Wikipedia talk:Funding Wikipedia through advertisements

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Note: There is a long history to this issue. See: strategy:Advertising, strategy:Category:Proposals on funding through advertising, meta:Polls, meta:Advertising on Wikipedia, meta:Opt-in Google-ads, Enciclopedia Libre, Spanish Wikipedia, Wikipedia talk:Tools/1-Click Answers, and Wikipedia:User categories for discussion/Archive/December 2007#Wikimedia and advertising. See also the talk archives linked below to the right for the various, defunct, "for and against" categories/WikiProjects concerning advertising.

Strategy discussion, Sept 2009[edit]

This topic has been raised again in the Strategy discussion, Sept 2009. See and —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 04:03, 25 September 2009

See strategy:Category:Proposals on funding through advertising. --Timeshifter (talk) 13:53, 18 December 2009 (UTC)

Amazon links[edit]

How about putting links to buy a book on Amazon on all the book pages, Amazon pays for every person you send to the site, and if someone's reading about a book then there's a high chance they want to buy the book. Discuss. Mark Swingle I (talk) 13:55, 7 December 2009 (UTC)

Craigslist advert[edit]

Listed here because I've had no response at Wikipedia:Village pump (policy) --Pretty Green (talk) 09:40, 16 December 2009 (UTC)

What the heck? I don't mind Wikipedia pushing this donations scheme - clearly it is vital to keep the project going and also amazing to see the speed with which the money is being raised. But surely endorsements, such as that by 'Craig from Craiglist' which appears at the top of my watchlist right now are perilously close to - or could even be considered as - adverts? The endorsement promotes Craiglist over other similar services or websites, it suggests some sort of relationship between the two organisations etc. Can I now consider the Craiglist entry to be neutral? Would Craig remove his support if the content of that article changed? More importantly, who decided to places this advert on Wikipedia? Pretty Green (talk) 09:36, 15 December 2009 (UTC)

Please see meta:Fundraising 2009/Launch Feedback/Archive_2#Craigslist advert --Timeshifter (talk) 20:11, 17 December 2009 (UTC)

I am against advertisement on Wikipedia.[edit]

If adverts start showing up everywhere on Wikipedia, you can kiss this user goodbye. Savie Kumara (and Nini Kastoa) 05:30, 21 March 2010 (UTC)

Goodbye! <smooch> Tisane (talk) 02:29, 23 May 2010 (UTC)

Too late?[edit]

Advertising is already on Wikipedia, and here's an example. If the employees of these companies didn't make that article that way, then someone else did their work for them.--MacRusgail (talk) 17:04, 7 April 2010 (UTC)

Multi-wiki watchlist[edit]

Is the need for an integrated watchlist really a legitimate justification for advertising? It seems to me that, while implementing this capability will probably be a pain in the neck, it shouldn't take a truly massive amount of resources. Tisane (talk) 02:32, 23 May 2010 (UTC)

Developers are needed. More money to hire them. There are many features awaiting developer time. --Timeshifter (talk) 04:01, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps it would be better to state that more general need? I'm not sure the multi-wiki watchlist is even something the paid developers are all that interested in, judging by their lack of comments at bug 3525. It may have to be fixed by volunteers. Tisane (talk) 04:30, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
There is a lot of interest. Look at all the duplicate bugs. There just aren't enough developers. One of the paid Wikia staff told me that the number of paid technical staff is not enough due to budget constraints. See also the many discussions linked from WP:Integrated watchlists. --Timeshifter (talk) 16:37, 23 May 2010 (UTC)[edit] The name of the company and the link are now provided at the end of every video, like for example in the Tourette's syndrome article (I have enabled the wmEmbed gadget). Is this an example of advertising in Wikipedia? Has it been payed for? Is it in accordance with the mission of a neutral, non-profit website which aims to educate? --Eleassar my talk 17:15, 12 June 2010 (UTC)

Kaltura is a software company that has been working with the Wikimedia Foundation since 2008 to develop video features for MediaWiki. Of course that still leaves the question whether these links are appropriate (not having enabled this gadget, I can't see them and don't have an opinion about this). Regards, HaeB (talk) 14:49, 13 June 2010 (UTC)
A bug has been filed at bugzilla:23965. See also a Village pump thread.

