Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Wikimedia fundraising, financial issues (and improprieties), expenditures, contracting, and corporate relations.
Renée Bagslint
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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Renée Bagslint » Mon Jun 25, 2018 8:57 pm

A quick question. Katherine retweets a post by George Ciccariello-Maher with a call to "Burn it all down". Probably "it" in this context refers to the whole political system of the United States. Again, Katherine is entitled to espouse any views she likes in her own personal life, but my question is whether George Ciccariello-Maher is any relation?

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Auggie
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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Auggie » Tue Jun 26, 2018 8:35 pm

Interesting. She must be incredibly stupid or full of herself. All her job really requires her to do is show up once in a while, cash those paychecks, and not say anything really dumb or inflammatory. It's almost like she wants to be fired.

Prediction: her days of failing upwards are over. She's going to wish she had this job back.

Renée Bagslint
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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Renée Bagslint » Sat Jul 07, 2018 5:28 pm

Katherine's Twitter feed continues to deliver:
That Silicon Valley v Russia thread was pretty funny — until it got onto ideological diversity. In case it’s not evident, in these parts that’s often a dog whistle for anti-feminist, anti-POC stories about meritocracy. Maybe’s not what the author meant. But idk, maybe it is?
There's probably something I'm missing here, but it appears that Katherine is against ideological diversity -- whch we used to call tolerance -- because it's a secret codeword for sexism and racism: that is, anyone who disagrees with her political stance is irredeemably fascist and she has no reason to employ them. It's also interesting that she feels that meritocracy, which used to mean employing the best person for the job, is in her mind a secret codeword for being against diversity. (Funnily enough in my young day it was precisely an argument in favour of diversity: how times change). But we have ample evdence that the WMF does not regard ability to do the job as a very important component of their selection process for the majority of the make-work sinecures that they give out to reward the ambitious cult members and support Katherine's political ambitions.

Renée Bagslint
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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Renée Bagslint » Sat Jul 28, 2018 11:31 am

Was Katherine actually at Wikimania this year, I wonder? She tweets approvingly about a invited talk by Martin Dittus, an Oxford data scientist, on Creating Knowledge Equity and Spatial Justice on Wikipedia. Dittus is under the impression that
Martin Dittus wrote:the Wikipedia community has introduced the concept of "knowledge equity" as an important strategic concern: "We will strive to counteract structural inequalities to ensure a just representation of knowledge and people in the Wikimedia movement."
I'm pretty sure they haven't, since there's no such thing as "the" Wikipedia community and no way for it to agree on a strategic concern: he probably thinks that the pronouncements of random Foundation people are the same thing. However, Dittus, thinks it's a bad thing that, as his Oxford colleague Mark Graham has found, many of the contributions on Wikipedia are made by North Americans. In fact, he showed a picture which Katherine tweeted. As you'll see from that picture, each region is accompanied by a percentage showing what percentage of edits made in that region are about that region: in the case of North American it's 88%. Katherine accompanies this with a comment North America makes 88% of edits about the rest of the world.. That's not what the picture says, and it is not true. The original paper, from which this is derived, shows that out of edits which can be regionally coded, 88% of edits from North America are about North America (and 73% of edits about North America are from North America). About 67% of edits from Sub-Saharan Africa are about Sub-Saharan Africa and about 16% of edits about Sub-Saharan Africa are from Sub-Saharan Africa: the lowest figure. For no part of the world is it true that the rest of the world contributes 88% of edits about that region.

So, did Katherine completely misundestand this chart? Or was she not even there?

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Auggie
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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Auggie » Tue Jul 31, 2018 3:21 pm

I wouldn't be surprised if she spent the whole conference schmoozing. I don't picture her as the type who would bother to sit and listen anymore.

Renée Bagslint
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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Renée Bagslint » Fri Aug 24, 2018 8:28 pm

Katherine's Twitter feed continues to reveal her personal philosophy. On her viceregal progress through the Latin American satrapies, she is quoted as
En los tiempos de la posverdad todos debemos ser colaboradores activos en la creación de contenidos
or
In the times of post-truth we must all be active collaborators in the creation of content
and
la verdad está siempre en negociación
or
the truth is always in negotiation
.

I think George Orwell puts it this way
The Party wrote:He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past.
So who will control the past as a result of this "negotiation"? Could it possibly be the Executive Director of a foundation with a hundred million dollar income, control of the world's sixth most visited website, pretending to be an encyclopaedia? An Executive Director with an avowed strongly leftist political position?

Proabivouac
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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Proabivouac » Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:54 pm

Renée Bagslint wrote:
Fri Aug 24, 2018 8:28 pm
An Executive Director with an avowed strongly leftist political position?
A "leftist" whose entire business model is built upon the exploitation of other people's unpaid labor.

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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Renée Bagslint » Tue Aug 28, 2018 9:04 pm

Proabivouac wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:54 pm
A "leftist" whose entire business model is built upon the exploitation of other people's unpaid labor.
Aren't they all?

Proabivouac
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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Proabivouac » Tue Aug 28, 2018 10:26 pm

Renée Bagslint wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 9:04 pm
Proabivouac wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:54 pm
A "leftist" whose entire business model is built upon the exploitation of other people's unpaid labor.
Aren't they all?
I supose it depends what we mean by "leftist." Originally it was the liberal (vs. royalist) wing of the French parliament, so maybe it's apt. However, a central moral claim of capitalism and communism alike is that people receive a fair share of the fruits of their labor, the difference being disagreement about what counts as a fair share, which in turn is based in part upon which examples one chooses to focus upon.

A certain strain of extreme libertarian capitalism holds that whatever share someone winds up receiving or not receiving is by the wisdom of the the black box ("hidden hand") ipso facto the fair one, though always with the caveat that a hegemonic state is there in the background enforcing property rights and contract law and preventing violence (so not even consistent social Darwinism.) This is more or less the ideology of Silicon Valley and hence of Wikipedia, which they have adopted because it justifies their kleptomaniacal ways.

I would say that any form of socialism which holds that some people should not be paid for their labor while others should reap the rewards instead has lost all credibility from the get-go.

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Auggie
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Re: Katherine Maher, executive director Wikimedia Foundation

Post by Auggie » Tue Aug 28, 2018 11:26 pm

Let's see how far she takes this. Will she make Zuckerberg-style promises to crack down on "fake news" and spin?

Prediction: a purge of the admin corps.

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