[Wikipedia-l] Re: Sanger's memoirs

Jimmy Wales jwales at wikia.com
Wed Apr 20 17:01:38 UTC 2005

lmsanger at sbcglobal.net wrote:
> Jimmy wrote:
>>I'll just restate my point, which is that the first person to 
>>propose that we move to a wiki system to resolve the problems 
>>of Nupedia was Jeremy Rosenfeld.
> What does "propose" mean, then?  I suppose you mean he mentioned such an
> idea to you.  Well, so what?  That didn't lead to the creation of Wikipedia,
> did it?  You're implying that it did.  But it didn't.

It means he came to my office and said something to the effect "I know
you've complained about the slow process of Nupedia, and I wonder if
you've seen this, it's called a wiki.  Maybe we could use something like

> And why, again, Jimmy, did you take four years to mention this, if it's
> worth mentioning at all?  Why did you never tell me, or Wikipedians, before?
> Why is it worth mentioning just now?

Well, because we're having this interesting discussion about the history
of Wikipedia, and I think it's interesting.  There are many interesting
stories that could be told, and none of them would in any way detract
from your role.

>>I just think this is an 
>>interesting bit of historical trivia which in no way detracts 
>>from your _causal_ role in the founding of Wikipedia.
> But to say that Jeremy Rosenfeld was "the first person to propose" a wiki
> encyclopedia is precisely to imply, isn't it, that he played the seminal
> causal role in founding Wikipedia--which is just false.  It isn't just
> "another perspective."

No, it doesn't imply anything beyond what it says.  Jeremy was the first
person to propose to me that we use a wiki to solve the problems of
Nupedia.  That's just a simple plain statement of fact.

> You don't need to apologize, condescendingly, for upsetting me, Jimmy;
> obviously, that's just a further insult, as it puts attention on the fact
> that I am upset. 

Ok, then. I, uh, apologize for apologizing?

It seems you are in a mood to be mad at me no matter what I say, so
maybe I better just step away now.


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