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Here you can find a collection of frequently asked questions for the “Wikipedia for World Heritage” project.


Why UNESCO World Heritage?

Wikipedia is an international project and therefore to apply for the UNESCO World Heritage status seems appropriate.

The UNESCO World Heritage agreement is the most successful agreement on the protection of culture and nature that the international community has ever reached. Over 180 countries have signed the UNESCO agreement from 1972 for the protection of world heritage. No other UNESCO project gets as much attention from the german public as the UNESCO World Heritage.

Wikipedia is located in the USA and the operator of Wikipedia is the Wikimedia Foundation. Is WMF ok with the project?

The idea was developed in Germany, but we always intended it to be an international project. We presented the idea at the Wikimedia Chapters Conference and received positive feedback only. Today we know that there are many chapters from all over the world who are going to take part in the "Wikipedia for World Heritage" project. Of course, the Wikimedia Foundation is informed.

Is there a benefit for Wikipedia?

  1. appreciation for Wikipedians
  2. higher attention for Wikipedia in the public
  3. inform about and elucidate free knowledge
  4. increasing awareness of free knowledge
  5. to protect free knowledge and access to it

Which UNESCO World Heritage criteria does Wikipedia meet?

Wikipedia meets many of the UNESCO criteria, e.g. "the site represents a masterpiece of human creative genius". However, it is not our main objective to meet single UNESCO criteria but to emphasize the project as the greatest ever collection of human knowledge, collected and supplemented by many people from all over the world. It is not only a success story in the history of the internet, but a success story for a paradigm change in the treatment of free knowledge. Therefore we deem Wikipedia ready to join the ranks of other UNESCO World Heritage sites. ten.wikipedia.org is the global focal point on the initiative for the WM Chapters and other interested people.

What exactly are you trying to protect?

We are trying to protect the biggest constantly evolving collection of human knowledge that is open to everyone. It is important for us to secure free access to this project in the future and to keep it free from ads.

Why does Wikipedia not use the formal way of application?

The formal way is rather time consuming and only possible via national states. We are taking this way as well, but we think that a petition signed by many people all over the world is a wonderful representive for the idea behind Wikipedia.

Which goals you are trying to achieve?

We want to create awareness and acceptance. Additonally we want to use the chance and educate people regarding the idea of free knowledge.

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