Friday, October 04, 2013

Looking for Wiki Donor ...

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda

I said I am looking for Wiki Donor …
You probably mistook it to be... Vicki donor ...

That is Rhymed confusion .

Write Over the Weekend theme for this week

She said WIKI DONOR.

He /She mistook it to be Vicki Donor .

 Thanks to the Rhymed confusion ... I have now caught your attention.

Please read on ...   

I really am looking for Wiki Donors.

FLASH BACK ...It all started like this.    

 A few years ago, on a cold, grey depressing morning, I called my folks in India from abroad.

 I did not know it was Vijayadashami, an Indian festival celebrating the end of the festivities after nine days of Navaratri. 
The celebrations were in fulll swing at home.

Vijayadashami is the tenth day after Nine days of Navaratri celebrations. In the southern part of india, the day before is Saraswati Pooja, when Saraswati, the Indian goddess of learning is worshipped.

On that day, books, musical instruments, spanners, ledgers, autorickshaws, cars, driving license   and virtually anything that has helped you or will help you  make a living is kept before the goddess and worshipped.

As children it was a day when we did not have to feel guilty if we did not study or do our homework. Because all the books that you needed to study or do your homework were kept before the idol and are being worshipped. 

 The next day, on Vijayadashami, is the day when all learning begins. VIDHYARAMBAM - is how it is traditionally denoted.   All that has been kept for worship from the previous day is taken and put to use. 

Most children start their school on that day. The first alphabet is taught to them on that day.

 On Vijayadashami, Students study, musicians play their instruments, dancers dance, drivers drive,  a mechanic uses his tools to start his work, an accountant makes a new entry to the book of accounts, a programmer writes a line of code and an aspiring author writes a few lines of her work. J

 Vijayadashami is also the day when you visit your Guru ( the teacher), pay your respects and give gurudakshina. A gurudakshina consists of a coconut, betel leafs with areca nut and sure enough some cash or gift for the guru. Students prostrate before the guru and give him/ her their offerings.

It is an ancient tradition. It reminds one to pay gratitude to the source of knowledge, art, tool or whatever that is which helps you earn a living.          

I woke up on one such Vijayadashami day, cold, drepressed and utterly home sick. I did not want miss out on the spirit of the day. There was no music instrument to play, no art to worship and no Guru to visit. I truly felt home sick. I had to cheer myself up. I prepared some sweets and an elaborate lunch to get over the lack of festivity.

After lunch, I opened my laptop.
Having grown amidst the world of information technology, my laptop is what I would consider my basic tool that helps me make my living.   I checked my emails. Nothing much. Just the routine stuff.

And then out of sheer boredom I hit the Wikipedia page to look up what it had to say about Vijayadashami. 
Like most people, I look up the Wikipedia for anything that I want to know and do not know where to ask and whom to ask ?

 Wikipedia had this about Vijayadashami.

But that is not where I stopped. 

 It was this appeal from Jimmy Wales – founder of Wikipedia that caught my eye.

I am not usually very prone to charity.

But this one was a fitting tribute on Vijayadashami day.

On an impulse, I clicked and made an online payment.
I hit Wikipedia everytime I need to know something. 
This was my Gurudakshina for all the knowledge that I have gained in the last few years from Wikipedia. 

Since then, every year I donate online to Wikipedia on Vijayadashami day.

That  makes me a WIKI Donor.

Wikimedia foundation took note of me.  They contacted me. We met and exchanged ideas and information.
Since then I am a fundraising volunteer for Wikipedia.
This is my fund raising effort for Wikipedia.  


Wikipedia runs on donations from users like us.

If it has to be kept free of any commercial and advertising interests, it needs to be sustained by donors like us.

If you are a frequent user of Wikipedia like me, make a pledge to donate to Wikipedia and offer your Gurudakshina on this Vijayadashami day.

The link is simple and easy to use. Just pick up your credit card or debit card and make the payment.If you are a donor who lives in the United States, you can also get a tax exemption.


From Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales
Wikipedia is the #5 site on the web and serves 500 million different people every month – with billions of page views.
Commerce is fine. Advertising is not evil. But it doesn't belong here. Not in Wikipedia.
Wikipedia is something special. It is like a library or a public park. It is like a temple for the mind. It is a place we can all go to think, to learn, to share our knowledge with others.
When I founded Wikipedia, I could have made it into a for-profit company with advertising banners, but I decided to do something different. We’ve worked hard over the years to keep it lean and tight. We fulfill our mission efficiently.
If everyone reading this donated $3, our fundraiser would be done within an hour. But not everyone can or will donate. And that's fine. Each year just enough people decide to give.
This year, please consider making a donation of ₹100, ₹200, ₹300 or whatever you can to protect and sustain Wikipedia.
Jimmy Wales
Wikipedia Founder


 According to Patricia  who works for the fund raising division of Wikipedia, Indians are the heaviest users of Wikipedia followed by the Japanese.

 NOW .. don’t be a free rider J

Donate generously by clicking here.   

Knowledge is free. Let it stay that way.


Be a WIKI Donor.           


On this Vijayadashami day do a good deed. Forward this portion of the content to anyone who uses Wikipedia  and urge them for the Gurudakshina.



  1. nicely written

  2. Jayanthi,

    Your post was inspiring.

    It made me a Wiki-Donor.

    I just did it.

    Thanks & Regards,

  3. Thank you Sandeep. I am happy my writing inspired you to become a Wiki Donor.


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