The Null Device

Wikipedia kills Encarta

The rise of Wikipedia and its open-source, collaborative content model has claimed a scalp among its traditional, proprietary competition: Microsoft's online encyclopedia Encarta will be shut down on 31 October. Encarta was launched in the 1990s as a savvier Britannica for the CD-ROM age.

I wonder how long Britannica has left. Will it survive indefinitely, sustained by the niche market for expensive, impressive-looking leather-bound volumes, fetishised by those to whom such things still suggest wisdom more than decrepitude? Will the brand name be snapped up by a manufacturer of prestige E-paper Wikipedia browsers? Or will it just sink without a trace, as a relic of a past age of informational scarcity?

There are 5 comments on "Wikipedia kills Encarta":

Posted by: ctime Wed Apr 1 18:26:17 2009

I really hope Britannica changes the way it operates in order to compete with wikipedia directly. That will be the only way for it to survive and maintain any relevance. I think they should be the 'closed' wiki counter-part that accepts and approves updates etc and counter-balances whats on wikipedia (which can be complete garbage at times).

Anyways, I tried using britannica online and it sucks. When I was a kid I would spend hours reading the printed version (1988 edition was the shiiit)

Posted by: Greg Thu Apr 2 04:32:46 2009

Why don't Britannica stop trying to get people to pay for their content, and simply monetize by placing ads in it? They don't seem to grok the www - information has to be free, and very easy to find, otherwise people will click elsewhere. Their content is very good and would surely compete if they removed the impediments to getting it.

Posted by: JackShit Thu Apr 2 13:31:53 2009

Not that Britannica are going to read this but that point up there by Greg is damn straight, Wikipedia is utter nonsense. I put on that I was the inventor of cowboys and went round on a huge haddock instead of a horse, it stayed there for 2 days before someone realised it was to Python-esque to be true an reverted it.

This was noticed and rightly changed, but anything slightly more beliveable could become fact if no-one bothered to check, and for the most who are lazy enough to belive wikipedia, it could re-write the history of many things to utter bollox. We need some kind of monitoring, if Brittania started adverts, no-one's gonna pay attention to them any way so who cares what they do as long as the info's correct.

Posted by: mark http://blog.formonelane.net/ Thu Apr 2 23:21:18 2009

Of course, one of the things that will help prevent Wikipedia from degenerating into "utter nonsense" is people like JackShit realising that they're pissing in our drinking water and developing the balls required to feel a sense of shame for what they've done.

Posted by: spook http://spook.cc Sat Apr 4 03:11:00 2009

"Of course, one of the things that will help prevent Wikipedia from degenerating into "utter nonsense" is people like JackShit realising that they're pissing in our drinking water and developing the balls required to feel a sense of shame for what they've done."

And this is why Wikipedia is infallible, and always doomed forever.

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