The Chicken didn't do it because it had already crossed the road.
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I'm wondering what you mean by "Search Engine"? Do you mean a way to sort and rank websites? That's only part of what Google does. You may want to identify what is missing from Google before following the models of the past.
>Wales dictated that "interwiki transclusion" links that included thousands of links to his for-profit enterprise Wikia site, should be "do follow",
I am interested in this. Do you have a citation?
Exactly. There is too much emphasis on the people as Wikipedia's problem, when in fact it's the software that's the problem. I write about problem of Wikipedia's software design in this blog post, and have implemented the solutions you suggest (randomizing and mixing the editors to avoid the accumulation of power) in Newslines, my crowdsourced news site.
For those wishing to catch up, I made a news timeline of the rise and fall of the site
Previously by Devlin: Stop Giving Wikipedia Money
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>But you missed out the third and worst of the options: editorial decisions which pander to the advertisers.
As a publisher who has run successful advertising sales teams in print and online you simply create policies that say the reader experience is primary and that any attempt by advertisers to influence editorial will be blocked. Readers can tell very quickly if editorial is influenced by advertisers and most publishers don't like to be pushed around. If advertisers really want unrestricted editorial presence they can buy an advertorial.
Thousands of newspapers, magazine and websites deal with these issues every day without having to run porn or low quality ads. I don't see any complaints that it causes those publications self censorship. I suspect most of Wikipedia's worry about ads is driven by a fear that ads will try to counter bias in articles.
Well I wrote it, and the self-censorship point is nonsense. There are lots of effective strategies that advertising-based media have used for many years to avoid self-censorship. To think that the situation is unmanageable is just incredibly naive. Such policies include accepting any kind of advertiser irrespective of their views (and let the reader decide the veracity of ads) or only accepting certain advertisers on certain pages, for example, no oil companies on global warming pages (although this type of policy actually a kind of censorship). The effect of any advertiser exerting undue influence is minimized by having many advertisers.
The wiki gives power to some users who are vocal about having that power removed. Unfortunately, those who are used to the "the wiki way" can see few other ways to organize content. To them, everything must be done on a wiki, whether that is the most appropriate tool or not. Flow is yet another example of choosing the wiki's flexibility over solutions that could easily be more practical. This inflexibility is also true for many of the non-encyclopedic pages of Wikipedia, such as news and biography pages where different editorial workflows and presentation will give better results. If you are interested I wrote a blog post about the many problems that are specifically caused by the wiki software.
Why u donate bro? Don't you know they don't need the money?
This issue highlights a structural flaw in Wikipedia's software, where the "encyclopedia" is being used for a purpose it was not designed for: Wikipedia is not a newspaper. These articles about dead children are news archives and not encyclopedic. An encyclopedia by definition requires fact checking. News archives do not require checking (or at the least the checking can be done external to the archive).