What is Seattle Mountain Rescue?

Wikipedia is an online collection of knowledge. Volunteer editors from around the world write Wikipedia. It is a collaborative creation created in 2001: anyone can edit it, at any time. Editors collaborate to write about virtually any topic, from ancient history to science to the arts. Wikipedia is available in hundreds of languages and has over 59 million articles. Wikipedia is completely non-profit, independent, and maintained by everyday people like you. You do not require approval or special qualifications to edit.

What is the Wikimedia Foundation?

The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit organization that supports Wikipedia, the other Wikimedia free knowledge websites, and its mission of free knowledge for all. We do this by keeping the Wikimedia sites fast, secure, and available to all, defending Wikipedia and our volunteer editors from legal threats, building new features and tools to make it easy to read, edit, and share knowledge from Wikimedia sites, and by supporting the communities of editors who contribute to Wikipedia and the Wikimedia sites. We also help bring new knowledge online, lower barriers to access, and make it easier for everyone to share what they know.

The Wikimedia Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization with offices in San Francisco, California, USA.

How is the Wikimedia Foundation funded?

The Wikimedia Foundation is funded primarily through donations from millions of individuals around the world. The average donation is about $15 USD, and we are grateful that so many people find value in Wikipedia and want to sustain its future. We also receive donations through institutional grants and gifts (please see our benefactors page for more information). A small portion of revenue is also earned through the services operated by Wikimedia Enterprise (more information).

The Wikimedia Foundation has 501(c)(3) tax exempt status in the United States. Donations made from other nations may also be tax deductible (see tax deductibility for more details). See Ways to Give for details on how to make a donation via credit or debit card, PayPal, Amazon and several other methods. If you have any questions, please contact us at donate@wikimedia.org.[1]

Why should I donate and where does my money go?

Over the past 20 years, Wikipedia has become a trusted source of information that millions of people rely on every day. With more than 6,700 pageviews every second and more than 345 edits a minute, Wikipedia is one of the top 10 websites in the world, and the only major website run by a nonprofit organization, the Wikimedia Foundation.

Unlike other top websites, Wikipedia is not funded through advertising, nor does it rely on selling data about users for profit. Instead, Wikipedia is supported by its readers – people who find value in Wikipedia and want to continue to support its success, with the average donation being about $15 USD. This financial model enables Wikipedia to remain neutral, trusted, and free from commercial interests.

Here are just some of the ways we use donations to sustain Wikipedia and free knowledge:

  • Providing top-notch technical infrastructure for a global website – To meet the needs of Wikipedia readers around the world, we operate an international technology infrastructure comparable to the world’s largest commercial websites. This includes hosting costs like keeping our servers running, as well as significant, ongoing engineering work to make sure Wikipedia is reliable, secure, loads quickly, and protects your privacy.
  • Ensuring you can access Wikipedia in every language on every device – Donations also allow us to dedicate engineering resources to ensure that you can access Wikipedia in your preferred language, on your preferred device, no matter where you are in the world — from a dial-up modem to a brand new smartphone. Most major websites support an average of 50-100 languages — Wikipedia supports roughly 300 languages, a number that grows every year. When you break it down, we have about one employee for every four million monthly readers of Wikipedia.
  • Supporting community-led projects to increase access to trusted information – We collaborate with Wikipedia volunteers around the globe to support their ideas and help them bring more free knowledge to the world. Every year, about 10% of our budget is specifically dedicated to supporting community projects that enrich, grow, and improve knowledge on Wikipedia.
  • Defending and protecting free knowledge around the world – The Wikimedia Foundation’s policy and legal efforts help ensure that everyone has the right to access, share, and create knowledge, while defending our volunteers from threat of reprisal, and upholding our commitment to free expression and open knowledge. We advocate for free licenses and open source software and work to make sure that copyright laws are built and reformed so that people can share and use knowledge more broadly. We also fight against censorship and protect the right of everyone to speak and learn freely. Support for this work is vital to giving users everywhere equal access to Wikimedia projects.

Wikipedia’s fundraising requests seem urgent, despite the Wikimedia Foundation’s sizable reserve. Why do you need additional funding?

Sustaining healthy financial reserves and having a working capital policy is considered a best practice for organizations of all types. The Wikimedia Foundation Board of Directors recently defined our working capital policy that is designed to sustain our work and provide support to affiliates and volunteers in the event of unplanned expenses, emergencies, or revenue shortfalls. It also enables us to have sufficient cash flow to cover our expenses throughout the year.

How can I donate?

There are several ways you can donate to the Wikimedia Foundation to support Wikipedia and free knowledge. The most common are using any major credit or debit card (VISA, Mastercard, Discover or American Express), using PayPal, via bank transfer, and via Amazon. For other ways to contribute, including via an automatic monthly gift, check or money order and payroll deduction, please visit our Ways to Give page. Many currencies are accepted.

