Automatic detection of “infiltrating” Wikipedia admins; Wiki, or ‘pedia?
- 1 Wiki, or ‘pedia? The genre and values of Wikipedia compared with other encyclopedias
- 2 Identifying trending topics of yesteryear
- 3 Automatic detection of “infiltrating” Wikipedia admins
- 4 Academic role models important for promoting the use of Wikipedia in higher education
- 5 Was Steve Jobs an inventor? WP:V as “delegated voice”
- 6 Briefly
- 7 References
Wiki, or ‘pedia? The genre and values of Wikipedia compared with other encyclopedias
Wikipedia and Encyclopaedism: A Genre Analysis of Epistemological Values is a new Masters’ Thesis that analyzes the values that influenced how knowledge is presented on Wikipedia, in comparison with other encyclopedias that have been created throughout history. The author uses genre analysis to compare the epistemological values that are represented in the kind of knowledge that different encyclopedias present and in the way they present that knowledge. The author first conducts a literature review to compare the epistemology of two genres: wikis and encyclopedias. The wiki epistemology is composed of six values: self-identification, collaboration, co-construction, cooperation, trust in the community, and constructionism. By contrast, the values of major current and historical encyclopedias—such as Diderot’s Encyclopedia, Pliny’s Natural History, and the Encyclopædia Britannica—prioritize trust in experts, authority, and consistency.
Despite being based on different, and even somewhat contradictory, value systems, the purpose of Wikipedia and the way it presents knowledge are shown to be similar to other works in the encyclopedia genre. The author analyzes the frequency of common words in section headings of 25 heavily edited English Wikipedia articles that had a corresponding article in Britannica. He compares the evolution of section headings within these Wikipedia articles and multiple editions of Britannica, and shows that the gradual process by which a Wikipedia article becomes more structured through the addition and alteration of headings is similar to the process for Britannica articles, which also tend to become longer and more formally structured over subsequent editions. This thesis presents some interesting parallels between the way articles are developed within Wikipedia and other encyclopedias, despite vastly different timescales and some differing underlying values. It also offers an engaging, in-depth discussion of the concept of genre, the purpose of the encyclopedia genre, and the history of several major historical encyclopedias.
Identifying trending topics of yesteryear
In a paper titled “Temporal Wikipedia search by edits and linkage”, the authors develop a method to identify Wikipedia articles associated with topics around a date based on changes the length of the article as well as patterns of the other articles to which it links. This paper expands on prior work in temporal information retrieval and anomaly detection and uses modifications to the HITS and PageRank to return a list of the most relevant documents for a topic on a date. This work has implications for not only using Wikipedia data to identify trending topics, but also to retrospectively identify trending topics. A downloadable Java client allows test searches (for the months of September and October 2011) and the display of the resulting page networks.
Automatic detection of “infiltrating” Wikipedia admins
A paper titled “Manipulation Among the Arbiters of Collective Intelligence: How Wikipedia Administrators Mold Public Opinion”, to be presented at next month’s ACM Conference on Information and Knowledge Management (CIKM), makes a rather serious claim: “We find a surprisingly large number of editors who change their behavior and begin focusing more on a particular controversial topic once they are promoted to administrator status.” (more…)