[Wikimedia-l] fundraising status?

Zack Exley zexley at wikimedia.org
Thu Dec 27 17:12:43 UTC 2012

James -

I don't fully understand all your concerns in this case, but I can say a
few things that might clear things up:

I have said recently that we'd have to put banners back up at the end of
the year for a final push. Since then, however, we raised money faster than
expected and so we no longer need to put up banners for fundraising at the
end of the year. We are going to run our planned "thank you" campaign a
little early this year instead of the normal final push.

Regarding the reserves: When we decided to split the campaign in two
(UK+CA+US+AU+NZ in Nov-Dec and then the rest of the world in April or May)
we set a goal for this first campaign that would keep the reserves above
the required level. That goal was $25M. Additional funds have been raised
by our major gifts team. When we run our next campaign in April or May that
will again increase the reserve.

Our tradition has always been to raise our budget and then stop asking as
close to when we reach that goal as possible. That's why we're not trying
to raise more and more and more. "Maximizing" for us means raising our
budget with as little negative impact on the projects as possible (and as
much positive impact as possible!).


On Mon, Dec 24, 2012 at 11:40 PM, Samuel Klein <meta.sj at gmail.com> wrote:

> James,
> Merry Christmas.
> I feel most of your points have already been addressed.
> Two quick comments, that others also asked about:
> * As Zack noted earlier this month, banners are down until the end-of-year
> push.  This has not changed.  "From December 26 to Dec 31 we'll begin
> showing banners again to everyone for a final push to the year end goal."
> * I was also confused by the slide on reserves in the November monthly
> report, and looked into it.  Let me correct a statement I made yesterday:
> reserves were projected to be at 6 months of expenses in October, and have
> stayed above 6.3 months.
> For the first time this year there are two different ways to measure
> expenses, thanks to the FDC budget, which allowed the confusion.  For
> details, see:
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Wikimedia_budget#Reserves
> SJ
> On Mon, Dec 24, 2012 at 10:29 PM, James Salsman <jsalsman at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > SJ,
> >
> > I have been looking for the commitment you mentioned in Board and
> > related records, but I can not find it:
> >
> > > We have committed to ending the active banner-driven fundraising once
> we
> > meet our targets.
> >
> > Does that commitment take precedence over the unanimous resolution of
> > the board of 9 October 2010 that Nemo pointed out at
> >
> >
> https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Resolution:Wikimedia_fundraising_principles
> > which directs the Executive Director to "implement ... 1) Maximizing
> > public support: Fundraising activities in the Wikimedia movement
> > should generally be directed at achieving the highest possible overall
> > financial support for the Wikimedia movement, in terms of both
> > financial totals and the number of individuals making
> > contributions...."? If so, could you please share the background and
> > Board deliberation records pertaining to it? I am concerned that the
> > Foundation is bowing to the wishes of op-ed critiques in the press to
> > the exclusion of the Board's unanimous resolutions.
> >
> > Again, I would not be so concerned if it were not for the evidence of
> > the deception regarding measured fundraising message effectiveness,
> > the nearly two million dollars in missing reserve funds, the sharply
> > widening ratio between executive and junior staff pay, the high staff
> > turnover, late vital projects, insufficient staff for the Education
> > Program, employee dissatisfaction and below par compensation reported
> > on Glassdoor.com, lack of a meaningfully wide call for community
> > consultation or reasonable numbers of community members commenting on
> > the recent "narrowing focus" changes, and lack of telepresence options
> > for Wikimania attendees. Many of these issues dwarf the ignominious
> > events of the Foundation's past, so I hope you, the other trustees,
> > and the Foundation leadership will address all of them swiftly.
> >
> > Sincerely,
> > James Salsman
> >
> --
> Samuel Klein          @metasj           w:user:sj          +1 617 529 4266
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Zack Exley
Chief Revenue Officer
Wikimedia Foundation

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