Jeff Jarvis has an interesting idea on BuzzMachine:
If I were a reference publisher, a library association, a university, a media company, or a foundation, I’d take Wikipedia as raw material and vet entries, perhaps even charging for the service: On demand or on the basis of traffic and links, I’d go in and vet already-written pieces and bless that version of it. Then maybe I’d publish a book from it….
Now that I think of it, this might have been a nice business model for the shrinking Britannica. It might still be.
Certainly Britannica had (and maybe still has, despite pressures to the contrary) one of the most elaborate, nay detail-obsessed, fact-checking processes I’ve ever seen in my life. Of course, to some degree the Britannica Internet Guide was supposed to provide a degree of certification– though there seems to nothing left of that project but some aging awards badges on various sites….
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