Fundraising season launch

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Fundraising season launch

Florence Devouard-3
Hello,


Last update from Michael (this summer) mentionned that we had about 550
k$ in bank.

The technical team mentionned recently there was an urgent need for new
application servers (apache/squids), to address the record traffic the
site has been receiving. A couple of weeks ago, traffic reports
indicated > 18,000 requests per second, far above our routine traffic of
12,000 requests per second earlier this summer.

Consequently, a hardware purchase resolution has been very recently
approved, which will significantly impact our reserves.

http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Resolution_Hardware_sept_2006

Michael reported that we purchased $425k of hardware last fiscal year
and will purchase $400k more in just the first half of the current
fiscal year. Rough estimate for this fiscal year hardware is between
$750k-$1M.

In short, it is high time to have our second fundraising of the year :-)

A fundraising committee was set up not a long time ago for such purpose
and will work with Brad for the success of the fundraising. The
translation committee will naturally have to be heavily involved and
coordination about press coverage will be under the responsability of
the comcom.

If you want to be involved, please say so.

Florence
Wikimedia Foundation

--------

As an individual (not board member), I would like to ask if it were
possible that the spin around the fundraising, focuses a bit on the
other projects, perhaps the notion of virtual library, with the
wikicommons and wikisource. We have the recent report of the german
digitization to show up as an example as how we could push things
forward in realm of digital libraries.

Ant

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Re: Fundraising season launch

Ray Saintonge
Anthere wrote:

>Hello,
>
>Last update from Michael (this summer) mentionned that we had about 550
>k$ in bank.
>
>The technical team mentionned recently there was an urgent need for new
>application servers (apache/squids), to address the record traffic the
>site has been receiving. A couple of weeks ago, traffic reports
>indicated > 18,000 requests per second, far above our routine traffic of
>12,000 requests per second earlier this summer.
>
It would be nice if proper financial reports were made available befor
the start of another round of fundraising.  We owe it to potential
donors to let them know that we believe in fiscal responsibility.

Ec

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Re: Fundraising season launch

Brad Patrick
Our auditors have been onsite for the past few days and we are
actively under the microscope, as it were.  I cannot say when things
will be done, but it is the number one priority for me right now,
since it is my responsibility.

It has been painful to see criticism about the financial aspects of
things, and feeling the pressure to make such information available
when we are on the verge of being able to offer audited financial
statements to the world for the first time.

Ours is a community where saying "trust me" is not the same as "show
me".  I look forward to being able to demonstrate the financial
picture of the Foundation as soon as possible.

The one thing I can comment on is that the external forces affecting
operations are huge.  The surge in demand we have seen since the
summer requires dramatic response in the hardware area.  We have also
been working very hard for the past 3 months to address our bandwidth
needs and networking operations for the long term.  These are all
mission-critical, complicated, and expensive issues.  They are caused
by our ever-upward demand.  We are presently at greater than 18,000
requests *per second* and climbing.

If our present performance is any indication of future success and
requirements, expect a seven figure fundraiser.  We are one of the top
dozen websites in the world, doubling in demand every 4 months.  In
short, we are growing nearly exponentially.  All I can say is thank
God for Moore's Law.

-Brad

On 10/9/06, Ray Saintonge <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Anthere wrote:
>
> >Hello,
> >
> >Last update from Michael (this summer) mentionned that we had about 550
> >k$ in bank.
> >
> >The technical team mentionned recently there was an urgent need for new
> >application servers (apache/squids), to address the record traffic the
> >site has been receiving. A couple of weeks ago, traffic reports
> >indicated > 18,000 requests per second, far above our routine traffic of
> >12,000 requests per second earlier this summer.
> >
> It would be nice if proper financial reports were made available befor
> the start of another round of fundraising.  We owe it to potential
> donors to let them know that we believe in fiscal responsibility.
>
> Ec
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>


--
Brad Patrick
General Counsel & Interim Executive Director
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.
[hidden email]
727-231-0101
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Jim Redmond
In reply to this post by Ray Saintonge
On Oct 9, 2006, at 3:42 PM, Ray Saintonge wrote:
> It would be nice if proper financial reports were made available befor
> the start of another round of fundraising.  We owe it to potential
> donors to let them know that we believe in fiscal responsibility.

