It's alive!

Wikimedia fundraising, financial issues (and improprieties), expenditures, contracting, and corporate relations.
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Renée Bagslint
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Joined: Sat Nov 25, 2017 1:43 pm

It's alive!

Post by Renée Bagslint » Fri Aug 03, 2018 8:58 am

“Wikimedia is conscious" writes Dario Taraborelli, Director, Head of Research at the Wikimedia Foundation. You might imagine, given that the topic of the post is AI, that Wikimedia Foundation has achieved a state of independent consciousness and volition. Well, no, the truth is less spectacular but no less strange. The full quote is "Wikimedia is conscious of the urgent need to build equitable foundations for AI." A pompous way of announcing that the WMF will be an active participant in the Partnership on AI’s working groups, an organization that brings together academics, researchers, civil society organizations, companies building and utilizing AI technology, and and other groups working to better understand AI’s impacts. Whatever that means,

What does this have to do with their mission, which is "Stell dir eine Welt vor, in der jeder einzelne Mensch frei an der Summe allen Wissens teilhaben kann." -- oh, sorry, "We help everyone share in the sum of all knowledge". Well, nothing, really. But it's more interesting than that boring old stuff they've been doing for years, like keeping the servers going, and trying to write an editor, and trying to write a discussion system, and trying to write a parser. Gosh it's dull. Especially since they've announced "Our dream of building an encyclopedia in the world, we’ve made a lot of progress there". Here "we" means "they the volunteers" and "a lot of progress" means "only a few million pages urgently needing to be fixed and more every day". So the progress, such as it is, is made by someone else, and the lack of progress, such as it isn't, by the paid staff.

Another day, another thing the donors didn't expect their money to be spent on.

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Re: It's alive!

Post by Dysklyver » Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:42 am

The donors have zero connectivity to the WMF now.

Also considering how there are only two AI's on Wikipedia, this is an odd direction to go down.
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