Fundraising ideas

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As of the 2011-2012 fiscal year, the Wikimedia budget stands at $28.3 million, including $2.2 million for fundraising expenditures. The current Wikimedia budget is available at foundation:Financial reports, while older information can be found at Wikimedia budget (2009) and What we use the money for (2004).

Please use this page to links to pages about fundraising ideas, or brief proposals of your ideas. For further discussion, click the Discussion tab at the top of this page. Longer concepts and discussion should be transferred to their own pages to permit more detailed consideration. Many of these pages have become historical as professionals have taken over the work; thus WMF grants are now managed by the Head of Partnerships and Foundation Relations. Nonetheless, as Wikipedians we have good reason to believe that every editor can make a difference.


Note: some of the content formerly appearing below has been moved to /Donation options or /Cafe Press to improve navigation

Ideas from the mailing list during the last fundraising drive[edit]

  1. Real-time updates via a bot
  2. Immediately visible donation comments, increasing the community feel.
  3. Progress-meter and PayPal link on every page
  4. Progressbars available to external sites
  5. Surprises at certain milestones.
  6. Something more interesting that makes people want to check the drive progress
  7. Optional email alerts
  8. More intrusive notices but with a convenient [hide] link
  9. Wikimedia affiliate program for mirrors
  10. Poll to find out if people did/didn't donate etc
  11. Let editors know about the CSS hide sitenotice option
  12. Less wordy, less NPOV, more emotional marketing

Fundraising proposal[edit]


  • posterity,
  • to raise money, and
  • provide local versions

would it be viable to offer, at cost with suggested donations, monthly or annual DVD subscriptions containing a snapshot of the wikipedia in various formats. In the perhaps unlikely event that wikimedia dissappears, it would be nice to have distributed preserved copies. As well, it could offer regular income for a valuable service. Educators, in particular, could certainly take advantage of this to reduce network traffic, or take advantage of it in places where internet, or high speed internet, is not available.

I do not foresee wikimedia disappearing :-) The english and the french versions of the encyclopedia will be published on CD (or DVD) for Christmas. We'll keep you informed about how to purchase them. To limit liability, the CD will be published by Mandrake. We do not foresee great benefits for the project in terms of money, but probably more in terms of visibility. Anthere 16:53, 21 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Ideas for after the fundraising drives[edit]

Inform people better about the results of the drive and what will happen with the money. Publish a press release - best in several languages-, summarizing the results of the fundraising drive. (via Elian on foundation-l)

Potential donors to Wikimedia[edit]

One means of raising funds for Wikimedia could be to solicit donations from certain individuals or companies. See also corporate sponsorship. Small donation requests, in the region of USD 5-50 (Euro 4-40, GBP 3-30, JPY 500-5000), could be made by snail mail. An initial investment in printing and postage would need to be made. Please list of potential donors below.

Suggestions from Wikimedia site feedback[edit]


Like other sites who provide information free over the internet, and who's customer's would like to have a solid, hard copy--yet do not want to bother with the elaborate task of compilation, a DVD or DVD set could be offered for a small donation. For those who teeter on the border of donating, this might put them over the edge--or might make the difference between a $10 donation and a $100 donation.

A suggestion: state the beginning of the current fundraising campaign on page [[1]].[edit]

This would allow to compute the speed of donations, which, I am sure, would be impressive.

Imre Simon, 19aug05.

Please add more transparency to the purpose of the current fundraising campaign[edit]

I just modestly contributed to the fundraising and I was thinking that the message asking people to donate is quiet obscure about the aim of the fundraising.

I really think, in every language, you should add a link in the message to the 2005 Budget and the What_we_use_the_money_for pages.
A bit like you did in the Fundraising page.

On the long run, transparency is a key requirement to improve contributors' confidence in Wikimedia's projects.

fr:Utilisateur:Effco 11:19, 21 August 2005 (UTC)

Timing of Fundraiser[edit]

I believe the the fundraiser should either last a longer period of time or should start later when schools such as Stanford and Harvard begin and students can donate as a dorm/class/school.

New suggestions[edit]

Fundraising on ebay[edit]

Has the foundation ever done any sort of fundraising drive on Ebay? I'm sure we could get some fairly nice donations, including autographed books and the like, which could then be autographed. The Giving Works program makes things pretty easy. I've used it before with another nonprofit. Sue Anne 02:59, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

Ads on Wikimedia sites[edit]

Why dont put ads on Wikimedia sites? Wikimedia can get a lot of money. 16:37, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

Google Grants[edit]

Google has a program which grants non-profit organizations free keyword ads on its search pages (Google Grants). Wikipedia could apply to the program to spread its message, solicit funds, or just attract more users to the site. --TidyCat 03:50, 18 December 2005 (UTC)


It would be interesting to have a set of related text and image banners (for websites) for the next fund drive that people could subscribe to or put up on their sites, linking to the donations page; there could even be a call for different campaign ideas, each with a handful of representative banners -- with the best one being selected for promotion to friends, bloggers, and partners to link back to the fund drive. If anyone has banner ideas, or sets of them, please list them below... +sj 03:34, 30 June 2006 (UTC)

