May 27 2007

Frank Arrigo on Wikipedia

Published by at 12:01 pm under Australian Blogs,Top Australian Blogs

Popular Australian blogger Frank Arrigo has an entry on Wikipedia. I’ve known about this for a couple of days, because the entry references the Top 100 Australian Blogs list.

The entry is being considered for deletion, much to the amusement of Frank, who hasn’t entered into the debate.

Laurel has dramatically stepped up to the plate – “Australia – SAVE FRANK ARRIGO!!! (wikipedia)“.

I haven’t added a comment on Wikipedia, basically because it could be deemed that I have a vested interest (or “COI” as they call it – Conflict of Interest) in the outcome, and I don’t have a wikipedia login.

If I was to make a comment, it would be to counter the argument that being 55th on the list isn’t high enough.

Firstly, the list is a somewhat arbitrary measure of a blog’s popularity. In Frank’s case, because he blogs on the domain, it is impossible to derive a true Alexa rank, as is done for the majority of blogs on the list (which are on their own domains, or on a hosted domain that allows this to be derived). Therefore, this has to be approximated (see about the index), and may well have a negative impact on his position in the list.

RSS subscriber counts, which would be a strong determination for popularity, are not taken into consideration either, nor is Google PageRank (which in Frank’s case is 6), and I dare say there could be many other factors used.

I have no doubt that many great and popular Australian blogs are not included in the list, because they do not fit the formula. For example Cameron Reilly’s G’Day World and John Quiggin, do not have a Technorati Rank, so it is impossible to derive an index.

Anyone feeling so inclined to keep Frank’s entry on Wikipedia is encouraged to visit the “articles for deletion” page, and vote to “keep”.

Update: Apparently this entry has been deleted.

Perhaps in hindsight I should have written a more balanced “Anyone feeling so inclined to vote on whether Frank’s entry should be kept or deleted should visit the articles for deletion page”. Mind you I suspect it wouldn’t have made a difference.

13 responses so far

13 Responses to “Frank Arrigo on Wikipedia”

  1. […] Ferris! Save Frank! More Save […]

  2. Laurel Papworthon 27 May 2007 at 4:06 pm

    Bless you Meg. :)
    If it’s not dear Frank, who else could be our Australian supremo blogger/web 2.0 evangelist worthy of a wikipedia page? Do they already have one?… just wondering.

  3. Megon 27 May 2007 at 6:01 pm

    Hi Laurel

    John Quiggin does, and so does Darren Rowse. Cameron Reilly is referenced in the podcast network, but doesn’t appear to have his own entry.

  4. Delicate Genius Blog » Save Frank Arrigoon 27 May 2007 at 11:45 pm

    […] Meg from Dipping into the Blogpond has her thoughts too. Meg was responsible for collating a list of popular australian bloggers which is being called as evidence in the virtual courtroom of Wikipedia. She has some very valid thoughts as to the importance of the list. […]

  5. […] can now clearly see where a couple of strategies undertaken by fans-of-frank may have come unstuck – albeit with good […]

  6. Delicate Geniuson 28 May 2007 at 8:27 pm

    Hey Meg,

    I particularly like the note at the top of the deletion page indicating that your post “requests Keep “votes”, providing both instructions on how to edit and what to say” and that that’s a bad thing.

    Heaven forbid if you help people contribute to wikipedia correctly and encourage them to voice their opinions.

    My faith in wikipedia took a bashing today. Almost on par with my faith in humanity at this point :-)

  7. Delicate Geniuson 28 May 2007 at 8:30 pm

    Opps, that was Laurel who was encouraging people stand up for themselves, my bad.

  8. Megon 28 May 2007 at 8:37 pm

    Delicate Genius,

    Actually the deletion page does reference my post saying:

    “Further this notice [link to my post] is also ask [sic] for keep “votes” and it provides a direct link here.”

    I’m with you, though. What’s wrong with informing the (relevant) public about what’s going on?

