Ask LH: Are Wikipedia Donations Tax-Deductible In Australia?

Dear Lifehacker, Wikipedia frequently runs annual funding drives, which makes me wonder: are Wikipedia donations tax deductible within Australia? And should I be donating to the main site or the Australian chapter? Thanks, Wikipedia Supporter

Dear WS,

The short answer is “no”. Despite being a not-for-profit organisation and registered charity, donations to the Wikipedia Foundation are not tax deductable in this country. To get a deduction for a donation, the organisation must be registered as a Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR), as explained on the ATO website:

Charities can receive tax deductible gifts provided the organisation is a DGR. Some charities are not DGRs and therefore cannot receive tax deductible gifts.

Unfortunately, neither Wikipedia nor Wikimedia Australia are currently on this list and therefore are not tax deductible. That said, if we’re talking a small amount I’d be tempted to claim it anyway. The chances of the taxman coming after you for $80 or so are pretty negligible.

Alternatively, you can check out this list of DGRs that will let you claim a reduction. The closest equivalent is probably the Australian Library and Information Association which is committed to building a strong network of library and information services for Australians.


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