500,000 users give Wikipedia $16 million to keep ads away

By Emil ยท 21 replies
Jan 3, 2011
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  1. On November 15, 2010, Wikipedia announced a fundraising goal of $16 million to help fund its operating budget of $20 million a year. For weeks, banner ads on the site asked users to donate and on January 1, 2011, the foundation announced the goal had been reached.

    Read the whole story
  2. mattfrompa

    mattfrompa TS Evangelist Posts: 553   +57

    So we can look forward to seeing egghead stare at us annually, asking for money? Wikipedia is great, I'm just commenting on how annoying fundraisers are.
  3. Emil

    Emil TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 154

    Better than ads.
  4. Show me the books!
  5. Xclusiveitalian

    Xclusiveitalian TS Evangelist Posts: 714   +75

    It just seems shady to me. I hate ads tho and would rather load up that same stupid guys face then a new ad everyday.
  6. God help me, those ads were awful. why does he give off that air of prickish sliminess? who let him use those photos?!
  7. "fundraising goal of $16 million to help fund its operating budget of $20 million a year" really?! Am I to understend that they need that much money to keep wiki running for a year? Thats nuts.
  8. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,310   +651

    Ad blockers are wonderful...I never saw any ads on that site. People need to also realize, that they should NEVER count what they find on Wikipedia as "the gospel" without checking alternate sources. The content on that site is user driver, and is also at the will of the "gods" of that site. They can leave incorrect info (and have) if it fits their political agenda.
  9. princeton

    princeton TS Addict Posts: 1,676

    It's one of the most used websites ever made. It has millions of users creating traffic.
  10. Leeky

    Leeky TS Evangelist Posts: 3,797   +117

    That is a pretty insane overhead cost!

    I like Wikipedia for referencing, but as others have said, its always best to confirm your findings elsewhere. What it has achieved is pretty awesome though.
  11. Benny26

    Benny26 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,535   +51

    Good old Wikipedia. One of the best sites on the net.
  12. Tanstar

    Tanstar TS Evangelist Posts: 616   +176

    I'd prefer ads. There are radio stations that do this too. Instead of doing the work all year to sell advertising, they submit their listeners to telethon begging. Just reeks of laziness.
  13. stwongbad85

    stwongbad85 TS Rookie Posts: 21

    This is the case for ANYTHING you read. Wikipedia gives authors the ability to link to their sources. You can instantly verify the credibility of the author. And if no source is cited IT SAYS SO RIGHT THERE! And if something is total B.S. you or an expert on the subject have the ability to correct it.
    All info you hear, see or read is edited is at the will of some "god" or arbiter and I doubt they are as impartial as the folks over at Wikipedia.
    If there is a better method of collecting and sharing knowledge I would like to hear it.
  14. "...have the ability to correct it."

    Yes, sir, what would you like to order?

    I want my 5500+ articles disputing anthropogenic global warming back on Wikipedia.

    Sorry sir, no can do, would you like fries with that?

    Right or wrong, those articles should be back on...
    the poster who mentioned political agendas was right.

    30,000+ emails, authenticated, don't lie, no matter how they were obtained, "hide the decline"...
  15. thekohser

    thekohser TS Rookie

    I wonder when the news media will figure out that the Wikimedia Foundation spends on program services only 41 cents of every dollar they scam from donors, which earns them ONE STAR (out of four!) from Charity Navigator in organizational efficiency. In fact, their KPMG audit discovered that it only takes about $2.5 million to keep the servers running, provide ample bandwidth, and staff a team of code developers to keep things running smoothly. Why, then, is the ask for $20 million?

    I also wonder why the news media never thought to cover the 2009 story of how the Wikimedia Foundation needed extra office space, and as if by magic, they hand-picked Jimmy Wales' for-profit corporation to be their landlord, THEN obtained competitive bids, THEN asked Wales' for-profit company to match the average of the competitive bids.