"Wikipedia Expanded"[edit]

All right, since the pledge drives are becoming more obtrusive than advertising would be, it's obvious Wikipedia needs ads.

What you could do is mark some articles as part of the "expanded" Wikipedia. This would basically be for minor pop culture articles. For example, a popular episode of The Simpsons would qualify for the core Wikipedia, but articles less culture-impacting would be part of the expanded Wikipedia instead. Any article on a heavy subject would automatically be part of the core Wikipedia no matter how obscure (for example, ANY article regarding ANY war).

How do you draw that line? Same arbitrary way administrators draw the line at what deserves an article at all (I believe it's formally known as "user consensus").

After a reasonable number of articles are marked, Expanded Wikipedia articles start running ads, while core wikipedia articles are left untouched. I think this would be much better than the current system of having a half-screen ad on every page

The only fear is that advertisers would have some control over their articles. Well, since anyone can edit a page, that would only be true if you had corrupt administrators.

Actually, it looks like the framework is up for this already. Perhaps "low-importance articles" would be a good target for ads:

--Headcase (talk) 13:33, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

How about just revising the NPOV policy slightly? Instead of taking a strictly neutral point of view, articles could be biased a little bit towards organizations that give Wikipedia money! Naturally, to maintain the overall lack of bias and encourage donations, organizations that don't give money could have there articles skewed slightly negative. --Ashenai (talk) 06:37, 14 January 2011 (UTC)

Where is the discussion about other funding options for Wikipedia? (+Idea)[edit]

I found this page by a link on a news site, and had an idea of non-advertising method for raising funds, but this page is all about ads. Where is the discussion page about all funding methods?

Any way, my idea is to make an IPhone/Android app that will help search Wwikipedia. It will cost the user around $1. It is also possible to make such a Chrome App (again, will cost the user around $1). There are some free such apps, so these apps need to have some special features in them, perhaps features based on closed API.

Just a thought.

Itai. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:41, 15 February 2011 (UTC)

WP:Village Pump --Timeshifter (talk) 01:44, 16 February 2011 (UTC)

Extra Money goes to Charity[edit]

Why cant you have a very small ad. This would be more than enough to pay for whats needed and the extra money could go to different charities. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:47, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

I agree that a small ad would probably be enough to pay for the current yearly budget and more. If the ad only showed up on pages viewed by users who approve of ads, then I think it would work out fine. No pain for anybody since no offense to those who dislike ads. --Timeshifter (talk) 10:33, 10 November 2008 (UTC)

I agree as well. By relying on donations, Wikimedia is a) taking money from charities that REALLY don't have other options and b) missing an opportunity to raise millions on behalf of other charities. -- Daamsie (talk) 01:23, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

Not me. What ever happened to non-profit?GTAjaxoxo 07:46, 1 June 2012 (UTC)

Shouldn't the benefactor backlinks be considered as advertising?[edit]

Scroll down to Sustaining Corporate Donors section. Those are just plain text-link ads. Linking to things like online casinos, herpes doctors, coupon sites with optimized anchor text to help manipulate Google rankings. I contend that these are in fact ads. 99% of the websites linked there only donated to Wikimedia to get that link. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Daamsie (talkcontribs) 01:32, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

Update, I see these links have now been removed (8th Jun) from the Benefactors page and buried deep down in a new Sustaining Corporate Donors page - --Daamsie (talk) 05:37, 27 June 2011 (UTC)

Wikiversity, Wikinews, etc. as Benefit Corporations, or other semi-for-profit organizations[edit]

Wikiversity, Wikinews, and more. See this discussion commented on by Jimbo Wales and others:

See also: Benefit Corporation and Social Enterprise. --Timeshifter (talk) 05:22, 9 June 2011 (UTC)

company offers?[edit]

I know that Wikipedia currently doesn't use ads, but I'm just curious: have any companies ever approached us with an offer? In that case, do we just turn them down? --Ixfd64 (talk) 05:18, 1 December 2011 (UTC)


