Home > Week 8 > #12 – Wikipedia

#12 – Wikipedia


Wikipedia is a free, web-based, collaborative, multilingual encyclopedia project supported by the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation. Its name is a portmanteau of the words wiki (a technology for creating collaborative websites, from the Hawaiian word wiki, meaning “quick”) and encyclopedia. Wikipedia’s 14 million articles (3.2 million in English) have been written collaboratively by volunteers around the world, and almost all of its articles can be edited by anyone with access to the site. It was launched in 2001 by Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger and is currently the largest and most popular general reference work on the Internet.

Wikipedia is written collaboratively by largely anonymous internet users who write without pay. Anyone with internet access can write and make changes to Wikipedia articles.

Every contribution may be reviewed or changed. The expertise or qualifications of the user is usually not considered. This is possible since Wikipedia’s intent is to cover existing knowledge which is verifiable from other sources, original research and ideas are therefore excluded. People of all ages and cultural and social backgrounds can write Wikipedia articles as most of the articles can be edited by anyone with access to the Internet simply by clicking the edit this page link (found at the top of every editable page). Anyone is welcome to add information, cross-references, or citations, as long as they do so within Wikipedia’s editing policies and to an appropriate standard. Substandard or disputed information is subject to removal. Users need not worry about accidentally damaging Wikipedia when adding or improving information, as other editors are always around to advise or correct obvious errors, and the software is designed to allow easy reversal of editorial mistakes.

Further information about wikipedia can be found here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:About   About Wikipedia

and here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:What_Wikipedia_is_not   What Wikipedia is Not


1.  If you’ve never used the Wikipedia, now is the time to visit it and take a look around!

2.  Search for a topic that you are personally interested in.  Once you have found and read the article, do you have anything to add to it?  Feel free to get involved and edit an article..maybe you can add references or citations, maybe you have additional information that might enhance the article.  Go ahead..after all this is what Web2.0 is all about..sharing and communicating with others.

3.  If you start to get really interested in the concept of wikis, you may ( and this is an optional activity!) want to set up your very own wiki.  Follow these instructions on wikihow on how to start up a wiki of your own


4.  You are not required to create a wiki for this activity, but if you would like to try one, you could look at the website. http://www.wetpaint.com/.  This site allows you to create a free wiki on any topic or subject that you would like.  Other free sites include:



5.  Blog about your views about wikis.  If you have set up a wiki of your own..provide a link in your blog so that others can get involved.  Or if you have edited an article in Wikipedia, tell us which article it is so that we can all benefit from your knowledge and experience.

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