Foundation fundraising drive postponed

The Wikimedia Foundation's next fundraising drive, originally planned for this month, has apparently been postponed until sometime in February.

The Wikimedia Foundation has been conducting these fundraisers roughly on a quarterly basis recently, primarily by posting a notice on all Wikimedia project pages inviting people to donate to support the Foundation's efforts. The most recent fundraising drive, which coincided with the milestone of reaching 1 million Wikipedia articles, raised over US $50,000 to support site operations.

The planned fundraiser was initially scheduled to coincide with Wikipedia's anniversary this month, as announced last Tuesday by Volunteer Representative Trustee Angela Beesley. She suggested that in preparation, the sitewide notice for the fundraiser could benefit from improvements, and mentioned the possibility of sending out a press release for the fundraiser and anniversary.

Beesley added that developer Tim Starling is working on a database that will allow the Foundation to start accepting memberships. Meanwhile, a quarterly budget for the use of these funds is also in the works.

Responses to the announcement indicated that the timing of the fundraiser was a bad idea. In addition to the fact that people may be strapped financially after the holiday season, Dori pointed out that this would be very close to the 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake, which is commanding much of the world's attention in terms of charitable giving. Wikipedia itself has been contributing to the situation by having a prominent link on the Main Page to information about donations to the relief effort.

With these considerations in mind, Member Representative Trustee Anthere indicated that the Foundation could afford to wait a little bit. With Chief Financial Officer Daniel Mayer in agreement, it appears that the fundraiser will be held in early February instead.

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