The nonprofit behind Wikipedia says the search giant is one of the first to buy its commercial services to the Wikimedia Enterprise.
The Wikimedia Foundation launched its business services for businesses, the Wikimedia Enterprise, last year. It allows customers who reuse Wikipedia resources and Wikimedia projects in large quantities to access their content more efficiently.
Rather than relying on free data aggregators and publicly available APIs to collect information from Wikipedia web pages, Wikimedia Enterprise allows customers to use APIs that are more appropriate to broadcast information at a much larger scale.
The service also allows customers to retrieve updates for the content they use, which helps prevent outdated or inaccurate information from appearing across the web outside of Wikipedia.
Google uses Wikimedia services in several ways. It includes the information cards that appear on the side of search results pages when you search for people, places, or things within Google’s huge database.
Also, Wikipedia is one of the sources that the search giant frequently uses to populate information into information cards.
Google also cites Wikipedia for the dashboards it adds to some YouTube videos to combat misinformation and conspiracy theories.
Google pays Wikimedia for better access to information
As Wikimedia and Wikipedia projects continue to grow, knowledge from Wikimedia sites is increasingly being used to power other sites and products.
The Wikimedia Enterprise service is designed to make it easier for these entities to share Wikimedia content widely in ways that best suit their needs.
The Wikimedia Enterprise provides a feed of real-time content updates across Wikimedia projects, guaranteed uptime, and other system requirements beyond what is freely available in publicly available APIs.
It is not clear how Google’s new partnership might affect the user side. Tim Palmer, Google’s Managing Director of Search Partnerships, commented that we look forward to deepening our partnership with the Wikimedia Foundation through the Wikimedia Enterprise service.
- Google has made donations to the Wikimedia Foundation in the past. But this is the first time that you become an actual customer with them.
- The Wikimedia Foundation has also announced that the Internet Archive has also become a customer of the Wikimedia Enterprise service. The Wayback Machine database is operated by the nonprofit Internet Archive.
- This database maintains snapshots of websites, allowing you to take a look at deleted or changed information.
Wikipedia used the Wayback Machine to fix over 9 million broken links in the free encyclopedia. Wikimedia Enterprise is freely available to non-profit organizations to support their mission to digitize knowledge resources.
The Wikimedia Foundation apparently gets some money from the Wikimedia Enterprise service. But it expects its service to make up a small portion of its revenue.