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This article is from:

All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License: 


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Wikinfo logo

Wikinfo, formerly known as Internet-Encyclopedia (renamed in January 2004), is a fork of the English language Wikipedia[1] initiated by Fred Bauder in July 2003. It is hosted by ibiblio. Although there are no subdomains on Wikinfo to separate articles of different languages, Wikinfo does welcome articles in languages other than English and requests that articles on the same topic in different languages link to each other. Existing links to Wikipedia articles in other languages are retained in the case of articles copied from Wikipedia.

Wikinfo policies

Rather than adopting Wikipedia's neutral point of view, Wikinfo's policy on a contributor's point of view is to edit for a sympathetic point of view.[2][3] This policy endeavors to present a subject or concept in a favorable light. A main article is written from a sympathetic point of view, described as "a way of encouraging a pluralism of content, rather than limiting content to an unattainable encyclopedic goal."[4] A critical article in the style of any title: A critical view is likewise encouraged. A set of articles about a particular topic are split into a number of articles with a specified point of view—thus Wikinfo can have several points of view on each topic, each linked to the other at the top of the article.

Users of Wikinfo feel this policy is a way of escaping debilitating edit wars, which they perceive to be frequent on Wikipedia. They do not want to become like Wikipedia, "hamstrung by squabbling sysops getting legalistic about their biases," as Wikinfo user Proteus put it.[5] Some Wikinfo users appreciate the fact that their submissions are not edited as frequently as on Wikipedia.[5] Some people are users of both Wikinfo and Wikipedia.

Unlike Wikipedia, Wikinfo accepts and encourages original research. The encyclopedia states: "Creativity and diversity are strongly encouraged in our articles. This means we do not encourage the capricious generation of factoids, but the deeper connections and discussion of new patterns revealed to us by other knowledge."[6]

Importation and modification

Like Wikipedia, Wikinfo uses the GNU Free Documentation License for most of its text, which allows verbatim copying and modification as long as derivative works remain licensed under the same terms. Wikinfo also supports signed articles, which are not subject to substantial editing by others and can be released under a license other than the GNU FDL.[7] In contrast with Wikipedia, Wikinfo does not allow anonymous editing; this is done to prevent vandalism and protect users' privacy, as "anonymous" users still have their IP addresses publicly revealed and recorded. As of December 2006, there is some activity on Wikinfo, with a small number of articles edited each day. The site lists approximately 30 "active editors" from some 1,800 user accounts. There are 26 administrators, including Bauder himself.[8]

By December, 2006 Wikinfo had approximately 35,700 articles, most of which have been copied from Wikipedia with minimal modification. The process of importing articles has been accelerated by using a simple interface[3] called GetWiki, a highly modified version of release 1.1.0 of the MediaWiki software (2003) used to power Wikipedia and other websites. The intention of GetWiki's author, M.R.M. Parrott, was to add some new features to MediaWiki, but it was decided to fork the codebase from the MediaWiki project in January 2004.[9] Instead of red links, GetWiki uses green links to point to articles which do not exist locally.

When the user follows such a link, GetWiki tries to dynamically fetch it from the wiki designated as an external source (in Wikinfo's case, the English Wikipedia), then renders and displays the article text. A local copy is created only if the page is edited. Effectively, Wikinfo therefore provides a transparent "wrapper" around Wikipedia pages which have not yet been copied. Some controversy has arisen from the fact that Wikinfo can fetch Wikipedia personal user pages,[10] where users of Wikipedia put information about themselves and the reasons they contribute to Wikipedia. Such user pages are displayed like any article would be, and some Wikipedia users feel that this creates the false impression that they contribute to Wikinfo.

See also

Other general-purpose wiki encyclopedias:

  • Wikiweise (German)
  • WikiZnanie (Russian)
  • (Swedish)
  • Enciclopedia Libre (Spanish)


  1. ^ Roy Rosenzweig (June 2006). "Can History Be Open Source? Wikipedia and the Future of the Past". The Journal of American History 93 (1). 
  2. ^ Joseph M. Reagle Jr. (2004). A Case of Mutual Aid: Wikipedia, Politeness, and Perspective Taking.
  3. ^ a b Erik Möller (2005-04-11). Der Stein der Wikis. Telepolis.
  4. ^ Wikinfo: Sympathetic point of view. Retrieved on 2006-09-12.
  5. ^ a b Wikinfo: Village pump. Retrieved on 2006-09-12.
  6. ^ Wikinfo:About. Retrieved on 2006-12-22.
  7. ^ Wikinfo: Signed articles. Retrieved on 2006-09-12.
  8. ^ Wikinfo:Site summary. Retrieved on 2006-12-22.
  9. ^ GetWiki:1.0. Retrieved on 2007-02-07.
  10. ^ WIkipedia user pages on Wikinfo. Retrieved on 2007-02-07.

Further reading

  • Klobas, Jane et al. (2006). Wikis: Tools for information work and collaboration. Oxford: Chandos Publishing. ISBN 1-84334-178-6. OCLC 63136958. pp 45-46.

External links

  • Wikinfo main page
  • Wikinfo's Sysops and Admins
  • Comparisons to Wikipedia
  • GetWiki website


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