[Foundation-l] Adding a comment section under every Wikipedia article

Svip svippy at gmail.com
Mon Jan 23 00:12:41 UTC 2012

On 23 January 2012 00:43, Yao Ziyuan <yaoziyuan at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Mon, Jan 23, 2012 at 7:39 AM, Svip <svippy at gmail.com> wrote:
>> On 22 January 2012 23:31, Yao Ziyuan <yaoziyuan at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> The wiki way to talk may be favored by the Wikipedia community, but is
>>> really weird to the general public.
>> The name 'talk page' is also a terrible name and very ambiguous as to
>> what it is.  A far more appropriate candidate for such a page's name
>> would be 'collaboration page', 'work page', 'improvement page' and so
>> on.
>> I understand why many people believe it to be a page to talk about the
>> article at hand rather than how to improve it.
>> A comment section under the article (or a trollpage like on Wikinews)
>> seems unlikely to benefit anything.  Most of the comments will be
>> unimportant, useless or altogether pointless.  And those few comments
>> THAT DO provide some insight or interest in the subject could either
>> be better used incorporated into the article *or* will get buried
>> among the thousands of other comments.
>> You think [[Cats]] isn't likely to get a lot of stupid cat comments?
>> And while changes to articles are worthy of maintenance for most
>> people to volunteer to do, I sincerely doubt you will find many who
>> would manage a comment system on Wikipedia.  And it *will* require
>> management to be useful.
> What about a Slashdot-like comment section moderated by users themselves? :-)

Slashdot's comment moderation system is my favourite comment
moderation system, but it is not perfect.  And it works for Slashdot,
because it is usually read by computer literate people.  We cannot
expect the same expertise from people who are likely to be commenting
on [[Cat]].  Which unfortunately would mean that a comment system like
Slashdot's would become too confusing to most people, even if they did
not have to participate in the moderation aspect.

Then one might suggest a Digg/Reddit type system where comments can
simply be voted up or down (or perhaps just up), but that is fine for
a news site, where comments disappear as a new news story flocks to
the top.  But on Wikipedia, [[Cat]] will always be there and it will
continue to have the same level of importance as it did yesterday,
today and tomorrow.  Hence the comments there will be carved in brine
stone.  And if *one* comment is elected to the top, it will continue
to get more votes and continue to be the comment most people will see
so there will be less ACTUAL new comments.  Bash.org is an example of
how this works (or lack thereof), as the same popular quotations
remain in the Top 100 as they were 5 years ago.

Then we come back to a no user moderated system, and then we run into
my former problem.  Where it will either way be a Lord of the Flies
system where no actual interesting conversation is generated (because
people with interesting comments worry their comments might get buried
anyway), because either there is no moderation or no one willing to do

What's further at issue is that a comment section on Wikipedia may
also degenerate people's trust in Wikipedia as a source, because
suddenly it would appear as every other Internet website where you
comment on articles, forum threads and whatnot.  Wikipedia *ought* to
steep above that.  It needs to be different.  It needs to be
information only.  No discussion.

And that is - in my opinion at least - the beauty of Wikipedia.  In a
world of a chaos, one remains committed for order.

But if we really *need* a system where we can comment on broad
concepts such as [[Cat]] or [[Solar calendar]]s, we could create a
'Wikipedia comment site', that would seemingly seem connected to
Wikipedia, but at the same time not.  And what's appropriate, it would
be less obvious to find, which may gander some headway among people
interested in actual conversations with others on the subject.

And I am certain some IT news site out there will cover its formation.
 And if we can handle it, there might even be a subtle link from every
Wikipedia article to this off-site comment site.

In fact, I'm surprised wikicomments.org is still available.

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