Why Wikipedia is so successful?

Report
Why Wikipedia is so successful?
Presented to
Prof. Dr. Eduard Heindl
& BCM 2010-11
Agenda
 Introduction
 Factors that madeWikipedia successful
 Few drawbacks ofWikipedia
 Comparison with other encyclopedias
 Conclusion
Wikipedia
 Run by Non-Profit organization “Wikimedia Foundation”
 Started in 15th January 2001
 Multi Lingual Encyclopedia – currently exists in 262
languages*
 Launched by Jimmy Wales & Larry Sanger
*as of 01st Sep 2010
Wikipedia
 “Wiki” & “-Pedia”
 One among the ten most visited website*
 Logos used:
 Till late 2001  
 From late 2001 until 2003   
 From 2003 till present day (Jan 2011) 
*study from Alexa and Comscore as of Jan 2011
Wikipedia
 Over 17 million articles (as of Jan 2011)
 English, German & French Wikipedia – each more than 1
million articles
 Traffic accumulated*
 54% - EnglishWikipedia
 10% - JapaneseWikipedia
 8% - German Wikipedia
 5% - SpanishWikipedia
*Survey done by Alexa Inc (as of May 2010)
Growth of English Wikipedia in terms of no of articles
Wikipedia
 Until 2004,Wikipedia used single server
 Currently, majority of their servers are located in Florida
(300 servers)*
 Small portion in Amsterdam (44 servers)*
 Between 25,000 – 60,000 clicks per second**
 Databases runs in MySQL query
* as of Dec 2009
**as of Oct 2008
Factors that led to be successful
 User factors




Openness
Computer skills
Motivation
Neutrality
 Knowledge factors
 Type of knowledge
 Fast changing rate
 Peer review
 Technology factors
 Easy usability
 Fast access
 Infinite reach & multilingual
Factors that led to be successful
 Many people visiting the website
 Wikipedia attracts all sorts of people
 Large articles database
 Timeliness &
Readability
 Comprehensiveness &
Depth
 EditingWikipedia
 Vandalism
Factors that led to be successful
 Organization
 Advantages over traditional encyclopedia
 Additional factors
 Steady growth of traffic
 Greater the people visits, greater the article (count as well as
content)
 Exponential growth of articles
 Run by non-profit foundation – free of cost
 No advertisement, no commercial view
Editing in Wikipedia
Editing in Wikipedia
Editing in Wikipedia
Editing in Wikipedia
Editing in Wikipedia
Editing in Wikipedia
Editing in Wikipedia
Few drawbacks
 Reliability
 Pictures
 Some unnoticed Vandalism
 Quality of writing
 Biases created by users
 Dialects
Comparison of Wikipedia over other
encyclopedias
Wikipedia
Britannica
Organization
Wikimedia Foundation
Britannica.com Inc (online Microsoft
version)
No of Articles
First Edition
3,500,000 (English)
120,000 (Online)
62,000 (English)
2001
First publication 1768 –
1771 (online – 1994, CDROM from 1989)
1993
Languages
262
6 (English, French,
Japanese, Korean, Spanish
and simplified Chinese)
8 (English, German, French,
Spanish, Dutch, Italian,
Portuguese and Japanese)
Revision
Continuously revised (by
users)
Updated regularly
Closed on 31st Oct, 2009
(Japan’s Encarta – 31st Dec,
2009)
Cost
Free
49.95 pounds (approx. 60
Euros)*
________
*as of 19th Jan, 2011
Encarta
Conclusion
 Jimmy Wales – "an effort to create and distribute a free




encyclopedia of the highest possible quality to every single
person on the planet in their own language“
In spite of increase of Wikipedia’s reputation in recent years,
still cannot be used as primary resource for research purpose
First preference to the people for learning something new
Timeliness of gaining knowledge
Wikipedia, as a collaborative initiative using a social medium,
has been very successful
Thank you
References

http://wikieducator.org/Wikieducator_tutorial/What_is_a_wiki/Advantages_and_disadvantages

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Wikipedia_is_succeeding

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Why_Wikipedia_is_so_great

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/About_Wikipedia

Forte, A., Bruckman, A. Why do People Write for Wikipedia? Incentives to Contribute to Open-Content Publishing.
GROUP 05 workshop position paper.

Wikipedia: The Missing Manual, by Author “John Broughton”, O'Reilly Media, Inc., 2008

Kittur, A., Chi, E. H., and Suh, B. 2009. What’s in Wikipedia? Mapping Topics and Conflict Using Socially Annotated
Category Structure In Proceedings of the 27th international Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
(Boston, MA, USA, April 04 – 09, 2009). CHI '09. ACM, New York, NY, 1509–1512.

http://www.research.ibm.com/visual/papers/viegas_hicss_visual_wikipedia.pdf

"Five-year Traffic Statistics for Wikipedia.org". Alexa Internet.
http://www.alexa.com/data/details/traffic_details/wikipedia.org?range=5y&size=large&y=t.

"Google Traffic To Wikipedia up 166% Year over Year". Hit wise on 2007-02-16. http://weblogs.hitwise.com/leeannprescott/2007/02/wikipedia_traffic_sources.html.

"Internet encyclopedias go head to head". http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v438/n7070/full/438900a.html. The
study was cited in several news articles, e.g., "Wikipedia survives research test". BBC News (BBC). December 15,
2005. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/4530930.stm.

Wikipedia.org Site Info. Alexa

http://www.howtoknow.com/BOL1.html

http://corporate.britannica.com/about/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Encarta#cite_note-Encarta2009-0

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