There are reports today that Wikipedia is about to start paying contributors for certain content. This represents a break from their roots as an all-volunteer project. The program, funded by a single donation right now, aims to improve the quality of the illustrations on the site – that’s currently the only thing they have plans to pay people for.
I’ve always found Wikipedia a good place to go for images, and have never felt a lack of good illustrations to be a shortcoming, but I’m for anything that could improve the site.
In other Wikipedia news, more schools have jumped on the banning bandwagon. As researchers who are always looking for authoritative sources, we are all concerned about people relying on Wikipedia too heavily. But blocking access from school computers? Doesn’t seem like the right lesson to be teaching kids.