Proposal:Go beyond the Wikis

From Strategic Planning
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  1. Achieve continued growth in readership
  2. Focus on quality content
  3. Increase Participation
  4. Stabilize and improve the infrastructure
  5. Encourage Innovation

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WMF should become a political player in education and copyright law on a global scale. Build expertise and standing as an NGO in global political processes regarding education and copyright. Get observer status first, later full membership at UNESCO and WIPO plus appropriate other organizations.


WMF should open a completely new field of activities that go way beyond the wikis and the net. Get involved into the political processes and participate in writing international treaties and building global programs in education and copyright law. Become a think tank with expertize in creation and distributing of educational material - and become a voice for consumers and creators of free content in the discussion of copyright law and related fields.

Aim to get observer status in one of the international bodies of the two most relevant fields education and intellectual property law within five years. Full membership in one and observer status in the other within seven years. Full membership in both within ten years.

Those national chapters that are well established and sufficiently funded could go the same way in their countries and become recognized as lobby organizations in one or both of those fields.


Some NGOs, such as the International Committee of the Red Cross or Greenpeace are either observers or full members in all international and many national political organizations in their fields. As the WMF intends to become the "Red Cross of Knowledge" (c) Jimbo, the Foundation must go beyond maintaining wikis and recruiting editors. It needs to become a global player in the political fields interconnected with its mission. Those are primarily education and copyright / intellectual property law. The corresponding international organizations are UNESCO and WIPO.

Key Questions

  • Can some of the existing structures (board, board of advisories, office, chapters) be used for this branching out or does the WMF need new structures?
  • Can the WMF find volunteers for this activities within the existing community or is the community focused exclusively on editors in wikis?

Potential Costs

  • Depend on the amount of volunteer work that can be integrated. The first steps would probably need one full time employee at the San Francisco office, plus attention and time of the ED and maybe a subcommittee in the board. Much later, branch offices in Paris, France (UNESCO) and Geneva, Switzerland (WIPO) are a real possibility.

Community Discussion

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