Walter Hinteler wrote:
I contributed (and edited, but that officially
) a bit to wiki myself in the beginning. (On the German as well as on the English site.)
No wonder it worked so well in the beginning then.
The success of Wikis rests on an important insight: Most malicious edits (removing a post, spam, obvious abuse) are easily reversed through software. At the same time, most benevolent edits are easily retained by doing nothing. As a result, good edits tend to accumulate in a Wiki, while bad edits add only a limited amount of noise. The difficult conflicts and abuses arise from benevolent persons who disagree what a `good' edit is, and each one fights for his version. Another problem occurs with topics that almost nobody cares about, and the few who do care slip some kind of agenda into a responsible looking post.
Or in other words, Wikipedia has the same problems as any other publishers, and they will probably resolve them just like they do -- with some fact-checking filter between contributors and users. I'm fairly optimistic about Wikipedia.