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Thursday, June 16, 2005

My, is it nearly that time again already?

When you go to sleep thinking about Wikinews, and wake up thinking about Wikinews, you know you're caring too much.

It doesn't help that I imagine that I'm as popular as a turd in a baked bean factory. I have always put the site first, and have not been afraid to make a wave if I see a problem that is harmful to Wikinews. Of course, that means I put a lot of people's backs up, but hey, this is supposed to be a news website, not a popularity contest.

But then, I sometimes wonder what we're doing. When I write a story, more often than not it strikes me that the short-comings of the press that were identified when Wikinews was created, don't actually exist. When you go to check the source for a two-paragraph story, and see that it's a well-written, three-page in-depth analysis of a difficult and complex situation in Iraq, you have to wonder what the hell we're doing. If you want a  good quality news service, read Reuters!

And then you hear that a coporate blog about yoghurt has 24 times more readers than the Wikinews RSS.

Hmm, done a pretty good job of talking myself out of contributing further...

I'm currently putting some effort into dispute resolution on Wikipedia. When you bring calm to troubled waters, it's satisfying. Smoothing out conflicts on such a valuble resource does, right now, feel more, well, worthwhile than working on Wikinews does.

One of the few chinks of light is Clare White. She's in Rwanda, and has developed a 'Rwanda newshut', which is aiming to enable Rwandans to put their news onto the world stage. *That*, I feel, is where Wikinews could shine.

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