The Wikimedia Foundation, which owns and operates Wikipedia, announced that it will no longer accept cryptocurrencies as donation payments effective Sunday, May 1. The firm decided to stop accepting the payment method based on the feedback received from the community. The community also put it up to the vote, each giving their reasons for and against the cryptocurrency. The Wikimedia Foundation also announced the closure of its BitPay account. This action will make it impossible for the organization to accept cryptocurrencies going forward.
The Wikimedia Foundation first began accepting cryptocurrencies in 2014. Lisa Seitz-Gruwell, Chief Advancement Officer at the Wikimedia Foundation, described donating via cryptocurrency as “simple and inclusive”. At the time, there were 13 payment options, with bitcoin becoming the 14th payment method. The decision to accept bitcoin was made after careful research, advice from knowledgeable external entities, and a partnership with Coinbase.
At that time bitcoin was not as famous as it is today. The cryptocurrency was trending towards the tail-end of 2014 at around $300 for a coin. But in just a few years, the value of the coin will skyrocket. At the same time, it was forcefully brought into the public eye. This will also increase its volatility. Bitcoin has had its fair share of ups and downs. Its peak reached $66,974 during October 2022. As of May 2022, the price of bitcoin is approximately $38,500 USD.
Although there are people who are firm believers in bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, a large part is still skeptical. There is good reason for this. For the time being, the Wikimedia Foundation will not accept cryptocurrency donations. This will close this chapter. The cryptocurrency space is always evolving and big changes are definitely coming. With these changes, there is always the possibility that cryptocurrency may once again become an accepted form of payment for your donations on Wikipedia.