Feeds

Taxman denies Wikipedia UK charity status

Decision unlikely to be amended

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

Wiki-fiddling isn't a charitable activity, according to the UK tax man. Revenue and Customs is denying tax privileges that go with charity status to Wikimedia UK, or Wiki UK Limited, as it's officially registered.

Wikimedia requested that because it is "disseminating knowledge", the operating company should receive charitable tax perks, stating its objective is to "aid and encourage people to collect, develop and effectively disseminate knowledge and other educational, cultural and historic content in the public domain or under a license that allows everyone to freely use, distribute and modify content... [blah blah]"

Alas, the tax man didn't agree that merely curating and publishing the world's most intensely-edited [citation needed] compendium of Lightsaber combat and female pornographic film actors doesn't count as education.

"The production of an encyclopaedia is not the charitable advancement of education and has not been accepted as such in law... If the object [should] be the mere increase of knowledge it is not in itself a charitable object unless it is combined with teaching or education," Customs responded in declining the request.

Harsh, or what?

The problem could be solved if, as everyone expects, Wikipedia becomes a commercial operation that doesn't need charitable status. Bono-backed VC company Elevation Partners has chucked $1.35m at Wikipedia, and the Mozilla Foundation provides a workable legal precedent: a non-profit with a commercial wing. License changes are currently being mooted.

But for now, the fiddlers could find ways of making the operation look more edukashnul and that. We suggest Wikia UK establish a British School of Fiddling, in which the public can be tutored in the labyrinthine layers of bureaucracy required to have their edits to "the Encyclopedia anybody can edit" rejected. ®

Using blade systems to cut costs and sharpen efficiencies

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes
Phone egg, meet desktop chicken - your mother
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.