Critics will harp on the obvious - that $2 million is a rounding error at Google - but news this morning that the search giant has awarded a grant in that amount to Wikipedia can only be seen as a positive development.
From Wikipedia's press release:
The Wikimedia Foundation, the non-profit that operates Wikipedia, today announced that it has received a $2 million (USD) grant from the Google Inc. Charitable Giving Fund of Tides Foundation. This is the Wikimedia Foundation's first grant from Google. The funds will support core operational costs of the Wikimedia Foundation, including investments in technical infrastructure to support rapidly-increasing global traffic and capacity demands. The funds will also be used to support the organization's efforts to make Wikipedia easier to use and more accessible.
Wikipedia's flaws are well known but its importance as a resource cannot be overstated. That it has had to scrounge for operating funds says said more about the difficulty of running a non-profit organization than it does the online encyclopedia's deficiencies. Here's hoping this Google grant marks the beginning of fuller coffers in the future.