*TL;DR - If you're going to change something, inform the people who will be
affected before you change it!*
Interestingly, I have a different understanding of the text when I read it
- I find it to be a positive message and those words that you singled out
have different tones depending on their contextualisation. So, I for one am
not left with a feeling that it is like an obituary, rather that it is
optimistic, but I do agree that it is aggressively worded. But... like you
say, that's the power of the 'banner testing' process, different people
respond well to different things! :-)
I am however negatively-struck by the finishing statement, a return to the
old motto of "keep us online without advertising for one more year". I
thought that we had collectively agreed that banners that directly threaten
advertising next year were not going to happen any more. Remember when we
used to get lots of mainstream media reports saying "Wikipedia will soon
have ads!" as a result of those campaigns in the past? [.This is different
from simply saying "we don't have ads and we're proud of it", etc.]
I also reiterate the concern raised by others - that it obscures the *whole
*page. A popular request to return to the usual 'banner' style was run on
the French WP: https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikip%C3%A9dia:Le_Bistro/25_novembre_2014#Mettre_en_place_une_banni.C3.A8re_classique
To its credit, the WMF fundraising team has responded on that page:
Indicating that the full-screen-blocking banner should only be visible the
first time a non-logged in user sees it, and that this particular
fundraising campaign will conclude on Friday: https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikip%C3%A9dia:Le_Bistro/25_novembre_2014#R.C3.A9ponse_de_la_WMF
While I personally disagree with their decision to obscure the whole page
in black, I would like to specifically thank the WMF fundraising team for
responding to the affected community on the same wiki-page and on the same
day that the question was first raised there (the 25th).
This notwithstanding, I think the issue *yet again*, is a lack of
communication with the relevant community members when a decision is taken
that affects them. In this case, at minimum, the French OTRS team - who are
apparently receiving complaints that Wikipedia is affected by a virus!
So can I reiterate my reqeust from the other day:
If you're going to change something, tell the affected people before you
change it (or as soon as possible afterwards). Please don't wait for the
public to raise concerns with volunteers, who then complain to the WMF,
before offering an explanation.
And on that note, regarding the fundraising concerns from last week, have
the Dutch or Russian communities received responses to their questions yet?
On 27 November 2014 at 11:35, Delphine MÃ©nard <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote: > You know, I think I'll pass on the actual content of the message that talks
> about "Commercial" not being a "Monster" and "The Bad". (and yes I know,
> these are in a negative sentence but... seriously?).
> This banner looks like an obituary I find. Where are the cool banners on
> green leafy foresty background? Those were the days ;)
> I know that a lot of thought goes into crafting the best messages for
> fundraising banners, I also know that the testing is thorough, and
> decisions are made with real data. But sometimes I find we might be
> forgetting the number of people we actually scare *away* with things like
> this. Not sure that's data we can acquire, but looking at this banner I am
> losing faith in my fellow French if they really respond to something like
> this more than they do to positive and cheerful looking messages).
> On Wed, Nov 26, 2014 at 11:44 PM, MZMcBride <email@example.com> wrote:
> > David Gerard wrote:
> > >Didn't we have the lightbox argument last year?
> > Probably. Or the year before. Or the year before that. I did say
> > in the subject line. ;-)
> > There are various discussions popping up across Wikimedia about these
> > banners. It didn't help that a bug earlier this week caused logged-in
> > users to be hit with them as well. Talk about eating your own dog food.
> > The French Wikipedia held what appears to be a straw poll with
> > overwhelming denouncement of the banner. It's also been repeatedly
> > described as a phishing attempt. Complaints and confusion aren't uncommon
> > during any annual fundraiser, but I think we can and should hold
> > to a higher standard when begging people for money.
> > As pointed out on Meta-Wiki's "Wikimedia Forum" by Jules78120,
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/CentralNotice/Usage_guidelines is pretty
> > clear that the (primary) goal is that banners "be as unobtrusive as
> > possible." I wrote this in May 2011, I believe deliberately outside of
> > annual fundraising that takes place in December so that we could have a
> > calm and reasonable discussion about appropriate CentralNotice usage.
> > MZMcBride
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