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Tuesday, December 20, 2005

wiki policy: protecting the commons

Wikipedia, the community-authored " free encyclopedia that anyone can edit," changed its rules earlier this month to require creators of new content to register. Some recent high profile errors have caused Wikipedia to re-evaluate its anonymous posting policy, such as running a biography of John Seigenthaler, former administrative assistant to Robert Kennedy, that falsely accused him of being a suspect in the assassinations of John and Robert Kennedy.

Now, the Financial Times reports from San Francisco that Wikipedia will begin instituting a tape delay-like effect. Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia’s founder, said a new “stable” version of the reference would be added to the site and audited to ensure its accuracy.

BBC News also confirmed that the Wikimedia Foundation could not be sued for libel in the US because it is a hosting company and not a publisher, and US laws protect online publishers from legal action.

Wikipedia thrives because people are basically good. it will be interesting to see how these new policies impact the community dynamic of the site.


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