Under US law, the Foundation is required to provide copies of its  
three most recent 990s* to anyone who requests them.  It should be  
trivial to post them in PDF format on the Foundation site as  
other .orgs have done.

A summary of audit findings may not be a bad idea either, but there  
is no obligation to post those.

*"990" is the number of the form used by non-profit organizations to  
report their revenue and expenses to the US Internal Revenue Service,  
the federal tax agency.  (My new project: clean up the relevant en:  
article.)

Jim Redmond
[hidden email]


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Re: Fundraising season launch

KIZU Naoko
In reply to this post by Brad Patrick
It is very nice to know we will get detailed financial information in days.
Regarding disclosure, I would like to point two things:

On 10/10/06, Brad Patrick <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Ours is a community where saying "trust me" is not the same as "show
> me".  I look forward to being able to demonstrate the financial
> picture of the Foundation as soon as possible.

1. In the past fundraisings, we had multiple questions / requests for
detailed budget, expenses etc on talk pages. Some were really severe
criticisms in my impression. So I think, it will be better to provide
such information before we start a new round.
2. Concerning comments on past fundraisings, not every donors of us
didn't seem parts of editing community and some thought themselves not
parts of the community but just visitors/users. Before starting a new
fundraising campaign, we are better to remind whom we will ask a help.

--
Kizu Naoko
  Wikiquote: http://wikiquote.org
  * Nessuna poesia prima di noi *
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Sebastian Moleski
On 10/10/06, Aphaia <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> 2. Concerning comments on past fundraisings, not every donors of us
> didn't seem parts of editing community and some thought themselves not
> parts of the community but just visitors/users. Before starting a new
> fundraising campaign, we are better to remind whom we will ask a help.


Is this meant to imply that we should not look for donors who aren't
actively involved in our projects?

Sebastian Moleski
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Gerard Meijssen-3
Sebastian Moleski wrote:

> On 10/10/06, Aphaia <[hidden email]> wrote:
>  
>> 2. Concerning comments on past fundraisings, not every donors of us
>> didn't seem parts of editing community and some thought themselves not
>> parts of the community but just visitors/users. Before starting a new
>> fundraising campaign, we are better to remind whom we will ask a help.
>>    
>
>
> Is this meant to imply that we should not look for donors who aren't
> actively involved in our projects?
>
> Sebastian Moleski
Hoi,
I would say that if we can target specific donors in a way in which it
makes sense to them, that would be better. I will ask some of the
organisations that I am involved in if they would be so kind and
consider donating things.. My request to them will be more personal than
the standard request for help .. Some of these potential donors may be
not active at all involved in any of the WMF projects.
Thanks,
    GerardM
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Sebastian Moleski
On 10/10/06, Gerard Meijssen <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> > Is this meant to imply that we should not look for donors who aren't
> > actively involved in our projects?
> >
> > Sebastian Moleski
> Hoi,
> I would say that if we can target specific donors in a way in which it
> makes sense to them, that would be better. I will ask some of the
> organisations that I am involved in if they would be so kind and
> consider donating things.. My request to them will be more personal than
> the standard request for help .. Some of these potential donors may be
> not active at all involved in any of the WMF projects.
> Thanks,
>     GerardM
>

This is what I was trying to get at. I think there are a lot of potential
donors that know fo Wikimedia (mostly through Wikipedia I'd imagine) who
would be willing to support our cause even if they aren't active themselves.
We shouldn't hesitate to make use of that potential for the benefit of the
foundation and all its projects.

