"Citizendium" project aims to rival Wikipedia

A new Wikipedia fork, Citizendium, will be launched within the next few weeks, according to project coordinator, Wikipedia co-founder, and "chief organizer" Larry Sanger.

Citizendium's website describes the project:

The Citizendium (sit-ih-ZEN-dee-um), a "citizens' compendium of everything," will be an experimental new wiki project that combines public participation with gentle expert guidance. It will begin life as a "progressive fork" of Wikipedia. But we expect it to take on a life of its own and, perhaps, to become the flagship of a new set of responsibly-managed free knowledge projects. We will avoid calling it an "encyclopedia," because there will probably always be articles in the resource that have not been vouched for in any sense.

The project would be editable only by creating an account and providing a real name. "Authors" (as Citizendium "editors" are called) would be able to edit the site. "Editors" are experts who must provide credentials, and who resolve editing disputes on pages relating to their area of study. "Constables" would be community managers (not like administrators on Wikipedia).

The project is, according to Sanger, independent of Digital Universe, a similar project with which Sanger was involved.

The announcement was not accompanied by a great deal of press attention; at press time, a ZDNet blog post was the closest to mainstream media coverage that the project had received.

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Is it possible to prevent Wikipedia (even though it is GFDL) to be downloaded and taken by Larry Sanger. This story is a really sad cause for Sanger. He tried for DigitalUniverse (which doesn't seem to work at all ... too complex) and now he is going to rip off wikipedia to make a citizendium, like that is a really sad attempt to stay in the wiki business. Lincher 12:19, 19 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]

That depends on whether or not Citizendium will be published under the GFDL or some other license. If it is, there's nothing to stop the project copying the database other than the fact that it'll make them appear as just another Wikipedia mirror. From the sounds of it, Sanger is trying to build up the resource from scratch. To be honest, I hope the site is under the GFDL, which'd allow us to copy their efforts back onto here (if the project actually gets off the ground, of course.) GeeJo (t)(c) • 16:23, 19 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]
If Citizendium uses Wikipedia content to create a fork, it will have to be published under the GFDL due to the terms of that license: 'You may copy and distribute a Modified Version of the Document under the conditions of sections 2 and 3 above, provided that you release the Modified Version under precisely this License.' -- Mithent 20:08, 25 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Media coverage

According to the Citizendium article's refs, the fork has been covered in The Register, although I haven't looked at the article myself. +Hexagon1 (t) 11:02, 20 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]

On principle, I try never to mention articles by Andrew Orlowski, because they're horribly biased. This one referred to Bomis as "Wales' titty portal"; that's not something I would ever endorse. Ral315 (talk) 23:25, 20 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]

No threat

It is not a threat. We have reached to this level in more than five years, and it is not easy to duplicate us very fast: wikipedia has become a habit for many of us, and a shift shall be a difficult proposition for many wikipedians, including the "experts". --Bhadani 19:23, 20 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Why not make "something completely different" rather than "same as Wikipedia with tweaking and components from Wikisource": will the experts be named etc. Jackiespeel 16:26, 21 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]


Well, damn me if Citizendium is not exactly what I proposed here. I'm more persuasive then I thought. Dev920 22:45, 22 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]

He's been trying different ideas based on this for a while, all fail because of no editing in them. The last one seemed to just crash when i tried to load it up. Funding problem perhaps. Either way the solution is simply to ban IPs on wikipedia, not to rely on "experts" (and just where does one draw the line at what an expert is?) If only one expert with a phD in biology is around, does that mean say, their controversial view on eugenics (made up example) would become fact because only they are expert enough to do it? This is just ego and desperate fumbling for recognition against mediocrity--I'll bring the food 22:22, 24 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]


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