Of all the annoying popups, interstitial pages, modal windows and other obnoxious crap on the web, there’s one thing I’d like to draw your attention to and actually tell you not to ignore: the plea on Wikipedia asking for donations.
Yes, the bubble at the top of the page toward the end of the year begging for money gets a little bigger and a little more intrusive each year. But Wikipedia is one of the greatest success stories of the entire internet. It’s the best argument for a free and open web:
- It’s built using open-source software
- It’s multi-lingual
- It’s ad-free
- It’s uncensored
- It’s the world’s largest collection of knowledge
- It’s free (as in “free speech” and also as in “free beer“)
- It’s decentralized
- It’s not owned by Google, Apple, Facebook, or any of the other giant, anti-competitive censorship-prone tech monopolies
I’m not always a fan of Wikipedia articles or editors, and sometime the information shared is biased and occasionally wrong. But I still believe in the power of crowd-sourced knowledge and unfettered access to uncensored content.
And, unlike the traditional media companies who almost never, ever issue corrections or retractions, Wikipedia can be corrected within minutes. There’s an editorial process in place, and allegations or claims must be sourced properly and cited. It’s essentially an online version of the old $1,400 Encyclopedia Britannica, but it’s better, more up-to-date, contains fewer errors, and costs you nothing.
Ask yourself this question: “How many times have I viewed a Wikipedia article this week?” If you’re like me, the answer is probably 10, 20, 50, or even more.
Donate to the Wikimedia Foundation to support Wikipedia. I just did.
Ron Stauffer is a web guy and digital marketer with a passion for helping small businesses grow. He has spent over 16 years working in the digital marketing field, building websites, creating marketing strategies, and growing traffic and revenue for small businesses across the USA. His motto is “data wins arguments,” and he uses data visualization tools and charts and graphs to track everything and prove the value of his marketing efforts for clients. Connect with Ron on LinkedIn, follow him on Twitter, or visit Lieder Digital online.