Regards,

Sebastian Moleski
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Gerard Meijssen-3
Sebastian Moleski wrote:

> On 10/10/06, Gerard Meijssen <[hidden email]> wrote:
>  
>>> Is this meant to imply that we should not look for donors who aren't
>>> actively involved in our projects?
>>>
>>> Sebastian Moleski
>>>      
>> Hoi,
>> I would say that if we can target specific donors in a way in which it
>> makes sense to them, that would be better. I will ask some of the
>> organisations that I am involved in if they would be so kind and
>> consider donating things.. My request to them will be more personal than
>> the standard request for help .. Some of these potential donors may be
>> not active at all involved in any of the WMF projects.
>> Thanks,
>>     GerardM
>>
>>    
>
> This is what I was trying to get at. I think there are a lot of potential
> donors that know fo Wikimedia (mostly through Wikipedia I'd imagine) who
> would be willing to support our cause even if they aren't active themselves.
> We shouldn't hesitate to make use of that potential for the benefit of the
> foundation and all its projects.
>
> Regards,
>
> Sebastian Moleski
Hoi,
The only thing you have to be careful about is HOW YOU ASK IT. You can
not say that you are Wikimedia Foundation. You are not. You should also
only approach those organisations you know personally. When you start
sending mails or e-mails in the dark, you are in effect spamming. This
is something you should do only when you /do /represent the WMF
officially or one of it's chapters.

I have seen a mailing that was not either by the WMF or a chapter and it
gave me a sinking feeling because imho it made it hard for either WMF or
the Dutch chapter to ask for money. You need to be careful.

Thanks,
    GerardM
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Florence Devouard-3
In reply to this post by Jim Redmond
James Redmond wrote:

> On Oct 9, 2006, at 3:42 PM, Ray Saintonge wrote:
>
>>It would be nice if proper financial reports were made available befor
>>the start of another round of fundraising.  We owe it to potential
>>donors to let them know that we believe in fiscal responsibility.
>
>
> Under US law, the Foundation is required to provide copies of its  
> three most recent 990s* to anyone who requests them.  It should be  
> trivial to post them in PDF format on the Foundation site as  
> other .orgs have done.

Good idea :-)
Can you request those ?

ant

> A summary of audit findings may not be a bad idea either, but there  
> is no obligation to post those.
>
> *"990" is the number of the form used by non-profit organizations to  
> report their revenue and expenses to the US Internal Revenue Service,  
> the federal tax agency.  (My new project: clean up the relevant en:  
> article.)
>
> Jim Redmond
> [hidden email]

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Re: Fundraising season launch

Ray Saintonge
In reply to this post by Sebastian Moleski
Sebastian Moleski wrote:

>On 10/10/06, Aphaia <[hidden email]> wrote:
>  
>
>>2. Concerning comments on past fundraisings, not every donors of us
>>didn't seem parts of editing community and some thought themselves not
>>parts of the community but just visitors/users. Before starting a new
>>fundraising campaign, we are better to remind whom we will ask a help.
>>    
>>
>Is this meant to imply that we should not look for donors who aren't
>actively involved in our projects?
>
I wouldn't read it that way.  Having information about the finances does
give people a greater sense of belonging, but the level of funding that
is needed for such a large operation is not going to be covered by what
the little people can afford.

Significant donors probably have other things to to with their time than
edit; they have a life.  Nevertheless they believe in Wikipedia, and
would like to help in the only way that they can by making donations.  
In return it's perfectly fair to demand fiscal responsibility.  They
understand financial statements, and reviewing these reports will be
what will convince them that their donations are being responsibly used.

Ec

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Re: Fundraising season launch

Andrew Gray
In reply to this post by Florence Devouard-3
On 09/10/06, Anthere <[hidden email]> wrote:

> As an individual (not board member), I would like to ask if it were
> possible that the spin around the fundraising, focuses a bit on the
> other projects, perhaps the notion of virtual library, with the
> wikicommons and wikisource. We have the recent report of the german
> digitization to show up as an example as how we could push things
> forward in realm of digital libraries.