When I browse Wikipedia, I newly see a large number of green double-underline intellitext ads on some pages. All the research I've done says that these ads are placed server-side by the website displaying the ads, but I don't see anything in the article-edit text, and this page still says wikipedia doesn't use ads. Is this something I've picked up, or is it possible that some pages are showing this now? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:32, 13 December 2011 (UTC)

Try looking at the pages from a different computer. Leave some links here too. I am fairly sure I will not be seeing the Intellitext links from my PC. You might want to run a full scan with Microsoft Security Essentials. It is free. If all else fails you might need to reinstall your system software. Anybody can copy Wikipedia pages, and put ads on them. I am assuming that the URLs of the pages you are talking about are Wikipedia URLs. --Timeshifter (talk) 01:28, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

bias against adverts[edit]

1) The against adverts section appears before the arguments in favour of adverts. It is the case that being in favour of adverts is the change that is being argued for here and that the consequences of this difference to the status-quo needs to be understood before they are criticized ( we know the status quo and don't know the changed version and must understand that through the arguments for it which also explain what it might be like and how it could work before understanding the criticisms of it) and therefore it is those arguments and that section which ought to be made and heard before their criticisms are given. I feel that this would be the neutral and logic structure for this article to take.

Doing it in alphabetical order with "against" being before "for" is arbitrary depending on the terms used which are used and is at the discretion of the authors of the article. I could think of terms such as "opposing arguments" which would change that order if you see what i mean. It is not usually the case on Wikipedia that this alphabetic ordering is used to decide section order.

2) Poor construction of the for adverts section without the numbering, use of bold and concise arguments. It is just one big bunch of paragraphs (frankly its a mess) and will therefore get read less frequently.

This article seems quite biased against adverts to anybody reading it I am sure and should be made more neutral. I am sure that this is difficult with very strong feelings both ways on this topic. It does feel like one one of Wikipedias more biased articles. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:54, 1 April 2013 (UTC)

It isn't an article so Neutral point of view does not apply. This is a page in Wikipedia space where those who support and oppose the case for advertising have summed up their arguments, if you support the case for advertising and want to rewrite that section then boldly go do so - one tack would be to try and include a rebuttal for each of the major arguments against advertising. I'm tempted to add that the depth and quality of the case against is symptomatic of one of the arguments against advertising, a large proportion of the community care deeply about this issue and even if you think we are wrong it makes sense to ask yourself "are the other advantages of advertising so great that you can afford to lose a large part of the community?". ϢereSpielChequers 22:16, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: Moved to Wikipedia:Funding Wikipedia through advertisements. People agree that Wikipedia:Advertisements is unclear, and the new title seems to be the most popular of the suggested alternatives. Mr S. and Timeshifter agree that it's not ambiguous. EdJohnston (talk) 21:15, 14 August 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia:AdvertisementsWikipedia:Advertisements in Wikipedia – It is easy to link to this page by mistake, either when intending our policy on advertising at Wikipedia:What Wikipedia is not#Wikipedia is not a soapbox or means of promotion or our guideline on spam at Wikipedia:Spam. From checking what links here, quite a few the links that aren't from {{User Noads-alt}} seem to be mistakes, e.g. these: [1][2]. I think this page would be better off as a redirect to Wikipedia:Advertising after the important links (such as at WP:PERENNIAL and in the userbox) are fixed to point to the new title. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 15:28, 4 August 2013 (UTC)

