It's westward ho for Wikimedia Foundation

After spending its first four years in St. Petersburg, Fla., the Wikipedia parent organization has announced a move to San Francisco to be closer to business resources like research universities and big media.

The Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit organization that brought forth wiki-based sites like Wikibooks, Wiktionary, Wikispecies, Wikiquote, Wikisource, the Wikimedia Commons, and of course the iconic Wikipedia, is packing up and moving.

The organization announced on Tuesday that at the end of January it will relocate from its longtime home of St. Petersburg, Fla., to the tech hub of San Francisco after choosing from six candidate cities in a search to find a headquarters close to major media, research universities and a thriving technology scene. "(San Francisco's) proximity to Asia in particular is expected to enable the Foundation to form closer ties with volunteers and potential partners in that part of the world," a release from the Wikimedia Foundation explained. "This is a key goal for the Foundation."

The Wikimedia Foundation has been based in St. Petersburg since it was founded by Jimmy Wales in 2003. While it currently only employs six people, the organization has said that new hiring will take place in anticipation of the move to San Francisco.

Wales' for-profit company, Wikia, has offices in San Mateo, Calif., and New York, as well as an overseas branch in Poland.

About the author

Caroline McCarthy, a CNET News staff writer, is a downtown Manhattanite happily addicted to social-media tools and restaurant blogs. Her pre-CNET resume includes interning at an IT security firm and brewing cappuccinos.

 

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