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I’m wiki’ing so hard right now

By Gretel Going

July 16, 2008

WikipediaThis blog post was written by our former super-intern Will Henchy. If you got here by googling his name because you’re wondering if you should hire him, the answer is yes. He’s fantastic. Otherwise, enjoy his posts–they’re pretty great.

As a marketing intern and compulsive reader, I love Wikipedia. Not only is it full of great information, but it’s a testament to what thousands of nerds in their mothers’ basements can do in their spare time with the right social utility. Thanks to their efforts, I’ve lost hours reading about weirdly esoteric topics.

While Wikipedia is typically used for research and personal edification (or as something for college professors to whine about), my experience with it has revealed there are far more amusing ways to utilize Wikipedia’s volumes of information. Sure, getting lost for hours in an endless maze of linked articles can be fun, but I think the following activities prove far more enjoyable:

  • Wikigroaning– Let’s be honest here-despite all of its intellectually-stimulating content, Wikipedia is a big nerdy lovefest. As a result, a lot of its content is nerd-centric. Wikigroaning takes advantage of this. How do you do it? It’s simple: look up an important and intellectually stimulating article (try “Utopia”), look up an pointless article (“Halo (videogame)”), and groan as the pointless articles is twice as long as the important one. One of my personal favorites: Toads versus Battle Toads
  • Wikipedia Trails – You may be surprised by the connections that you can find between Wikipedia articles. For instance, Wikipedia links to Depictions of Muhammad links to The Ottoman Empire links to World War I links to Communism. There you have it folks, Wikipedia = Communism.
  • Wikiracing – Fun for the whole family! Everyone picks a Wikipedia page and edits it so it’s ever so slightly inaccurate or borderline offensive. The loser is whoever chose the page that gets fixed first. While this might not sound exhilarating, you’d be surprised at the speed with which obscure pages get fixed by obsessive wikipedians.This could also be turned into the most nerdy drinking game in the world, not that I’d know anything about that…
  • Winning Bets – Did you lose a bet? Do what one of my friends did, and edit whatever you were betting on’s Wikipedia page. Then show it to who you were betting with before the inevitable swarm of wiki-freaks descends on the page to fix the wrongs you’ve created. Congratulations: you win!

See? Half the fun of Wikipedia is injecting some creativity into it. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to try and find a connection between Jello and John McCain.

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