Submissions/Fundraising: Under the Hood

From Wikimania 2012 • Washington, D.C., USA

This is an accepted submission for Wikimania 2012.

Submission no.


Title of the submission
Fundraising: Under the Hood
Type of submission (workshop, tutorial, panel, presentation)
Author of the submission
Katie Horn
E-mail address
khorn AT wikimedia DOT org
Khorn (WMF)
Country of origin
Affiliation, if any (organization, company etc.)
Wikimedia Foundation
Personal homepage or blog
Abstract (at least 300 words to describe your proposal)

One of the goals of the fundraising team is to keep the process as simple as possible for all our potential donors. I plan to present a picture of the path a typical donation takes through our systems, by actually building out a literal picture of our current donation pipeline piece-by-piece. As our typical donation progresses through the pipeline, we will add on icon representing that component to our picture until we have built out a diagram linking all the major front and backend components of the fundraising system. Each new component will come with a relatively brief overview of that component's purpose, how it works, and how it interacts with the surrounding components in the pipeline. Our initial picture of how the process works will start very simple, and become more detailed as the presentation goes on.

Some of those components include:

  • The CentralNotice extension
    Okay, technically speaking, CentralNotice is probably more like the gas in the tank, than a part of the actual engine: Through a neverending series of tests comprised of banners and associated appeals, the role of CentralNotice in the fundraising pipeline is sending potential donors to the start of the pipeline.
  • The DonationInterface extension
    DonationInterface is a component that contains many distinct mechanisms, but all with a common focus: To allow a donor to make a payment through a third-party payment processor. As the component that contains all of the payment forms, this is the last piece of the pipeline that the typical donor will touch directly.
  • The payment gateways
    A payment gateway is an object whose sole purpose is to provide communication between the rest of DonationInterface, and one of our payment processors (currently, Globalcollect or PayflowPro).
  • Fraud Prevention mechanisms
    No two payment processors handle fraud identification and prevention in the same way, or have the ability to take advantage of all the data we have. For the sake of both consistency and increased functionality, we have our own fraud prevention system. This system is also internal to DonationInterface.
  • Various message queues
    There are times in the process where, in order to prevent our donors from experiencing prohibitively long delays, we have to send some data to a queue for continued processing as soon as one of our other components can get to it. I will explain what these are, and where we use them to get data from one distinct system to another.
  • Queue consumers
    These pieces of our puzzle are made to periodically look at specific queues for data to process, and chew through anything it might find there as fast as it can.
  • IPN (and other) listeners
    With some payment methods, it is impossible for us to keep track of the donation on our end, because all the information is collected at a third party website (like paypal). For payment types that behave this way, payment processors notify us when they receive a payment from a donor, through a message listener that we set up to sit around and wait for notifications like those.
  • Orphan Rectifier
    You'll have to wait for the presentation to find out what this one does!
Track (Wikis and the Public Sector; GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives, and Museums); WikiCulture and Community; Research, Analysis, and Education; Technology and Infrastructure)
Technology and Infrastructure. Probably.
Length of presentation/talk (if other than 25 minutes, specify how long)
25 Minutes
Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?
Slides or further information (optional)

The actual building of the diagram will either be done in a standard slideshow, or it could potentially be built on a suitable blank wall with physical components (if the room itself isn't terribly huge).

Special request as to time of presentations (for example - can not present on Saturday)

Interested attendees

If you are interested in attending this session, please sign with your username below. This will help reviewers to decide which sessions are of high interest. Sign with four tildes. (~~~~).

  1. Add your username here.
  2. Marclaporte (talk) 06:00, 11 March 2012 (UTC)[reply]