Google launches Wikipedia-rival "Knol"

By on July 23, 2008, 7:48 PM
Following eight months of testing, Google's Wikipedia competitor, Knol, was finally opened to the public today. The concept is quite similar to that used by Wikipedia, whereby users can share knowledge in a wiki format, but with a twist that emphasizes authorship and control over an article’s content.

Each article – otherwise known as knol – is created by an author or team of authors who receive attribution and are allowed to insert AdSense ads on their pages to receive a share of the revenue. Any reader may suggest changes to a knol, but edits will pass through a moderation process before being applied. Readers can also rate, write reviews of, and submit comments to any given knol.

Any topic can have several articles written on it, but only the ‘best’ ones will in theory rise to the top while the rest fade away. By offering a monetary incentive Google hopes to lure experts on any given subject into creating good (and hopefully credible) content for the site, and a quick glance at some of the topics featured on the site already show many articles written by doctors that have to do with medical conditions. Seeing that articles will contain advertising, though, one has to wonder what is to keep Knol from becoming just another spam repository.

User Comments: 3

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nirkon said:
It seems like many people are already using the website!Although in terms of what it has to offer, wikipedia takes the gold here,sure wikipedia can be edited by anyone, but from the time i've spent getting information there, I haven't found something that was inaccurate.Obviously, there are more contributing internet users, than there are credible authors.Plus there aren't any ads on wikipedia, and people tend to go for the non-profit organizations sense they are doing it for reasons other than money.I do wish good luck to Knol though, because I guess any database of good credible knowledge is worth a cheer.
Julio said:
I see a lot of health and medical information for now... not too browsing friendly IMO.It will be hard to compete with Wikipedia though, lots and lots of good contributed information that in my case works quite well for mostly trivial research.
thejedislayer said:
I doubt it'll ever really pick up.
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