On Mon, Feb 22, 2016 at 12:22 AM, Lila Tretikov <l...@wikimedia.org> wrote:

> When we started, the open knowledge on Wikipedia was a large piece of the
> internet. Today, we have an opportunity to be the door into the whole
> ecosystem of open knowledge by:
>    - scaling knowledge (by building smart editing tools that structurally
>    connect open sources)
>    - expanding the entry point to knowledge (by improving our search
> portal)


Could you please explain the reasoning behind the focus on "open knowledge"
and "open sources" in what you wrote above?

Just to avoid any misunderstanding -- I am of course well aware that
Wikipedia itself is (at its best) "open knowledge". This, after all, is
what volunteers are here to build – a body of open knowledge.

But I would contend that if we are talking about Wikipedia aspiring to
be a *door
*to something, then that aspiration is to be the door to *all knowledge*,
isn't it? Not the door to *open knowledge*?

This is reflected in the fundamental Wikimedia vision, which is -- to this
day -- for people to be able to freely share in "the sum of all knowledge"
-- not "the sum of all *open* knowledge" (i.e. knowledge that is *already*

In line with this vision, Wikipedia for example cites all manner of sources
today – from paywalled journals and books costing hundreds of dollars to
CC-licensed and public-domain websites.

Indeed, in terms of creating open knowledge, content based on the most
exclusive, most expensive sources is arguably the most valuable content
Wikimedia projects contain: it liberates knowledge that would otherwise be
inaccessible to those without ample enough means -- or indeed any means --
to pay.

Beyond that, there are many mainstream sources of knowledge that are "All
rights reserved", i.e. not open, yet can still be consulted by anyone with
an Internet connection, without payment.

We all consult such sources every day. They include publications like the
Guardian newspaper (whose publisher's board Jimmy Wales joined recently);
the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy; CNN; and thousands of others.
These are high-quality knowledge sources that are "All rights reserved" --
not open -- yet freely accessible.

So, if you speak of structurally connecting *open* sources, as a basis for
smart editing tools, you seem to be saying that such copyrighted yet openly
accessible sources, as well as all genuinely paywalled sources, should be
excluded from these efforts.

If that's correct, and I am not misunderstanding what you mean to say here
(please correct me if I do!), how do you square it with the Wikimedia

Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: 
New messages to: Wikimedia-l@lists.wikimedia.org
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, 

Reply via email to