[CPOV] Welcome to the Critical Point of View mailinglist

Geert Lovink geert at xs4all.nl
Wed Feb 3 13:20:29 CET 2010

Thanks, Jon. I see you're active on MyWikiBiz.

About MyWikiBiz:

MyWikiBiz is a new directory where you can author your legacy on the  
Internet. We think you are notable, even if Wikipedia has rejected an  
article about you or your enterprise as being "non-notable". With  
MyWikiBiz, you create a beautiful, reader-friendly page that will get  
picked up by Google, Yahoo!, and MSN Search engines.

Wikipedia entry on MyWikiBiz:

MyWikiBiz is a wiki directory that allows people and enterprises to  
write about themselves. The brand began as a service creating  
Wikipedia articles for paying corporations, which hibernated when the  
owner of MyWikiBiz was banned from Wikipedia.[citation needed] As of  
January 2010[ref], the MyWikiBiz directory contained over 53,000 pages  
of content about corporations and individuals. The business is  
headquartered in West Chester, Pennsylvania.[1] The site was founded  
by Gregory Kohs, a market researcher.[2]
Professor Jonathan Zittrain of the Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center  
for Internet & Society discussed the case of MyWikiBiz in his book The  
Future of the Internet - And How to Stop It.[3] Kohs appeared on  
Attack of the Show! on January 25, 2007, and discussed MyWikiBiz.[4]  
Heise Online expressed a suspicion that while MyWikiBiz’s “attempted  
corporate infiltration” of Wikipedia was discovered, MyWikiBiz was not  
an isolated case.[5]

[edit]History and Wikipedia controversy over paid editing
Gregory Kohs and his sister started the MyWikiBiz venture in  
Pennsylvania in July 2006, initially as a paid editing service,  
writing content for inclusion in Wikipedia and other community-edited  
sites.[6][7] The idea came from Wikipedia’s Reward Board, where  
interested parties would offer cash rewards or gifts to create or  
improve Wikipedia articles.[1] MyWikiBiz’s prices ranged between $49  
and $99 for adding entries that conformed to Wikipedia's standards and  
policies.[1] No official Wikipedia policy prohibited paid-for  
contributions at the time.[8] Kohs argued that there were tens of  
thousands of clearly notable companies and nonprofit organizations  
unrepresented on Wikipedia.[9]

Wikipedia's Jimmy Wales called the commercialized editing  
"antithetical" to Wikipedia’s mission and "absolutely unacceptable"[1]  
and blocked Kohs' account from editing Wikipedia.[3] However, in  
August 2006, Wales issued a "mutually beneficial" compromise[10] where  
he encouraged MyWikiBiz to author and post content on a GFDL-compliant  
section of MyWikiBiz.com, which could then be scraped by non-paid,  
independent editors into Wikipedia and other GFDL sites.[3]

In October 2006 Wales again banned Kohs from Wikipedia, and cautioned  
any business from using its services, which, according to Kohs, caused  
MyWikiBiz to go into "hibernation". In late October 2006, Kohs formed  
a partnership to promote and market a wiki-based directory at  
Centiare.com,[1][11] but when the site's owner pulled the plug on the  
site, negotiated a transfer of its contents to MyWikiBiz.com


On 3 Feb 2010, at 12:36 PM, Jon Awbrey wrote:

> Geert & All,
> Being still hopeful that there will arise places where critical  
> reflective thinking about the impact of distributive information  
> technology on society can take place, I welcome the appearance of  
> this list.  I hope it will be a place where broader perspectives on  
> social-technical architectures can be maintained, points of view  
> from which we can see a way through the mists of mystification to  
> all that we hoped for in the future of communication, education, and  
> inquiry.
> Jon Awbrey
> --
> inquiry list: http://stderr.org/pipermail/inquiry/
> mwb: http://www.mywikibiz.com/Directory:Jon_Awbrey
> knol: http://knol.google.com/k/-/-/3fkwvf69kridz/1
> oeiswiki: http://www.oeis.org/wiki/User:Jon_Awbrey
> -------------- Original message ----------------------
> From: Geert Lovink <geert at xs4all.nl>
>> Dear all,
>> welcome to this mailinglist on critical Wikipedia research!
>> There is an announcement of the Amsterdam CPOV event in the next  
>> email.
>> Work on this project started early 2009 when the editorial team
>> emerged out of the global social cloud. I met Nate in Melbourne in
>> December 2008 and knew of Johanna's work already for a while. Then I
>> ran into Sunil and Nishant in De Balie, here in Amsterdam, and  
>> quickly
>> agreed that should do an INC reader on the matter, prepared by two
>> events. The concept was ready in June and work on the production of
>> the two conferences, one in Bangalore, and one in Amsterdam, started
>> soon after. First of all there was a call for papers for the  
>> Bangalore
>> event.
>> During the first event, on January 12-13 2010 in Bangalore, the
>> editorial team decided to start its own mailinglist. So, here it is.
>> Here in Amsterdam at the Institute of Network Cultures we are working
>> with a small team on the Amsterdam event. Besides me and Sabine
>> Niederer (who will be on leave soon) who are on the original  
>> editorial
>> team, there is the manager Margreet Riphagen, the Brazilian-German
>> research intern Juliana Brunello and the production intern Serena
>> Westra.
>> CPOV is about Wikipedia--and its not. That's the central phrase right
>> now. Doing critical work in this field doesn't mean Wikipedia  
>> bashing.
>> To me it is sign that Wikipedia is growing up. It is a luxury to have
>> independent research networks that is not formally or informally
>> attached to the big Wikimedia Mothership.
>> Let's see where CPOV will take us!
>> Greetings from a wet and cold, slippery Amsterdam,
>> Geert
>> _______________________________________________
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