Wikipedia campaign raises over US$6.2M

Fund raising drive by Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales has led to over 125,000 people making donations to the online community-generated encyclopaedia.

Wikimedia has raised over US$6.2 million (4.3 million pounds) for its Wikipedia project, the foundation has announced.

Since a fundraising drive was launched in July by Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, over 125,000 people have made donations to the online community-generated encyclopaedia.

An appeal in December by Wales resulted in a late surge of donations, totalling approximately US$2 million, according to a Wikimedia statement. The Wikimedia Foundation is the charitable organization that runs Wikipedia.

"This campaign has proven that Wikipedia matters to its users, and that our users strongly support our mission: to bring free knowledge to the planet, free of charge and free of advertising," wrote Wales in a letter published online. "We deeply appreciate the generosity of our supporters."

The funds will be used to maintain and enlarge the Wikimedia Foundation's technical infrastructure, which includes managing global traffic for Wikipedia. The money will be used for day-to-day Wikimedia operations, including maintaining its servers, hosting, bandwidth and 23 Wikimedia staff.

The funds will also be used for the continuing development of the open-source software used in Wikimedia projects.