Wikimedia and Wikipedia are a complex infrastructure of servers, applications and databases managed by the Wikimedia Foundation and the community of volunteers. National organisations contribute to stimulating the use of and contributing to free knowledge.
- Wikimedia is the organization; organized by country and via user groups
- The Wikimedia Foundation is the supranational organization in California, founded in 2003.
- The Foundation owns the servers and logos (not the content).
- Is financed through donations (donations)
- There are about 40 national organizations
- The organization is mainly composed of volunteers (The Foundation has more than 300 employees and a number of large countries such as France, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Germany have dozens of employees).
- Wikimedia Belgium was founded on 8 October 2014 (no staff; volunteers only, 100 members in 2019).
- The national organisations are legally independent of the Foundation but are contractually bound to use the logos and the name Wikimedia™ under a license.
- The sole purpose of the association is to promote the use of Wikipedia, to provide training, and to cooperate with museums, libraries, heritage associations, universities and institutions.
- The Wikimedia organization has no control over, or influence on, the content of the encyclopedia.
- The Wikimedia organization is not responsible for the content of the encyclopedia.
- The Wikipedia encyclopedia is organised by language, including its administration, it has started for EN on 15 January 2001
- Wikipedia is only 1 of the 16+ Wikimedia projects
- The encyclopedia is written only by the voluntary community
- Anyone can create or modify Wikipedia articles (even anonymously)
- Nobody is paid (in principle) to write Wikipedia (unless announced and accepted)
- You do not need to be a member of the organization to write (80% of the volunteers write without any contact with the organization).
- The organization does not know (in principle) the volunteers
- Each author remains personally responsible and remains the owner of their contributions (CC BY-SA), Creative Commons
- There are 10 - 40 active volunteers per million language users (30,600 for EN)
- Any volunteer can reverse a change, or can request that an article is evaluated for removal
- Volunteers with a significant number of edits can approve changes to an article.
- The content is published online in most Wikipedias, except in German.
- The Wikimedia community consists of all users, volunteers, administrators (moderators), burocrats of Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects.
- Only the community has control over, or influence on, the content of the encyclopedia.
- The community determines and monitors the compliance with the rules for the management of the encyclopedia.
- The control is done by language. For multilingual projects this control is centralised.
- Moderators are chosen each year by volunteers who have contributed a minimum number of articles.
- There are 1 - 3 moderators per million language users (1,274 for EN).
- Only moderators can remove articles, certain strict management rules have to be respected.
The movement is composed out of all volunteers and their representatives from the Community and the Organisation (Affiliates like national Chapters and regional or world-wide User groups, the Foundation, and partner organisations).
- There are countries where Wikipedia is blocked, such as Turkey, China, etc.
- Kazakhstan has bypassed the https protocol
- There are countries where volunteers have to write anonymously, with an IP address, and even via international VPNs to prevent their identity from being revealed (risk of imprisonment).
Dangers of subjectivity
- Wikipedia could be infiltrated by vandals or fake news agents
- That's why it's important to have moderators
- There are also robots (autonomous programs) that monitor and neutralize vandalism.
The most important projects
- More statistics