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June 03, 2005
WikiHow - Thanks, But No Thanks
Wikipedia is one of the great success stories of the internet and will, likely, play an even greater role as it matures. Success, of course, breeds imitation. Recently, I came across a pitch for www.WikiHow.com (no link love for them), which describes itself thus:
wikiHow is a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest how-to manual. With your contributions, we can create a free resource that helps people by offering clear, concise solutions to the problems of everyday life. Please join us by writing a new page, or editing a page that someone else has started.
Yeah, except that, unlike Wikipedia, their Wiki isn't under the GNU Free Documentation License
. In other words, they're basically asking people to slave away for them for free. Thanks, but no thanks.
Extra bonus points for them not mentioning this difference when they note the differences between WikiHow and Wikipedia: "wikiHow differs from Wikipedia in several important respects:"
- Neutral Point of View not Required
- Multiple Methods and Pages
And... I guess the GNU Free Documentation License isn't an important difference. Nice try, guys.
UPDATE 4 July 2005 1415PT
WikiHow has now switched entirely to a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 License: WikiHow Responds to Criticism - Goes Creative Commons. Good job guys.
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