A taxonomy of wiki journalism


A taxonomy of wiki journalism

 

Based on the review of examples of, and the literature on, wiki journalism, this paper argues there are key qualities that must be identified when examining the use of wikis in journalism:

 

Based on variations in the above, we can identify five broad types of wiki journalism:

 

This taxonomy can be mapped out as follows:

 

Wiki journalism: a taxonomy of types
  User-defined topic? User-created draft? Impossible without wiki? Infinite? Unedited?
Second-draft NO NO NO NO NO
Crowdsourcing NO NO YES MAYBE NO
Supplementary NO YES YES YES YES
Open YES YES YES YES YES
Logistical YES YES YES MAYBE NO

 

 

This taxonomy is not definitive, but indicative: it is possible, for example, to have a second-draft wiki that was ongoing (infinite), but the suggestion is that this would be atypical. The taxonomy aims to provide a conceptual framework through which to analyse examples of wiki journalism. It highlights the range of types of wiki journalism in their relation to 'pure' wiki-ness: Open wiki journalism, for example, has all the qualities that could be argued are inherent in the form; whereas Second-Draft wiki journalism has none. The taxonomy also highlights the closeness of certain types of wiki journalism: Second-Draft and Crowdsourcing types, for instance, are almost identical save for the fact that a piece of Second-Draft wiki journalism does not need the audience in the same way.