Thank you SJ, I think you've said it better than I could. 

As I hope everyone can appreciate - different audiences are interested in different pieces of information and look for that information in different places. Today's 'press release' is differently formatted to, and with different focus from, the message I've sent here (and Meta). And those are different again from the (also public) 'tuning session' quarterly update slides. Equally, for example, technical roadmap updates about this project are published on its MediaWiki page and the code is on its GitHub page - both of which have also received substantial updates recently that I did not mention in my earlier email because they were less relevant to this audience. But, since we're talking about the different interests of different audiences I'm happy to link them here now too. 

For the benefit of the wider community here, it should be noted that I've replied to Andres' comments about these quarterly update slides, with relation to the Enterprise project, when he first raised them the 15th of June on the Meta talkpage
and also on the WikipediaWeekly facebook group the same day

- Liam 
Peace, Love & Metadata.

On Tue, 21 Jun 2022 at 22:40, Samuel Klein <> wrote:


There are three slides in that deck about Enterprise, much less detailed than the summary Liam just shared. 
There is no contradiction involved, and the transparency of sharing quarterly slides is all I could imagine wanting. 
In its context, they focus on OKRs and specific metrics, which are less relevant to this conversation (and were arbitrary in the first place).  

If you constantly cry wolf, valid concerns will not be heard. 
Meanwhile you are making this list less pleasant and less useful for normal, undramatic discussion.


On Tue, Jun 21, 2022 at 3:55 PM Andreas Kolbe <> wrote:
Dear Liam,

There seem to be (at least) two types of presentations on Wikimedia Enterprise here: a PR-optimised one for public consumption, given here, and an internal one. I'd like the difference between the two to be smaller, ideally, and for the community (also) to be given the internal one, as found in Advancement's Q3 "tuning session" (quarterly review):

This says: 


The situation 
Although we successfully closed an initial set of paying customers for Wikimedia Enterprise at the end of the last calendar year, and have continued to have ongoing sales conversations with additional potential customers, we have been unable to close additional customers as quickly as we projected due to unanticipated legal and product requirements, and will not hit the revenue target for FY21/22. 

The impact 
We are developing a clearer picture of what is required to successfully scale sales of the Wikimedia Enterprise product within our non-profit context. In particular, we need to redefine, and better articulate, the relationship between our free and paid APIs, so that we can successfully explain why they would choose our paid, commercial-grade services rather than our free APIs. 

We are working with the legal team to develop a contractual structure that allows us to sell to a wider set of countries, and with the product team to better delineate the relationship between our free and paid API services, so that by the end of this calendar year there will be a clear value proposition that drives commercial customers to pay for the Enterprise APIs.


Note that this tuning session presentation, too, is marked "PUBLIC", so presumably there is a non-public version of that file as well. 

I find all of this (which I doubt is your decision, so please don't take it as a criticism of you personally) lamentable. The community is the WMF's partner in all of this. Why not speak openly to us? We are not paying customers who need to be wooed, or wowed. 

And no – the solution is not to stop publishing the quarterly reviews, or to delay their publication even more.


On Tue, Jun 21, 2022 at 5:11 PM Liam Wyatt <> wrote:

Dear all, 


TL;DR: Today the Wikimedia Foundation published a press release[1] about the “Wikimedia Enterprise” API project - announcing our first set of customers, as well as a new self-signup system. This is a significant milestone because it fulfills several promises we have made to ourselves and to the movement. There will be a community open meeting on Thursday 23 June @ 1700 UTC as documented on our Meta page.[2] The text of this email is also published on the talkpage - please centralise any comments/feedback there.[3]


I am writing today with details of the latest developments in the “Wikimedia Enterprise” API project. This follows the project’s community-discussion phase, which began approximately one year ago, focused on Meta [and also this wikimedia-l thread]. Then, this past October, we issued a press release announcing that we were “open for business” on the project’s new site.[4] This wikimedia-l email thread contains the details of those previous phases.

Now is the third and final major announcement in this journey from “idea” to “reality”. Today’s press release,[1] and associated story on the project’s new “news” page,[5] states that:

  • Two well known organisations will be announced as the first customers of the project. One is a major social/search corporation [Google], as our first official paying customer. This also means that the project is now covering its current operating costs. The other is a movement partner and nonprofit organization [The Internet Archive] that will receive access at no cost. 

