My birthdate

So, I notified Britannica about what my birth certificate and driver’s license says, but they refused to change their article unless I was willing to send them copies of the actual documentation! Naturally, I refused to do so.

Fortunately, an enterpising reporter did his homework and so now for the first time the world has a proper source.

I will, nevertheless, still continue to celebrate my birthday as I please. :)

By Jimmy Wales Posted in General

Truth in Numbers

Director Nic Hill is making what looks to be a fabulous film about Wikipedia and Wikipedians worldwide. Truth in Numbers has a wiki at Wikia, and Nic has posted his demo trailer and also his first “vodcast” from the road on his current trip.

He just finished up in China and is headed for Korea. After that he will be meeting me for a week’s travel in India, and then when I am off to Japan he is headed to… well, I forgot. But I am sure you can find out soon enough from the wiki.

Wikipedians may want to bookmark the site and check back often, because Nic and his team are very open to ideas for the film. Just edit the wiki to give ideas. :)

Advertising and Wikipedia

I advise the world to relax a notch or two. :-) We are not considering advertising on Wikipedia.

Visit World Wikia (travel), Campaigns Wikia (reforming politics), and Star Wars Wikia, a.k.a. Wookieepedia. For some types of communities, advertising to support the infrastructure is a good thing, and I fully support it. But not for Wikipedia.

As seems to be his special gift, Jason Calacanis has set off a bit of a blog storm with his report of having dinner with me a few months ago. The storm seems to mostly be of people responding with one of two viewpoints: (a) evil Jason Calacanis wanting Wikipedia to “monetize” versus virtuous Jimbo Wales nobly refusing OR (b) sensible Jason Calacanis wanting Wikipedia to do good with the money we could raise versus crazy idealist Jimbo Wales insanely refusing.
The real story, though, is much more interesting…

Continue reading

Lost is coming

I am so excited and terrified.

Lost Wikia is shaping up to be really great this year. We’ve got Lynnette Porter, co-author of the fabulous book “Unlocking the Meaning of Lost: An Unauthorized Guide” contributing. A ton of great users from last year are coming back.
30 minutes from the Season Premiere. I am so excited and terrified. Why did I ever let myself get addicted to this show? :-)

By Jimmy Wales Posted in General

Campaigns Wikia

Campaigns Wikia is something I have been dreaming about for the last few months. Today it launches. Please go read about it, and join the mailing list. And blog about it! :)

I don’t have the answers to the problems of broadcast politics, but I think we can work together to do something useful and, quite possibly, if we throw enough heartfelt energy and passion into it, something more than useful. Something astonishing.

By Jimmy Wales Posted in General

More about the New York Times article

Dana Blankenhorn interprets the New York Times story differently than I do. I have been sharply critical of the story, but I did not interpret it as trying “very hard to speak ill of Wikipedia.” It was a nice story, not a negative story. It was just wrong in the impression it gave about the trend of Wikipedia.

I did not feel that it was an attack piece. I think it does tend to show how traditional media just can’t quite accept that there is a revolution going on, and so the story line somehow has to be made to fit some preconceived notions. Obviously, Wikipedia can’t work. Obviously, the solution is to close down open editing. So, since Wikipedia is pretty good, and trying to do good, they must follow this obvious path over time.

Well, not necessarily. We actually can innovate and make changes which simultaneously improve quality and openness at the same time. That’s the interesting story here, how we are evolving new mechanisms which are both more open and better at dealing with problems. Neat.

By Jimmy Wales Posted in General