Why this Site?

  • Our Mission:
  • We exist to shine the light of scrutiny into the dark crevices of Wikipedia and its related projects; to examine the corruption there, along with its structural flaws; and to inoculate the unsuspecting public against the torrent of misinformation, defamation, and general nonsense that issues forth from one of the world’s most frequently visited websites, the “encyclopedia that anyone can edit.”
  • How you can participate:
  •  Visit the Wikipediocracy Forum, a candid exchange of views between Wikipedia editors, administrators, critics, proponents, and the general public.
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Press Releases

  • Please click here for recent Wikipediocracy press releases.

Wikipedia – keeping it free.
Just pay us our salaries.

By Andreas Kolbe

The other day, I was fortunate enough to be treated to a fundraising banner on Wikipedia:

DEAR WIKIPEDIA READERS: To protect our independence, we’ll never run ads. We survive on donations averaging about £10. Now is the time we ask. If everyone reading this right now gave the price of buying a programmer a coffee, our fundraiser would be over within an hour. We’re a small non-profit with costs of a top 5 website: servers, staff and programs. Wikipedia is something special. It is like a library or a public park. A temple for the mind where we can all go to think and learn. If Wikipedia is useful to you, take one minute to keep it online and ad-free another year. Thank you.

UK fundraising bannerI don’t seem to have been the only one being shown the banner, judging by a rash of breathless posts on Twitter where people are proudly announcing:

I have just donated to #Wikipedia. Help keep it free! #keepitfree

Donations link added, of course.

There’s just one problem here: the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) – the non-profit that runs Wikipedia and other crowdsourced projects such as Wikimedia Commons and Wiktionary – is wealthy enough today to keep Wikipedia “online and ad-free” for about a decade.

So why does it want even more of your money?

1,000% growth in revenue

Under Sue Gardner’s leadership (2007–2014), the Wikimedia Foundation’s revenue skyrocketed, based on fundraising banners designed to solicit small donations from a very large number of Wikipedia readers.

Wikimedia_Foundation_financial_development_2003-2013

The Wikimedia Foundation does extensive

…continue reading Wikipedia – keeping it free.
Just pay us our salaries.

Trouble at Jimmy Wales’ Talk Page

By Gregory Kohs and Andreas Kolbe

Only weeks after Wikipedia editors from around the globe gathered for a happy and uplifting Wikimania 2014 rally in London, many long-time active editors of Wikipedia began expressing their rage August 29, on the Talk page of Wikipedia’s co-founder, Jimmy Wales. At the Wikimania summit, unaware of the soon-to-be ironic angle of his comments, Wales gave a closing speech that dreamt of building the Wikipedia “community up into a more fabulous, fun-loving environment”, and cherished “love of each other, love of the project, love of life; love of the spirit of what we’re trying to accomplish”. Today, that spirit of love seems entirely gone from the discussions swirling around Wales.

The source of anger

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Jimmy

Hundreds of the most active Wikipedians are in a state of near-revolt over a MediaViewer software feature that the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) implemented on Wikipedia recently. It opens photos on a black background that hides much of the meta information that Wikipedians typically want to see about an image. The MediaViewer had so many bugs and caused so many problems for active editors, some Wikipedia administrators began to take steps to override the software extension. That prompted the Deputy Director of the Foundation, Erik Moeller (who has his own curious history of pontificating about child pornography), to install a sort of lock on Wikipedia’s software called “Superprotect”. This enraged so many Wikipedians that even the German Wikipedia community (Moeller is a native German) voted six to one against the Superprotect installation.

Jimmy Wales eventually tried to calm everyone down by expressing his unfailing support for MediaViewer, but that just rattled users even more. They called Wales to task, saying things like, “Sorry

…continue reading Trouble at Jimmy Wales’ Talk Page

The Battle for Wikipedia: How Your Donations May Be Destroying the Crowd-sourced Encyclopedia

By The Masked Maggot

Just as the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) was wrapping up its annual show of “wiki-love” and idealism at London’s Wikimania 2014, the latest round of tensions between the foundation and the volunteer community reared its ugly head. The trigger this time was the forced introduction of the Media Viewer to the German Wikipedia, after the community of editors that work on that version voted to disable it. While a slight change to the presentation of images might seem like a minor issue, it points to a deeper and widening rift between the offices in San Francisco and the global community which they serve.

The WMF’s gradual grab, or How the Wikimedia Foundation is harming Wikipedia

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While there are all sorts of issues worth complaining about, Wikipedia really is an amazing thing. For 13 years, a vast collection of unpaid and unsung volunteers have written, organized, and advocated for an online encyclopedia-like website that pretty much everyone uses, naively or reluctantly. It’s been a long run where volunteer “editors” have not only created the content, but have also been enfranchised to have a say in how the site is run. Wikipedia’s “consensus” model, for all its problems, has been the real driving force behind getting the product to market, and the “Stone Soup” way that everyone brought something to the table (from content to structure to presentation) worked a bit better in practice than it should have in theory.

Those happy days seem to be coming to an end, and while the seeds for that end were planted at the beginning, the fruit is only becoming apparent now. The Wikimedia Foundation, which accepts all the donations and was (so the Wikipedians thought) dedicated to supporting the volunteers who write Wikipedia’s articles, has

…continue reading The Battle for Wikipedia: How Your Donations May Be Destroying the Crowd-sourced Encyclopedia