Saturday, December 15, 2007

Wikipedia Competitor Being Tested by Google - New York Times

Interesting times

Knol and Wikipedia would be different in other ways. While Wikipedia is a not-for-profit and ad-free endeavor, Knol has a more commercial bent: Authors could choose to have Google place ads on their pages and would get part of the revenue.

“At some point, Google crosses the line, where they are not only a search engine, but also a content provider,” Mr. Sullivan said. Technically speaking, he said, authors, not Google, would create Knol pages. “But it matters how it appears,” he said. “I do a search on Google, I go to some place that Google hosts and I also find Google ads.”

I think this will come down, in part, to:

1.  Information value and information value-add: if Knol has more useful and accurate entries than Wikipedia, people should go with the better source

2.  Google's search heuristics: if there's any data suggesting Google is biasing search results to favor resources it controls, it should prove devastating to Google's "don't be evil" etc. good will, and people should search elsewhere

Wikipedia Competitor Being Tested by Google - New York Times

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