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December 12, 2005

A prankster on Wikipedia—how interaction helps both sides 

Since 2004, I’ve contributed to Mitchell Levy’s series of books on the next year’s business predictions. For 2006, I predicted, ‘As gets , it attracts less knowledgeable people, who begin to render some of the services less useful.’ I don’t think this one made it in to the book, but I was a few weeks early, according to The New York Times today.
   , like any entity, is only as good as the people behind it. And today, a was exposed for a false entry about the Kennedy assassination. The tendencies have been there for a long time, and already I am seeing based on the thinking of an English-speaking majority.
   The is the same. Once upon a time, only smart guys were on it. Now, a lot of people who aren’t smart are on it. But it’s the best chance we currently have at raising everyone’s . Just as history shows that raises the income of both the first-world country and the third-world country involved, intelligence can be thought of in the same way.
   And since this is a blog about , one can now think: a can be communicated, and can educate others, through free expression. We just need to think of it more as an , where the brand can change depending on the audiences’ feedback, rather than an indoctrination, which relies on carpeting the with messages and not hearing anything in the din.
   This isn’t anything new. But consider this aspect: the interaction makes both the brand and the viewer better. Even Wikipedia pranksters, even if it will take a while to get the message out to them all. The brand can grow stronger because it begins to encompass, organically, its viewpoints. It then becomes more connected to the public body, rather than be separate from it—turning all of us into its guardians, not just the organization.
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