[Foundation-l] Fundraiser update

Nathan nawrich at gmail.com
Wed Jan 7 16:14:01 UTC 2009

I think you guys did a great job, all in all. We can't and shouldn't expect
it to be perfect, and obviously you can't please everyone. I'm happy to say
that the disgruntlement I described in my "strong negative reaction" thread
at the beginning of the fundraiser did not prevent a very successful outcome
for the drive. It really shows the value of a professional staff, a value
that we've seen in a number of areas around Wikimedia. There will always be
people against asking for money, against banners, etc. But they don't come
with ideas on what to replace money with... (perhaps WMF can get into
providing natural gas to EU countries?), so in the mean time money it is!

Personally I appreciate that the foundation is working to make fundraising a
year round project, particularly with respect to large donations from
individuals and other foundations. I wonder if we can't work more closely
with other, more established charitable foundations though. If we connected
our fundraising drive to the fundraising of another charity, particularly
one that is very well known (like the B&M Gates Foundation, Ford Foundation,
Red Cross, etc.), wouldn't that make our drive more high profile in the
press and the donor world? Right now we get a lot of online buzz, but it
doesn't seem to translate into wider coverage. Working with them would also
much more clearly establish our charitable credentials, which directly
targets the major perception gap in the world about Wikimedia.

We could pair our whole drive with the drive of another major organization,
or parcel out days or weeks separately (a week where our drive is "In
cooperation with the American Red Cross, with donations split between these
two very valuable organizations" etc.). I don't know if we would get more
from the dual appeal than we lose by splitting donations, but we could
always have separate "Click here to donate to Wikimedia" and "Click here to
donate to the Red Cross."

Something to perhaps consider, anyway.


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