From: Monty Solomon
The Story Behind a Wikipedia Entry
By NICK BILTON
SEPTEMBER 9, 2010, 8:09 PM
James Bridle founded a Web site called Booktwo in September 2006 to
"investigate, analyze, catalog and debate the future of literature
and the publishing industry." Over the years the site has been home
to some interesting debates over literature and its transition from
paper to screens.
In a post on Monday, Mr. Bridle talked about Wikipedia and the lack
of understanding readers have about the backstory of each entry on
the Web site.
Mr. Bridle picked Wikipedia for this discussion because he notes that
the site offers a "historiography" - a thorough look at the history
of each edit. Every change is documented and archived.
His essay points out that although an article on Wikipedia may tell a
specific story, the edits show a process that involves the opinions
and biases of each writer. In this respect Wikipedia, and in some
instances other continually changing Web sites online, offer two
stories: one that is front-facing to the reader and one that reveals
the behind-the-scenes editing, writing and creative process.
To help illustrate the point, Mr. Bridle took the entry on the Iraq
War and made physical books that illustrate the incredible discussion
taking place in the background.