24 January 2009

Britannica's got balls

I must say that I admire Britannica editor Jorge Cauz' courage. In the same press release they both announce that they will start plagiarizing* Wikipedia, and that they are a lat better than Wikipedia (paraphrased). But if that was the case, why bump up the competition in the first case? It is obvious that they are afraid of us, and rightly so.

Britannica's tactics remind me of the Republican tactics used in the U.S. election – instead of focusing on what they themselves are doing right, they focus on what we are doing wrong. And that's not going to get them anymhere.

Luckily the editor-in-chief of Store norske leksikon, the Norwegian counterpart of Britannica, is a lot more positive towards Wikipedia (as some may remember, SNL is also is opening up like Britannica). He realizes that Wikipedia and SNL fill out different, yet tightly-wound niches in the market of knowledge. Hopefully there is room for both.

* Yeah, I know it's not really plagiarizing – they of course have every right to do what they do, and it is a good thing that they do. But they would never have needed to if it wasn't for us.

4 comments:

Bawolff said...

And really to be fair, Encarta did the exact same thign they're doing now in 2005, so they are really copying them,

darkoneko said...

to add a bit (since for once he posted in english) :
http://david.monniaux.free.fr/dotclear/index.php/2009/01/25/365-britannica-hopes-to-compete-with-wikipedia

Jon Harald Søby said...

Oh, nice stats. They need to fix *a lot* if they hope to compete with us...

Right, I had totally forgot about Encarta doing that. But it can hardly be labelled a succuss, can it, I mean, Encarta is pretty much dead.

Bawolff said...

Perhaps encarta is a lesson for those who try to have the best of both worlds.