It's like those charity mailshots you get. "Whilst a new database
server costs ten thousand dollars, a donation of just five dollars
will allow us to do ----" ;-)

I agree that bringing up examples of smaller-scale projects is a good
idea - if nothing else it'll help publicise them.

--
- Andrew Gray
  [hidden email]
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Gerard Meijssen-3
Hoi,
When we are seriously going to ask for money for specific purposes, you may
want to read what was written already a long time ago. The idea is that not
everybody is able to support specific parts of our project in the
traditional way but is able and willing to help financially what is of
specific interest to them.

A good example of this were these people who spammed our mailinglist but
were willing to donate to Wikinews, something that is not really possible
right now..

Thanks,
    GerardM

http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Donations:Putting_your_money_where_your_mouth_is

On 10/10/06, Andrew Gray <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> On 09/10/06, Anthere <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > As an individual (not board member), I would like to ask if it were
> > possible that the spin around the fundraising, focuses a bit on the
> > other projects, perhaps the notion of virtual library, with the
> > wikicommons and wikisource. We have the recent report of the german
> > digitization to show up as an example as how we could push things
> > forward in realm of digital libraries.
>
> It's like those charity mailshots you get. "Whilst a new database
> server costs ten thousand dollars, a donation of just five dollars
> will allow us to do ----" ;-)
>
> I agree that bringing up examples of smaller-scale projects is a good
> idea - if nothing else it'll help publicise them.
>
> --
> - Andrew Gray
>   [hidden email]
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Mark
In reply to this post by Ray Saintonge
Ray Saintonge wrote:

>Significant donors probably have other things to to with their time than
>edit; they have a life.  Nevertheless they believe in Wikipedia, and
>would like to help in the only way that they can by making donations.
>
I don't disagree that we should welcome donations from uninvolved people
who want to financially support us, and provide financial transparency
to convince them their money is being well-used, but I hope you're not
suggesting that only people who have nothing better to do with their
time and no life edit Wikipedia.  There are plenty of professionals and
academics here who really could (maybe even *should*) be doing other
things, but for various reasons choose to spend some time editing.

-Mark

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Re: Fundraising season launch

Erik Moeller-4
In reply to this post by Florence Devouard-3
On 10/9/06, Anthere <[hidden email]> wrote:
> As an individual (not board member), I would like to ask if it were
> possible that the spin around the fundraising, focuses a bit on the
> other projects, perhaps the notion of virtual library, with the
> wikicommons and wikisource. We have the recent report of the german
> digitization to show up as an example as how we could push things
> forward in realm of digital libraries.

Yes, it seems absolutely essential to me that the communication
strategy is carefully planned _before_ we ask for money.

What have the Foundation and the Chapters accomplished so far? What is
the status of our work to bring Wikimedia to developing countries?
What have our expenses been? (Get audited financial reports out.) What
expenses do we foresee? What strategic projects are around the corner?
What is the state of the projects besides Wikipedia, the small
languages?

The last thing I want is another "WE NEED MORE SERVERS" fundraiser.

So, in order to do this properly:

Brad - can we assume that the financial statements will be published
before Nov 1? Can you work on outlining some expenses over the next 6
months you see as critical, in broad terms (staff, hardware, etc.)?

Tim - when are the static dumps going to be ready?

Samuel - can you pass on some promotional materials re: the OLPC
partnership to the Fundraising Committee?

Delphine - can you compile a report on chapter activity (max 10K,
pictures would be nice)? What projects were completed, what chapters
were set up?

Jimmy, Florence - shall we prepare a detailed vision statement on
Board Wiki? I volunteer to take a first stab at the structure.

Sabine - could you write a little report regarding translation
projects, and future activities you can envision in this area?

I would suggest early November as a launch of the fundraising drive. I
would like to see some new functionality implemented for this
fundraising drive as well, e.g. the ability to donate directly from
any Wikimedia project page, as well as a more prominent display of
donor comments above a certain amount.

Most importantly, however, I want us to start working very soon on a
decent appeal for support and report of activity so far. I understand
that donor attention is limited, so we need to have a very short
general appeal, but those who care should be able to find detailed
information about what we are doing and why we need support.

