Wikimedia Deutschland e.V. is the German local chapter in the Wikimedia community. It is a registered organization under German law (Verein), recognized as a charity organization and tax-exempt. The purpose of the Verein is to support the creation, collection and distribution of Open Content in a non-profit way, to support the equal opportunity to access to knowledge and the education. In terms of the Verein Open content is all work that has been placed by their creators under a license that allows everybody to distribute these works for free and to modify these works.
The Verein’s purpose is to be pursued by:
i) the operation and the funding of operation of online systems for creation, collection and distribution, respectively, of Free Content. The main focus lies on the several international Wikimedia projects;
ii) the distribution and support of distribution of Free Content by other means, e.g., in digital or printed form, with focus on the contents of the international Wikimedia projects;
iii) the acquisition, making available und distribution of information and public relations work relating to Free Content, Wikis and the various Wikimedia projects, through events or information literature; and
iv) resolving scientific, social, cultural and legal questions relating to Free Content and Wikis, e.g. with expert opinions, surveys, and awarding of scholarships.
While being a local chapter in the Wikimedia movement, it is an independent entity separate to the Wikimedia Foundation in San Francisco which is the worldwide operator of servers and owner of the trademarks. The Verein currently has 45 employees (including part-time employees, interns and students) and more than 2.400 members. It operates in a country with one of the largest communities of Wikipedia authors, mostly contributing to the second largest language edition in Wikipedia, the German one.