Tuesday, June 05, 2007

I Edit Wikipedia...

I have become hooked on Wikipedia - I use it almost as much as Google or Yahoo.

Why do I like it so much? Because in medical school, a lot of time we're taught "that's the way it is" or "its idiopathic" (which as Isaac Asimov put it, "A high-flown term to conceal ignorance")

[Picture caption: From Weird Al's "White and Nerdy" music video]

When I look the disease up on Wikipedia, many times there are actual theories that help make the disease make sense to me. The theories may not be correct or verified, but at least there's something!

Its also a great reference to find more information.

I often find myself making changes to Wikipedia - fixing spelling, adding a link, or sometimes even adding new info. On occasion, I even start a new entry.

To date, I have made about 100 contributions (hopefully many more to come).

A friend of mine asked me if people who contributed got anything in return. I responded with the following:

It’s all volunteer work, my friend. Wikimedia Foundation is a nonprofit organization. As far as I can tell, they pay the board members a certain salary and perhaps a few admins. Other than that, they rely on nerds (like me) and super-nerds to add, edit, modify, and verify the content.

As far as I can tell, they work soley off of dontations from people who care (I donated a small amount last year - I use it so much, I felt I had to).

I edit because it helps me learn the material I am studying and it makes me feel extra warm and nerdy inside :-)


At 12:17 AM, Blogger Elise said...

Actually none of the Board members get paid, or admins (at least none get paid FOR being admins). All those positions are volunteer. Some office and legal type positions are paid. There should be info on http://wikimediafoundation.org/ if you really care. :)


At 12:50 PM, Blogger CaptnSaj said...

Well, I stand corrected

At 12:53 PM, Blogger CaptnSaj said...

Well, I stand corrected. I did browse the wikimedia foundation website but did not find anything about staff compensation. I guess this means that giving a donation makes you feel even better about it.

Thank you


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