Ideally, the information we compile here should be useful to approach
organizations and wealthy individuals, beyond just a general appeal to
the masses.

Does that sound reasonable? :-)
--
Peace & Love,
Erik

Member, Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees

DISCLAIMER: Unless otherwise stated, all views or opinions expressed
in this message are solely my own and do not represent an official
position of the Wikimedia Foundation or its Board of Trustees.
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Re: Fundraising season launch

daniwo59
In reply to this post by Florence Devouard-3
 
Slow down a bit. Let's start with the basics. For various technical  reasons,
a fundraiser should not start at the beginning of the month.
 
Befpre deciding that the fopcus shoudl not be servers, decide what the real  
needs are. If servers happen to be the primary cost, then that should be the  
focus.
 
I am wary of turning this into an OLPC/Wikimedia fundraiser, even if just  by
tying the two organizations together. It may also run counter to our 501 c 3  
status, but of this I am not sure.
 
Will the money go to chapters or to the Foundation? Can the chapters  
transfer money to the foundation if needed?
 
How will funds donated be processed? Who will process them? How will we  
recognize donors, both by what is required by law and by what is simply a nice  
way to recognize them? This is an enormous amount of work.
 
Just some thoughts.
 
Danny
 
In a message dated 10/10/2006 3:27:27 PM Eastern Daylight Time,  
[hidden email] writes:

On  10/9/06, Anthere <[hidden email]> wrote:
> As an individual  (not board member), I would like to ask if it were
> possible that the  spin around the fundraising, focuses a bit on the
> other projects,  perhaps the notion of virtual library, with the
> wikicommons and  wikisource. We have the recent report of the german
> digitization to  show up as an example as how we could push things
> forward in realm of  digital libraries.

Yes, it seems absolutely essential to me that the  communication
strategy is carefully planned _before_ we ask for  money.

What have the Foundation and the Chapters accomplished so far?  What is
the status of our work to bring Wikimedia to developing  countries?
What have our expenses been? (Get audited financial reports  out.) What
expenses do we foresee? What strategic projects are around the  corner?
What is the state of the projects besides Wikipedia, the  small
languages?

The last thing I want is another "WE NEED MORE  SERVERS" fundraiser.

So, in order to do this properly:

Brad -  can we assume that the financial statements will be published
before Nov 1?  Can you work on outlining some expenses over the next 6
months you see as  critical, in broad terms (staff, hardware, etc.)?

Tim - when are the  static dumps going to be ready?

Samuel - can you pass on some  promotional materials re: the OLPC
partnership to the Fundraising  Committee?

Delphine - can you compile a report on chapter activity (max  10K,
pictures would be nice)? What projects were completed, what  chapters
were set up?

Jimmy, Florence - shall we prepare a detailed  vision statement on
Board Wiki? I volunteer to take a first stab at the  structure.

Sabine - could you write a little report regarding  translation
projects, and future activities you can envision in this  area?

I would suggest early November as a launch of the fundraising  drive. I
would like to see some new functionality implemented for  this
fundraising drive as well, e.g. the ability to donate directly  from
any Wikimedia project page, as well as a more prominent display  of
donor comments above a certain amount.

Most importantly, however,  I want us to start working very soon on a
decent appeal for support and  report of activity so far. I understand
that donor attention is limited, so  we need to have a very short
general appeal, but those who care should be  able to find detailed
information about what we are doing and why we need  support.

Ideally, the information we compile here should be useful to  approach
organizations and wealthy individuals, beyond just a general  appeal to
the masses.

Does that sound reasonable? :-)
--  
Peace & Love,
Erik

Member, Wikimedia Foundation Board of  Trustees

DISCLAIMER: Unless otherwise stated, all views or opinions  expressed
in this message are solely my own and do not represent an  official
position of the Wikimedia Foundation or its Board of  Trustees.
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Brad Patrick
Erik, I have to agree with Danny we need to not get ahead of ourselves here.

