Financial Sustainability Task Force Question 2

Financial Sustainability Task Force Question 2

What business model options are available for Wikimedia to pursue to cover its costs? What can we learn from other organizations that have pursued these models?

VeroniqueKessler19:17, 18 November 2009
Edited by 2 users.
Last edit: 19:00, 7 December 2009
Help fund Wikipedia. On/off button for ads.

I suggest developing an opt-in ad system. A button that turns on ads. Then use the ad money to pay more developers to fix the 4000+ bugs listed in the Bugzilla Weekly Reports. This is an example of a basic need. Secondary goals are unrealistic in my opinion until basic needs are met. Donations will never be enough in my opinion to cover even our basic needs as we keep expanding bandwidth, users, servers, and maintenance staff worldwide. and are examples of popular, free web sites that anybody can edit, that use opt-in, opt-out, or minimal as-needed ads. Most people don't even know that the millions (see timeline charts) of free blogs on are funded partially by ads, since only a few ads are used throughout the many blogs. See: "To support the service (and keep free features free), we also sometimes run advertisements. If you would like to completely eliminate ads from appearing on your blog, we offer the No-Ads Upgrade."

For more info and ideas see w:Wikipedia:Advertisements and the other ad-related funding ideas being discussed elsewhere on the Strategy Wiki.

I do not think there will be broad input into these discussions as long as they are on the Strategy Wiki. Unified watchlists is a bug/feature and basic need that needs funding to develop. The ability to combine all the Wikimedia watchlists (or at least all the ones outside Wikipedia and the Commons) would greatly facilitate the expansion of the other Wikimedia projects. I only regularly check my Wikipedia and Commons watchlists.

I suggest moving all these strategy discussions to the Commons. Far more people watchlist the Commons than the Strategy or Meta Wikis. The Commons has a broad worldwide user base, and so would provide wider input, including more people outside English-speaking countries. By the way, about the ad button, cookies would remember the last choice. Since the button would be the same across all Wikimedia projects in all languages, its use would be intuitive even in other languages. Color would be different for on and off setting. --Timeshifter 05:27, 19 November 2009 (UTC)

Timeshifter23:23, 18 November 2009

Great stuff, Timeshifter. I copied some of this information over to the advertising page, which also has additional links and context.

Eekim15:58, 20 November 2009

Thanks, Eekim. I just linked to that new page from w:Wikipedia:Advertisements. There is further discussion at meta:Fundraising 2009/Launch Feedback#Some of us don't have money to donate. --Timeshifter 02:31, 21 November 2009 (UTC)

Timeshifter02:31, 21 November 2009

As far as I know there are no other organisations like the Wikimedia Foundation and Wikipedia, which is at the forefront of internet usage today and constantly expands without going ad-based through old fashioned fund raising efforts. First the Foundation has to decide on the path it wants to take, whether to follow in the footsteps of older institutions and become self-sufficient through older time consuming efforts or find alternative funding approach through collaboration possible mergers. The foundation can consider options like any other university for funding, the only concern is the lack of time since the bulk of the endowments are derived from estates of the deceased, grants etc., the foundation can consider some financial ideas used by charities or something a little more unconventional like large benefits or events for the foundations benefit. It could be a hybrid of different things but a concise direction has to be decided by the foundation before anything.

Theo1001119:54, 19 November 2009