(anonymous) wrote:

> […]

> But 'getting big' is maybe not the most important thing in the world.
> Working on our mission, is. And part of that, is security. The WMF is not
> in this world to play the odds, but rather to ensure that knowledge is
> freed, and stays free - most specifically by securing Wikipedia's continued
> availability (at least, that is what our deck of cards looks like now).

> Fully focussing on one sigle stream of money may indeed allow you to get
> more out of it. But the question here is rather, how to you tackle the
> situation when that stream dries up? And for that question, diversification
> is actually key.

> […]

I don't agree with that.  From the Library of Alexandria to
the Duchess Anna Amalia Library it has always been a mistake
to keep knowledge in one place and try really hard to keep
it from falling apart.  The biggest advancement in that
field probably came from Gutenberg's press which allowed
knowledge to be spread around and resist attempts of censor-
ship.

When cinema and television came along, the ancient pattern
repeated: Cultural goods are lost today because the broad-
casters put them in one vault and then did not maintain the
fire alarm properly.

We have the same issue now with streaming services: During
dictatorships, you could hide books and jazz records.  Net-
flix or YouTube just stops serving videos some entity does
not like, and Amazon can wipe your Kindle clean of anything.

So the diversification for the purpose of the advancement of
knowledge should not lie in making WMF immortal, but ensur-
ing that it survives WMF's death.

Tim


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