But in round numbers, just as a *starting point* -

If we have +/- 250 servers running now
*and we double in traffic every four months
*and the costs per server (for round number purposes, including racks,
power, etc.) are $4000
*we are talking about *starting* with a $1M computer order being
fulfilled before March 1.

If we add to that the next 500 computers, at the same rate, we are
talking about a batch of $2M beyond that.  /me's head spins.

Let's say we disagree and growth levels out at the same rate we are at
now, it is still another several hundred thousand dollars to get ahead
of the curve.  For that assumption to hold, however, many, many things
would have to be wrong with our predictions about expanding smaller
wikis, etc.  And the rest of the stuff on your list would have been
for no effect in terms of growth.

Even purchasing rack after rack after rack, these technical operations
challenges are daunting, and cannot be ignored.  They *are* the most
important thing, whether you choose to put your head in the sand about
the facts or not.  If there is one thing I have come to appreciate
even more than I did at Hacking Days, it is that the technical
component will come back to bite us even harder if we neglect it like
we did this summer.  We must purchase capacity on at least a 3x per
year basis, with linear or geometric assumptions.

-Brad

On 10/10/06, [hidden email] <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Slow down a bit. Let's start with the basics. For various technical  reasons,
> a fundraiser should not start at the beginning of the month.
>
> Befpre deciding that the fopcus shoudl not be servers, decide what the real
> needs are. If servers happen to be the primary cost, then that should be the
> focus.
>
> I am wary of turning this into an OLPC/Wikimedia fundraiser, even if just  by
> tying the two organizations together. It may also run counter to our 501 c 3
> status, but of this I am not sure.
>
> Will the money go to chapters or to the Foundation? Can the chapters
> transfer money to the foundation if needed?
>
> How will funds donated be processed? Who will process them? How will we
> recognize donors, both by what is required by law and by what is simply a nice
> way to recognize them? This is an enormous amount of work.
>
> Just some thoughts.
>
> Danny
>
> In a message dated 10/10/2006 3:27:27 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
> [hidden email] writes:
>
> On  10/9/06, Anthere <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > As an individual  (not board member), I would like to ask if it were
> > possible that the  spin around the fundraising, focuses a bit on the
> > other projects,  perhaps the notion of virtual library, with the
> > wikicommons and  wikisource. We have the recent report of the german
> > digitization to  show up as an example as how we could push things
> > forward in realm of  digital libraries.
>
> Yes, it seems absolutely essential to me that the  communication
> strategy is carefully planned _before_ we ask for  money.
>
> What have the Foundation and the Chapters accomplished so far?  What is
> the status of our work to bring Wikimedia to developing  countries?
> What have our expenses been? (Get audited financial reports  out.) What
> expenses do we foresee? What strategic projects are around the  corner?
> What is the state of the projects besides Wikipedia, the  small
> languages?
>
> The last thing I want is another "WE NEED MORE  SERVERS" fundraiser.
>
> So, in order to do this properly:
>
> Brad -  can we assume that the financial statements will be published
> before Nov 1?  Can you work on outlining some expenses over the next 6
> months you see as  critical, in broad terms (staff, hardware, etc.)?
>
> Tim - when are the  static dumps going to be ready?
>
> Samuel - can you pass on some  promotional materials re: the OLPC
> partnership to the Fundraising  Committee?
>
> Delphine - can you compile a report on chapter activity (max  10K,
> pictures would be nice)? What projects were completed, what  chapters
> were set up?
>
> Jimmy, Florence - shall we prepare a detailed  vision statement on
> Board Wiki? I volunteer to take a first stab at the  structure.
>
> Sabine - could you write a little report regarding  translation
> projects, and future activities you can envision in this  area?
>
> I would suggest early November as a launch of the fundraising  drive. I
> would like to see some new functionality implemented for  this
> fundraising drive as well, e.g. the ability to donate directly  from
> any Wikimedia project page, as well as a more prominent display  of
> donor comments above a certain amount.
>
> Most importantly, however,  I want us to start working very soon on a
> decent appeal for support and  report of activity so far. I understand
> that donor attention is limited, so  we need to have a very short
> general appeal, but those who care should be  able to find detailed
> information about what we are doing and why we need  support.
>
> Ideally, the information we compile here should be useful to  approach
> organizations and wealthy individuals, beyond just a general  appeal to
> the masses.
>
> Does that sound reasonable? :-)
> --
> Peace & Love,
> Erik
>
> Member, Wikimedia Foundation Board of  Trustees
>
> DISCLAIMER: Unless otherwise stated, all views or opinions  expressed
> in this message are solely my own and do not represent an  official
> position of the Wikimedia Foundation or its Board of  Trustees.
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l  mailing  list
> [hidden email]
> http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>