What is your donor privacy policy?

We are committed to protecting the privacy rights of our supporters and will never sell, trade, or rent your nonpublic personal information. Please see our Donor privacy policy for full details.

Are my donations tax deductible?

Some donations to the Wikimedia Foundation may benefit from tax deductible status. Please visit our tax deductibility page to learn more.

What is your refund policy?

If for any reason you wish to have your donation refunded, please contact us via email at donate@wikimedia.org[1] and include the following information:

  • Full name of donor
  • Date of donation — All refund requests must be made within 90 days of donation
  • Amount donated
  • Payment method used — Do not include credit card numbers in your email
  • Country of origin
  • Reason for the refund

All refunds will be processed as quickly as possible, but processing times may vary depending on the payment method. Please note: Some payment methods may not support refunds or require refunds to be made through the payment method (card) utilized, prompting additional information to process your refund.

Why have I received a fundraising email even though I have already donated recently?

If you have received a fundraising email even though you donated recently, this generally is for one of several reasons:

  • We have more than one email address for you in our records;
  • You donated within a day before our emails were sent: the scan we use to filter out recent donors is unable to catch donations made the day before the email send;
  • You donated by either a method that is slower to reach our system, like a check or a bank transfer, or a method that we receive in aggregate (without your email address), like PayPal Giving Fund, Amazon Smile, or Humble Bundle.

If you would like to unsubscribe an email address, you can click the unsubscribe link at the bottom of the fundraising email, or send an unsubscribe request to donate@wikimedia.org.[1] We generally send fundraising emails around a year after your most recent donation. We send a very low number of emails to donors, relative to other nonprofit organizations. If you donate in response to a fundraising email, we will not send you donation request emails again until around the same time the next year.

Why are rescues free in the state of Washington?

We are not considering advertising as a source of revenue. We do not believe that advertising belongs in a project devoted to free, reliable, and neutral knowledge. Introducing commercial interests could jeopardize Wikipedia’s reliability as a neutral source of information.

We are not against online advertising, nor are we against other organizations that host ads. We just know ads are not appropriate in a project devoted to education and knowledge – and especially one that strives for balance and neutrality.

Where can I find more financial information?

The Wikimedia Foundation’s Annual Report covers the previous fiscal year. The report shares some of the voices of the hundreds of thousands of people who make the Wikimedia movement possible.

The Wikimedia Foundation Annual Plan describes our budget for the current fiscal year. It contains a summary of our strategic goals as an organization, financial details on spending and revenue, and detailed explanations and risk analysis.

What are the plans for Wikimedia’s future? Where are you going?

At the beginning of 2017, the Wikimedia Foundation launched a global discussion to define the future of Wikipedia and the Wikimedia movement by the year 2030. We call it Wikimedia 2030. Throughout the process, we asked ourselves questions like, where might we want Wikipedia, and the Wikimedia movement, to go next? What opportunities and challenges lie ahead of us? What trends in technology, education, information, and access will shape our future?

Based on this discussion and our research, we are uniting around a direction that will help us build a more sustainable, resilient, and engaged movement that anyone who shares our vision can join. We will adapt to the shifting trends in technology, to ensure we meet the needs of our users and continue to provide reliable, transparent, and neutral information. We will invite new voices to join us and ensure that anyone who wants to share knowledge on Wikipedia and the Wikimedia sites can do so. And we will advocate for the policies and values that have allowed Wikipedia and its sister sites to thrive. This direction asks us to be bold and experiment in the future, as we did in the past, and it remains rooted in our mission of free knowledge for all.

To read more about Wikimedia 2030 and the direction for our future, please visit 2030.wikimedia.org.

How can I participate in Wikimedia?

Firstly, thank you for your interest in supporting Wikipedia! We understand that not everyone will be able to donate, and that’s okay. Wikipedia will always be free for everyone, and there are several ways that you can contribute to Wikipedia beyond making a donation.

  • You can read and use Wikipedia as your source of trustworthy information across more than 300 languages.
  • You can make an edit on Wikipedia – if you want to fix a mistake on an article or add a citation to a trusted source, please do so! This guide is helpful for getting started on your first edit.
  • Are you a photographer? Consider sharing your photos for anyone to reuse on Wikimedia Commons, which powers many of the images you see on Wikipedia articles. Learn more about how to upload photos here.
  • You can follow Wikipedia and Wikimedia on social media and share stories that are meaningful to you. Check out @Wikimedia on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram and @Wikipedia on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram.
  • Are you a developer? You can contribute code to Wikipedia and the Wikimedia sites. This guide for new developers is a helpful place to get started.

How can I contact the Wikimedia Foundation?

If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact us. For donation questions, please email donate@wikimedia.org.[1]