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Wikimedia Reels In $500,000 Grant
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It looks like everyone’s favorite source for info about sci-fi characters, historical trivia, and other random stuff will be safe for a while longer.  The Wikimedia Foundation, which is the organization behind Wikipedia, has received a $500,000 grant.

A Future of Googling for Twitter Results?

After checking out Bing’s explanation of how it handles reference searches, it got me thinking how big of a role Wikipedia plays in search. Wikipedia entries are often among the top results in Google, and clearly they are a big part of Bing’s strategy as well.

Reasons to Use Bing for Reference?
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Microsoft says that reference search sessions average over 9 minutes in length and over 6 queries per session before the user finds what they are looking for. With that in mind, the company is highlighting how Bing handles reference material.

There is clearly great emphasis placed on Wikipedia results, and I have to admit that as I began to read Microsoft’s explanation, I was starting to think, "Why not just cut out the middle man and search Wikipedia?"

The company says things like:

Wikipedia Adding Video By End Of The Summer

Okay, no, not really—but the encyclopedia anyone can edit is looking to add video to its offerings, according to Technology Review (via RWW).

Wikipedia to Go Creative Commons
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It appears that all Wikimedia content will become available for free under the Creative Commons License soon. This has been approved by a 75% majority of community voters, though the decision has not yet been approved by the Wikimedia Foundation’s board of trustees. The licensing update/result page says:

Does Dmoz Still Have a Place in Search?
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Dmoz.org, also known as the Open Directory Project, is widely considered to be the mother of all directories. Well, that was the case at one time, anyway. Dmoz has dropped significantly in popularity over the years, and is the subject of much criticism by webmasters looking for inclusion. What do you think about Dmoz these days? Is it still valuable? Tell us what you think.

Wikipedia Founder Slams Wikipedia Art
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Some controversy stirred up earlier this week after the Electronic Frontier Foundation stepped in on behalf of the creators of Wikipediaart.org, a site dedicated to a Wikipedia-related art project. The EFF was responding to demands by a lawyer for the Wikimedia Foundation, the parent company of Wikipedia, that the artists turn over control of the domain.

Wikipedia Founder Talks Consumer-Generated Content for Branding
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WebProNews recently spoke with Jimmy Wales, Founder of Wikipedia for a few minutes, and discussed the past, present, and future of user-generated content as a marketing medium, not to mention several other topics. What kinds of brands do you think work the best for marketing with consumer-generated content? Share your thoughts with us.

Irish College Student Dupes Media With Wikipedia Hoax
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When fans across the globe read of composer Maurice Jarre’s death at the end of March, they were treated to a charming quote: “One could say my life itself has been one long soundtrack. Music was my life, music brought me to life, and music is how I will be remembered long after I leave this life. When I die there will be a final waltz playing in my head, that only I can hear.”

It’s cute, but the thing is, Jarre never said it. Irish college student Shane Fitzgerald did, on Wikipedia.

Wikipedia Art Pushes The Elastic Boundaries Of Fair Use
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UDPATE, 5/1/09: Wales got back with us with his comments about the matter. They are as follows:

UK Gvmt May Take Cues From Wikipedia, Google, MSFT

Parts of the UK government may start to take after some ultra-popular websites and online services if David Cameron has his way.  Cameron, the leader of Britain’s Conservative Party, directed nods toward Wikipedia, Google, and Microsoft in a recent speech.

Wikimedia Enters Partnership With Orange
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The Wikimedia Foundation, the organization behind Wikipedia, is partnering with European mobile provider Orange. The partnership will see Orange devices carrying co-branded content for customers in France, the UK, Spain, and Poland.

Jimmy Wales Talks Consumer-Generated Content At ad:tech
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ad:tech San Francisco kicked off today, and Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales was present to give the opening keynote presentation.  His speech was called "Wikipedia, Wikia, and the Future of Consumer Generated Content," and it nicely complemented an introduction by Drew Ianni on the state of the overall industry.

Wikia Search Takes Leave Of Abscence

Jimmy Wales announced a few days ago, the closure of Wikia Search due to the ongoing economic recession. Wikia Search was designed with the primary purpose to allow users determine the rankings of sites and pages for all other users.

Wales summed up the decision like this,

Microsoft Closes the Door on Encarta Encyclopedia
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Microsoft is closing the door on its world-renowned Encarta encyclopedia. It’s not exactly slamming the door. Online versions will still be available until October 31st, and in Japan, Encarta will still be available online until the end of the year.

General Motors Could Begin Offering Twitter In Their Cars

An early  April Fool’s Day joke, or the real deal? You judge.

Wikirank Shows What People Are Reading About

Search trends are fun, and give you an idea of what the mass population is into during a specific slice of time without always giving much of an explanation for why; the intent of their search could be merely informational or it could be commercial or for some other reason.
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Reading, Writing, ‘Rithmetic & Twitter?
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The horrors of war and the odd perversions of the Victorian era might be a little much for an eight year old. But Twitter, blogging, podcasting, and Wikipedia might just be the 21st century ticket to learning.

Educators in Britain are mulling proposed changes to primary school curriculum that would require kids be taught modern Web-based communication and information retrieval skills instead of teaching them about World War II. War they can learn about in high school.

Searching for Answers Google Doesn’t Have
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A new way of searching is on the way, and will come under the label Wolfram Alpha. This is a "knowledge engine" built by Stephen Wolfram, which allows users to ask questions and receive a single definitive answer rather than a page of results pointing to pages that may or may not have the answers they are looking for.

Postscript To World Net Daily/Wikipedia Editorial
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I wasn’t as objective as I could have been in this piece, which is an editorial, not, technically, an article. I’ve decided Wikipedia editors probably were too aggressive in blocking edits regarding Barack Obama controversies, but I still hold my other opinions firm. And as always, my views do not always reflect the views of WebProNews or iEntry, Inc. itself.

World Net Daily Cries Foul On Wikipedia
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As always, consider the source. In this case, consider the source considering another source. (If you want to be a stickler, you can include me in that consideration, a source considering a source considering another source. Ah, academics.) World Net Daily reports changes made to Wikipedia’s entry on Barack Obama regarding his citizenship issues were deleted within minutes, and users were banned after trying again.