On 7/4/06, Anthere <anthere9(a)yahoo.com> wrote:
There is an issue on which I'd like to react
Anthony wrote "Distributing content (including in
print form) *is* the
purpose of Wikimedia."
Well.... not exactly.
The bylaws do mention a distribution free of charge,
but it makes no reference on whether it should be
online, on paper, on dvd etc...
It's important to realize the context of my statement, which was
regarding Unrelated Business Taxable Income on revenues generated by
distributing print versions of content currently distributed online.
The amended articles of incorporation give the "specific purpose" of
the foundation as "to create and freely distribute freely licensed
encyclopedias, textbooks, reference works, and other literary,
scientific, and educational information in all languages of the
world." Print is not explicitly mentioned. This purpose is certainly
much different from that of a museum.
Among benefits, a financial one. It is unclear as of
today whether we are looking for *this* specific
benefit though. *I* am not looking for that benefit
for the Foundation. I do not know if other board
Another benefit would be to help distribution, for
example in providing all pressed dvd to ship in
certain countries. We could press the DVD and get as
an income exactly what the DVD costs us. This is a
different benefit. And one which might possibly induce
lesser costs in case of a problem.
I've said before that online distribution will never be sufficient to
achieve the alternately stated goal of realizing "a world in which
every single person is given free access to the sum of all human
knowledge". I still think that's true.
But in any cases, it is not among goals of the
Foundation to become publishers to make *profit*.
Of course not. Profit is merely a possible avenue to fund the
achievement of the goals.
Distributing content in print form *is* not the
purpose of Wikimedia. We may do it. It is not our
Distributing content is one of the two stated purposes of Wikimedia
(with creating it being the other one). Print form is simply a method
of distribution. I see no philosophical reason it should be any more
or less desirable than any other form.