--
Brad Patrick
General Counsel & Interim Executive Director
Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.
[hidden email]
727-231-0101
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Re: Fundraising season launch

A. Özgür Erdemli
In general we should be aware of upcomming financial shortages and we should
aware of upcomming needs so we can create a plan and work on it in advance.
All these reminds me the importance of "Financial
committee"<http://meta.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Financial_committee&action=edit>and
"Fundraising
committee <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Fundraising_committee>", so
everything could be in order.

Dbl2010


On 10/10/06, Brad Patrick <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Erik, I have to agree with Danny we need to not get ahead of ourselves
> here.
>
> But in round numbers, just as a *starting point* -
>
> If we have +/- 250 servers running now
> *and we double in traffic every four months
> *and the costs per server (for round number purposes, including racks,
> power, etc.) are $4000
> *we are talking about *starting* with a $1M computer order being
> fulfilled before March 1.
>
> If we add to that the next 500 computers, at the same rate, we are
> talking about a batch of $2M beyond that.  /me's head spins.
>
> Let's say we disagree and growth levels out at the same rate we are at
> now, it is still another several hundred thousand dollars to get ahead
> of the curve.  For that assumption to hold, however, many, many things
> would have to be wrong with our predictions about expanding smaller
> wikis, etc.  And the rest of the stuff on your list would have been
> for no effect in terms of growth.
>
> Even purchasing rack after rack after rack, these technical operations
> challenges are daunting, and cannot be ignored.  They *are* the most
> important thing, whether you choose to put your head in the sand about
> the facts or not.  If there is one thing I have come to appreciate
> even more than I did at Hacking Days, it is that the technical
> component will come back to bite us even harder if we neglect it like
> we did this summer.  We must purchase capacity on at least a 3x per
> year basis, with linear or geometric assumptions.
>
> -Brad
>
> On 10/10/06, [hidden email] <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > Slow down a bit. Let's start with the basics. For various
> technical  reasons,
> > a fundraiser should not start at the beginning of the month.
> >
> > Befpre deciding that the fopcus shoudl not be servers, decide what the
> real
> > needs are. If servers happen to be the primary cost, then that should be
> the
> > focus.
> >
> > I am wary of turning this into an OLPC/Wikimedia fundraiser, even if
> just  by
> > tying the two organizations together. It may also run counter to our 501
> c 3
> > status, but of this I am not sure.
> >
> > Will the money go to chapters or to the Foundation? Can the chapters
> > transfer money to the foundation if needed?
> >
> > How will funds donated be processed? Who will process them? How will we
> > recognize donors, both by what is required by law and by what is simply
> a nice
> > way to recognize them? This is an enormous amount of work.
> >
> > Just some thoughts.
> >
> > Danny
> >
> > In a message dated 10/10/2006 3:27:27 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
> > [hidden email] writes:
> >
> > On  10/9/06, Anthere <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > > As an individual  (not board member), I would like to ask if it were
> > > possible that the  spin around the fundraising, focuses a bit on the
> > > other projects,  perhaps the notion of virtual library, with the
> > > wikicommons and  wikisource. We have the recent report of the german
> > > digitization to  show up as an example as how we could push things
> > > forward in realm of  digital libraries.
> >
> > Yes, it seems absolutely essential to me that the  communication
> > strategy is carefully planned _before_ we ask for  money.
> >
> > What have the Foundation and the Chapters accomplished so far?  What is
> > the status of our work to bring Wikimedia to developing  countries?
> > What have our expenses been? (Get audited financial reports  out.) What
