Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2005-12-05/In the news
In the news
Wikipedia and Seigenthaler
John Seigenthaler Sr., a retired journalist and USA Today editor and founder of the First Amendment Center, wrote an opinion piece entitled "A false Wikipedia 'biography'", published on November 29 in USA Today (see related story). The column was re-published verbatim in other sources as far afield as The Tennessean and China Daily.
Seigenthaler has been talking to many other media outlets as well; see a transcript of his brief interview with Tucker Carlson, host of The Situation with Tucker Carlson on MSNBC, and will appear today on CNN discussing the issue with Jimbo Wales.
The story of Seigenthaler's disillusionment and Wikipedia's reaction was given extensive coverage in online and mainstream media, including:
- "Snared in the Web of a Wikipedia Liar" - New York Times (reprinted extensively)
- "[(unreliable source - do not use) www.postchronicle.com/news/technology/article_2121655.shtml Wikipedia: The Art Of Internet Character Assassination] - The Post Chronicle
- "The Danger of Wikipedia " and a follow-up: "Wikipedia Founder, Readers Respond to Seigenthaler Article" - Editor & Publisher
- "A Wicked-pedia" - CBS News Blog
- "'Worldly' readers call 'interference' on Internet" - Shreveport Times
- "Misinformation in Wikipedia - Times of India
- "Complaints over Wikipedia" - Kashar World News
- "Wikipedia and the nature of truth" - CNet
- "Complaints Over Wikipedia Accountability With Bios" - Search Engine Watch
- "Wikipedia Hits a Wall" - LinuxInsider
- "Wikipedia Bios Draw Controversy" - TechNewsWorld
- "Is Wikipedia a threat or a menace?" - ZDnet
- "Trust No One" - The Chronicle of Higher Education blog
- "Wikipedia In Hot Water Over False Bio" - Techsmec.com
- "Wiki Don't Lose That Number - Nashville Scene blog
- "It's Your Story...You Tell It Anyway You Want On Wikipedia - The Official Newswire
- "Wikipedia Bio Claimed Slanderous - Techtree.com
Partially in response to the Seigenthaler problems, Jimbo Wales announced on December 5 that for the time being anonymous users would no longer be allowed to create new articles (see related story). The first story about it was the widely syndicated "Growing pains for Wikipedia", by CNET reporter Daniel Terdiman; his story went live even before the announcement was widely posted within the encyclopedia, so many Wikipedians first learned of the new policy through other outlets.
The change to Wikipedia's mechanisms was also reported in several places, most using information from "Wikipedia Tightens Rules", by Associated Press writer Dan Goodin. However, many outlets misunderstood and misrepresented the nature of Wikipedia's editorial process. "Wikipedia Tightens Rules For Posting" from Information Week is an example. A BBC report implied that only 600 volunteers were responsible for monitoring the entire site. 
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On November 29, CNET's News.com published "Web tool puts new face on Wikipedia", reporting that German designer Harald Hanek has invented Gollum, a new "Wikipedia browser" that presents Wikipedia articles in a simplified interface. It strips Wikipedia's menus and tabs, replacing them with a graphical toolbar and a prominent search bar. The story was also picked up by ZDNet, Search Engine Watch and other technology news sites.
Citizen's media and marketing expert Steve Rubel, has written extensively about Wikipedia in his popular blog Micro Persuasion lately, including:
- "People Don't Know Wikipedia's Solyent Green is People"
- "Ten Wikipedia Hacks"
- "Wikipedia cracks top 10 (The article doesn't mention that the figures are for the United States only, on a global basis wikipedia is ahead of most of these sites, based on the Alexa rankings.)
His column "Wikipedia is the next Google" has drawn many comments and trackbacks.
Taiwan's leading English-language newspaper The China Post ran an article describing how "Wikipedia democratizes information", and invited Chinese readers to contribute to the encyclopedia. "I'm a little disappointed, however, to see that the Chinese-pedia has fewer than 50,000 entries. Anyone want to help out with that?"