Sunday, November 16, 2008

Wikipedia's National Presence?

I'm sure everybody who reads this blog uses Wikipedia a great deal. For the most part, I find it a valuable resource and yes, I have edited a few entries here and there. In some books I've read lately (e.g. Remix by Lawrence Lessig), the point is made that Wikipedia is leaving about $100 million US on the table by not running ads. Arguably, the non-commercial nature of Wikipedia partly explains its great success. Anyhow, I started to think about contributing financially to support the project (something small as I am still a graduate student, but something all the same).

Sadly, I found that there is no chapter of the Wikimedia foundation in Canada. There are some efforts afoot to start such a chapter, but that project has not yet been registered formally as a charity. I'm embarassed to see that such discussion apparently did not formally start until January 2008. In contrast, many other countries founded Wikimedia chapters already: the United States, United Kingdom (Feb 2006), Russia (established May 2008), Austria (Feb 2008), France (Oct 2004), and Germany (June 2004).

The question I have is this: Why has it taken so long for Wikipedia to establish a Canadian presence organizationally?

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