New Shape of Learning & the Wikipedia

I finally got around to reading through the latest issue of EduTopia. Congratulations again to Will Richardson and a wonderful article. I was also please to see an article in the recent Learning & Leading with Technology by Doug Johnson on the Wikipedia. It was a very easy to read and comprehensive article, and it took me back to a blog post I wrote a few weeks ago the day after we changed our minds about Pluto.

I went back and did a little more research, examining the edits that were made on the article for the Solar System in the Wikipedia during that day. It was an interesting day, August 24. It opened with five edits starting shortly after 5:00 AM and ending just before 8:00 AM. Then it quieted down, as astronomers met in Prague. the announcement came and the BBC posted a news flash that “Pluto Loses Status as a Planet“, Thursday, 24 August 2006, 13:34 GMT. In less than 60 seconds, the Wikipedia article is updated with the following line of text added.

On August 26, 2006, it was decided that Pluto was, in fact, ”not” a planet, lowering the number of planets from nine to eight.

Over the next few minutes new images were added, text changed, deleted, and added, and the article changed before the world. The content was ready to go regardless of the verdict.  Between 13:34 GMT and midnight, the article was edited 90 times.

Do we have any examples to compare this to? ..any metaphors?

A relevant saying is frequently recited, attributed alternately to Benjamin Franklin, William Randolph Hearst, and AJ Liebling.  It goes

“The power of the press belongs to those who own one!”

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Author: David Warlick

David Warlick has been an educator for the past 40+ years. He continues to do some writing, but is mostly seeking his next intersect between play, passion and purpose, dabbling in photography, drone videography and music production.