Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

Angela, Dan and Ross have blogged about Wikinews so I assume the idea is "out" and I can blog about it. Wikinews would be to journalism what Wikipedia is to encyclopedias. Reports and articles would be written by a community wiki-style and would follow the Wikipedia rule of Neutral Point of View (NPOV). There would be controls in place to decide when an article was "finished" and a lot of thought has gone into the workflow of how this would work. The idea of accreditation of contributors has also been proposed.

I've been spending some time hanging out on IRC with the Wikipedia community ever since I met Jimmy Wales and a few Wikipedians in Linz. I've worked on a few articles, but I'm fascinated as much by the community as the product of their efforts.

That's why I'm against Wikimedia doing Wikinews. I think Wikinews is a great idea and a noble experiment. Someone should do it. I'm just worried that it will change the tone of the Wikipedian "bookworms for the common good" community. Competing with encyclopedias is very different from competing against journalists. it reminds me of the Jack Handy quote: "To me, boxing is like a ballet, except there's no music, no choreography, and the dancers hit each other."

On the other hand, who would have thought Wikipedia itself would have worked in the beginning. To their credit, they do have some rather politically charged articles that have managed to stay quite NPOV, but pumping a consistent flow of these out is another matter. I've posted more thorough comments on the Talk:Wikinews page.

In any case, it looks from the votes like the project will happen, so I will support and participate in any way that I can.


To their credit, they do have some rather politically charged articles that have managed to stay quite NPOV,

Some articles take months or years to reach NPOV, while a wikinew article will be build in a few days. I doubt much a couple of contributors may reach a reasonable neutrality when dozen of editors did not manage to do so in weeks.
On top of it, the more quickly the article is published the best. News rely on speed and there will be inherently a desire to hurry to "print" the article. This will again decrease the change of the article to be neutral.

Another point I think is a really bad idea, is that journalists are in great part those who helped the project to get famous.
Competiting with those who help you become famous is hardly a good direction.

Well, to be honest, this seems to be the wrong solution to the wrong problem.

What is really needed to promote independent journalism is the equivalent of a WikiWire--a news wire that would make it easy for independent journalists to offer their work to both paying and non-paying sites.

The answer to non-partisan independent journalism is better distribution, not another new format.

Hello Joi !

do you know ?

It's a politic with vote and wiki.

What do you think about it ?



I found this idea very intriguing, since several months, I have been thinking about building a community portal in which discussing international and local politics with the idea of giving the possibility to the users of the portal to initiate discussions and to comment on each idea.

I believe that there is an enormous potential in having the possibility of discussing openly political ideas, reporting facts and experimenting with the noble art of arguing and argumenting to support an opinion. This kind of training should be the basis for each democratic society.

More and more we assist to the lost of interest in politics by citizenry and the flattening that common people do on the general ideas as expressed by media or mainstream information.

I believe that we need a new way of reformulating our concept of political participation starting from this simple concepts of providing discussion tools to citizens as this idea of Wikinews.

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Wikinews Coming from Oliver Thylmann's Blog
October 26, 2004 5:42 PM

I first read it via Ross' post and then I found Joi's post about Wikinews which is currently being talked about. The idea is to do something like Wikipedia for News. As you see from both posts the verdict is Read More

Bottom-up phenomena has accelerated in recent years because of social software. A relatively simple decentralized pattern of enabling more connections and groups to form has complex results. These results (for example: open source, the long tail, hete... Read More

Rebecca MacKinnon, who knows a little bit about journalism, has a terrific post on the proposed WikiNews. Overall, I think it's an interesting experiment that is likely to turn into something other than is planned. What worries me most is their insiste... Read More

Mo' Better News? from Center for Media and Democracy
December 16, 2004 6:25 AM

Wikipedia, the successful open source encyclopedia, is launching a daily news website called Wikinews. Its goal is to "create a diverse environme

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Wikipedia from Preoccupations
December 22, 2004 6:14 AM

Wikipedia has come some way in just a year, as these two graphs, originally posted by Sébastien Paquet, show. Earlier this year (September), Wikipedia passed the one million article mark. Joi Ito commented:Wikipedia is in more than 100 languages Read More