Google Knol the rip-off of Wikipedia
Posted in Pay Per Click (PPC) by Geoff Parker on 7th of January, 2008
Some of you may have seen that Google are launching Google Knol as competiton to Wikipedia, but will it be successful? I want to conduct a straw poll and see what people think, leave your comments below please. Some people may question the ethics behind the fundamentals of Google Knol. As you know, Wikipedia is written by whoever wants to update it. This is good because it is constantly updating by say for example you came across something that isn’t factually correct. For example, Islam is the most tarnished term in Wikipedia and the entry is constantly changed to slander the religion. However, the marvelous thing about Wiki is that it is self healing. What I mean by this is it is policed by whoever and when something is incorrect it is updated by whoever wants to. Therefore, a slanderous entry for Wiki only lasts only four minutes, on average! The fundamental difference with Knol is that once an author makes an entry it can only be modified by the author. Therefore, surely it leaves itself open to incorrect entries, slander and even racism! How is this ‘don’t be evil’ from Google? Surely it will just turn into a knowledge blog? Another question some people may ask is what will Google do to the authority on Google Knol….? Google’s moto is known as ‘don’t be evil’ but after seeing the modifications of search result listings in China, will they be honest enough to rank a site above them which is actually better? Will they update the algorithm to suit? So many unanswered questions. Yet again, another question to answer is does this look like Google re-inventing the wheel? Surely after wikipedia, yahoo answers, squidoo.com, and about.com we don’t need any more knowledge banks. Google takes good ideas and makes them pretty much perfect. I think they will do a similar job here like they have done with sponsored links and natural listing algorithm. However, is there enough of a niche to make it successful? I am sure that good old Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia would have something to say about the above comments. What do you think? Comments below, please.