> > expenses do we foresee? What strategic projects are around the  corner?
> > What is the state of the projects besides Wikipedia, the  small
> > languages?
> >
> > The last thing I want is another "WE NEED MORE  SERVERS" fundraiser.
> >
> > So, in order to do this properly:
> >
> > Brad -  can we assume that the financial statements will be published
> > before Nov 1?  Can you work on outlining some expenses over the next 6
> > months you see as  critical, in broad terms (staff, hardware, etc.)?
> >
> > Tim - when are the  static dumps going to be ready?
> >
> > Samuel - can you pass on some  promotional materials re: the OLPC
> > partnership to the Fundraising  Committee?
> >
> > Delphine - can you compile a report on chapter activity (max  10K,
> > pictures would be nice)? What projects were completed, what  chapters
> > were set up?
> >
> > Jimmy, Florence - shall we prepare a detailed  vision statement on
> > Board Wiki? I volunteer to take a first stab at the  structure.
> >
> > Sabine - could you write a little report regarding  translation
> > projects, and future activities you can envision in this  area?
> >
> > I would suggest early November as a launch of the fundraising  drive. I
> > would like to see some new functionality implemented for  this
> > fundraising drive as well, e.g. the ability to donate directly  from
> > any Wikimedia project page, as well as a more prominent display  of
> > donor comments above a certain amount.
> >
> > Most importantly, however,  I want us to start working very soon on a
> > decent appeal for support and  report of activity so far. I understand
> > that donor attention is limited, so  we need to have a very short
> > general appeal, but those who care should be  able to find detailed
> > information about what we are doing and why we need  support.
> >
> > Ideally, the information we compile here should be useful to  approach
> > organizations and wealthy individuals, beyond just a general  appeal to
> > the masses.
> >
> > Does that sound reasonable? :-)
> > --
> > Peace & Love,
> > Erik
> >
> > Member, Wikimedia Foundation Board of  Trustees
> >
> > DISCLAIMER: Unless otherwise stated, all views or opinions  expressed
> > in this message are solely my own and do not represent an  official
> > position of the Wikimedia Foundation or its Board of  Trustees.
> > _______________________________________________
> > foundation-l  mailing  list
> > [hidden email]
> > http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > foundation-l mailing list
> > [hidden email]
> > http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
> >
>
>
> --
> Brad Patrick
> General Counsel & Interim Executive Director
> Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.
> [hidden email]
> 727-231-0101
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Asher Heimermann-2
In reply to this post by Gerard Meijssen-3
Hi,
   
  I can't find a PDF of Previous fundraisers in 2005 nor 2006.
   
  Can you please help me by telling me where I can find a PDF or a printable view of the previous fundraisers in 2005.
   
  Thanks for your time today!

 
---------------------------------
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Re: Fundraising season launch

Jim Redmond
In reply to this post by Florence Devouard-3
Ant wrote:
>> Under US law, the Foundation is required to provide copies of its
>> three most recent 990s* to anyone who requests them.  It should be
>> trivial to post them in PDF format on the Foundation site as
>> other .orgs have done.
>
> Good idea :-)
> Can you request those ?

I can.  There are also a couple sites like www.guidestar.org (free
registration required) which list 990s for many non-profits, WMF included.

I just think it would be nice to have them readily available on the
Foundation wiki because
a) the Foundation is already required to complete one,
b) the Foundation is already required to make it available, and
c) even if a potential donor is not in the US, the information therein
could be very useful.

The Form 990 won't help people who want to know how the chapters handle
their money, but at least it's a start.

--
Jim Redmond
[hidden email]

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