Guide to the 2019 Wikimedia Stewards elections

Errata: This post was written before Pcastellina withdrew and Alex Shih was revealed to be under omcom investigation for checkuser abuse, neither  Pcastellina or Alex Shih are options for steward.

The 2019 Stewards Election has come round again. Voting begins on 8 February 2019, and in addition to new Stewards being elected, the confirmation process of 24 current stewards will happen at the same time.

Stewards are volunteers which have advanced permissions on all Wikipedia and Wikimedia projects. They are the ultimate point of contact for issues that affect multiple projects but are not within the remit of the Wikimedia Foundation staff team. They hold permissions above that of a local administrator or bureaucrat, however on projects with active local administrators, they are not allowed to make administrative actions.


Candidate submissions were open from 15 January 2019 to 28 January 2019, so this is the final list of candidates.

Alex ShihYesNoNeutralQuestions
Jon KolbertYesNoNeutralQuestions
Vit KozYesNoNeutralQuestions
Wim bYesNoNeutralQuestions

Who, what, why?

The candidates are fairly limited in number, but to be elected candidates must meet the criteria and obtain at least 30 votes in favor with an 80% support ratio.

Alex Shih

Pros: Speaks Japanese, English, Chinese. Admin on the English Wikipedia, former ArbCom member. Great guy.

Cons: Quit ArbCom a year early for an undetermined reason. Could be seen as critical of the English Wikipedia status quo.


Pros: Speaks Ukrainian and Russian, some English. Admin on Meta-Wiki, OTRS agent.

Cons: Never seems to have done any writing or become an admin on his home wiki.


Pros: Speaks Polish and English. Was a Steward before, serving three years before taking a break for personal reasons. Scrutineer in three ArbCom elections. Extensive OS and CU experience. Polish Wikipedia admin.

Cons: Too perfect, there must be something wrong with this guy.

Jon Kolbert

Pros: Speaks English and French. Active on IRC. Administrator on Wikimedia Commons. OTRS agent and English Wikipedia ACC operative. Has experience in bot work (KolbertBot) with a focus on citations and security.

Cons: Not an admin on his home wiki despite having made 135,000 edits there.


Pros: Speaks Italian, Piedmontese, English, and Interlingua. Active on multiple projects.

Cons: Only sysop experience is temporary sysop on the Piedmontese Wikisource. Doesn’t seem to have demonstrated any skills relevant to stewardship.


Note: This user was previously known under a different username. They hard-break renamed their account in late 2018.

Pros: Global sysop, OTRS agent, abuse filter helper on the English Wikipedia. Fights fire with fire.

Cons: Only speaks English. Somewhat abrasive attitude and disregard for others evident in numerous flame wars both on and off wiki. Not very good at keeping personal information secret. Not an admin on their home wiki.


Pros: Speaks German and English. Admin on the German Wikipedia. Member of Wikimedia Deutschland, involved in Wikimania organisation.

Cons: Almost unknown outside the German community.

Vit Koz

Pros: Speaks Belarusian and Russian. Basic English ability. Temporary sysop on the Belarusian Wikiquote.

Cons: Not much sysop experience. Not an admin on their home wiki.

Wim b

Pros: Speaks Italian. Established Global sysop. Active SWMT. Admin and interface-admin on Italian Wikibooks, and bureaucrat and admin on the Italian Wiktionary, interface-admin on Italian Wikivoyage.

Cons: Only really speaks Italian, although he has some English ability. Not an admin on the Italian Wikipedia.

Who to vote for, or not.

  • Alex Shih – Good choice for steward.
  • Base – Mediocre option.
  • Einsbor – Good choice for steward.
  • Jon Kolbert – Good choice for steward.
  • Pcastellina – Bad selection.
  • Praxidicae – Bad selection.
  • Schniggendiller – Good choice for steward.
  • Vit Koz – Bad selection.
  • Wim b – Good choice for steward.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.