|19223 - Research on Wikipedia authorship CooperationCommons||05/09/2006 - 18:59:06|
by Howard Rheingold — posted at 2006-09-04 13:53 last modified 2006-09-04 13:53
Aaron Swartz heard Jimmy Wales speak at our Stanford class on Literacy of Cooperation (here's and wondered about his claims that more than half the edits were done by fewer than one percent of the contributors. Swartz rented some computer cluster time, downloaded a sample of the 60 billion Wikipedia edits, and :
When you put it all together, the story become clear: an outsider makes one edit to add a chunk of information, then insiders make several edits tweaking and reformatting it. In addition, insiders rack up thousands of edits doing things like changing the name of a category across the entire site -- the kind of thing only insiders deeply care about. As a result, insiders account for the vast majority of the edits. But it's the outsiders who provide nearly all of the content.
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