Open Knowledge Association (OKA)
Disseminating free content on Wikipedia and open platforms through targeted funding
We are a non-profit organization dedicated to improving Wikipedia and other open platforms. We do so by providing monthly stipends to full-time contributors and translators.
We pragmatically prioritize work that generates the most impact. To maximize returns on our donors’ funds and decrease systematic bias, we hire content writers from countries underrepresented among Wikipedia editors.
Our processes are public. Our work is transparent. Our freelancers have a high-level of autonomy. We are based in Switzerland and recognized as a tax-exempt organization with a public utility purpose.
Wikipedia was mostly written by volunteers. But sometimes they need a bit of help.
So far, we have created 1,500+ new articles on Wikipedia, which generate 3.5m views per year.
What makes us different
Wikipedia relies entirely on volunteers to create and maintain its content. That often works well, but there are tasks that volunteers don’t enjoy doing, and topics where volunteers are missing.
For example, articles in topics such as Science, technology, engineering, and Finance are lacking compared to topics such as History, Geography, and Humanities. Content from non-anglophone countries is underrepresented. Hundreds of thousands of high-quality articles are not translated.
With targeted funding, these opportunities can be addressed for high impact with very limited costs.
But even when paid, Wikipedia editors need to enjoy what they do. Otherwise quality suffers. That’s why we strive to provide as much autonomy and ownership to our freelancers as possible, just like regular volunteers. They use their own account for all edits, and are responsible to maintain the articles they create.
Where we focus
It’s still early days for us, so we need to focus our efforts in selected areas.
We prioritize translations over new content, which requires significantly less time to achieve similar results. We leverage Machine Learning tools for initial drafts to minimize manual work.
We concentrate on the English Wikipedia to reach larger audiences. We prioritize high-quality articles in topics for which content ages well, so that they remain up-to-date.
Currently, our team consists of 10 full-time translators covers English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian and German. We are currently hiring translators for other languages such as Russian, Japanese, Dutch, and Turkish.
How we get funding
Currently, the majority of our funding comes from our founders and from individuals, but we also accept donations from other charities, government entities, and companies.
If they wish to, our donors can specify the area in which they want their money to be spent. For example, a local government may want its donation to be dedicated to the translation of articles related to their region. A company may wish us to focus on articles related to their industry.
But they are not allowed to influence the work of our editors under any circumstances. Our editors retain complete editorial freedom and are asked to ensure objectivity.
More details about who we are and how we work.
Help finance one of our grants. We accept all major currencies.
Want to learn more or explore partnership opportunities?