Wikipedia co-founder to test quality control idea

Jimmy Wales said a new quality control program for Wikipedia will undergo testing.

A way to ensure better quality control on Wikipedia entries by color coding edits to red flag potentially dubious content will be tested on some smaller sites in the Wikia community to determine its effectiveness, the co-founder of Wikipedia said Sunday.

The color coding idea comes from Luca de Alfaro, an associate professor at University of California, Santa Cruz and is aimed at erasing doubts about the reliability of entries on Wikipedia by its all-volunteer team. It's a huge task. The program will analyze Wikipedia's entire editing history, 2 million pages and over 40 million edits on the English language site alone, and each contributor will be ranked for reliability. Wikipedia entries that stand the test of time, without revision, will improve the reputation of a contributor. Contributors with a history of postings that require corrections are flagged as untrustworthy. The program calculates the reputation by working from a contributor's history of edits.

The co-founder of Wikipedia said it was one of the most exciting ideas he'd heard at Wikimania 2007 in Taipei.

"I thought that was really cool, and we're going to do a test," said Jimmy Wales, adding that he'll have to see how the program works under testing before deciding whether to use it on Wikipedia.

"You roll out a new quality control feature, especially on English-language Wikipedia, that's a huge thing to do. The whole world's watching. It's a massive community. If it leads to problems, it's a fiasco, so it's nice that we have a small community [Wikia] where we can test it," he added.

Florence Nibart-Devouard, chair of the board of trustees at the Wikimedia Foundation, which runs Wikipedia, said the color-coding idea won widespread support from community members attending Wikimania 2007. "We're definitely going to support further research and development of this idea," she said.

The color-coding program could boost quality control on one of the most widely used Internet encyclopedias, and one of the most popular Web sites. The English language Wikipedia site accounts for nearly a third of all visits to U.S. educational sites, according to tracker Hitwise Pty. Ltd. It's also the second most visited site from Google searches, just after MySpace.com, due to sheer volume and the fact Wikipedia listings tend to rank high on Google search results.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Dan Nystedt

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?