    I too wonder why the media don't seem to care that the 2010 market research study of past Wikimedia Foundation donors was awarded to the former employer of the WMF staffer running the project (Philippe Beaudette, mentioned above!), without any competitive bidding whatsoever. And when the Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation was asked how much the project cost, the guy asking the question was banned from the online discussion.
  16. @thekohser Maybe you're being a bit naive. I'd take anything KPMG say with a whole bunch of salt. $20 million would probably just about pay Google employees' coffee bill for the year. It's refreshing to have a site like Wikipedia on the Net. While it's not authoritative as all entries are not 'peer reviewed', it's a great first port-of-call, and there are already off-shoots of it for certain communities of scientists in particular research areas, which are, or will be peer-reviewed. Hopefully in the future some more parts of Wikipedia will move in this direction. People forget it's a not-for-profit organisation, but then also assume that because Wikipedia has a modest cash surplus, they operate shifty business practices. To me it just seems common sense to have some extra money available for contingencies. As for the majority of commercial sites with their inane and incessant advertising, I can personally put up with seeing an egg-head once or twice a year.
  17. I write to say that I feel so sorry, that there seem to be so many angry people out there.
    Personally, I am of a similar age to 'the prickish egg-head sliminess', and sadly, age sometimes does that to you, we'd love to continue to look so young & lovely, but until we discover eternal youth, life just doesn't happen that way!
    However, age also gives you the years of experience to decide whether you wish to use this amazing encyclopedia or not. So if you don't like it, go somewhere else.
    Consider how us 'oldies' feel? Wikipedia wasn't around when I needed it. Now I can access it anytime I like. Do you not ever think about the years it took to compile the OED or Roget's Thesaurus. Have a heart, please consider, that you are equally as lucky, and that this universal benefit is to be championed, not castigated.
    Yes! $20 m sounds absolutely incredible, I would find it hard to condone, but if you ran a business of this size, and not-for-profit, you would understand that you have to fund; Insurances, heat, light, National insurance & pension contributions, VAT, Income tax & currency fluctuations ..... etc., etc .If you have never worked for yourself, perhaps you aren't aware that every business has these to pay for, big or small, though in varying degrees.
    There are many benefits to Wikipedia, and on a general level, it is invaluable and I whole-heartedly commend it.

    I made a donation today, because I use the site at least twice a week sometimes more, and I consider my small offering, less than the price of the bus-fares, I would have had to spend 20 years ago, to get to my local library.
    Happy New Year and please start smelling the roses, before we don't have any left.
    PD 99
  18. @stwongbad85

    glad to see people have common sense when it comes to sources. "don't believe everything that you read, you'll get a parking violation and a maggot on your sleeve..." comes to mind. and this applies to sources as well.

    in a broad sense, all information promulgated regardless of being correct or incorrect (which is a matter of individual perception) comes from a political agenda. it takes skill to find that agenda even if it comes from a nicely bound book written by someone with a PHD, and perhaps less if it is written anonymously in text on a wiki. but the process remains, regardless.

    as was once said by Dr. Whalen Lai, "taking from other sources is called plagiarism, but when you add a footnote, it is called research."
  19. Americans spent 4 Billion on Halloween Candy in 2009...
    Americans spent 29 Billion in 2009 during the holiday season in ONLINE purchases...
    500,000 just gave wikipedia 16 Million...

    5,000 children die globally every day because they don't have clean water to drink

    10 Billion would provide clean water for the ENTIRE PLANET.

    Sorry everyone, but I did just fine finding information on the internet before Wikipedia.

    It's time to start making a responsible choice between ease of access to information and SAVING LIVES.
  20. @thekosher: You really need a new hobby. Trolling comment pages trying to expose the corruption of Wikipedia is getting really really old.

    I can understand that you've got a perpetual hard-on for Jimmy ever since he wouldn't let you profit from writing wiki entries, but it's time to step away from the dead horse.
  21. Is Jimmy a Marxist? I won't donate so long as there are advertisers willing to pay the full freight on Wikipedia... and there are: the full freight, and then some. Advertising is part of business, and business is what makes the world go around. I admit some ads can be too in-your-face, fair enough, but get off your soapboxes and stop being so hypocritical. Fight it if you must, but there is NOTHING wrong with capitalism. The way ads are treated as though they were some kind of cancer is sickening. Ditch the socialist worldview instead.
  22. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,014   +2,536

    I wish you would have kept going. Eventually I suppose, you might have hit upon something I even remotely care about.

    The odd thing about humans is, they operate the same as every other species in the animal kingdom. They become more prolific as the odds increase against each individual's survival.

    As I understand it, we already have far too many humans on the planet. If you already have too many, then either too many people are being prevented from dying, or too many are being born. (Or both). Yet one primary goal of science, is to further extend the human life span, grant money permitting. We should quick find a way for each and every one of us to live until we reach 200 years of age. Then the "old timers" can sit around wringing their hands about food and water shortages, while simultaneously bragging about how science has pushed back menopause until the age of 100!

    I love the irony and disparity of cause and effect, between social causes, and an honest reality check.

    Those that are starving, need to pull up their zippers, and find a place where food does grow, and water does exist. It would take their mind off foreign aid, and infant mortality rates.

    Even tropical fish have the genetic ability to only grow to a size appropriate to the size of the container which is supporting them. The human race unfortunately, doesn't share that biological good sense, practicality, or taste.

    To go back to topic, fund raising on public television has become a 24/7 year round affair. I expect that the executives of PBS, draw salaries at a level which well compensates them for the level of public begging they must undertake to achieve them. Sort of a "circle of life" paradigm. The more you beg, the more you make, the more you make, the more you feel obligated to beg.

    I expect Wiki may have a few of those "NPO status" skeletons in its closet as well.
    cliffordcooley likes this.

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