The World and Wikipedia: How we are editing reality

3 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0956205209
ISBN-10: 0956205208
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Editorial Reviews

Review

'A meticulous and judicious examination of the way [Wikipedia] is put together. An extraordinary world is unveiled...' --London Evening Standard, October 22, 2009

From the Publisher

In a world increasingly shaped by the desire for instant gratification, which now extends beyond mere rampant consumerism into the realm of information, Wikipedia is king. Andrew Dalby's timely book looks beyond the hype of mass collaboration and exposes this phenomenon for what it really is and what it means for all of us - for better and for worse.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Siduri Books (December 31, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0956205208
  • ISBN-13: 978-0956205209
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,955,730 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By K. Kladakis on November 1, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Like many web users, I use wikipedia almost accidentally; like many web users, I know why I shouldn't trust it. Or at least I did until reading Dalby's fascinating book. As an editor and administrator of wikipedia, one might expect a glowing tale of its merits, however Dalby manages to show both arguements very convincingly. This book made me look again at the world's largest encyclopedia with renewed interest.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A. Flavell on December 17, 2009
Format: Hardcover
To anyone searching for information on the internet, Wikipedia frequently appears as the first hit. Andrew Dalby explains why this is in his illuminating book. He also puts Wikipedia in context by giving a brief history of published encyclopedias. From his detailed knowledge of its workings, Dalby is very much a Wikipedia insider, but his analysis of its successes and failures is both perceptive and well balanced. The book is impressively thorough and written in an engagingly informal style. While not intended as a work of scholarship, the narrative is well researched and documented, and the arguments are persuasive. Dalby is a passionate supporter of Wikipedia's multiple language-based versions: not only does this make it a truly worldwide resource, but the existence of sites in minority languages is a means of preserving them. The book deserves careful reading, and it gave me an insight into the both the workings of this popular website and also the way in which the internet is developing. The conclusion is that Wikipedia is far from perfect -- but there are flaws in conventional encylopedias too -- and its imperfections reflect those of the world outside.
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4 of 20 people found the following review helpful By G. Kohs on November 10, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I had read enough of the excerpts and independent criticism of this book to begin to form my own opinion about it. According to others, it is not an objective look at Wikipedia, it is yet another song-and-dance about Wikipedia.

The book is the first imprint of Siduri Books. One of the principals of Siduri is liz@siduri.co.uk. She has posted elsewhere on the Internet to promote this book. In at least one such post she also included a phone number. That phone number belongs to Liz Dalby, whom we have to assume is related to the author. I agree with other critics who believe that Siduri Books was created solely to promote this book. Some have opined that real publishers are not interested in Dalby's book because it is unworthy of traditional publication.

However, I was given the book recently as a belated birthday gift, and I've gotten past the first 4 or 5 pages thus far, and I can say that the writing style is at least breezily engaging, which I do appreciate. Thus, I am modifying my rating here to 3 stars, and I'll check back in once I've completed the book.
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The World and Wikipedia: How we are editing reality
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