Wikipedia appeals for donations

It's approaching the end of November, and that can only mean one thing.

No, we don't mean the endless loop of Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas Is You" on Radio 1, but the annual Wikimedia Foundation fund-raising appeal.

Now in its 7th year, it's the time of year when Mr Wikipedia himself, Jimmy Wales, appears on the site, pleading for your money in order to keep the nasty advertisers at bay (and keep the training schemes going as well).

Over here in Blighty, Wikimedia UK, the local affiliate of the Wikimedia Foundation is hoping to raise £500,000 by January 2011.

Andrew Turvey, Chair of Wikimedia UK, says: "There is a phenomenal amount of content available through Wikimedia projects - there are 9430 new Wikipedia articles in 270 languages added daily to the 16 million already in existence, and over 7.3 million freely licensed images available via Wikimedia Commons for anyone to use.

"The funding will allow us to build on this success and broaden out content available by showing UK academics, cultural organisations and public and private sector employees how Internet users and organisations can benefit, if they learn to use Wikimedia projects, especially Wikipedia, in the right way".

So come on, cough-up. Without Wikipedia, how else will students be able to write essays inside an hour? And think of the effect on your favourite news based websites, Pocket-lint included. After all, at least half of our content is directly copied and pasted from the site.

Only joking, of course it isn't. It's probably just over a third.