[Foundation-l] [Wikimedia Announcements] Stanton Foundation Awards Wikimedia $3.6 Million for Technology Improvements

Jay Walsh jwalsh at wikimedia.org
Wed Oct 5 23:17:57 UTC 2011

*Stanton Foundation Awards Wikimedia $3.6 Million for Technology

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – October 5, 2011 – The Wikimedia Foundation announced
today it has been awarded the largest-ever grant in its history: $3.6
million from the Stanton Foundation. The purpose of the grant is to fund
major investments in the technology infrastructure that supports Wikipedia
and its sister projects, in order to successfully serve their growing
readership. The Wikimedia projects currently reach more than 422 million
unique visitors around the world every month (comScore, August 2011), making
Wikipedia the fifth most-popular website in the world.

The grant will fund development of a new editing interface that will make it
possible for people to easily edit Wikipedia without needing to learn
special wiki syntax. It will also support development of new technical
features to make Wikimedia a friendlier and more understandable environment
for new editors, and an improved mobile experience for readers and editors.

"The Stanton Foundation is a long-time funder of the Wikimedia Foundation,
and I am thrilled they're increasing their investment in us," said Sue
Gardner, Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation. "The Stanton
Foundation was one of the first institutions to recognize that Wikipedia is
a serious educational endeavor that's having a significant impact on people
around the world. I will always be grateful to them for taking a risk in
first funding us, many years ago."

The Stanton Foundation is the foundation created by the American
broadcasting executive and media pioneer Frank Stanton, who, in 1960,
organized the first-ever televised presidential debate. Among its previous
grants to the Wikimedia Foundation, the Stanton Foundation provided $1.2
million in 2010 for the Wikipedia Public Policy Initiative, a program
designed to improve the quality and quantity of information related to
public policy topics in Wikipedia. The project resulted in 800 American
students at universities such as Harvard and University of California
Berkeley adding the equivalent of 5,800 printed pages of material to
Wikipedia, and has now been expanded to include universities in Canada and

*About the Wikimedia Foundation*

The Wikimedia Foundation is the non-profit organization which operates
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. According to comScore Media Metrix,
Wikipedia and the other projects operated by the Wikimedia Foundation
receive more than 422 million unique visitors per month, making them the
fifth-most popular web property world-wide (comScore, September 2011).
Available in more than 280 languages, Wikipedia contains more than 18
million articles contributed by a global volunteer community of more than
100,000 people. Based in San Francisco, California, the Wikimedia Foundation
is an audited, 501(c)(3) charity that is funded primarily through donations
and grants.

Media Contact:
Jay Walsh
Head of Communications
Wikimedia Foundation
Tel. +1 415 839 6885 x 6609
jwalsh at wikimedia.org

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