5.02.2007

Modern Dragons, Now With 20% More Umlauts

CHiLLi.cc, an Austrian youth magazine, is running a short article on Citizendium written by yours truly! You can check it out in its original English form or the German translation. It's a good summary of the differences between Citizendium and Wikipedia and the rationale for those differences.

Some personal musings-
The realities of Citizendium's situation mean that the more we publicize Wikipedia's flaws the more likely we are to succeed. That's not something I relish, as I personally like Wikipedia a lot for what it is, and I'd also rather be making Wikipedia better than criticizing it-- but since a thriving Citizendium is good for the world (and, I strongly believe, good for Wikipedia itself) I've accepted it.

Tip o' the hat, Wikipedia.

4 comments:

Michael said...

Everything I know about Citizendium I learned from Wikipedia. Needless to say, I updated the article. Did you know that Ryan Seacrest founded Citizendium?

David Gerard said...

;-p

It's clear Larry understands your point: pretty much all the publicity for Citizendium leverages and plays up his Wikipedia connection, even though he left in 2002.

There's nothing wrong with sensible criticism of Wikipedia; it can only be good for us.

I've refrained, and have strongly advocated other Wikimedia press contacts refrain, from criticism of Citizendium, particularly as the project's barely started and there's hardly a meaningful criticism to be made.

CZ's criticisms of WP won't damage WP, whereas WP criticising CZ could cause damage to CZ. And while it would enhance publicity for CZ, concentrating on an adversarial relationship is only a distraction from writing an encyclopedia.

It also takes the wind out of the sails of stupid "let's you and him fight" press stories, which do neither CZ nor WP any good - the only reason I do the press thing is for the good of the Wikimedia projects' aims, after all. I'm not paid for this, and thankfully have a tolerant employer ;-)

What I want is more wiki-based free content encyclopedias. Two or three is not enough. LOTS AND LOTS.

I'd also love Scholarpedia to adopt a free content licence or two. They wouldn't have to change a thing - just insist on open licensing. I can think of frustrated academics on Wikipedia who are primary sources themselves who would flock to the result.

Mike said...

David,

We're on the same page. I'm glad. :)

Mike said...

Scholarpedia seems like sort of an odd duck sometimes-- any idea what the "patent pending" notice at the bottom of the main page might refer to (or imply)?