  • Anyone will be able to sign up for an account and use/access the service [but not at a commercial scale] for free. Furthermore, payments for usage above that threshold will be calculated simply and publicly based on the number of API requests and gigabytes of data used. (Other free access methods for the dataset continue to exist, as documented on our Meta FAQ)[6]

  • The API’s metadata has been expanded to include the beta version of what we are calling “credibility signals”. This is already public information (such as pageviews, edit-rates, and page-protection status changes) packaged within the single data feed to help users make more informed decisions about when they should refresh their copy of the dataset. (Emphasis on ‘beta’, as this is not available on all versions of the product yet.)

This announcement is a significant milestone because it fulfills several promises we have made to ourselves and to the movement, namely that: 

  • We have built something that commercial organisations who are already heavy users of Wikimedia content and Wikimedia Foundation services are willing to invest in. The pricing is based on estimated usage, resulting in a more manageable and transparent cost structure. The project is now covering its current operating expenses. In addition, we requested and received a public affirmation/support letter from the Board for the project’s financial operating principles, ensuring that commercial revenue will only ever be a minority of the total and their oversight for any future high value contracts.[7]

  • The nonprofit partner will receive access at no cost, demonstrating a first practical example of how this project supports the mission of knowledge access while also providing a new revenue stream.

  • The ‘trial’ tier of the service is primarily designed to allow potential customers to determine whether they want to use it in commercial production environments, but it also allows anyone to see what is ‘in’ the API. Moreover, it will allow volunteers or researchers to access the service for free at a non-commercial scale. If those people have a mission-relevant use-case that requires them to continue to use the Enterprise API above that scale (i.e. that isn’t viable using other APIs/dumps), we will continue to provide them with free access.

  • The ‘credibility signals’ concept means that vandalism and errors should appear less often and/or be removed more quickly in downstream services such as search engines. [Note, how and when customers incorporate features is their own decision].

While we are proud to announce these customers, it is important to note that our market research has identified a significant gap in our movement’s ability to have Wikimedia knowledge used. The world’s largest companies are already using Wikimedia; we’re just providing a better way for them to do so. But for everyone else, it is often too hard and they do not have the resources (financial, technical, and human) to incorporate Wikimedia information – even though they want to. In short: simply providing legally-reusable knowledge is insufficient to enable reuse for a very large portion of society.


And so, we are focusing a lot of our future product development on this Knowledge as a Service model - consistent with the Movement Strategy’s “strategic direction”.[8] This is what’s interview with the Enterprise team referred to as our attempt at “lowering the playing field” – a term we quite like.[9]

We are increasingly realising that the future of Wikimedia Enterprise is much more nuanced than merely “making big tech pay”, but is about enabling access to the many companies who want to use Wikimedia knowledge in their own products but currently can’t. These organisations are willing to pay us to find ways to better support their specific use of Wikimedia content, both through more accessible technology, contractual guarantees of service availability, and professional services to help them make the best use of our content in their systems. As per our enumerated  Principles,[10] all customers get the same product - there are no exclusive or bespoke features - they only pay for the volume of usage. This will allow smaller companies to compete and will ensure that Wikimedia knowledge is more widely available. Our goal is for the future business model of Enterprise to resemble “many paying a little” rather than “few paying a lot” – an approach similar to our movement’s “many small donors” fundraising methodology.

Still to come later this year will be: 

  • Exploring options to integrate Wikidata in the dataset, which is a common customer request. We are working closely with Wikimedia-Deutschland to discuss how to best do this.

  • Small, and non-U.S. based customers. This is crucial to demonstrating the Knowledge as a Service value of the project. We already work with relevant Chapters when we have a potential ‘local’ customer who has expressed strong interest.

  • Publishing aggregate revenue/expense data, but only after there’s enough aggregate financial data collected, over a sufficient period of time, and with enough customers to be informative.

