Hey Pine,

I appreciate and understand your feedback about this subject line.

For some time we have been trying to find an alternative subject line to
-/This is a little awkward/-. That line works and works very well but we
have found it very difficult to effectively translate and adapt into other
languages, and despite our best efforts have struggled to find an
alternative.

We first tested -/Deleting Wikipedia?/- as a subject line a couple of weeks
ago and it was the only winning variant in hundreds of tests. We retested
in case it was a statistical fluke and continued to see it perform well.
The effectiveness of this subject line for the most part does not come from
its apparent clickbaiting. The change in the number of people opening the
emails was relatively small and unsubscribes remained extremely low. The
big driver in terms of its success was from a significant increase in those
people who opened AND read our email appeal. We posed a question and donors
were motivated to donate when presented with the idea of imagining a world
without Wikipedia.

Our motivation behind this sort of subject line is the fact that in three
countries today it is already as if Wikipedia does not exist. The risk that
this could happen in more countries is greater now that it ever has been.
Censorship, impediments to free speech and over regulation of copyright are
threats that Wikipedia, Wikimedia and its communities face every single day
and it is with that context that we want to lead.

Any email that included this subject line came with at least some context
to flesh out the idea, i.e., “If Wikipedia were deleted, it would be a
great loss to the world,”, but going forward it is our full intention to
make even clearer that we intend for the donor to imagine a world without
Wikipedia and the threats it faces every day, not threaten that it is going
away.

Our plan is to continue to testing on this theme, exploring censorship and
copyright restrictions as well as our increasing role as the backbone of
knowledge on the internet, and help donors see that knowledge can and is
threatened all the time. We are definitely and eagerly open to any
feedback, suggestions and ideas you might have.

Best,
Seddon

On Tue, Nov 13, 2018 at 11:04 PM Pine W <wiki.p...@gmail.com> wrote:

> There is a report from a user on Jimbo's talk page on ENWP regarding
> receiving fundraising a fundraising email with the subject line "[NAME] -
> Deleting Wikipedia?"
>
> In previous years I've disagreed with some of WMF's fundraising choices,
> and it would be unfortunate if in the era of "fake news" becoming
> mainstream WMF chooses to continue to be a part of the problem. If this is
> happening then I request that WMF put a stop to it. Regardless of how
> effective it is to send misleading fundraising appeals and that WMF has
> received minimal repercussions for doing so over the years, it's wrong and
> it should stop.
>
> Pine
> ( https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Pine )
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-- 
Seddon

*Community and Audience Engagement Associate*
*Advancement (Fundraising), Wikimedia Foundation*
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