Jimmy Wales at Wikia HQ

Wikia co-founder Jimmy Wales at our San Francisco HQ (photo by Monica Semergiu)

On Wednesday, we were treated to a visit from Jimmy Wales, the co-founder of Wikia and Wikipedia, in our San Francisco office. When Jimmy co-founded Wikia, it started off as a broader spinoff of Wikipedia, one that would allow people to create their own wiki communities. He once said that if Wikipedia is the encyclopedia, then Wikia is the rest of the library. Now, Wikia is home to the greatest superfans in the world, and, with the launch of Fandom, it sits at the center of pop culture. So we were thrilled to have Jimmy speak to us this week in an open forum, where he shared his thoughts about Wikia and the future of Fandom. Wikia staff asked a volley of questions about all aspects of Wikia to get Jimmy's unique perspective on our company and your communities.

Having always been a proponent of a post-professional editorial world and the democratization of knowledge, Jimmy is especially excited by the Fan Contributor Program and how "you don't have to be a Buzzfeed writer to create shareable content." Now, you can be a fan whose voice can be heard by millions of people around the web. "It's harder to ignore us," Jimmy said, remarking on the inevitability that "a Fandom contributor will break a news story. Give people the tools and they'll do it."

Fandom is still brand new, and we all have an eye towards the future. Everyone wants to know, what will Fandom look like tomorrow, or next month, or next year? As our product developers continue to evolve Fandom, one staff member asked Jimmy what features he would like to see. He is especially interested to see what tools Fandom will continue to develop for new contributors. "I'm really excited about Fandom," Jimmy said, "and what it offers for new contributors to start writing."

Photos by Monica Semergiu

As always, it was such a treat for Jimmy to stop by and share his thoughts about where we've been and where we're going. It's always gratifying to know that the person at the forefront of online collaboration is excited about the future of Wikia.

Sometime in the future, we would also love to set up a live Q&A session for our fans. In the meantime, stay tuned for all the latest updates on the future of Fandom!

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