One of my all-time favorite websites is the wikipedia – partly because I’ve used it for many years to look up terms, concepts, historical facts; also because I like to link to its pages for terms where I want to provide context; but mostly because of its altruistic and utopian perspective.
Imagine a world in which every person has free access
to the sum of all human knowledge. That’s what we’re doing.
– from wikipedia
There aren’t many things in this world that focus on access to knowledge and being free. These two goals are counter to any major corporation and their quest for global monetary domination. That’s one of the reasons why I’ve always had respect for academia and nonprofits. Their mission is distinctly different.
To me, that difference also plays out distinctly in our experiences of the site itself. Just as a purely commercially-driven entity like TVGuide.com has blinking banners, four frames of moving flash ads threatening the squeezed content area, the Wikipedia, a nonprofit, completely publically-supported free “encyclopedia” provides clear, readable navigation, helpful indicators, and an endless wealth of content and interaction for the individual and the communities.
Global knowledge communication? Seems like a much better concept of the world to me.