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My First Wikipedia Article

16-Jan-07 05:08 pm EDT Leave a comment Go to comments

Last night, I just made my first contributions to Wikipedia and, I gotta say, I found the experience a little humbling.  There’s nothing stopping from having done this before – I post here all the bloody time, so what’s the big deal.  And then it occurred to me – there’s something a little vain about the whole idea of contributing articles to the world’s largest encyclopedia.  It’s like "I’m writing something that will actually be used in framing others’ ideas – the foundation of research!".

Mostly here, I editorialize observations about topics that interest me (and ocassionally others).  But it’s not the same – I don’t have to source anything.  With Wikipedia, it’s like you’re writing a term paper.  Images and any statements of fact (quotes, citations of other’s works, etc.) need to be properly sourced.  And this lends authority to what one says on Wikipedia vs. what one writes in a blog.

A big difference?  Well, not where I’m concerned – since everything I write about here typically has just been read about or, in some sense, researched.  Often I do source what I say – via links.  But the feeling with Wikipedia remains that I’m doing something valuable; which isn’t the same thing as publishing to one’s own blog.

Mabye that’s the lure of Wikipedia too.  I heard it reported on CFRA (a local Ottawa area AM radio station) recently that the #1 contributor to Wikipedia lives right here in Ottawa!  Apparently, this guy has contributed so many articles, he lives in his parent’s home and has no job.  All he does is contributions to Wikipedia.  You’d think there would be some kind of job one could occupy where Wikipedia contributions and research would pay for itself, but maybe those jobs are pretty hard to find…  Either way, it certainly sounds addictive, and to a few I could see how.

Unfortunately, I’m a little too practical to fall into that category – but maybe when you do a search at some point down the road, and click on the "history" tab, you’ll see me in the list somehwere: "Ross613".

Categories: Personal
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