Wikipedia - free and reliable? Aspects of a collaboratively shaped encyclopaedia

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Wikipedia – Free and Reliable? Aspects of a Collaboratively Shaped Encyclopaedia
Authors: Maria Mattus [edit item]
Citation: Nordicom Review 30 (1): 183-199. 2008.
Publication type: Journal article
Peer-reviewed: Yes
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Google Scholar cites: Citations
Link(s): Paper link
Added by Wikilit team: Added on initial load
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Wikipedia – Free and Reliable? Aspects of a Collaboratively Shaped Encyclopaedia is a publication by Maria Mattus.


[edit] Abstract

Wikipedia is a multilingual, Internet-based, free, wiki-encyclopaedia, created by its own users.The aim of this article is to let the users’ descriptions of their impressions and experiences of Wikipedia increase the understanding for the function and dynamics of this collaboratively shaped wiki-encyclopaedia.Qualitative, structured interviews via e-mail, concerning users, and the creation and use of Wikipedia, were carried out with six male respondents – administrators at the Swedish Wikipedia – during September and October, 2006.The results focus on the following themes: I. Passive and active users; II. Formal and informal tasks; III. Common and personal visions; IV. Working together; V. The origins and creation of articles; VI. Contents and quality; VII. Decisions and interventions; and, VIII. Encyclopaedic ambitions.The discussion deals with the approach of this encyclopaedic phenomenon, focusing upon its “unfinishedness”, the development in different directions, and the social regulation implied and involved. Wikipedia is a product of our time, having a powerful vision and engagement, and it should therefore be interpreted and considered on its own terms.

[edit] Research questions

""Will collaboration compensate for the lack of authority and source credibility?" (p. 183)

"The questions were grouped into seven categories: Demographic questions (A), Wikipedia as a source (B), Creation of articles (C), The users and the use of Wikipedia (D), Promotions of featured articles (E), Requests for interventions (F), and Wikipedia’s future (G)." (p. 186)"

Research details

Topics: Encyclopedias, Other collaboration topics [edit item]
Domains: Communications [edit item]
Theory type: Analysis [edit item]
Wikipedia coverage: Main topic [edit item]
Theories: [edit item]
Research design: Case study [edit item]
Data source: Interview responses [edit item]
Collected data time dimension: Cross-sectional [edit item]
Unit of analysis: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia data extraction: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia page type: N/A [edit item]
Wikipedia language: Swedish [edit item]

[edit] Conclusion

""Perhaps the core question concerns how we can all approach Wikipedia – if we only glance at it superficially, or if we make an effort to attain something more. To outsiders, Wikipedia could be perceived as an updated, traditional online encyclopaedia – or as a playground for young enthusiasts. These views are not necessarily contradictory. People who only see the apparent surface tend to be more critical and focus on the faults and weaknesses. Initiated individuals, on the other hand, are aware of the ongoing processes, and know that all articles must undergo a process of development before they reach a somewhat satisfactory stage – even without ever becoming completely “finished”. Finally, the initial question must be addressed: Will collaboration compensate for the lack of authority and source credibility? In line with Wikipedia’s concept, there will always be articles in all stages of development." (p. 197)"

[edit] Comments

""The method chosen for this exploratory study is qualitative, based upon structured interviews held with individuals committed to Wikipedia." (p. 185)"


Further notes[edit]

Facts about "Wikipedia - free and reliable? Aspects of a collaboratively shaped encyclopaedia"RDF feed
AbstractWikipedia is a multilingual, Internet-baseWikipedia is a multilingual, Internet-based, free, wiki-encyclopaedia, created by its own users.The aim of this article is to let the users’ descriptions of their impressions and experiences of Wikipedia increase the understanding for the function and dynamics of this collaboratively shaped wiki-encyclopaedia.Qualitative, structured interviews via e-mail, concerning users, and the creation and use of Wikipedia, were carried out with six male respondents – administrators at the Swedish Wikipedia – during September and October, 2006.The results focus on the following themes: I. Passive and active users; II. Formal and informal tasks; III. Common and personal visions; IV. Working together; V. The origins and creation of articles; VI. Contents and quality; VII. Decisions and interventions; and, VIII. Encyclopaedic ambitions.The discussion deals with the approach of this encyclopaedic phenomenon, focusing upon its “unfinishedness”, the development in different directions, and the social regulation implied and involved. Wikipedia is a product of our time, having a powerful vision and engagement, and it should therefore be interpreted and considered on its own terms.terpreted and considered on its own terms.
Added by wikilit teamAdded on initial load +
Collected data time dimensionCross-sectional +
Comments"The method chosen for this exploratory study is qualitative, based upon structured interviews held with individuals committed to Wikipedia." (p. 185)
Conclusion"Perhaps the core question concerns how we"Perhaps the core question concerns how we can all approach Wikipedia – if we only glance at it superficially, or if we make an effort to attain something more. To outsiders, Wikipedia could be perceived as an updated, traditional online encyclopaedia – or as a playground for young enthusiasts. These views are not necessarily contradictory. People who only see the apparent surface tend to be more critical and focus on the faults and weaknesses. Initiated individuals, on the other hand, are aware of the ongoing processes, and know that all articles must undergo a process of development before they reach a somewhat satisfactory stage – even without ever becoming completely “finished”. Finally, the initial question must be addressed: Will collaboration compensate for the lack of authority and source credibility? In line with Wikipedia’s concept, there will always be articles in all stages of development." (p. 197)es in all stages of development." (p. 197)
Data sourceInterview responses +
Google scholar urlhttp://scholar.google.com/scholar?ie=UTF-8&q=%22Wikipedia%2B%E2%80%93%2BFree%2Band%2BReliable%3F%2BAspects%2Bof%2Ba%2BCollaboratively%2BShaped%2BEncyclopaedia%22 +
Has authorMaria Mattus +
Has domainCommunications +
Has topicEncyclopedias + and Other collaboration topics +
Issue1 +
Pages183-199 +
Peer reviewedYes +
Publication typeJournal article +
Published inNordicom Review +
Research designCase study +
Research questions"Will collaboration compensate for the lac"Will collaboration compensate for the lack of authority and source credibility?" (p. 183) "The questions were grouped into seven categories: Demographic questions (A), Wikipedia as a source (B), Creation of articles (C), The users and the use of Wikipedia (D), Promotions of featured articles (E), Requests for interventions (F), and Wikipedia’s future (G)." (p. 186)(F), and Wikipedia’s future (G)." (p. 186)
Revid11,078 +
Theory typeAnalysis +
TitleWikipedia – Free and Reliable? Aspects of a Collaboratively Shaped Encyclopaedia
Unit of analysisN/A +
Urlhttp://swepub.kb.se/bib/swepub:oai:DiVA.org:liu-13070?tab2=abs&language=en +
Volume30 +
Wikipedia coverageMain topic +
Wikipedia data extractionN/A +
Wikipedia languageSwedish +
Wikipedia page typeN/A +
Year2008 +