The Wikimedia Foundation made big news last week then they publicly announced they would be accepting bitcoin donations, and already they are returning with some big news a week later.
In just one week, the Wikimedia Foundation managed to raise $140,000 in bitcoin donations from the community, which has been known for their generous outpouring (and they’ve also been begging Wikimedia to accept these types of donations for a while).
Wikimedia, of course, is the organization that runs Wikipedia, the world’s biggest online encyclopedia. This encyclopedia is free to all, and anyone can edit entries.
Serious discussion of Wikimedia embracing bitcoin started in early March, when Jimmy Wales (who serves on the Wikimedia Board of Trustees) announced that he was personally toying with bitcoin.
As news spread, members of the bitcoin community took notice and began essentially giving Wales free money, which they knew he would donated toward Wikimedia.
It wasn’t long before over ten bitcoins were collected, amounting to quite a bit of loose change to be used for the Foundation.
But still, Wikimedia was hesitant — actually “cautious” — in accepting the digital currency due to lack of regulation and unclear legal status.
But they are now sending a clear message to other not-for-profits that accepting digital currency is actually a viable way of collection donations. $140,000 in one week seems to prove that, but let’s not shy away from the fact that community excitement drove donations that high.
The Wikimedia Foundation has partnered with San Francisco-based Coinbase to process their bitcoin donations.