  9. Andrewon 28 May 2007 at 9:04 pm

    There’s been a long-standing opposition to canvassing (to the point of it being a guideline), “pile-on” votes and various other such things at times. Most of the worst I’ve seen, out of curiosity, relates to either schools (there’s one up right now about a bunch of interschool carnivals!) or small corporations which may be looking to use Wikipedia’s high Google ratings to get themselves a bit of free publicity. If it helps, one reason the outside contributions were a bit of an own goal is that many Wikipedians would have seen people signing up for an account just to vote in the AfD as a form of vote-stacking – I know some in the community (not including myself) have suggested a minimum bar of 500 edits to vote, as is the case in some other Wikipedia procedures.

    It’s worth noting that Wikipedia *is* a community, there’s diversity and norms within that community just as any community has. For instance, I’ve noticed that well-funded mainstream media bloggers are looked down upon by the blogging community as almost “intruders within the house” – not that I disagree with them, for the record.

  10. Delicate Geniuson 28 May 2007 at 10:02 pm

    Hey Andrew,

    You make a very valid observation.

    It seems to me that by defending their community in such a way, they are being exclusionary of new members (in this instance anyway).

    I guess proof once again, that online communities are no difference than the schoolyard. The cool kids, the uncool kids, the clicky groups and of course, the loner and the metal head :-)

  11. Megon 28 May 2007 at 10:25 pm

    Hi Andrew

    A few points:-

    1. I think it’s unfair to punish an entry because of those not “au fait” with the Wikipedia guidelines. After looking at the guidelines, my understanding is that canvassing (as you referred to on the AfD page) refers to “…overtly soliciting the opinions of other Wikipedians on their talk pages…” and that “Votestacking” refers to “… sending mass talk messages out to editors who are on the record with a specific opinion”. I don’t see evidence of this, do you?

    2. If you notice I didn’t sign up to vote as I saw a potential COI. I didn’t realise that my post, which was predominantly countering an argument against inclusion, would be portrayed so negatively.

    3. If you think that users shouldn’t get to have a say on AfD’s unless they’ve had “500 edits” then perhaps it should be a guideline. Of course this is implying that unless you reach that “standard” your opinion doesn’t count. So much for “community”

    4. With a PageRank of 6, I really don’t think that Frank gives a toss about a link from Wikipedia.

    5. Are you saying that you think that Frank is a “well-funded mainstream media blogger” and that you look down on him because of that? How can you claim to be impartial with an opinion like that? No wonder you voted for a delete.

    6. Why is it that just about everybody who voted for a “keep” no longer has a valid user page? Were these deleted by the “community” or did they all self-destruct?

  12. Andrewon 28 May 2007 at 11:44 pm

    Hi Meg, in response:

    1. The document probably needs to be rewritten to reflect how it is used/interpreted which includes off-wiki canvassing (including via email or other means). The current status probably more accurately describes how it is *prosecuted* (i.e. in terms of warning or banning users).
    2. I didn’t think your post was problematic – it was more newsish in tone than some of the others.
    3. Note *I* don’t support the 500 edits thing, I was saying that I’ve heard that in some quarters (I think we should be encouraging participation)
    4. Fair enough.
    5. No, I was thinking of Tim Blair, actually. :)
    6. As far as I can tell, they always were red links – i.e. were never created. There’s never been a requirement to create user pages and many choose not to.

    Delicate Genius: indeed! I think all communities are prone to elitism, and it’s a danger to be avoided.

  13. Megon 28 May 2007 at 11:58 pm


    1. I agree, but again I don’t think blog posts created by “unassociated” individuals should be counted against the inclusion of an article. If someone feels strongly about a topic, it’s their choice to air their opinion.

    3. Yes, sorry you did state that it was not your opinion

    5. Oh, cool – “no comment” 😉

    6. My mistake – I thought a page in red indicated one which had been deleted.

    Thanks for your clarification.