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> Wikipedia Insular, New Study Shows, (News at 11...)
Achromatic
post Thu 13th August 2009, 4:58pm
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The ever ubiquituous Slashdot has published an article discussing a study on the insularity of Wikipedia. Interesting discussion ensues.

QUOTE
"The Guardian reports that a study by Ed H Chi demonstrates that the character of Wikipedia has changed significantly since Wikipedia's first burst of activity between 2004 and 2007. While the encyclopedia is still growing overall, the number of articles being added has reduced from an average of 2,200 a day in July 2007 to around 1,300 today while at the same time, the base of highly active editors has remained more or less static. Chi's team discovered that the way the site operates had changed significantly from the early days, when it ran an open-door policy that allowed in anyone with the time and energy to dedicate to the project. Today, they discovered, a stable group of high-level editors has become increasingly responsible for controlling the encyclopedia, while casual contributors and editors are falling away. 'We found that if you were an elite editor, the chance of your edit being reverted was something in the order of 1% — and that's been very consistent over time from around 2003 or 2004,' says Chi. 'For editors that make between two and nine edits a month, the percentage of their edits being reverted had gone from 5% in 2004 all the way up to about 15% by October 2008. And the 'onesies' — people who only make one edit a month — their edits are now being reverted at a 25% rate.' While Chi points out that this does not necessarily imply causation, he suggests it is concrete evidence to back up what many people have been saying: that it is increasingly difficult to enjoy contributing to Wikipedia unless you are part of the site's inner core of editors. Wikipedia's growth pattern suggests that it is becoming like a community where resources have started to run out. 'As you run out of food, people start competing for that food, and that results in a slowdown in population growth and means that the stronger, more well-adapted part of the population starts to have more power.'"
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Friday
post Thu 13th August 2009, 5:05pm
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Interesting... People have mentioned article creation slowdown as a problem before, but I'm not convinced it's a problem. As coverage becomes more complete, the low-hanging fruit are mostly gone. There aren't as many articles that _should be _ created now, except perhaps in certain specialized fields.
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gomi
post Thu 13th August 2009, 5:10pm
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Already being discussed here.

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Kato
post Thu 13th August 2009, 5:24pm
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And here

http://wikipediareview.com/index.php?showtopic=25665

QUOTE(Milton Roe @ Fri 7th August 2009, 1:02am) *


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Milton Roe
post Thu 13th August 2009, 5:25pm
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QUOTE(Friday @ Thu 13th August 2009, 10:05am) *

Interesting... People have mentioned article creation slowdown as a problem before, but I'm not convinced it's a problem. As coverage becomes more complete, the low-hanging fruit are mostly gone. There aren't as many articles that _should be _ created now, except perhaps in certain specialized fields.

QUOTE(Chi)
Wikipedia's growth pattern suggests that it is becoming like a community where resources have started to run out.

When you have resource-limited growth, it slows down as a logistic curve with a nice symmetrical S-shape and then a flat finish. That's not AT ALL what the Wikipedia new article creation curve looks like. However, we should note that the new-article creation curve is the derivative of the total growth curve we're really interested in. The derivative of the logistic curve (how fast it changes, which is corresponds to new article creation) is a perfect bell-shaped curve (though not a Gaussian-- it's a y = 1/{exp(t) + exp(-t)}^2 thing). See

http://billharlan.com/pub/papers/logistic/logistic.html.

That's at least closer to what we see in Wikipedia, though I'd like to see come attempts at fitting done. Are the bell curves they use in the graph above, logistic function derivatives, or Gaussians?
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Moulton
post Thu 13th August 2009, 5:30pm
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Milton, if you go to Ed Chi's blogsite (Augmented Social Cognition) and read through the comments, the choice of logistic-shaped functions is discussed.
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dtobias
post Thu 13th August 2009, 5:47pm
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The time when the decline began corresponds pretty well with the period of the BADSITES wars.
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EricBarbour
post Thu 13th August 2009, 5:55pm
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I wonder who Slashdot user Moryath is.

Obviously he is some kind of WP insider.

I like the cut of his jib.

