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News from the Wikimedia Foundation and about the Wikimedia movement

Happy 10th anniversary, Wikipedia!

Ten years ago today, Jimmy Wales typed Hello World! into a wiki, and Wikipedia was born.

Today, Wikipedia’s the fifth most-popular site on the internet, and the only site in the top 25 that provides a wholly non-commercial public service, backed by a non-profit. It’s the largest collection of information ever assembled in human history: free to use, and free of advertising. If you’re reading it, it’s for you :-)

The anniversary’s an opportunity for us all to reflect on Wikipedia: its social impact, and what we want to accomplish in the next ten years. There’s been a lot of thoughtful media coverage over the past few weeks: you can read a lot of it here.

What makes me happy about the coverage is that it seems like people’s attitudes towards Wikipedia have finally turned an important corner.

In its early years, Wikipedia was one of our culture’s dirty little secrets: everybody used it, but very few were comfortable saying so. For the longest time, the only people who openly admitted loving Wikipedia were early adopters and iconoclasts.

Today though, journalistseducators and culture critics are finally embracing Wikipedia, acknowledging that its strengths vastly outweigh its weaknesses, and that its fundamental premise works. (A reporter told me the other day that mocking Wikipedia is “so 2007.” LOL.)

So today, we celebrate all the people who built this extraordinary thing. The engineers who made the code. The people who write the articles, fix the typos, smooth the text, localize the software, answer readers’ mail, and fight off vandals and POV-pushers. The donors, who pay the bills.

I invite you to check out this page, where there are listed (at last count) 454 Wikipedia anniversary parties, conferences, film screenings and other events. If you can come to one –even if you’ve never edited or even ever met a Wikipedian– please do!

And if you can’t be with us in person, why not do a little celebratory editing? Wikipedia wants your help: here’s a really great place to get started.

Thank you to everyone who’s helped to build Wikipedia. What you’ve done is amazing. Happy anniversary!

Sue Gardner, Executive Director

13 Responses to “Happy 10th anniversary, Wikipedia!”

  1. Vamsheek says:

    Happy Birthday WIKIPIDIA and congrats on growing to 10 years.
    Imagining a world of information it self sounds to be a though to acheive goal, your are working further harder to keep this world add free. Thanks for starting and providing a site like this.

    -wikifan

  2. ffs says:

    Happy Birthday Dear WIKIPIDIA!!! I

  3. Olga says:

    Happy Birthday Dear WIKIPIDIA!!! I really appreciate and happy that people around the world can get a free informant and knowledge from such a wonderful encyclopedia. Thank you guys for Wikipedia. All the best in the future!!! Thank you Thank you Thank you

  4. Yevgeny Gayev says:

    Many thanks to volontiers and ‘parents’ of the Wikipedia!

  5. M Haidar H says:

    Happy Birthday Wikipedia on the 10th Anniversary of all anything Wiki! Keep up the knowledge running!

  6. Danny Quinones says:

    Happy 10th Anniversary, Wikipedia!

  7. Cheerful says:

    LOVE YOU WIKIPEDIA! :*

  8. YES WIKIPEDIA IS ONE GREAT PLACE TO GO IN TO DO YOUR SEARCH AND IT IS FULL SURPRISES WITH THE KNOWLEDGE YES I LIVE CANADA 14 JANUARY JUST 1 HOUR 17 MINUTES TO BE 15 JANUARY BUT I TAKE LIBERTY TO CONGRATULATE WIKIPEDIA IN ADVANCE SO CHEERS HAPPY 10TH YEAR OF SERVICE APPRECIATE THE FREE SERVICE TO HUMANITY WITH KNOWLEDGE

  9. KHUSHI KA DASWA JANAM JANTI MANAYEH 15 JANUARY HO GAYA PURAB DISA MEH WIKIPEDIA IN HINDI
    NI SA BULA BULA SA CHINI YAMBAKI KEMUNI WIKIPEDIA MEH BULA BULA SARA GA LOKO TIKI VEISINGA YEO MARAU CHINI YAMBAKI IN FIJIAN ALREADY JANUARY 15 IN FIJI.

    YES HAPPY HAPPY 10TH WIKIPEDIA AND STAFF

  10. P.S. Happy Anniversary, Wikipedia! You’re the greatest Older Sister the sister services could ever dream of… I mean it, too! Respectfully, Robert

  11. Malimetter says:

    Congratulations!
    Gratulation!
    Поздравляю!

    Good job for 10 years!

  12. This is, to me, the most wonderful learning/writing helper I’ve ever had in my home office! Or in my life. I cannot even begin to say how much wikileaks burns a certain ineffable passion inside of me; I won’t try then… Thank you all, so very much for everything! Respectfully, Robert

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