Talk:Memorandum of Association

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The old goals were:

\item to enable, assist, promote and promulgate wider participation in
the creation, dissemination and expansion of information and educational
resources covering the world's knowledge and languages to all persons,
\item to further the development of electronic, printed, and other resources
required to support such participation;
\item to produce, publish and develop, or cause to be produced, published
and developed, information resources, whether in printed, electronic, or other
\item to make use of or encourage the use of information resources for the
advancement of education;
\item to encourage the adoption of practices and policies to widen education,
participation and dissemination of information worldwide; and
\item to undertake and carry on any other business which may seem to the
Company capable of being conveniently carried on in connection with any of
the above specified objects, or calculated directly or indirectly to
enhance the value of or render profitable any of the Company's property or


I think we should explicitly mention Wikimedia in the goals, in addition to more general goals. It is important that the goals be pretty general so we aren't unnecessarily restricting what we can do. Please make suggestions below (I will make my own at some point). --Tango 00:27, 30 August 2008 (UTC)

Charity considerations[edit source]

Note that to register as a charity in the future these objectives need wholy toward one of the listed charitable purposes,[1] almost certainly "The advancement of education" in our case.

Also they must be toward the "public benefit", which is a quite technical test.[2] These Objects would have to checked against the Charity Commission document in detail. But in summary they are:

  • Principle 1: There must be an identifiable benefit or benefits
    • Principle 1a It must be clear what the benefits are
    • Principle 1b The benefits must be related to the aims
    • Principle 1c Benefits must be balanced against any detriment or harm
  • Principle 2: Benefit must be to the public, or a section of the public
    • Principle 2a The beneficiaries must be appropriate to the aims
    • Principle 2b Where benefit is to a section of the public, the opportunity to benefit must not be unreasonably restricted:
      • by geographical or other restrictions or
      • by ability to pay any fees charged
    • Principle 2c People in poverty must not be excluded from the opportunity to benefit
    • Principle 2d Any private benefits must be incidental

In short, we need to be careful how they are changed. I suspect the originals were checked against these rules by the v1 project.

There are also rules about working internationally, and in particular giving money or other resources to bodies abroad (which might side-step the UK chartiable laws). So we have to be careful how we relate to the Foundation. [3] Rwendland 10:33, 2 September 2008 (UTC)

For information, WMUKv1 specifically chose not to refer in any manner to the Foundation as it was thought likely that it could be easily misunderstood by someone reviewing the submitted document and work against registration. As to making grants to the Foundation we had ascertained that engaging the WMF to do "research" for us could enable us to 'pay' them ("a rose by any other name", etc) and that this would meet UK law requirements. --Alison Wheeler 22:25, 8 September 2008 (UTC)
I notice that the Charity Commission has made a decision covering areas somewhat similar to ours for an organisation in-part "collating and publishing material on a wide range of educational subjects primarily by electronic means".[4] In the decision document the CC discuss the "legal framework for the advancement of education by a charity and of what that extends to in modern society" and "The Scope of Charitable Education Outside of Formal Instruction". This looks like being worth study if we are having difficulty getting charitable status. Rwendland 22:46, 12 December 2009 (UTC)

Wiki text[edit source]

Can we do this in wikitext please. LaTeX does not make for a nice editing experience. --cfp 00:38, 2 September 2008 (UTC)

Yeah, I can convert to LaTeX afterwards (this version is in LaTeX just because the v1.0 versions were and I copy and pasted!). Ignore the currently posted versions, I'm going to put new, plain text, versions up based on the new versions of the models (following the 2006 Acts). --Tango 02:15, 2 September 2008 (UTC)
Cool OK. I wouldn't even bother to convert to LaTeX. It's the document writing equivalent of programming in assembly... --cfp 04:19, 2 September 2008 (UTC)
LaTeX is often the best way to get a well typeset document. What format would you use instead? --Tango 04:36, 2 September 2008 (UTC)
Oh I'm a Microsoft whore. Ease of editing trumps tiny presentational quirks any day. But if you have moral objections to MS I guess Open Office is the next logical one, or in this case, direct save to PDF from wiki mark-up. --cfp 23:38, 2 September 2008 (UTC)
LaTeX is easy enough to edit once you get used to it. There's a mediawiki to PDF converter somewhere? I've never seen one. We could do it in OO and convert to PDF, but I think LaTeX would look much more professional. We can't really edit it once we've sent it to Companies House anyway, not without lots of paperwork, so it's just a one-off use of my time, and I'm happy to do it. --Tango 17:43, 3 September 2008 (UTC)
I agree with using LaTeX, as it looks a lot more professional. We should also have a wikitext version of it, though, so that a copy can be kept here (or on a future WMUK website, which I guess will/should be done by Mediawiki). We can manually create a LaTeX version once it's been checked by ChapCom. Mike Peel 18:43, 16 September 2008 (UTC)
I'm not sure a wikitext version is useful - it's not going to be edited, so why have it in an easily editable format? We can upload a copy as a PDF and link to it. --Tango 20:04, 16 September 2008 (UTC)
A PDF version either takes time to download and open up with another program (at least on a mac), and if you have an embedded PDF reader in your browser then that's normally fairly sluggish, whereas a webpage loads pretty much immediately. It's also a lot more compatible with people's computers, and a lot easier to read on screen (especially if you have a widescreen monitor that doesn't rotate). Mike Peel 20:23, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

Discussions on email list[edit source]

The following key issues are being discussed on the email list:

  • Name
  • Objects
  • Location of Registered Office
  • Powers

I don't think there are any other contentious issues, but please feel free to add any other items.

I'll try to keep the meta updated with any consensus/options that come through on the list. AndrewRT 13:04, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

Suggested changes[edit source]

The Company’s objects (the ‘Objects’) are to promote, maintain, improve and advance education through open knowledge by:

  • promoting freely accessible online educational repositories whose content is freely and collaboratively editable;
  • enabling, assisting, promoting and promulgating wider participation in the, dissemination and expansion of information and educational resources covering the world's knowledge and languages to all persons, everywhere;
  • the producing, publishing and developing educationl resources, in printed, electronic, and other forms;
  • the preservation of British and global audiovisual heritage through online repositories.
  • supporting the charitable work of the Wikimedia Foundation

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Changing the Objects is a long and painful process and needs qualified majority support to be passed. You need to be able to demonstrate that these are significantly better than the current ones. How do you do that with these? AndrewRT 21:14, 4 May 2009 (UTC)
Once we are a registered charity it will also require the permission of the CC. --Tango 22:24, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Typos[edit source]

Could someone replace "foreign is permissible so long as the final decisions over the allocation and use of funds rest with the chapter's Board and supporting that organsation" with "foreign person or organisation is permissible so long as the final decisions over the allocation and use of funds rest with the chapter's Board and supporting that organisation". Thanks WereSpielChequers 15:38, 4 October 2011 (UTC)