From the Slashdot discussion:
QUOTE
If you actually believe that, you're the first wikipedian I have ever met who assumes good faith and understands, even partially, how ridiculous and ill-considered the "policy" structure of wikipedia is.

Let's face it. One of the "rules" of wikipedia is NO WIKILAWYERING. What happens almost constantly? Wikilawyering! The "no wikilawyering" clause is only pulled out to beat up on new users, period. One of the other policies states that contentious topics will always attract new users, and yet what happens whenever anyone shows up and edits on something remotely contentious? That's right, they are accused of being a sockpuppet/meatpuppet, tarred, feathered, branded with a big scarlet letter "S" for "Sockpuppet" and then banned by the pet admin of whatever clique is currently ruling (or fighting on the opposite side of) that particular topic.

Look at RFA. How many users are told that their conduct is good, but that they lack the "edit count" to make admin?

Look at AN/I. Or rather, don't if you don't have a strong stomach to deal with the lies, abusive language towards anyone who's not an admin or an admin's friend, and constant taunting.

Grab a random user from the list of recent blocks/bans. Look at the standard responses of those who respond to the [[unblock]] template. I assure you it is disgusting the way they behave, and that every one of them is deliberately designing their responses not to end conflict, but to try to taunt and provoke an already-aggravated user into doing something "banworthy" (as simple as calling an admin names in anger).

The "rules" and "policies" of wikipedia don't mean anything except as weapons for the entrenched, and there is no oversight. That, right there, is a main reason the Wikipedia MMORPG has descended so far into madness.
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A Horse With No Name
post Thu 13th August 2009, 6:06pm
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I have as much free time as a Wikipedia admin!
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QUOTE(Friday @ Thu 13th August 2009, 1:05pm) *

Interesting... People have mentioned article creation slowdown as a problem before, but I'm not convinced it's a problem.


Well, you're not the brightest crayon in the box. ermm.gif


QUOTE(Milton Roe @ Thu 13th August 2009, 1:25pm) *

When you have resource-limited growth, it slows down as a logistic curve with a nice symmetrical S-shape and then a flat finish. That's not AT ALL what the Wikipedia new article creation curve looks like. However, we should note that the new-article creation curve is the derivative of the total growth curve we're really interested in. The derivative of the logistic curve (how fast it changes, which is corresponds to new article creation) is a perfect bell-shaped curve (though not a Gaussian-- it's a y = t(1-t) thing). See

http://billharlan.com/pub/papers/logistic/logistic.html.

That's at least closer to what we see in Wikipedia, though I'd like to see come attempts at fitting done. Are the bell curves they use in the graph above, logistic function derivatives, or Gaussians?


Now you are a smart guy! I have no clue what you are talking about, but you put it across with style. You deserve a big Horsey kiss! wub.gif
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Milton Roe
post Thu 13th August 2009, 9:06pm
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QUOTE(A Horse With No Name @ Thu 13th August 2009, 11:06am) *

QUOTE(Friday @ Thu 13th August 2009, 1:05pm) *

Interesting... People have mentioned article creation slowdown as a problem before, but I'm not convinced it's a problem.


Well, you're not the brightest crayon in the box. ermm.gif


QUOTE(Milton Roe @ Thu 13th August 2009, 1:25pm) *

When you have resource-limited growth, it slows down as a logistic curve with a nice symmetrical S-shape and then a flat finish. That's not AT ALL what the Wikipedia new article creation curve looks like. However, we should note that the new-article creation curve is the derivative of the total growth curve we're really interested in. The derivative of the logistic curve (how fast it changes, which is corresponds to new article creation) is a perfect bell-shaped curve (though not a Gaussian-- it's a y = t(1-t) thing). See

http://billharlan.com/pub/papers/logistic/logistic.html.

That's at least closer to what we see in Wikipedia, though I'd like to see come attempts at fitting done. Are the bell curves they use in the graph above, logistic function derivatives, or Gaussians?


Now you are a smart guy! I have no clue what you are talking about, but you put it across with style. You deserve a big Horsey kiss! wub.gif

And you deserve a big no-holds-bared, no-lipstick-limit, dentures-out granny-kiss! And if you spin any more mental images of this type I will instruct my granny image to slip you some granny tongue.
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