Wikipedia co-founder says that involving crypto with the platform is insane

on Feb 22, 2020
Updated: Sep 20, 2022
  • The co-founder of Wikipedia stated that he has no intention of adding crypto to online encyclopedya.
  • He is concerned that doing so would bring bad content creators who would be after the profits.
  • He is still not against cryptos, but he believes that their use cases are not what Wikipedia needs

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Jimmy Wales, the co-founder of Wikipedia, recently attended the CoinGeek Conference in London. During the conference, Wales spoke about cryptocurrencies, stating that they do not have a single practical use-case that would convince him that they could contribute to Wikipedia in any way.

Quite the opposite, in fact, he is concerned that crypto would damage the way that the platform has been operating for all the years since its creation.

Wales said that he did dedicate some serious thought to the idea, and he tried to distinguish between the ideological and practical nature of cryptos. However, his conclusions did not change. He already declined numerous proposals from crypto supporters and advocates who wanted him to consider the possibility of rewarding content creations through microtransactions.

He repeated that it would be a bad idea, and that would not actually work. He said taking something that is a bad idea and putting it on the blockchain does not make it a good idea. Instead, Wikipedia, as it is right now, relies on volunteer experts and enthusiasts, who add and edit content, check facts, remove irrelevant or inaccurate materials, and alike.

Why is adding crypto to Wikipedia a bad idea?

Adding cryptos would allow companies and people to pay for the content that they want to be on Wikipedia, which would be taking a step back, as Wales sees it. Further, if editors and creators were to stake cryptocurrency, Wikipedia could see serious harm. It would be like saying that people have to pay or put their own money at risk in order to be allowed to edit the platform.

Next, if the platform had people deposit the money, that could lead to the exclusion of experts and enthusiasts who are adding content out of interest in the topic. Instead, there would be people who are after the earnings, which would lead to competitions, inaccurate entries, and alike.

Still, Wales is not against cryptocurrency, only against this kind of use. He stated that he had no problem if the platform were to accept donations in different forms of crypto. After all, Wikipedia is a charity, and it accepted BTC donations since 2014.


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