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A fair, effective and free rewarding system for Wikipedia volunteers

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Hope I am using the right words and sentences to express my idea because English is not my mother tongue. :-)

Proposal Motivations:

  • We'd better to find fair, effective, and free ways to reward, either spiritually or financially or both, those volunteers who are diligently, consistently creating and editing high-quality articles in Wikipedia site family.
  • And We also should extend this reward method to any person who directly or indirectly contributed or are contributing to Wikipedia site family by any means.

Do we really need this?



By fairly and effectively rewarding those page creating and editing volunteers, we can encourage and enable current volunteers to do even better work and attract more new volunteers to participate in this magnificent, world-wide cooperation which will definitely benefit to our planet in the future . Actually, a positive feedback cycle could be established in this way and Wikipedia would have a model to grow rapidly and healthily:

volunteers write/edit good articles--> more people are willing to read them, find they are useful
and reward the volunteers  --> volunteers get rewarding, either spiritually or financially 
-->volunteers are encouraged and be able to write more good articles --> ...

I am not treating Wikipedia's volunteers as experimental white mice here. (Remember I am one of them.) But this cycle simply works! Doesn't it? Of course, there are some people don't need any kind of reward to do excellent work, just let them be and provide an option to turn off the rewarding faucet to them. :-)

Mission Impossible?


Do I mean fair, effective, and free? Yes!

How to be Fair?

  • let all readers/visitors have an equally chance to participate in grading any volunteer and any article (or even any section with enough work) in terms of quality and quantity.
  • A convenient way for readers to grade current article or section.
  • A convenient way for readers to grade each volunteer
  • Or we can just focus the quality of the article, let computer derive the grading of the volunteers from the articles ? No, I don't like this way. Computers are not smart enough to identify real work or junk work currently. And somebody could abuse it if he/she knows the deriving algorithms.

How to be Effective?


Simply and easy: Give them Fame! && Give them money! Needless to say, all volunteers deserve fame and money via their excellent work. Again turn off the rewarding faucet to people who don't want those two :-)


  • Showing their names (the nicknames are quite enough in many times if somebody cares about privacy)explicitly under the title of each article(or even each section if it is piece of enough work), sorted by grading numbers provided by readers/visitors which can be used to identify the quality and quantity of their work.
  • Better organization of the contribution information for individual volunteers. I don't want talk too much about it this time, but the current page for this is a mess.
  • A centralized monument (a php page actually) carved in the important names and their pictures (if they don't mind) who contributed a lot to Wikipedia in history (though it is a short history)
  • A centralized room to show current star volunteers with highest grading number along with their pictures if they don't mind.


  • Let readers/visitors have changes to directly donate money flawlessly (1 cent, 1 dollar or one house if they really want) to the volunteers at their own will.
  • Or let them donate all to Wikipedia and let Wikipedia distribute them? NO!NO!NO! Some bureaucrats could abuse their power and ruin the whole direct and fair reward mechanism. We already have the option for visitors to donate to Wikimedia Foundation directly. Don't mess them up.

How to be free?


It is actually care-free enough for Wikipedia Site family if we use the methods I mentioned above.

Is it feasible?


I cannot see any technical obstacles to prevent us from realizing this grading-rewarding system. However, we need consult experts for the non-technical problems, I am not a lawyer. And, it is not a new idea at all. I saw something similar happening in http://www.sourceforge.net .

Its impact on the future


Finally, what is the impact of this open, direct, and discrete working-rewarding model on our world in the future? I would say: A revolution has began! Why? This model can facilitate people to do what they really have interested in while get the reward they deserve if their interests can actually benefit a large group of people in some way. The direct feature of this model also eliminates most of the intermediate costs or overhead which is not unusual in current world.

By contrast, traditionally, we have to be employed by some organizations for a relatively longer time to contribute our wisdom, knowledge, and efforts to end-users indirectly. However, our interests are usually changing and sometimes we are feeling be forced to do something we no longer like to do. The worse thing is that the reward from the end-user are so indirect that sometimes the people between us and the users grab a large portion from it in an amount of we think they do not deserve. The result is quite obvious: we get really frustrated and therefore work ineffectively.

Hey! I am not saying this model can completely phase off the traditional work model. The people between the workers and users are indeed necessary for many big products, the pressure imposed by employers serves as stimulant for us to secrete more adrenalin to become more powerful and energetic than usual, and there is no detour to gain real achievement without loyal to your original faith and interest.

What I am really going to emphasize is that some real requirements in our world can be fulfilled better in simpler, director, and even discrete way. And, We already have paid enough attention to the free spirit of software sharing,knowledge sharing and so on and so forth. It is time for us to see another unadulterated side of this coin: the sharing is also joyful, profitable, and thus sustainable and scalable.

In conclusion, please seriously consider my above proposal and the meaning behind it. Let's put it in roll as soon as possible! I bet it will make a big difference to Wikipedia site family, the whole free resource community (no matter it is an idea, a software, a valuable experience, an encyclopedia article, a piece of knowledge or anything else useful to our world), and most important, it may make a big difference to you, my lovely, respectable friends combating in this money? World for the noble ideal of sharing knowledge among the world for free.