Financial Sustainability Task Force Question 1
What are the revenue streams that could support Wikimedia in an ongoing, sustainable manner (i.e. grants, licensing, reciprocal agreements, in-kinds streams such as free bandwidth, free servers)?
Make use of country/cultural specific grant opportunities
Sweden/Swedish make up 1-2% of the WMF community/activiies, and being a rich country it would be fair we would support WMF with a higher share of the financing, say 100-150 k$ yearly. The stream of giftdonations from here though is only around 15 k$ a year, which probably if it was promoted more heavily could double, but this revenue source from here would never come close to the 100 k$. (the tradition of gift giving exists in Sweden but lees and involving far smaller sums then in US for example).
On the other hand, Sweden (and the Nordic countries) have a long traditon of revenue opportunities for non-profut organsaition from grants from some cultural specific funds, some totally independant from governement, other semi-dependent. For eaxmple when no will or close relatives exist, the inheritance after a death goes into a special fund, giving away grants to "good causes". I would think grants in the magnitude of 0,5 - 1 M$ yearly would be quite realistic to receive, which would allow both appropriate funding to WMF as well as funding a small office (two persons?) to be able to suport the WMF cause more professional then by only volunteers organized as today in the Chapter.
To be able to go this road, costs neeed to be more dedicated to Swedish usage then today. But, for example a dedicated cost for servers (not necessary for them to be placed here) could be allocated to Sweden, I would think the funds here would love it to be a common Nordic one, also supporting the Baltic states and perhaps som other language version in the poorer parts of the world.
Anders Wennersten 09:11, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
There are many options available to seek out alternative revenue streams, for Example server and bandwidth cost could be sponsored by hosting companies or large vendors who might seek positive PR generated since Wikipedia has a global presence, its a more centralised and viable option of reaching millions potentially hundreds of millions of users who use their product and services directly, the benefactor might require a Thank you page or a small banner mentioning their support or some press release. some kind of licensing agreement has also been discussed, there are devices like the kindle that use off-line versions of Wikipedia currently and clearly mentions the fact, a centralised effort to form collaboration for such hand-held reading devices could be beneficial for Wikipedia, an off-line or customized version of Wikipedia for the Kindle or any other e-reader device. The foundation can grant license to third parties or form reciprocal agreements. Large grants seem to be of the utmost importance and benefit, some dedicated personnels should seek them at every opportunities from corporate grants to indirect government grant or private institutions, they would have the highest pay-off but grants would be more likely to benefit if they contributed to a long term solution like a Fund instead of flipping the bill for the year and worrying about the next, the benefactors would also be more likely to contribute if its a one time grant for a permanent solution rather than till next year when someone else makes the same grants and older contributions are forgotten.
This might be a too early to consider but Wikimedia Repository is growing at a decent speed. A direction to consider in future might be to serve as a repository for images for professional purposes on licensing terms for publication, a special copyright agreement would have to be drafted where up-loaders can choose to provide all rights to the project with the up-loader receiving a payout for his IP if their pictures are used. Similar services could be considered for news as well but exclusive content would be the key. It might seem a bit early or far-sighted to consider right now but a decision to pursue the avenue further would have to be made now and it would grow on its own in the future.