Joho the BlogNew issue of Joho - Joho the Blog

New issue of Joho

I just published a new issue of my increasingly intermittent newsletter, JOHO:

Why believe Wikipedia?:Wikipedia is credible. Not always. Not in every detail. But nothing passes that bar except perhaps for some stuff scratched into stone tablets. What is the source of Wikipedia’s credibility? Oddly, it has something to do with its willingness to admit fallibility.

Simply appearing in the Encyclopedia Britannica confers authority on an article. Simply appearing in Wikipedia does not, because you might hit the 90 second stretch before some loon’s rewriting of history or science is found and fixed. Yet, Wikipedia is in some ways as reliable as the Britannica, and in some ways it is more reliable. Where does it get its authority?

There are a few reasons we’ll accept a Wikipedia article as credible…

The end of the story (Or: The tyranny of rectangles:
Journalism can’t get stories right because the world doesn’t fit into rectangles.

If you’ve ever been part of a story covered by a newspaper, it’s a near certainty that you didn’t think the story got it exactly right. Even if there were no outright mistakes, you read it thinking that the emphasis was wrong, that it didn’t quite capture all sides, that there was more to the story, that a turn of phrase was prejudicial. You would have written it slightly differently. At least.

This is not because reporters aren’t good at their job. By and large they are, and it is hard job requiring skill, experience and persistence. It also generally doesn’t pay that well. The problem is not with the reporters. Lord bless them and multiply them. The problem is with the notion of "the story." …

Book report (Or: My obsession):
The first draft of my book is done. Here’s a brief report on Chapter 8.

…One odd manifestation of my obsession is that I never get to a point where I’m ready to talk about the book…

Walking the Walk: Raytheon tags. And taxonomizes.

Cool Tool: Diigo notes socially.

What I’m playing:
Gun is disappointing. Indigo Prophecy progresses from cool to idiotic.

Bogus contest: Metadata for traditional authorities

One Response to “New issue of Joho”

  1. Great issue!

    One typo, I think: do you mean Britannica in this quote?

    “Imagine we had discussion pages for the 1950’s Wikipedia page on segregation.”

    (I also have some comments on the book report I’ll post later. :-)


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