Thursday, June 28, 2007

Wikimedia Board candidates: Mindspillage

Tonight's first candidate is Mindspillage, better known as Kat Walsh. I've previously stated that Kat is one of only two Board members who enjoys my complete trust. I was becoming somewhat worried that I would have to write a negative review of her based on a lack of answers on her questions page, but apparently she's had a burst of activity in the past couple of days, and her questions page is now mostly answered. Nonetheless, I still have some trepidations about Kat as a candidate, and my endorsement of her will not be nearly so clear-cut as was mine of Michael Snow.

Kat is one of the two people who I identify as personal mentors on Wikipedia (the other being Seth Anthony). Kat has consistently shown wisdom and careful thought in what she has had to say. My main problem with Kat is that she is too passive for my taste. Objectively, this is probably actually a positive characteristic, though; I am, myself, a terribly rash and impulsive person, and I tend to chafe at people who can merely stand by and watch in situations where I would not be able to resist acting. I consider Kat to be too reluctant to act by my standards, but I suppose my standards are perhaps not the best to use for such an evaluation. On the other hand, Kat herself acknowledges that she "stand[s] back where [she] should say something", so perhaps I am not entirely off-base here. Anyway, it remains that my main complaint about Kat is that she is too "timid", to use her own words for it.

Kat is popular and has stepped on relatively few (but certainly not none). The fact that her name is behind the recent resolution (which I drafted) that requires certain Wikimedia volunteers to be of legal majority and identified to the Foundation has probably cost her some support from the hard-core anonymists and certain others who feel squeezed out by this. Overall, she should get reasonably good support and stands a fair, but not great, chance of reelection.