Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2006-10-02/In the news

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The Wikipedia Signpost

Wikipedia in the news

By Trödel, October 2, 2006

Wikipedia quality initiative tested on German Wikipedia

CIO magazine covered the flagging system that will be tested on the German Wikipedia (see also Deutsch Hauptseite) that has been called a "stable version" feature. Implementation is described as "users who have been registered for four days or more will be able to flag a recent entry as being correct and unvandalized... People will be able to update the entry with new material, but it won’t be visible as part of the main entry until another trusted contributor has flagged the updates as being correct." However, Wales is quoted as saying, "The exact details are still being worked out and the flagging system may be updated even after it goes live, depending on what works best."

International Wikipedia

At Red Hat's Knowledge Symposium in New Delhi, Computer Reseller News (CRN) India reported that Wikipedia was used as an example of what can be accomplished with the "open source model, based on collaboration and sharing of knowledge." New Wikipedias in Indian languages were also announced at the symposium.

CyberMedia News reported that Jimmy Wales, speaking at Infovison 2006 in Bangalore, India, reconfirmed Wikipedia's commitment to its "anyone can edit" tagline. Wales spoke about the flagging system (above) and lamented that content in Indian languages is minimal. Additionally, India eNews reported that the Bengali Wikipedia had crossed the 10,000 article milestone in September after having only "500 articles in March 2006."

Reputation of Wikipedia

American Chronicle reported on an interview with Encyclopædia Britannica's Director of Corporate Communications, Tom Panelas. "Britannica has indeed become an alternative - not just to Wikipedia but to all of the unreliable information ... on the Internet," Panalas said. He also defended EB's approach, "It's a myth that professionally edited reference works are limited or elitist. ...[Our] rigorous editorial method ... produces an excellent balance in perspective."

Arizona State University's online campus newspaper, the Web Devil carried an article and an editorial on Wikipedia's reliability. The article, titled Database a deceitful academic source discussed the pros and cons of using Wikipedia in doing research. Meanwhile, the editorial challenged not only Wikipedia's reliability but the validity of information available on the internet in general.

Local impact of Wikipedia

The Boston Globe reported on the impact Wikipedia articles have on local towns. The suburbs of Newton, Framingham and Medfield are mentioned, along with interviews of local politicians and their view of the content available on Wikipedia. Local residents, and Wikipedians, Tom Parmenter and Brian Corr were interviewed for the article, noting that a sentence Parmenter "wrote three years ago... has survived hundreds of cyber editors." Corr mentioned the addictive nature of Wikipedia, "It does tend to suck you in a bit."

Other articles

  • The New York Times, in an article on Fred Turner, reports that Turner feels that Wikipedia "can be traced to [the] idea" of a "peer-to-peer, collaborative society, interlinked by invisible currents of energy and information."
  • An article in The Guardian, by Seth Finkelstein, titled I'm on Wikipedia, get me out of here discussed the impact vandalism to the Seth Finkelstein article had on him. Finkelstein argues that the potential for vandalism should justify deletion because "any libel, defamation, or smear... will be made prominent about the person, and reputation-laundered with the institutional status of an encyclopedia."
  • The Shenandoah Valley Herald referenced Wikipedia's article on slacklining in its article on the activity.

Also this week: More CSD

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