Thursday, December 29, 2011

Help Keep Wikipedia Free


I know you’ve looked up an article in Wikipedia at some point in your life. Reading up more on a current event, a crisis that occurred, a religious occasion you’re unable to understand, life history of your favourite celebrity, etc. We’ve all done that; read up on Wikipedia actively, that is. Since Wikipedia has been there for you, my humble request to those who are reading this post is, please be there for Wikipedia, by donating whatever you can to this awesome organization.

I’ve been using Wikipedia since 2006 – as referrals for projects, to find all facts of a particular case in one page, to understand what APA style of writing was, to find more info on my assignments. Wikipedia never failed me, not once. You will find some of the best written articles in Wiki, written concisely, to the point and informing the reader accurately, and therefore spreading knowledge actively.

I truly believe that Wikipedia is the messiah in spreading all of this new found knowledge to the world and constantly helping us become better people by learning all of this information.  You want to know about the Anna Hazare scenario, you go to Wiki. You want to know the status of the Lokpal Bill, you go to Wiki. You want to know what the big fuss is about the Mullaperiyar Dam, you go to Wiki. (Don’t write in that you go to Google, because you and I both know Google would take you to that Wiki page that has all the information).

Jimmy Wales, Co-founder of Wikipedia
Think about it. Wikipedia is really that online encyclopedia that has all the information sorted in one place; not just that, this information is constantly updated with new developments and other events that occur. And, this page is free from all that clutter of blatant advertising, glittering and flashy (not to mention blinding) banner ads, sponsored stories, etc – no interference whatsoever.

Despite having zero ads, staff of 95 people, 679 servers, Wikipedia is still the 5th most visited website in the world and serves 470 million people every month with billions of page views. That’s most certainly saying something. It’s not just you and I who rely on Wikipedia, it’s millions of people around the world who want to be enlightened with information and knowledge that really would make the world a better place to live in.

Wikipedia is not asking too much of you. They are accepting donations of even Rs.100 this year (by debit/credit card). And they only raise what they need. Once they’ve raised their budget, they stop fundraising for the year. You can have nothing but respect for such an organization.

So, please donate. Any amount. Anything that you can to help protect and sustain Wikipedia. More than any of us, our future generations depend on it.  Keep Wikipedia Free. Thank you.

P.S. Once you’ve made a donation, tweet about it and use the hash tag #keepitfree.

P.P.S. Wikipedia did NOT pay me to write this. 

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