Thursday, September 8, 2005

Wikipedia Traffic Booms to New York Times Levels

"Hitwise, via Reuters, reports that Wikipedia's traffic has grown 154 percent during the past year. It now threatens to surpass traffic to the NYTimes site—one of the few successful news brands online—and other major news sites. What are we to take away from this?

"First, Wikipedia is not an online brand, but a publishing phenomenon where users provide the content. It's become a trusted (or at least well-known) source of information and is also an expression of several of the Internet's primary characteristics (and, arguably, virtues)—decentralization, openness, collaboration.

"The fact that Wikipedia may soon overtake the NY Times also speaks to something we've been saying for awhile—news has become a commodity online. For the most part, news is just information—columnists are an exception and why the NY Times believes it can charge for that content. I don't particularly care whether that information comes from CNN, Yahoo! News, Google News, Topix or USA Today." ...

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