Courtesy of Google, the nonprofit Wikimedia Foundation has received a significant gift. Google donated $2 million to the organization, which is responsible for keeping Wikipedia up and running.
Unsurprisingly, both men seemed happy. In terms of what this should mean to the Wikimedia Foundation, $2 million is a big deal. The goal of the 2009/2010 Annual Fundraiser (which ended on January 5th) was only $7.5 million, so Google has supplied enough money to cover over three months’ expenses.
Of course, the donation might not be entirely unselfish; Google and the Wikimedia Foundation have some common goals relating to "free and open information." Also, donations to the Wikimedia Foundation are tax-deductible.
Still, the Wikimedia Foundation is determined "to keep Wikipedia free of ads," and Wikipedia is in direct competition with Google Knol (if "competition" is a fair word when Wikipedia’s winning by a huge margin). So it’s hard to be too cynical about Google’s gift.