Q: Is Wikipedia related to WikiLeaks in any way?

A: No. The Wikimedia Foundation and Wikipedia have no affiliation with WikiLeaks. Although both use the term “wiki” in their name, they have always been completely separate and unaffiliated.

The word “wiki” refers to a website built using collaborative editing software. Hundreds of organizations and projects with no affiliation with Wikipedia or the Wikimedia Foundation also use the term, including wikiHow and WikiEducator.

Wikipedia and the Wikimedia Foundation’s history predates, and is independent from, WikiLeaks. Wikipedia was founded in January 2001 by Jimmy Wales, while WikiLeaks was founded in October 2006 by Julian Assange. Wikipedia is developed by thousands of volunteers from around the world with support from the United States based nonprofit organization Wikimedia Foundation.

WikiLeaks has been involved in some large stories related to politics recently, and there has been some resulting confusion due to the similarities in our names. A member of Congress confused Wikipedia and WikiLeaks in a televised interview, prompting many news stories about the mistake. A news anchor also mixed them up. But never fear. You can save yourself any possible embarrassment by remembering a simple fact: We are not related.

As a 501(c)(3), the Wikimedia Foundation does not support or oppose political candidates.

Q: What are you doing to make sure Wikipedia stays neutral?

A: The Wikimedia Foundation does not create or curate the contents of Wikipedia or the other educational sites we manage; instead, this work is done by a vast community of volunteers. The crowdsourced work of tens of thousands of editors helps to check and balance Wikipedia. Content is not created, reviewed or controlled by a central authority, but rather by anyone from the public who is interested in joining in to spread knowledge. Those tens of thousands of editors make updates of all kinds—including checks and balances on subjectivity—continuously (Wikipedia is edited, on average, 200–300 times a minute). This community of editors holds neutrality as one of its main ideals.

All encyclopedic content on Wikipedia must be written from a neutral point of view (NPOV), which means representing fairly, proportionately, and, as far as possible, without editorial bias, all of the significant views that have been published by reliable sources on a topic. From the English Wikipedia’s policy on NPOV (current as of May 2019):

[Neutral point of view] is a fundamental principle of Wikipedia and of other Wikimedia projects. It is also one of Wikipedia’s three core content policies; the other two are “Verifiability” and “No original research“. These policies jointly determine the type and quality of material that is acceptable in Wikipedia articles, and, because they work in harmony, they should not be interpreted in isolation from one another. Editors are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with all three.

The policy adds that it “is non-negotiable, and the principles upon which it is based cannot be superseded by other policies or guidelines, nor by editor consensus.”

You can find more information on neutral point of view policies and processes on the English Wikipedia.

Q: If you don’t create the content, what do you do?

A: It’s a great question, and one we are always happy to answer. We build and operate technology to make sure Wikipedia is available to everyone, everywhere, across devices, and in nearly 300 languages. For instance, our engineers built a content translation tool that has helped editors add thousands of articles to Wikipedia websites  in other languages. We engineer privacy for our readers and editors so they can safely and securely explore Wikipedia. We create programs and initiatives to make Wikipedia freely available to more people in more parts of the world. We build new tools for the community of editors so they can continue to improve and grow Wikipedia. Roughly a quarter of our budget goes to supporting the community that make the site possible, including through grantmaking programs that enable volunteers and enrich the information on the sites.

More frequently asked questions about the Wikimedia Foundation are answered on our website. For questions about fundraising, please contact donate@wikimedia.org. Send press questions about Wikipedia and the Wikimedia Foundation to press@wikimedia.org.

This post was last updated in May 2019.

Related — Related

Read further in the pursuit of knowledge

A group of men celebrate with the World Cup trophy amidst a shower of confetti

Wikipedia Year in Review

Wikipedia’s most-popular articles of 2018 show that pop culture rules over us all

People visited Wikipedia over 190 billion times in 2018 alone, many motivated by the encyclopedia’s wealth of in-depth articles about topics you didn’t know enough about. But in looking at the English Wikipedia’s most-popular articles of 2018, it’s clear that one motivation reigned supreme. People wanted to keep up with the popular culture moments happening….

Community Gender gap Wikipedia

Five ways academics can contribute to Wikipedia

In recent weeks, the world learned about Dr. Donna Strickland, only the third woman to be awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics. It also learned that Wikipedia lacked an article on Strickland amongst its over five million articles. Wikipedia subsequently received justifiable criticism for its low percentage of female editors, its editing culture, and its….

Community From the archives Offline access Wikipedia

Offline-Pedia converts old televisions into Wikipedia readers

There are villages in the Ecuadorian Andes that are so small you cannot find them on a map. Cajas Juridica is one such place, located just 13km north of the equator. But two engineering students, Joshua Salazar and Jorge Vega, and the staff of Yachay Tech University have figured out a way to give discarded….

Help us unlock the world’s knowledge.

As a nonprofit, Wikipedia and our related free knowledge projects are powered primarily through donations.

Donate

Connect — Connect

Stay up-to-date about the Wikimedia Foundation

Get email updates

Subscribe to news about ongoing projects and initiatives.

Contact a human

Questions about the Wikimedia Foundation or our projects? Get in touch with our team.

Photo credits

wikimania_2016_-_group_photo_02

Niccolò Caranti

CC BY-SA 4.0

NYU library2 crop

Detroit Publishing Company/restored by Durova

Public domain

Offline-Pedia-screenshot

University Yachay Tech

CC BY-SA 4.0