Year: 2008 Week: 37 Number: 99

Wikimedia News
Technical news
  • [Amazon goes wiki] – One of the uses of Wikipedia is to look up information about a music band. Amazon has started a website to compete with Wikipedia for that aspect of content.  At users can look up music related information and edit the content. The well known “edit” button  is present. But you need to login and all edits need to be approved by Amazon staff.
  • [Sarah Palin] – A story has appeared around the EN Wikipedia article of a US Vice-president candidate. A new user who worked at the article before it was known publicly that the candidate was candidate attracted attention.
  • [The Power] – a spider of google gets confused about the data of an article its discovers and lists by mistake an old article as new in google news. Result; the stock prize of an airline crashes because the article announced the bankruptcy of the airline. In this story are the Wikimedia projects not involved. But it shows clearly to potential effect of incorrect information in a highly visual used source of information, like the WMF are also.
Other news
  • [Court ruling] – The US appeals court ruled that Wikipedia is not highly accurate.  No, seriously, this is not a story form UnNews.
    The case was that the “Department of Homeland Security” (Big Brother USA), had used information from Wikipedia to decide to reject a request from a refugee to receive protection inside the USA.

  • [Medical wiki] – A new wiki is preparing to launch end of 2008 to provide medical information. It is a project in co-operation with several universities. People who have a medical degree can request to become an editor. Other people can only suggest changes. Content will be released under the GNU/FDL.
  • [Google News Archive] – Google is working on a project to digitize on a large scale old printed news archives. This will make it possible to search in to articles who until only existed in box in some seller up to a century or more ago. This could be very useful to fix some “[citation needed]”  needs. There is already an option to search old news present. Some of the results point to archives that are not free to access. But that are not google archives.
  • [GNU] – If you work on Wikipedia, or most of the other projects, you have heard of GNU. The content of our projects is mostly under the GNU/FDL licence. MediaWiki, the website, uses the GNU/GPL-licence. And the servers are using the GNU/Linux operating system. Just like the Wikimedia projects stands GNU-philosophy for openness of information. And now is it the 25th birthday of GNU.


“There are many ways to commit career suicide. Wiki is just a new
one.” (Eric Johnson, Wikimania 2008)

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