Last week, Jimmy Wales, the co-founder of online encyclopedia Wikipedia, announced that if new proposals go ahead, less trusted or lesser known users would have to have their revisions to the website aproved before it appeared live. Currently, anybody can edit the internet’s biggest encyclopedia, but this may change to help protect the site from vandalism and bogus editing.
One of the aspects that Wikipedia is very proud of is that anybody can edit any of the articles on the website with exception to a few high risk, complete or important articles. These new changes would mean that although well known users would have their content displayed as soon as it is updated, newer users will not. While it is a good move I believe to stop spam, I do think that the sites novelty will fade. Although everyone will still be able to edit the site, some people will have to put up with being constantly checked for spamming, and this may put people off and turn people away.
It is said that around 60% of Wikipedia users will be up for trials of the proposals, named ‘Flagged Revisions’. After browsing, I found out that one user of Wikipedia reportdley said after Wales’ announcment: “Are you nuts? It took less than five minutes for the vandalism to be removed. Instead of being proud of your users you instead take it as an opportunity to push for flagged revisions.” This is an interesting point, because to be honest, even when vandalism is posted on the site, although it can be upsetting or give people the wrong idea, spammers tend to falsley edit highly visited pages. Therefore, within minutes, those serious users and contributors will put any edits right, and then Wikipedia will be able to retain its novelty.