Please Pay Wikipedia if You Use It: Simple. Anarchist. Moral.

Do you just love Wikipedia as a reference? Me too. I do count myself privileged to have known Jimmy “Jimbo” Wales from way back, corresponding now & then in email in the years during which he created a local Chicago based-website when still a trader on the futures & options floors. Then Bomis, then NuPedia…which then morphed into Wikipedia. I use it so much it’s hard to estimate the value I get. And you do, too, because links to Wikipedia articles feature prominently in many of my posts—about 250 or so of them per year.

In the end, I’m firmly confident that his idea of a bottom-up encyclopedia—where virtually anyone can add to or edit—will, over time, surpass a top-down edited encyclopedia produced by your elite authorities. Yea right: they’re not selling anything. Bullshit. They trade in mind and soul, in exchange for your domesticated comfort in their Zoo Human.

Mistakes and micro-agendas are of far less concern than your elite authorities.

People here and elsewhere are always in my ear about taxes and who ought to pay what and when. Man the fuck up! Pay for what you use, whether required, asked, or not. Taxes really, are for children, but that’s a subject for another day, addressed to the nearly 300 million American children.


Dear Richard,

At Wikipedia we only ask for donations during our year-end fundraiser. That’s our tradition. We don’t think having your email address is a license to spam. We send two reminders per year. This is your first. Donate today, and we won’t send you the second. 😉

If everyone reading this email repeated their previous donation, our fundraiser would be done today. Please help us forget about fundraising and get back to improving Wikipedia.

Did you forget why you supported Wikipedia last year? Here’s a reminder:

Wikipedia is the #5 site on the web and serves 450 million different people every month. We’re non-profit, but we still have costs like any top site: servers, power, rent, programs, staff and legal help.

Commerce is fine. Advertising is not evil. But it doesn’t belong here. Not in Wikipedia.

Wikipedia is something special. It is like a library or a public park. It is like a temple for the mind. It is a place we can all go to think, to learn, to share our knowledge with others.

When I founded Wikipedia, I could have made it into a for-profit company with advertising banners, but I decided to do something different.

This year, please consider making a donation of $75, $100, $150 or whatever you can to protect and sustain Wikipedia.


Jimmy Wales
Wikipedia Founder


OK, Jimbo. I’m in; again.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More


  1. Lute Nikoley on December 5, 2012 at 19:12

    I also will be in as usual, annually. I find it amazingly helpful for almost everything.

  2. Remnant on December 5, 2012 at 21:01

    Speaking of anarchy (and its opposite), I just learned that the government has come up with the solution to the obesity epidemic. God, the guys in D.C. are brilliant. Expect everyone to be slim in a matter of years as a result of this breakthrough idea.

    • Remnant on December 5, 2012 at 21:09

      (Follow-up, with sarcasm off this time.)

      Five questions about this calorie posting rule:

      1. How many men fed their families by dreaming up, formulating, drafting and promulgating these absurd rules?

      2. How many men had to take food away from THEIR families to pay taxes for the above rule-formulators salaries?

      3. How many man hours will be diverted to complying with these rules?

      4. How man men will not be engaged in productive work for companies because of the diversion of such resources?

      5. How much more will consumers pay for food and services from price increases to deal with the costs of 3 and 4?

      Now multiply this by TENS OF THOUSANDS. That’s our government in the land of the free.

      • gabriella kadar on December 6, 2012 at 18:31

        Glad it’s all men and man hours.

      • Remnant on December 7, 2012 at 18:57

        It’s called the English language.

        man: “2. a member of the species Homo sapiens or all the members of this species collectively, without regard to sex. 3. the human individual as representing the species, without reference to sex; the human race; humankind. 4. a human being; person.”

        men: “plural of man”

        manhour: “a unit of measurement, especially in accountancy, based on an ideal amount of work accomplished by one person in an hour.”

        I don’t submit to PC language totalitarian bullshit. For your reference, here are a few other English words whose meanings you may be familiar with: manpower, layman, freshman. You must have a very difficult time reading anything written more than 30 years old. Luckily, all great thought and writing has been produced since 1980, right?

  3. Andrew Ryan on December 5, 2012 at 21:40

    On the surface, the Parasite expects the doctor to heal them for free, the farmer to feed them out of charity. How little they differ from the pervert who prowls the streets, looking for a victim he can ravish for his grotesque amusement.

    • Gordon Shannon on December 6, 2012 at 09:01

      I like the name. 😉

  4. Dr. Curmudgon Gee on December 5, 2012 at 22:23

    until the China Study page ceases to be run by zealots, i am not going to donate.


    • DML on December 7, 2012 at 19:36

      Isn’t that “throwing the baby out with the bathwater”?

      I know that saying is overused, but I think it really applies here.

      • Dr. Curmudgon Gee on December 9, 2012 at 16:38

        yes, but so can be say with most voters (both sides) that focus on ONE issue only. or many people’s view (here) about religion.

        some wiki pages at least have a “POV” warning @ front. that would be ok w/ me.


  5. DML on December 7, 2012 at 19:34

    As far as I can tell, Wikipedia has already surpassed the ‘top-down” encyclopedies in most respects. True, every once in a while I will read a Wikipedia article that is sub-standard. However, I can say the same thing about “The World Book Encyclopedia,” “Comptons,” and any other top-d0wn encyclopedia I have ever browsed.

    In the long run, decentralized information (knowledge) will generally out-compete hierarchial, top-d0wn knowledge in any given metric, but most particularly in terms of quality and accessibility. I would like to claim that it *always* does but that would simply be untrue: I know better and to claim otherwise would be dishonest. However, it doesn’t matter if there have been cases where a top-down system has worked better; those cases are rare, particular, and highly contextual. And I am pointing this out so laboriously precisely because there are people who focus on these particulars and support hierarchy despite their experiences, intutition and the ever-growing body of evidence that psychology, neuroscience, economics and information theory is mounting against it.

    For insightful research in the context of decentralized social arrangements (which rely largely on how information is gathered/communicated) I suggest the political economist Elinor Orstrom. I think her book “Governing the Commons” is good starting point.

    Anyway, that is my 2 cents, feel free to point out any intellectual laziness or lack of info on my part.

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