Peer Production of Knowledge

Collaborative learning is the face of modern day learning. Information takes a global shape when shared and skills and capacities can be increased with sharing. With bits and pieces of information added now and then information keeps on increasing at a high rate in the world. The credibility of the shared knowledge is based on the trust that a human-being has on the other. Open licensing and decentralization are the greatest positives of global knowledge co-creation. Networking is the art of creating learning communities.

Today, the world races at a fast pace and all are inclined towards the concepts of self-learning. To facilitate self-learning there are a plethora of Massive Open Online Courses available for the students to take up. Online learning platforms such as Udacity and Course-Era have successfully enrolled over 2 million students in a year and that too during their initial years. There are several online colleges that offer courses online hence increasing the popularity of shared knowledge without the constraints of a classroom.

The knowledge about a concept becomes complete only after it has been first learned, reflected and finally shared. It instigates in an individual more freedom to know, and more motivation to learn. Co-production and tutoring are most effective during networking. Recognition and prestige can be earned from your peers in networking. Moreover, an emotional bond is created during the networking process. Enlargement of personal and professional networks supplemented with a free choice of subjects is another additional quality of networking.

Few tools that have created a revolution in peer-knowledge production is given below.

  • Wikipedia – The available knowledge becomes a source of a lot of insights with the help of this tool. The scaling principle of knowledge is most seen in the Wikipedia, wherein any person can add information to the already available knowledge source with sufficient reference. In a way, sustainable human development is best possible with the Wikipedia.
  • Wikisource – It is an online digital library consisting of free text resources and is operated by the Wikimedia Foundation which was launched in 2003.
  • Citizendium – It is a free encyclopedia project from the same creator of Wikipedia, Larry Sanger. The difference between Wikipedia and Citizendium is that the latter is more reliable. Contributions poured out into the project with the highest contribution to the project happening in 2008, until the office closed in 2016. In January 2019, the Citizendium is recorded to have almost 16,978 articles, few of which have already received editorial approval.
  • Open Site – Though shut down in March 2017, this encyclopedia project consists of entries by approved editors. This project began under the Open Directory Project editors.
  • Quora is a question-answer based knowledge repository which began on June 21, 2010. The website was founded by Facebook former employees Adam D’Angleo and Charlie Cheever in 2009. As in September 2018, Quora has reported of having 300 million monthly users.
  • Everything2 – This is another knowledge sharing platform that contains write-ups of different genres including poetry, humor, and fiction. E2 has a successor known as ‘Everything’ which began in March 1998.
  • Fanlore – Fanlore page is focused on archiving the transformative steps taken by fans and fandoms. As on June 2018, Fanlore has almost 35,000 registered users, with 7,80,000 edits made for than 45,000 pages.
  • Yahoo Answers is another knowledge management portal similar to the Quora, launched by the Yahoo. The website was first launched on June 28, 2005, to replace Ask Yahoo.

There are also similar platforms such as Stack Exchange, infogalactic, OpenStreetMap, Encyc and more that act as platforms for imparting shared knowledge. Some of the similar projects in the development phase include Stockepedia, SourceWatch, GamePedia, MemoryAlpha, InfoBitt and more.

Effective use of Peer-produced Knowledge

Knowledge production is as important as knowledge sharing. The creation of accurate and linkable information is highly essential in peer-networking. The knowledge created and shared should also be reliable. With freedom of expression in your hands, the best practice is to create and share all the information needed to create a better and wiser world.

Author – Theres Ann Mathew