[Foundation-l] what do we do in the event the Foundation fails? - Re: Pol...

daniwo59 at aol.com daniwo59 at aol.com
Wed Apr 18 23:45:57 UTC 2007

In a message dated 4/18/2007 7:22:16 PM Eastern Daylight Time,  
polimerek at gmail.com writes:

I think  that "black" option could be similar with what happened to
DMOZ. DMOZ was  sold and bought several times, and their main asset was
in fact not the  brandame, logos, servers etc. but both a structurized
data and structurized  community.  Although it was sold several times,
their community was  not very affected by these changes, as all the
companies who holded DMOZ  were clever enough not to "kill the chicken
producing golden eggs", ie.  they did not destroy the community's
integrity by forcing new policy, which  might be rejected by majority
of the community's members. Logos,  brandnames, servers are just a
tools, not the main value of the Wikimedia  projects.

Our content is free. Anyone can take it. In fact, we make money off of live  
feeds when people take our content. Nevertheless, there is a reason people 
turn  to Wikipedia and not Answers.com or Ask.com or any other such product. It 
is the  name. Our strength lies in our brand. Our strength lies in 
recognizability.  Our strength lies in the fact that people want to be on Wikipedia, and 
not our  mirrors. It lies in the fact that we are the one at the top of the 
Google  charts. 
What Kelly and I have talked about is losing our brand. Sure, the content  
will be there, thanks to Jeff Merkey and others. But it will not be Wikipedia.  
It will have a different name. It will not have the same logo. It will have a  
different logo. And the new organization will have less of a reputation than 
we  currently do for simply allowing that to happen to us. It will have to 
file  again for tax-deductible status (a major source of our large donations), 
and  with the history that led to a downfall, it will be much harder to achieve. 
Meanwhile, the people who took over Wikipedia would likely monetize it (a  
nice way of saying puts ads everywhere and reduce open editing). And the  
millions of people who turn to Wikipedia every day, those that dont read this  
mailing list, will continue to go there, because that is what they know. And the  
new management said it would be better. 
I'm sorry, but this is not at all like DMOZ.

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