[Foundation-l] A modest proposal: ads on wikipedia.com

Christophe Henner christophe.henner at gmail.com
Mon Apr 23 02:41:49 UTC 2007

Even if I'm not strongly against the idea, I must say I won't
encourage it. Many many problems would occur.

First of all, from the community. We all remember what happened just
six month ago with this tiny virgin unite logo, do you remember? I do.
Now imagine the same situation but now with google adds... even if
it's not editable, for the contributors it wouldn't change a thing.

Now, we're claming for ages that we won't have adds... who would think
we're serious if 4month ago we said "adds? no way" and now we say
"Adds? Yes, on every single article"... Is that serious, not really...

Let's continue about PR, in January we had "problems" with some
AP/Reuters/AFP news claiming wikia is the commercial side of
Wikipedia... try to guess what would happen "Hey they're no more
neutral blablabla, they're having adds...". I know, I know we
shouldn't care too much of the media, but if we want to make things
move to move forward in the Foundation ends we have to keep being
"neutral" in every single part of the projects.

Now about the stable/editable. At the moment it remains hard for
people to understand "anyone can edit" the website. Even if the
Community is becoming really big, we still needs more and more
volounteer. If we set up the stable, people, in the end, will only go
on the stable version, and so soon or late there will be a lack of

Finally, as I said in an other mail one of the Foundation ends is "The
mission of the Wikimedia Foundation is to empower and engage people
around the world to collect and develop educational content under a
free license or in the public domain, and to disseminate it
effectively and globally.", this mean, setting up a non editable
advertised website, don't fit with this. So this mean is not, imo, a

On 23/04/07, Jean-Baptiste Soufron <jbsoufron at gmail.com> wrote:
> Yeah what a great idea.
> What a useless foundation to end up in creating an ad-sponsored
> encyclopedia ! The youtube of content !
> Face it : there is no need for money, except for the amount of money
> needed to create the illusion that the foundation serve a purpose.
> The only goal the foundation should concentrate its energy on is
> making wikipedia more free... not trying to find business models that
> do not exist.
> But go on : you will generate the money you actually would not need
> to spend if there were no foundation in the first place.
> And you will really put an end to the beautiful experience that it was.
> Best,
> Le 23 avr. 07 à 01:41, David Gerard a écrit :
> > How about using the old domain, wikipedia.com, as a site for stable
> > Wikipedia versions, with ads on? The ad money, as well as paying our
> > comparatively small hosting and staff costs, could go toward
> > educational programmes for those people who could benefit from our
> > hard work but *aren't* comfortable, well-fed first-world citizens.
> >
> > (As far as I can tell, pretty much all opposition to ads on Wikimedia
> > comes from people who are in fact comfortable, well-fed first-world
> > citizens. I eagerly await news and demographics otherwise.)
> >
> >
> > - d.
> >
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