The move sounds good to me. --Timeshifter (talk) 17:00, 4 August 2013 (UTC)
I like it, too, because it narrows the scope to be closer to what is in the essay now. That still leaves a distinction between advertising disguised as an article (a legal liability for the Wikimedia Foundation, forbidden, and unpaid) and paid advertising, but the proposed title is still an improvement. Nick Levinson (talk) 17:32, 4 August 2013 (UTC)
I now think that we need an absolutely clear title. How about "Funding Wikipedia through advertisements". --Timeshifter (talk) 08:02, 13 August 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment "Advertisements on Wikipedia" sounds better to me than "Advertisements in Wikipedia" [considering this is a website, rather than a physical encyclopedia]. Is this an ENGVAR thing? -- tariqabjotu 05:19, 12 August 2013 (UTC)
    Probably. I use "on" and "in" interchangeably in this context, so I'd be happy to go with "Advertisements on Wikipedia" if you think it is more natural. I don't have any strong preference for one over the other, as long as we move the page to a title that is more easily distinguished from WP:Advertising. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 06:49, 12 August 2013 (UTC)
Either preposition is fine and creating a redirect from the unused title will solve the uncertainty about what readers will seek. Nick Levinson (talk) 14:58, 12 August 2013 (UTC) (Corrected wording & changed indentation: Nick Levinson (talk) 15:02, 12 August 2013 (UTC))
"On" sounds more correct to me, but I am only going by what feels right. I don't know if one is actually more correct or not. --Timeshifter (talk) 19:24, 12 August 2013 (UTC)
Well, we have meta:Advertising on Wikipedia... maybe we should maintain consistency, if no other reason. -- tariqabjotu 22:42, 12 August 2013 (UTC)

Comment. Please be sure to leave a redirect from the old name to the new name. Please do not redirect it to the disambiguation page. The hatnote at the top of this article points to the disambiguation page. The people who have been linking to the correct page should not be penalized. Most people have been linking correctly. Let the fewer readers following the incorrect links have to take the extra step of reading the hatnote and following the link from there to the disambiguation page. We shouldn't make the readers following the majority of correct links be the ones having to take extra steps. --Timeshifter (talk) 19:24, 12 August 2013 (UTC)

I don't want the existing links to be broken either, but I think that your suggestion would make the links counterintuitive. This would give us two titles, Wikipedia:Advertising and Wikipedia:Advertisements, that mean exactly the same thing, and yet point to pages about different subjects. This isn't much of an improvement from the current situation, in my opinion. I'm willing to go through and fix existing links so that they link to the essay rather than to the disambiguation page. There aren't actually that many of them - of the ~870 links to the page, about 700 are from userboxes, so there are only 150 or so that I would need to inspect. Would that address your concerns? — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 06:28, 13 August 2013 (UTC)
That would work, but the userboxes are important too. Maybe you can change those too. Or leave a note on the userbox talk pages. --Timeshifter (talk) 07:57, 13 August 2013 (UTC)
Yes, I would change the userboxes too. I didn't include them in the count as it will only take a single edit to change all of them. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 09:03, 13 August 2013 (UTC)
Mr. Stradivarius. Please comment on my suggestion higher up for a clear name per Nick Levinson. I think "Funding Wikipedia through advertisements" would be clearer. I would hate for you to make all these changes to all the links, and then have them end up all being double redirects later after a future move request. --Timeshifter (talk) 21:33, 13 August 2013 (UTC)
I like "Wikipedia:Funding Wikipedia through advertisements" a lot, because it resolves ambiguity that there would be between "Wikipedia:Advertisements in Wikipedia" and e.g. Template:Wikipedia ads. I think you're right that we should go for a name that is absolutely clear. If no-one else has any objections, I think we should go with it. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 01:52, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

Requested move 2. Funding Wikipedia through advertisements[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the proposal was procedural close. There's no problem with you disagreeing with the requested move proposal immediately above, changing your mind and striking your previous !vote, modifying it, adding to it, and so on, to voice your opinion that rather than the target chosen by the nominator, you think the target should be a different title. However, the way to do so is in that discussion, not in a second proposal while the first one is still pending. Having two open RM discussions about the same title's move is highly confusing and procedurally untenable.--Fuhghettaboutit (talk) 22:13, 12 August 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia:AdvertisementsWikipedia:Funding Wikipedia through advertisements

Per Nick Levinson in the previous talk section, this proposed article title is more clear. Nick wrote: "distinction between advertising disguised as an article (a legal liability for the Wikimedia Foundation, forbidden, and unpaid) and paid advertising." --Timeshifter (talk) 19:30, 12 August 2013 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Wikipedia Zero Ads[edit]

Wikipedia Zero has some banners on the bottom of the page and to test that it is caused by no malware I tested with a few online services that takes snapsots of the pages current status. Here is an example:

Screenshot from

Mavromatis (talk) 22:32, 22 September 2017 (UTC)