  • The “news” page on the Enterprise website itself will be where future software updates, customer case-studies, etc. will be published. This ensures that the information is available, while not detracting from community-focused places like the Diff blog. The first post on that news page is available today.[5]


In order to not distract from community-focused discussions, and of course unless there’s something important for the community to know, in the future we will announce new customers product updates etc. on the project website’s news page and on Meta rather than on this mailing list etc. - but we felt it was important to do it this time. 


Finally, I would also like to ask you to keep your eyes and ears open for anyone in your corner of the Wikimedia community who has questions or concerns about the project. Please ask them to read and comment on our Meta FAQ,[6] to contact me directly, or to attend the public community open meeting on Thursday, which is already announced on Meta on the project’s page & the mainpage calendar.

Sincerely, and on behalf of the Wikimedia Enterprise team,[11]

Liam Wyatt [Wittylama]

Program Manager
 Enterprise, Newcomer Experience, & WikiCite

Wikimedia Foundation












On Mon, 11 Oct 2021 at 19:01, Liam Wyatt <> wrote:

Dear all, A lot has happened since March when we Introduced the Wikimedia Enterprise API and began community conversations about the project’s development. Now is an important milestone to give everyone:
1) an update responding to community advice we’ve received;  and
2) to describe what is happening next.

The idea of an API for the specific needs of the commercial sector had been discussed for more than a decade (both for the purposes of improving user experience, and also to diversify revenue). The announcement in March introducing the Wikimedia Enterprise API generated a lot of Wikimedia-community and mainstream-media attention - most notably in WIRED. Since then, the team has been hard at work building the actual product and hosting many conversations (regular public meetings and participation in events including SWAN, Wikimania, EMWCon, Clinic) - as well as a considerable volume of discussions on our meta talkpage. All of this has generated lots of suggestions, which we have endeavoured to incorporate and respond to before the actual commercial launch. On behalf of the whole team, I thank the many many people who have been willing and able to share constructive feedback with us over these months. Links to recordings from those meetings/presentations can be found on our meta homepage:

1. To that end, here are some updates in response to community advice:

WMF Board statement.

Subsequent to the most recent WMF Board of Trustees meeting, a statement reaffirming their support of the project, and in particular its operating principles relating to its future revenue, has been published. You can find the board Statement here, and the Enterprise operating principles on Meta here. Consistent community feedback was that our published principles were good and sensible, but for such a new and unusual thing in our movement, an overt statement from the Board of Trustees was requested. This statement affirms that:

  • Revenues of the WMF obtained from commercial activities shall not surpass 30% of the total planned revenue via all sources (including donations) in that fiscal year, and no further revenue would be sought beyond that limit;
  • The Board of Trustees will be notified in advance of any large commercial agreements, giving them time for review - exactly mirroring the procedure for large gifts; 
  • Revenue obtained from Wikimedia Enterprise services is under the oversight and control of procedures for revenue raised by the Wikimedia Foundation and the revenue will not be earmarked for a specific program. 

Each of these things were already noted on-wiki, but they were very much worthwhile re-stating formally. Equally it bears repeating: the existing APIs and methods of accessing Wikimedia sites remain. The creation of this optional commercial service, designed for those with specific high data-volume demands, does not change the experience (legally or technically) for anyone else.
Relatedy, and also in response to community suggestions, the formal contracts which define the legal relationship of the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation to this commercial activity, have now been published on the governance wiki and linked from the related section on the project’s FAQ.

Free technical access for the community. 

You will soon be able to access a copy of the Enterprise dataset, refreshed each fortnight, at the Wikimedia dumps portal. Furthermore a ‘daily dump + hourly diff’ version is also already available, via Wikimedia Cloud Services to any users of Toolforge, Cloud VPS, or PAWS. Both of these are provided to anyone, for free (in both ‘gratis’ and ‘libre’ senses of the word). Importantly, and consistent with community feedback, neither of these access methods require any special request process to access them, other than the existing terms of service on those platforms.

Software development updates are published monthly on our page on MediaWiki (as is the API documentation), and the work is coordinated on our Phabricator board.

Next public meeting.
As mentioned, the team has been holding regular public calls. If you would like to meet with, and ask any questions of, the Enterprise team (a.k.a. “Office hours”):

Friday October 22 @ 1500 UTC on Zoom. If you would like to arrange a conversation about this project with a group in the community that you are part of (at a time, language, and meeting-software platform of your choice), please contact me directly.

