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By Sage Ross

Possible alternatives to Wikipedia?

The library ezine Cites & Insights: Crawford at Large has an article that critically explores the near-monopoly status of Wikipedia as a casual online general reference: Net Media: Beyond Wikipedia (beginning on page 23). Starting from the question "Why do we love monopolies so?", Cites & Insights author Walt Crawford comments on Knol, Citizendium and Wikia as potential alternative models of online reference content creation. On the Citizendium Blog, Larry Sanger describes the article as "not entirely fair."

Internet Watch Foundation staff threatened

In the wake of the bungled attempt by the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) to censor an offensive image on Wikipedia (see earlier story), Computer Shopper reports that IWF staff have received threatening emails and have removed photographs of staff from their website.

English Heritage uses Wikipedia, faces criticism

Will Henley of Building Design reports that English Heritage, the non-governmental public body in the United Kingdom responsible for designating buildings and other sites as "English Heritage sites", has used material from Wikipedia in some of its submissions to the government. In its submission to the government for the site 24-26 Hereford Square, English Heritage included Wikipedia as a source for biographical information on the architect, Colin St John Wilson. After criticism of the use of Wikipedia, English Heritage responded that "it might occasionally be useful for checking dates of architects, like Colin St John Wilson, who are so recent and not yet in the key published sources. We didn’t see any reason to remove or hide it, and sent it over as a complete record of how we dealt with the case."

Wikipedia among most trusted sites in Japan

According to an English-language summary (may contain explicit images) on the anime, manga, and games website Sankaku Complex, a survey by Yahoo found that Wikipedia is the third most trusted information source in Japan, behind newspapers and radio but ahead of television. (CNET story (in Japanese))


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