Talk:Membership fees

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Membership application: gathering other information[edit]

This is a great time and channel for asking for more information (A voluntary membership information form,

included attached to the short, required membership application).  Much

better than on-wiki polls or votes.

  • For aggregate analysis only:
Age, native languages, spoken languages, favorite author, fields of interest, native country(ies), how long ago did you hear of / start using / start editing your first WM project, which projects do you contribute to, which potential future projs interest you most, &c &c. One full page, with some fun questions.
  • For individual analysis/use :
Which projects would you like to be more involved with? Which mailing-lists are you interested in? (single fill-in of email address & name; sign-up for multiple lists)

+sj+ 20:05, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)


We should show people nice stats (number of members, fees amounts collected...)


Anthere asked me to address some more specific questions about legal requirements in terms of dues amounts, voting rights, and requiring member identification. I need to do a little study to provide better answers, and warn you in advance that I may not be able to completely answer these questions. I'm not an accountant or an expert tax attorney, but I'll do what I can. --Michael Snow 17:06, 28 Jun 2004 (UTC)


Depending on the amount charged for membership, I would suggest creating a scholarship fund for users who seriously cannot afford membership fees. For instance, if someone in Burkina Faso has proved to be a valuable contributor, I would cover membership costs with all the perks, provided that they continue editing. Scholarships should be secretive--no one must know who is on scholarship. There must be a committee to determine who is eligible, and whether they maintain their eligibility. I would also suggest that the committee match up the recipients with their sponsors, without either knowing who is who. Danny 12:54, 19 Jun 2004 (UTC)

I find this idea interesting. But the valuable contributor can continue to be an active wikimedian without becoming a member. Currently, the active contributing members (due-paying members) are expected to have only voting rights. Do we want to ensure that the valuable contributor to vote? I am not sure. But again, this is an interesting idea anyway. Tomos 06:28, 20 Jun 2004 (UTC)
I think this would be complicated, both bureaucratically and socially, for little gain. Better to just decide

to let certain people have free membership if it came to that. +sj+ 18:50, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Note from Anthere : I have no opposition in principle for this idea. However, I think this should not be an argument to set a high level for everyone. The main idea of membership is to raise money, not to redistribute it among ourselves. Besides, we’ll have to define who is “good” enough to get a scholarship and who is not (controversial and loss of time). Third, simply because it is humiliating to “ask” for money to have the “privilege” to claim we give money to the Foundation. Either we have enough and can afford giving some, and then great. Either we do not have enough and can’t afford giving money, and in this case, we are most welcome to be editors.

24th of July: provide feedback[edit]

Yes, that proposal is great or acceptable as is

I like it... but I may just have a comment or two

  1. Please collect other voluntary census information about users, while getting the basic registration information (see Talk#Extra information for more). I also think 60 for active members may encourage most students not to pay the full fee, but this is perhaps not so important. +sj+ 19:12, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)
    This comment is noted. I have no clear position on it for the moment. Feed back welcome on a future Voluntary membership information. Anthere
  2. J'approuve cette suggestion. BCorr|Брайен 20:37, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)
  3. I like this proposal. Thank you for those who worked on this.
    • The idea of string-free and expense-specific money is good, though there could be a debate on what kind of specific expenses people can choose from. I suppose we do not accept, for example, spend this on language X project, spend this on feature Y of MediaWiki, etc.
      • I would prefer to avoid this. Right now, the only specificity I think of mentioning is hardware. I suppose others will be mostly community decided; ant
    • It would also be convenient for the contributors if they can pay dues and make extra donation at the same time. If the administrative cost of receiving such payment is not great, this could benefit the foundation as well.
      • I think I wrote that somewhere in the proposal. I absolutely support that. ant
    • The most difficult issue so far is regarding the relation of membership fees and local chapters' fees, as discussed several times in the past.
      • Errr, yes. Actually, I tried to start a discussion about this just today Tomos. Have you received my mail on the topic ? Anthere

Tomos 21:27, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I oppose it (beware Anthere's reaction)

Keep it simple[edit]

The plethora of suggestions for adjusting membership fees could make the job of administring them very complicated. There are numerous valid reasons for having reduced fees, but the ways in which they are administered need to be kept to a minimum. One needs to start from a single no-exception membership fee to which various discounts may be applied. Some of these discounts may be as much as 100%. Thus using the proposed US$60.00 as the single fee we can have among other examples

  • 3rd world country discount, $50.00,
  • Personal hardship discounts, based on personal agreements,
  • Local branch discount - as negotiated with the local branch to insure maximum personal tax benefit,
  • Participation discounts, 5¢ per edit, higher when we want to encourage a particular project such as Cherokee,
  • Expense discounts such as maintaining the rights to a foreign domain,
  • Etc.

Eclecticology 19:02, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Sorry, but I do not get it. I propose about the simplest system possible. And here you propose something much more complicated, with the title "keep it simple" ? I am confused ec. Anthere 00:01, 25 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Hmm! What I saw was a lot of suggestions from many different people, all trying to do things differently. Perhaps I lost track of your original suggestion. :-) All I was saying was have one flat fee, and treat all adjustments as discounts on that fee. That should make administration easier. The rest was only examples. Eclecticology 06:53, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Oki. Most of what is above is to be archived now ihmo. the proposal is on the page itself, not discussion. There is one flat fee, and one discounted fee. So, I guess you kinda agree with the general proposition :-)


I wonder if a regular fee of $60 will raise much more than one of $30, as certainly much less[sic] people will take the bait on such a considerable sum. After all it does not buy them much except a good feeling that they contributed to a healthy Wikipedia. I have no idea where the optimum lies, we would have to ask some economist to measure the price elasticity of a clean conscience, but this is a considerable amount for people with average income. $30 sounds much better to me, keep the goodies like a coffee mug with logo for people who add an extra donation of $30 or more.

On the other hand $500 to $1000 sounds ridiculously low for a company that wants to donate. Why not start at $10,000 ? If they want to be recognized as sponsors (a logo on the sponsor page ?) they should have contributed significantly. Erik Zachte 00:23, Jul 29, 2004 (UTC)

I agree with what you've said about the regular fees. The same thought brought the German Verein to his regular fee of 24 Euros per year. People that want/are able to give more can easily make a recurring donation. BTW: regular fees should be string-free. -- Arne (akl) 10:30, 29 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I've just realised that a long time ago, I wrote "it isn't necessary that anyone pays dues to Wikimedia, so a user could decide to pay dues to their local foundation, but not to Wikimedia". Should we allow this? Can someone choose to be a Volunteer Active User and a member of their local association or must all members of local ones be Contributing Active Members? Angela 23:46, 25 Sep 2004 (UTC)


I understand from this proposal with changes to the bylaws that are informally approved and pending legal review that the WMF is stripping the 'contributing active members' out of the set of membershipclasses. So, in the future there will never be members paying an annual due, if legally approved (that is, if the board decides so). My big questions is if (only if) the WMF won't have any contributing members any more, should it then still be required of chapters to be a membership organization and have contributing members. Once it was proposed that chapters for each contributing member they have had to transfer a small sum to the WMF - ehich naturally would lead to those contributing members of a local chapter to be naturally a contributing member of the WMF. Without contributing members in the WMF it is no longer any 'natural' to transfer a small sum per contributing member of a local chapter to the WMF. Dedalus 09:02, 14 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

According to the current bylaws, this page is completley obsolete. Thunderhead 06:51, 27 December 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]