The Wikimedia Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to advancing open-source knowledge initiatives, has announced the release of a new Wikimedia Enterprise API. This API, which will be available for a fee, is intended to solve technical problems for enterprise users while also helping to fund the work of maintaining free knowledge ecosystems.
The intention behind releasing a fee-based API Platform is not to restrict access to Wikimedia content, but rather to provide a more robust mechanism for data access that sits alongside existing free options. The Wikimedia Enterprise API will provide access to standardized Wikimedia data feeds which will enable faster access to content, improve machine readability, and simplify the process of updating content.
The announcement of the API provides a solid context for the mutual benefit provided by this Resource to businesses and the Wikimedia ecosystems alike:
“... what many of the largest commercial technology organizations require in order to effectively utilize Wikimedia content goes beyond what we currently provide. Consequently, each of these large companies independently re- Builds Wikimedia project data internally to address their very similar use-cases. This significant investment is not only duplicated effort but also represents resources spent within each company rather than in support of the free knowledge ecosystem.”
The foundation has noted that it is committed to using all funds generated via the Enterprise API to directly support the Wikimedia mission via the development of resources such as this API. A fee structure has not been established and the foundation is exploring factors such as the volume of content reuse as a potential metric that may factor into the cost.