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Britannica vs. Wikipedia – via email

Sep - 22 - 2006
Nicole C. Engard

The Wall Street Journal Online has an interesting email conversation between Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia and Dale Hoiberg, editor-in-chief of Britannica. For those of you who are behind on the encyclopedia debate you can find my other posts here, here and here.

The “discussion” starts with Wales stating:

The strengths include a much greater timeliness, a much more comprehensive coverage, and the wide range of inputs means a good chance at a more balanced and more neutral coverage.

To which Hoiberg replies:

But there is little evidence to suggest that simply having a lot of people freely editing encyclopedia articles produces more balanced coverage. On the contrary, it opens the gates to propaganda and seesaw fights between writers with different axes to grind.

I haven’t had a chance to finish the entire article yet, but it’s worth a look.

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