Groan: here comes another competitor to Wikipedia

Google has started their own product to rival the hugely popular free encyclopaedia, Wikipedia.

What they have dubbed “knol” will be written by “experts”; now where have I heard that before… (cough* Citizendium *cough)? Their little units of knowledge will take precedent when searching for particular items of topic over, say, Wikipedia.

They are going to lock the editing of the entries to their approved authors and will only allow the public to suggest changes, etc. But with this you would have thought you could trust what is being written. However, on the Google Blog they wrote this: “Google will not serve as an editor in any way, and will not bless any content.” [Their emphasis.]

Ahh but it gets worse, they are going to completely contrast with Wikipedia by allowing the authors to put in their own opinions and point of views. Wow, “smart” people thought that one up! Jeez!

Oh, and the content will also be influenced by advertisers! “At the discretion of the author, a knol may include ads. […] Google will provide the author with substantial revenue share from the proceeds of those ads.” I don’t expect anything bad to come from that advertorial decision!

And expect to wade through a few entries on the same topic, “Competition of ideas is a good thing.”

And their sample doesn’t overly help the idea as well. Did anyone else spot the spelling mistake on the second line? I’m not saying that Wikipedia doesn’t have spelling mistakes, but for a sample, Google should have been more careful.

At least their site will be under a Creative Commons licence.

Hat tip: Brian Anderton.


1 Response to “Groan: here comes another competitor to Wikipedia”

  1. 1 Wikipedia to fail in 2008? « Gabriel Pollard Trackback on January 3, 2008 at 8.35 am

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I write at Wikinews, and Practical eCommerce. I thoroughly enjoy writing about news and current affairs. I also have a TV related blog at Throng.

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