Damon Sicore lol

For WMF employee / slave nonsense, developer hijinks, and MediaWiki and related software screw-ups.
Post Reply
User avatar
ericbarbour
Sucks Admin
Posts: 4724
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2017 1:56 am
Location: The ass-tral plane
Has thanked: 1190 times
Been thanked: 1913 times

Damon Sicore lol

Post by ericbarbour » Tue Sep 17, 2019 11:50 pm

No one even remembers that Sicore, a former Mozilla developer, was hired by Lila Tretikov in 2014 to be Wikimedia's "WP of Engineering".

He lasted all of eight months. There's evidence that he squabbled with WMF leadership about the terms of his severance--indicating it may not have been "voluntary".

The whole story (what little you can make out, anyway) is in these old WO threads:
http://wikipediocracy.com/forum/viewtop ... =38&t=5435
http://wikipediocracy.com/forum/viewtop ... f=8&t=6036

Damon's blog, which I said was "drivel" and "unreadable", had been drifting like an abandoned boat for a while. Just today badmachine noticed that Damon had started updating it. And posting stuff like this.....
https://damon.sicore.com/apple-purchase ... erpetuity/

If you use the USPTO trademark search to find out how the word "Wikipedia" is registered, all such registrations are properly assigned to the WMF, with Carrie L. Kiedrowski as the attorney of record. The USPTO doesn't keep the past history of trademark registrations online, just the current record. I have a vague memory that Apple might have paid for trademark registration in 2004, but don't have more info. The book wiki only says:
Application to the United States Patent and Trademark Office to trademark Wikipedia was granted on September 17, 2004.

Granted that the early history of the WMF is EXTREMELY screwy and they were chronically underfunded in 2003-04, it is possible that Sicore is at least partly correct. But he has to offer some proof.

And back in July of this year he posted a rant claiming that "Lila used me as a scapegoat". THIS I can believe.
https://damon.sicore.com/wikipedia-search/

User avatar
CrowsNest
Sucks Maniac
Posts: 4459
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2018 4:50 am
Been thanked: 5 times

Re: Damon Sicore lol

Post by CrowsNest » Wed Sep 18, 2019 12:47 am

My plan was to charge Google, Apple, and Bing for the direct and unlimited access that they enjoy today. I do not believe it is fair to the public of the World to ask for donations to fund Wikipedia when Google, Bing, and Apple are making tens of billions of dollars every year using Wikipedia.
What an asshat.

Wikipedia has zero commercial value as a product, it is free for any reuser to do with it whatever they wish, under the terms of their own license. "Direct and unlimited access" is worth only what these companies would save in not creating and keeping their own relatively up to date copies of that giant digital junkpile, which obviously would not run into the millions of dollars.

If donors aren't aware of the basic realities of what Wikipedia is, how it is made and how it can be used by evil corporations, I'm quite sure that's not these corporation's ethical conundrum to solve.

And since when would crafting such a plan even be a task for a VP of Engineering? His primary job was to roll out VE, and he clearly made a right balls up of it. Probably not his fault, but you can probably appreciate why, after only eight months in the job, he still might have been labouring under the false impression that this was a problem that was fixable with more money. It isn't. His problem was the customers. They are still the problem.

User avatar
ericbarbour
Sucks Admin
Posts: 4724
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2017 1:56 am
Location: The ass-tral plane
Has thanked: 1190 times
Been thanked: 1913 times

Re: Damon Sicore lol

Post by ericbarbour » Wed Sep 18, 2019 3:44 am

CrowsNest wrote:What an asshat.

:lol: But having watched his blog conniptions when he worked for Tretikov, to me "asshat" doesn't seem unreasonable. He has all the signs of a coder dudebro, complete with some rather eccentric ideas about the world and about human beings. "Doesn't play well with others", eh?

Man, there could be a whole book just about the shitshow of Visual Editor. Nearly everyone associated with it did at least one stupid or insane thing. And the insane started with letting Moeller and Forrester "run" it. I would not trust those fine gentlemen to wash my car, must less manage a major software development project. Can't plan their way out of a paper bag etc.

User avatar
badmachine
Sucker
Posts: 475
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2017 1:55 am
Has thanked: 609 times
Been thanked: 273 times
Contact:

Re: Damon Sicore lol

Post by badmachine » Wed Sep 18, 2019 4:45 am

From "Support the People of Wikipedia":

Damon Sicore wrote:It’s been almost three years now. By working at WMF, it feels as if I destroyed my career as a VP of Engineering anywhere. From this, I’m attempting to transform myself into something better and more effective. I’ve become a better person in the process, I feel.


Someone on another forum speculated about whether working for the WMF is a career killer... for Mr Sicore, it certainly didn't seem to help.

There's quite a lot to chew on in that one blog post alone, enough that it's worth linking to again. This bit looks interesting, but trying to remember who he is referring to made my eyes glaze over so i gave up. Someone with more dedication and understanding of the subject could perhaps figure out who he refers to here (in bold):

Before the Knight Foundation meeting, and outside of my purview, the Executive Director hired a new executive to lead the search effort to report to me and she gave me instructions to find a place for him in the organization. This was an impossible situation.

This act of cronyism had a profound negative impact on my team. It’s a unilateral act which displaced a key member of my staff, who at the time was helping me guarantee WMF Engineering’s overall success, out of the running for a planned leadership promotion. It killed the morale of the team dead. They lost faith in my ability to lead. I could no longer keep members of my staff on a track to success in their eyes. The Executive Director demonstrated that she would step on me if she wanted to and that I didn’t have the power to stop it.


No idea who he is referring to, perhaps Moeller? And who lost out on a promotion? :?:

User avatar
CrowsNest
Sucks Maniac
Posts: 4459
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2018 4:50 am
Been thanked: 5 times

Re: Damon Sicore lol

Post by CrowsNest » Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:06 am

For an engineer, he certainly seems to have issues with change. :?

Post Reply