For a good cause: Half a million people fund Wikipedia

By Nate Anderson 

Back on November 15, Wikipedia announced a fundraising goal of $16 million to help fund its $20 million a year operating budget. For weeks, banner ads on the site showed the head of founder Jimmy Wales—which several Ars staffers found oddly disquieting—and asked users to donate. On January 1, the site said that the goal had been reached, making this Wikipedia’s shortest fundraising drive ever.

In announcing the fundraising drive, Wales called Wikipedia a "vital public resource for hundreds of millions of people. We’ve come to depend on it being there for us—free to use, without any bias or interference, and without advertising."

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