that context of a male athlete) and got hung out to dry for it.  Again, if this was a man, someone would have a quiet talk page discussion and/or correct the translation, but as a solution she ended up finding some native speaker to copyedit her translations, so what exactly is the big deal here Wikipediocrazy?  In the absence of any proof, or obvious inside knowledge, this looks like just another “woman obtains a position normally obtained by a man without having a penis, therefore she must have slept with someone to get it” same old, same old smears are always applied to women who are able to eek anything at all out of the system. Vigilant needs to cut back on the caffeine.  Seriously, he does have a talent with snark, but really needs to think about whether this type of research needs to be presented in the same NPOV manner as his grudge-match with Sucks.

They are spinning this as the same issue as superprotect, but sorry, that was then, this is now. This is not the c-suite protecting a software group that is not doing its job, i.e releasing software that is not even in a stable beta incarnation.  Wikipediocrazies are dragging out this old chestnut when it has nothing to do with the current situation.  They still have a hammer, but this does not look anything like a nail.  It is not tech problem.  How about some thoughtful analysis, instead.

Carrite does indeed have a majestic animal.

Bottom line, the WMF needs to get its hostile, toxic community under control, as well as the destructive “governance” processes that chew up anyone who gets anywhere close to them.  The “community”, including arbcom, is still throwing rocks, back in the inner city, and anyone even halfway competent has moved out to the suburbs, wikidata, wikisource, etc. If they are still around at all, that is. Yas, WMF needs to get control of its process, while it still has one.

The “community” lost control a long time ago.

Sue Gardner departs “The Markup”

According to Inside Philanthropy,

“Craigslist founder and philanthropist Craig Newmark announced the departure of Sue Gardner and Jeff Larson, two of the founders of The Markup, the online publication he seeded with $20 million last year.”

Back in April, after gaining control of the fledgling organization, Sue Gardner fired co-founder Julia Angwin, who was the only one with any real managerial experience in this type of journalism, and replaced her with Jeff Larson.  (See Julia Angwin petition and Julia Angwin on what went wrong at The Markup.) Five of the seven new employees quit in protest.

The announcement was covered by no less than the New York Times.

On Friday, Craig Newmark, the Craigslist founder and the site’s biggest backer, said in a statement that the site’s other two founders had departed.

“I’ve been informed that Sue Gardner and Jeff Larson are no longer with The Markup,” Mr. Newmark said in the statement, which he posted on his Twitter account.

The Inside Philanthropy piece concludes:

With Angwin, Larson and Gardner all out of the picture, Newmark and the other donors have a blank slate—and so far, seem intent on sticking with The Markup. “I’m hopeful an announcement about the future of The Markup will be made soon,” Newmark said in a recent statement. “I remain absolutely committed to its mission.”

But are they “all out of the picture”, as it says?

True enough, Jeff Larson’s twitter account no longer carries any claims about his relationship to the Markup, i.e. that he is editor-in-chief.  Jeff Larson@thejefflarson

But it looks to me like Julia Angwin’s Twitter account now claims she is “Editor-in-Chief of The Markup ().” Her Twitter account claims the Markup‘s original Twitter account and not the Markup-in-exile account: The Real Team Markup@MarkupReal (“The Real Team Markup in Exile”).

black holeShe has the expertise, and she has the loyalty of the staff. Newmark isn’t stupid. There may be no guarantee that the project will work at all, but there is no way it can work without Angwin.

They must have all signed NDAs though, because more information gets out of a black hole than is coming out of this situation.

Newmark is such a nice guy.  He was the one who gave Wikipedia half a million dollars for anti-harassment, probably just because Katherine asked him to.  And the WMF used the money to…to….well, anyway they must have put it to good use, because there’s not any harassment anymore, right?

And here is the controversial hiring spreadsheet,

…in which Gardner ranked potential job candidates on criteria ranging from “understands journalism” to “social class,” “Famous?,” and “skeptical/critical about tech’s societal effects.” The CJR’s Matthew Ingram said the spreadsheet reflected “the yawning cultural chasm between the business side and the editorial side” of The Markup. The former category, Ingram explained, found “bean counters” concerned with metrics like page views and uniques, name recognition and Twitter followers. The editorial staff, meanwhile, concerned itself with tone, content, and style.

This might shed some light on the pedigree of the current philosophy of the WMF C-suite, if anyone can figure out what it is.

I think it’s a horrible name though.  It may be some kind of journalistic insider lingo, but to the ordinary public, a “markup” is a price gouge.  Personally, I am more favorably inclined when I see the words “marked down”.

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