Users of Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, must have breathed a sigh of relief as Wikimedia Foundation refuted the report that had claimed that the website had lost a significant number of editors this year and has categorically stated that the number of people editing the online encyclopedia was stable.
According to a recent report authored by Dr. Felipe Ortega of Universidad Rey Juan Carlos in Madrid, it was revealed that the English version of the website had lost 49,000 editors in the first three months of this year as opposed to 4900 last year.
Erik Moeller, deputy director of the Wikimedia Foundation, wrote on a blog that although Ortega was right about the difficulties and challenges faced by the website, he had wrongly evaluated the number of editors.
He added that every month some editors stopped writing and every month new ones emerged to take their place. Wikipedia had seen an immense rise in the number of editors in 2007 which declined slowly and was now stabilised, he wrote on the blog.
Moeller believes that Ortega had counted everyone who made one change as an editor, which was 3 million according to Ortega.
He pointed out that Wikipedia considered people who had made at least 5 changes in an article to be an editor which turns out to be 40,000 in the English version. However, the foundation said that it will work with Dr. Ortega to determine long term editing trends.
So it could well be down to the methodology used, apparently. The fundings of Wikipedia is proving extremely problematic and unless the website finds a sustainable source of revenues, it will be continuously looking for money. It has currently managed to get only $1.4 million out of $7 million it is looking for.
( The Next Web)