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Jimmy Wales being interviewed in Rotterdam

There were a few major news events this fall: the "one million-article" press release, which was picked up around the world in over ten languages; the press release about the German Directmedia CD, which was picked up widely in Germany; and the launching of Wikinews, which was heavily reported by reporters and bloggers in many languages (please, see In the Media, pg. 7).

During this trimester, it was noticed that several of the larger wikipedias, aside from the English one, were beginning to receive important media coverage. For example, the French wikipedia was the subject of several very good articles. Among them, was one in Liberation ([1]), as well as, a very critical one in Charlie Hebdo ([2]). On November 27th, 2004, Anthere participated in a radio interview at radio BFM (please, see [3]). Another radio interview occurred, featuring Yann : [4] in January, 2005.

For quotes from articles about Wikipedia and other projects, see "In the Media", pg. 6.

Angela Beesley

Angela, also, participated in a radio interview on BBC Radio4. Her report :

On November 17, I did my first ever radio interview for Wikipedia. It was for BBC Radio 4's You and Yours programme. I didn't realise it was going to be live when I agreed to do it, but it turned out less terrifying than I imagined it might be. It was recorded at the BBC Suffolk studio in Ipswich, since the BBC Essex studios, which are closer to me, were fully booked at that time. I was invited to wait in the "Green Room" when I arrived, which wasn't as impressive as it sounds; it was a room with some sofas, drinking water, and press clippings about BBC Radio Suffolk. Shortly before the recording began, I was taken into a small studio and given some headphones, where I could hear both the programme and the editor in Manchester talking to me. I was left alone in the studio during the recording.

Bamber Gascoigne started by giving a potted history of the encyclopedia, and, then, a recording was played of a family searching for facts in a traditional encyclopedia, compared to one using the web. Michael Schmidt, an English professor at the University of Manchester, Institute of Science and Technology, then talked about how his students nowadays were more likely to use computers than books for their research. The presenter, Liz Barclay, asked me to distill how Wikipedia works, and I explained how the site is editable by any visitor, and how vandalism is quickly discovered and reverted. Bamber was at a studio in London, and talked about his HistoryWorld site. Bamber and Michael both felt that Wikipedia articles should be "arrested" at some point to prevent editing. But, I suggested that instead of locking articles permanently, a version of an article could be marked as stable and could be given to users who wanted that, whilst still allowing other users to edit the live article. This section of the programme lasted just under 20 minutes and concluded with Bamber saying "the idea that encyclopedias [which are printed] are reliable is nonsense".

Listen to the programme.