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Wikipedia To Require Revisions Sanctioned By Editors

     

engine

3:53 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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Wikipedia To Require Revisions Sanctioned By Editors [news.bbc.co.uk]
The online encyclopaedia Wikipedia is on the cusp of launching a major revamp to how people contribute to some pages.

The site will require that revisions to pages about living people and some organisations be approved by an editor.

This would be a radical shift for the site, which ostensibly allows anyone to make changes to almost any entry.

The two-month trial, which has proved controversial with some contributors, will start in the next "couple of weeks", according to a spokesperson.

frontpage

4:45 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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I think this is a mistake. The purpose of Wiki is user submitted knowledge -- very democratic. Now, it is likely to end like ODP where editors become autocratic or absent which results in the demise of the product. There have been substantial instances where Wiki has been hamstrung by political zealots deleting unfavorable facts about their cause or candidate already.

Gomvents

6:13 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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I think the whole idea of Wikipedia is flawed. Built by copyright abusers, run by zealots... I think in this case you NEED a profit motive to encourage neutrality. Also, how much can the typical person contribute? Why trust them? Who's fact checking? Also notice how this killed all paid encyclopedias? I'm all for the free flow of knowledge, but not a fan of wikipedia. Look at DMOZ and how that fell apart. People within an organization need clear agendas and oversight.

zett

6:30 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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ODP all over again. How sad.

kaled

6:38 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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Provided no page is the sole domain of a single editor, then it sounds like a good idea to me.

Kaled.

ken_b

6:39 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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Standardized bias, worth striving for?

Silvery

6:44 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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Essentially, this is already happening, though.

Some of the more controversial pages and pages more prone to being defaced with graffiti are getting locked more often. So, as things currently stand, this "new" policy is really just going to standardize existing defacto operating processes.

StoutFiles

7:14 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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This would be a radical shift for the site, which ostensibly allows anyone to make changes to almost any entry.

You can make a change to any entry, but most changes are reviewed and edited anyway. This just makes it so that tampering isn't seen by people before it's reviewed and edited.

The idea of Wikipedia is great and for the most part it is extremely useful if you don't go in to it expecting 100% fact and no biased opinions. However, I'm still waiting for the day when Wikipedia decides to lock down all the free information they've been given and start charging for it.

mack

8:00 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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I can see both sides to this. There is a point where we need to work out where is the line to be drawn between the open concept behind Wikipedia and a safeguard to keep the information as useful as possible. In a perfect world Wikipedia is a great vision. Allow everyone to contribute their knowledge to one universaly accesible pool.

However, we do not live in a perfect world and safety precautions are needed to prevent people from exploiting such openness for their own gain.

I think Wikipedia need to show some transparency on how they approach this by still showing edits that have been disallowed by editors. This will help reasure users that the process, although not quite so open, is still fair.

Mack.

koan

8:26 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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about living people and some organisations

It seems to me this will remain the exception to the rule, as it concerns only sensitive topics with a possibility of libel.

keyplyr

8:37 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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"Sanctioned By Editors" what a joke. These "editors" who have infringed my content repeatedly for the last 3 years? Now I'm going to have to ask their permission to remove my plagiarized property?

JS_Harris

8:49 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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I think a better approach would have been to require editor approval for changes on pages deemed complete and retain the old system on pages that aren't up to standards or require more information.

It works well on forums, it would work on Wikipedia. Going from one extreme to another is rarely the best solution.

Gomvents

9:50 pm on Aug 25, 2009 (gmt 0)

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keyplyr, that is the main thing that really pisses me off about wikipedia. From what I can tell it's 90% stolen works and 10% pure BS. I take a lot of time to write content or pay my employees to write content. Scraper sites and thieves that resell my work as their original work is bad enough but Wikipedia often outranks us for our content!

[edited by: lawman at 2:36 am (utc) on Aug. 26, 2009]

2clean

10:13 am on Aug 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

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Big companies have money to throw against spurious claims. For example on Wikipedia you can effectively go and slur any company that is listed there. This is to avoid law suits I imagine.

"Provided no page is the sole domain of a single editor, then it sounds like a good idea to me."
- Thank goodness it's possible to find this out. ;)

esllou

6:30 pm on Aug 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

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coming to wikipedia.org/forum soon:

"Hi, I just wanted to know what's the status of my edit on the Ted Kennedy page. It's been four weeks now and the admin who does most of the edits on that page also edits the pages of Sarah Palin, The GOP, Fox News and all the Bush family. Any reason why the wait is taking so long?"

"Still in the queue. Ask again in 3 months."

;)

g1smd

11:03 pm on Aug 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

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I originally though Wikipedia to be a good idea - until the day I spent several hours correcting major flaws in several technical articles and adding extra clarification and original background material, only to have the whole lot reverted as "vandalism" less than 20 minutes later. How long before Godwin's Law strikes this thread? I was tempted in this post.

StoutFiles

12:10 am on Aug 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

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I originally though Wikipedia to be a good idea - until the day I spent several hours correcting major flaws in several technical articles and adding extra clarification and original background material

I honestly don't know why so many people spend their time editing or writing content in which they get no recognition for or see no profit from. If people have something to say they should put it on their own site instead and monetize it.

graeme_p

10:11 am on Aug 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

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I'm still waiting for the day when Wikipedia decides to lock down all the free information they've been given and start charging for it.

Not legally possible. See the creative common license terms.

I honestly don't know why so many people spend their time editing or writing content in which they get no recognition for or see no profit from

Why do people do any form of voluntary work?

Syzygy

10:37 am on Aug 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

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"Who watches the watchers?" is the crucial factor in this. How do you become an editor with the power of veto? What criteria are applied? Once in position, how is the editor's work overseen? What processes of internal arbitration exist where and when conflict arises (as it will)?

If a credible structure can be created, then there is no reason why it cannot work. However, bearing in mind the breadth of content, and thus the shear volume of editors needed, such a task is gigantic in proportion.

I'd be interested to learn how the Encyclopaedia Britannica, with its many decades of experience in exactly these issues, handles the categorisation and compartmentalisation of editorial control and authority.

Undoubtedly, Wikipedia will have sought advice from external sources.

Syzygy

swa66

10:55 am on Aug 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

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Undoubtedly, Wikipedia will have sought advice from external sources.

ROTFL

Seriously, Wikipedia powers that be that I've met online are mostly ignorant at best (holding back what I really think of them).

Not knowing the difference between copyright violation and plagiarism e.g. when you manage a site that's filled from top to bottom with it ?

Not knowing that you create circular references when you remove the original source reference to one that was written after your article is written because it *better* matches your content ...

Dragging on fixing problems they create and sanction for many months in a row till you give up on getting justice instead of admitting they've been proven wrong, and even after they finally do admit being wrong not setting right what they did wrong cause by now the article got edited by others and that would not be right ...

Removing links to original material cause the site has ads on it ?

Count me as not a fan ... in fact I'd rather it go away with the communist ideas it is based on and let the real ones run by professionals thrive.

hutcheson

9:16 pm on Aug 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

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The internet allows us to transcend the fan/not-fan categories and proceed directly to more nuanced "use-when/don't-use-if" decisions.

I'm a very-small-time Wikipedia contributor (i.e. link-fixer). I know I've triggered the internal security alarms--adding several dozen links to a "new" (i.e. moved) domain is all it takes.

But the smoke cleared and the links stayed--the site had moved and the old domain had been squatted on, the new links worked and the old ones didn't. If the case had not been so clear, I can easily see me getting locked out and rolled back.

 

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