If there were a banner server set up, it would be possible to identify sets of banners as belonging to one campaign or theme, and encouraging people to subscribe to that campaign. This would give them dynamically changing banners in the same spirit. +sj+ 03:36, 30 June 2006 (UTC)
This is a good idea. There are many "friends of Wikipedia (and Co)" out there who would like to but on there own website free ads to announce the fundraiser to there own visitors. --Walter Do you have news? Report it to Wikizine 23:02, 28 November 2006 (UTC)


It may be worth asking Amazon if they'd be willing to either:

  1. (Preferred) add a "Donate this much to Wikipedia" section to the shopping cart on, or,
  2. Add a set of "Wikipedia Donation" items, possibly even kickstarting an entire "Donations" online store on Amazon that other non-profits can use also.

Feedback welcome. Ash Black 23:21, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

E-commerce frameworks[edit]

Less immediately, there are a couple of open source storefront frameworks: w:OsCommerce and its most widespread fork, w:Zen Cart.

$5 million from Knight Foundation[edit]

Someone suggested that we told you this: "Knight Foundation plans to give a total of $5 million for projects that show how online news can transform community life."

This might be an idea to raise funds for WikiNews? --Steven Fruitsmaak (Talk) 12:31, 12 October 2006 (UTC)

I don't know if we vote on Meta, but Support Thunderhead 16:16, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
Agreed that this should be pursued. Does anyone object to this being submitted to the WMF Fundraising Committee? (BTW, posting to front page.) -- Zanimum
Isn't this closer to a one-time grant? I'd say this lies within Danny's delegation as Grants Officer. Then again... maybe it doesn't. :P Feel free to ignore me. TOR 04:30, 27 October 2006 (UTC)
Please do not involve anyone outside the wikinews community in developing this initiative. Let the wikinews community itself submit a proposal to the Knight Foundation. Dedalus 19:51, 26 October 2006 (UTC)
Only the Wikimedia Foundation should be involved with third parties like this. The WikiNews community is not a legal body that can ask for anything outside of the Wikimedia community. Helping the foundation create a propoasal is OK by me though. --Daniel Mayer 13:57, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

Semipostal stamp for email[edit]

A fundraising idea could be a semipostal stamp for email. (talk) --Fasten 09:27, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Celebrity endorsements for the next round of fundraising?[edit]

Just been discussing this on #wikipedia-en. In the next round of fundraising, possibly as an alternative to the much maligned but effective Jimbo banners, why not use celebrities? The banners might be effective because people sort of vaguely know who Jimbo is and subconsciously see it as a personal welcome from a well-known person. This would explain why other banners like the Sue Gardner banners didn't work as well as the Jimbo ones: because people other than Jimbo don't necessarily have as much presence outside WP.

If that is the case (and that's a big and very ad-hoc hypothetical kind of if), why not get some other well-known people to do a fundraising letter and a banner. Off the top of my head: Vint Cerf, Tim Berners-Lee, Clay Shirky, Larry Lessig, Gilberto Gil, Timothy Garton Ash, Bruce Sterling, Stephen Colbert. People who are well known and who've said nice things about Wikipedia/Wikimedia. In addition to possibly offsetting the amount of people who will grumble about seeing all those Jimbo banners, it might be a bit of a PR coup if the Foundation could get a few big name, deep thinking Internet luminary types. It would be a hook for journalists to write up: basically, you spin it as "[big name person] helps celebrate the tenth anniversary year of Wikipedia and by the way, give us money". —Tom Morris (talk) 23:43, 13 March 2011 (UTC)

Sell Wikipedia-Loaded Hard Drives[edit]

{{help me}}

(I am new and I hope this is the right place for an idea. Please move me if this is the wrong place. I signed up specifically to help with fundraising.) OK, here is the idea: Sell hard drives with all of Wikipedia loaded on it. The "2012 Model" would be loaded at the end of the year, boxed up, and delivered to buyers. The survivalists will love it! "Show-offs" could show it off with some neat logo and a Jimbo signature. How big would the drive be? What would it cost? Can the files be made compatible with Windows and Apples or is it Unix? I think nonprofits are allowed to make some money. We would have a profitable product and the dreaded ads could be avoided.LadyJosie 17:01, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

Looking at the dates of the entries above, this page looks pretty dead! Is there a more active page where I might introduce this idea? LadyJosie 23:26, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
Good idea but I can't help you, I suggest you to leave a message for User:Mav. And be patient please. --Z 12:25, 25 December 2011 (UTC)

Live from Radio City Music Hall in New York City, the Wiki Awards![edit]

How about this? Herostratus (talk) 02:02, 21 August 2012 (UTC)

Crowdfunding Campaign[edit]

Seems like a natural, has anyone proposed a crowdfunding campaign. There would be no question that any of the major crowdfunding sites would be happy to host what would likely be the largest crowdfunding campaign in history.