Cyberspace Law and Policy Centre, University of New South Wales
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Wednesday, December 13, 2006


Wiki Wiki Wild

Jimmy Wales, founder of the Wikimedia Foundation (parent organisation of Wikipedia) has announced the next big thing to hit the wiki landscape. "extends the essence of the open source model-free software and content- to all aspects of web based computing."

The six pillars of OpenServing are:
"FREE software, FREE bandwidth, FREE storage, FREE computing power, FREE content over the Internet, and GIVING AWAY 100% of the ad inventory and revenue to bloggers and website owners who partner with Wikia" [Wikia press release].

The project may open the door for many more collaborative content projects, giving adminstrators of websites the opportunity to make money in the process.
“Social change has accelerated beyond the original Wikipedia concept of six years ago. People are rapidly adopting new conventions for working together to do great things, and Wikia is a major beneficiary of that trend. OpenServing is the next phase of this experiment. We don’t have all the business model answers, but we are confident – as we always have been – that the wisdom of our community will prevail” [Jimmy Wales, Wikia press release].

The project is an interesting nexus between open software and open content (as are the other wiki projects). I will be interested to see how this 'next level' wiki project unfolds and the resulting impact on the commons. At the very least it opens the door for a few more Star Wars, Star Trek and Doctor Who wikis to populate the World Wide Web. ..and that has to be a good thing...right?

(Pictured: "Wikifriends", Randall Munroe - via his excellent webcomic xkcd, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 license)

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