2. What is happening next: 

The launch of the project’s standalone website, denoting the service as “open for business”, will take place early next week

In parallel we will also be announcing the first customers - both from the commercial and non-profit sectors. We expect this will generate some attention in the media. Despite our best efforts to be visible across the wikiverse, reading about the Wikimedia Enterprise API in the media will probably be the first time that some Wikimedians hear about it - which might be surprising for them. So, next week, if you see any Wikimedians asking about this project on community forums, please notify me by email, on-wiki [as user:LWyatt (WMF) ], and/or direct them to the project FAQ on Meta (currently available in 7 languages).

Once again, thank you to all who have been involved in the development of, or given feedback to, Enterprise. It’s been a long road getting from there to here... 


Liam Wyatt [Wittylama]

Program Manager for Enterprise, WikiCite, and Newcomer Experience

Wikimedia Foundation

On Tue, 16 Mar 2021 at 17:02, Liam Wyatt <> wrote:

Dear all, 

Over the last few months, a small team at the Wikimedia Foundation has been working on a project that has been discussed by many people in our movement for many years: building ‘enterprise grade’ services for the high-volume commercial reusers of Wikimedia content. I am pleased to say that in a remarkably short amount of time (considering the complexity of the issues: technical, strategic, legal, and financial) we now have something worthy of showing to the community, and we are asking for your feedback. Allow me to introduce you to the Wikimedia Enterprise API project – formerly codenamed “okapi”.

While the general idea for Wikimedia Enterprise predates the current movement strategy process, its recommendations identify an enterprise API as one possible solution to both “Increase the sustainability of our movement” and “Improve User Experience.”[0] That is, to simultaneously create a new revenue stream to protect Wikimedia’s sustainability, and improve the quality and quantity of Wikimedia content available to our many readers who do not visit our websites directly (including more consistent attribution). Moreover, it does so in a way that is true to our movement’s culture: with open source software, financial transparency, non-exclusive contracts or content, no restrictions on existing services, and free access for Wikimedia volunteers who need it.

The team believes we are on target to achieve those goals and so we have written a lot of documentation to get your feedback about our progress and where it could be further improved before the actual product is ‘launched’ in the next few months. We have been helped in this process over the last several months by approximately 100 individual volunteers (from many corners of the wikiverse) and representatives of affiliate organisations who have reviewed our plans and provided invaluable direction, pointing out weaknesses and opportunities, or areas lacking clarity and documentation in our drafts. Thank you to everyone who has shared your time and expertise to help prepare this new initiative. 

A essay describing the “why?” and the “how?” of this project is now on Meta:

Also now published on Meta are an extensive FAQ, operating principles, and technical documentation on You can read these at [1] [2] and [3] respectively. Much of this documentation is already available in French, German, Italian, and Spanish.

The Wikimedia Enterprise team is particularly interested in your feedback on how we have designed the checks and balances to this project - to ensure it is as successful as possible at achieving those two goals described above while staying true to the movement’s values and culture. For example: Is everything covered appropriately in the “Principles” list? Is the technical documentation on clear? Are the explanations in the “FAQ” about free-access for community, or project’s legal structure, or the financial transparency (etc.) sufficiently detailed?

Meet the team and Ask Us Anything: 

The central place to provide written feedback about the project in general is on the talkpage of the documentation on Meta at:

On this Friday (March 19)  we will be hosting two “Office hours” conversations where anyone can come and give feedback or ask questions:

Other “office hours” meetings can be arranged on-request on a technical platform of your choosing; and we will organise more calls in the future.

We will also be attending the next SWAN meetings (on March 21), and also the next of the Wikimedia Clinics 

Moreover, we would be very happy to accept any invitation to attend an existing group call that would like to discuss this topic (e.g.  an affiliate’s members’ meeting).

On behalf of the Wikimedia Enterprise team, 

Peace, Love & Metadata
-- Liam Wyatt [Wittylama], Wikimedia Enterprise project community liaison.





Liam Wyatt [Wittylama]

WikiCite Program Manager & Wikimedia Enterprise Community Liaison
Wikimedia Foundation

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