Shine On You Crazy Diamonds

According to David Segal of the Washington Post, volunteer Wikipedia editors remove over 100 entries a day from the community-based encyclopedia.

The Shiny Diamonds, a spunky band from Canada, make music they call “mind-blowing thrash folk.” Last week, the lads and their songs were tagged with a less flattering description: “non-notable.”
This was not some hasty, capricious opinion, either. No, this was the official verdict of a squad of stern-sounding editors at Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, which recently began the process of booting an entry about the Shiny Diamonds off the site.
In Vancouver, B.C., where the band’s lead singer was reached by phone, the news hit kind of hard.
“Dude, I don’t know what they were thinking,” said Tim the Mute, which is a stage name and the only name he would give. In mid-sentence, Tim’s cell phone went dead and a few minutes later, he sent an e-mail.
“I urge whatever Internet-snob wiki-geeks who deem our band ‘non-notable’ to look at their own lives,” he wrote. “The Internet is about sharing and the point of Wikipedia is that there’s room for everything.”

Of course, that’s far from true. Wikipedia does not make room for everything. The several thousand unpaid volunteers who write and edit Wikipedia spend a lot of energy ensuring that people, bands, companies, and everything else meet what it calls “notability guidelines.”



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.