Good Faith Collaboration: The Culture of Wikipedia

Front Cover
Mit Press, 2012 - Computers - 244 pages
2 Reviews

Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, is built by a community--a community ofWikipedians who are expected to "assume good faith" when interacting with one another. InGood Faith Collaboration, Joseph Reagle examines this unique collaborativeculture. Wikipedia, says Reagle, is not the first effort to create a freely shared, universalencyclopedia; its early twentieth-century ancestors include Paul Otlet's UniversalRepository and H. G. Wells's proposal for a World Brain. Both theseprojects, like Wikipedia, were fuelled by new technology--which at the time included index cards andmicrofilm. What distinguishes Wikipedia from these and other more recent ventures is Wikipedia'sgood-faith collaborative culture, as seen not only in the writing and editing of articles but alsoin their discussion pages and edit histories. Keeping an open perspective on both knowledge claimsand other contributors, Reagle argues, creates an extraordinary collaborative potential. Wikipedia'sstyle of collaborative production has been imitated, analyzed, and satirized. Despite the socialunease over its implications for individual autonomy, institutional authority, and the character(and quality) of cultural products, Wikipedia's good-faith collaborative culture has brought uscloser than ever to a realization of the century-old pursuit of a universal encyclopedia.

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Review: Good Faith Collaboration: The Culture of Wikipedia

User Review  - G - Goodreads

Legal research doesn't count as reading. Good read, though! Read full review

Review: Good Faith Collaboration: The Culture of Wikipedia

User Review  - Rebecca - Goodreads

Seriously, this guy sounds like a raving fan-girl of all things Wiki. But for the most part, it was an interesting read. I had to read it for class, and was thankful I didn't get stuck reading a worse book. It was an easy read despite the fan-girl moments. Read full review

About the author (2012)

Joseph Michael Reagle Jr. is an Assistant Professor of Communication Studies at NortheasternUniversity and a Faculty Associate at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at HarvardUniversity.

Lawrence Lessig is a professor at Stanford Law School and the founder of the Stanford Center for Internet and Society. The author of "The Future of Ideas and Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace," he is the chair of the Creative Commons project ( A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Cambridge University, and Yale Law School, he has clerked for Judge Richard Posner of the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and Judge Antonin Scalia of the U.S. Supreme Court.

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