User talk:WJBscribe
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Thank you and a farewell note
I wanted to say a huge thank you not only to those who have posted supportive messages here and elsewhere, but also to those who have posted criticisms of my actions. It has been a pleasure editing this project alongside each and every one of you, whether we have agreed or not. I hope that those whose advice I have not felt able to follow over the last couple of weeks do think it fell on deaf ears. I have read every word and listened carefully.
Some have suggested that my recent actions have been out of character. I think that overlooks some of my history on this project. I have always believed more in principles than rules. Some may remember my unblock of Giano during the 2008 ArbCom elections, others my staunch objection to the existence of an off-wiki bureaucrat mailing list, or indeed my strong opposition to certain resysop decisions at WP:BN that I felt ran contrary to the best interests of the project. It is probably true to say that I have been one of the most "activist" / "interventionist" bureaucrats. Whether that is a good or bad thing I leave to the judgment of others, but I make no apology for it.
Harassment is a serious issue, and one that has affected me personally in my time editing the project. I have never spoken publicly about the full reasons for my withdrawal from the 2008 ArbCom elections. I did so due to threats I received that actions would be taken against me in the real world to embarrass me and my then employer. I had recently started a new position and was relatively junior, so that was a threat that I could not ignore. I withdrew from the elections and resigned as an admin and bureaucrat. Some months later, when I felt more secure and established at work, I resumed service as an admin and bureaucrat. It has been a matter of great sadness to me to see some suggest that I don't take the issue of harassment seriously or that recent actions by me are supportive of harassment. That is not the case, and I caution people against being overly quick to accept unquestioningly a narrative that has been presented to them. The WMF account of its actions in relation to Fram does not withstand the most cursory scrutiny - it should be treated with utmost suspicion.
There are two very serious problems facing the community at the moment, and neither ought to be allowed to eclipse the other:
  1. WMF v community self-governance. There is an urgent need to clarify the extent to which WMF is required to defer to community consensus, and the extent to which it must explain its actions and be held accountable for them by local communities. Without this, the project will hemorrhage contributors. Absent sufficient autonomy, wikipedia will simply not be the project that many of us chose to give our time to. The number of staffers would need to rise exponentially to fill the gap. I suggest WMF think long and hard about the value to them of the volunteer time they benefit from.
  2. Fair process in WMF actions. In all judicial or quasi-judicial proceedings, the accused must have basic rights. Those include the right to know the name of their accuser(s), to understand what they are accused of, and to have the opportunity to defend themselves. The accused must also have the right for any public statement about them to clearly identify the misconduct that they were found to have committed, rather than to be subject to vague insinuations and innuendo thrown about from those who claim to speak from a position of authority. Fram has been treated abysmally. The decision of two of my fellow bureaucrats to re-enact a punishment applied by WMF with no respect for basic concepts of fairness was the last straw in convincing me that I could not continue here.
I would remind everyone that over the last few years I been minimally active on the project, with little time to dedicate to it. Everyone will be fine without me. I also think that it is time for this project to stop relying on old hands in key positions. ArbCom is increasingly comprised of re-elected former Arbs, many bureaucrats (including me) were elected over a decade ago. That's not a good thing. We need fresh blood in key roles.
I hope that matters are resolved in relation to the two issues that I have identified above such that in future I will feel able to continue contributing to this project, but my days as a bureaucrat or administrator are done. WJBscribe (talk) 11:05, 26 June 2019 (UTC)
Replies to this message and further discussion have been archived
Precious anniversary
Six years!
miss you - see Die Fliege (the fly) on my talk --Gerda Arendt (talk) 09:29, 13 January 2020 (UTC)
... so delighted to read your measured comments again, "old" crat ;) - February flowers - late Valentine, read Alte Liebe and enjoy Handel's birthday! --Gerda Arendt (talk) 16:21, 23 February 2020 (UTC)
Precious anniversary 8
Eight years!
thoughts for the still new year on my talk --Gerda Arendt (talk) 07:29, 13 January 2022 (UTC)
Last edited on 13 January 2022, at 07:29
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