Knol – Wikipedia With Ads

If Wikipedia is an essential resource of knowledge for you, you may find it is about to lose out against a powerful new competitor. Google announced last December that it would be encouraging people to contribute knowledge. Now we are told that Knol is open to everyone.

.. and what exactly is Knol? Well it is a website where you will find knols, which are authoritative articles about specific topics. And who are these authorities? It’s you and me. Provided no one else writes a better knol, then yours may stay as the authority. Your topic can be as important or as unimportant as you wish. For example, I wrote a knol on the humble exclamation mark!. I even included a relevant New Yorker cartoon on aliens and the exclamation point. That knol will stay as the authority until someone writes a more authoritative one.

Other commentators are quite clear on what it is all about. As ReadWriteWeb suggests, Google is taking on Wikipedia.

In many respects, Knol is similar to Jason Calacanis’ Mahalo, though its scope seems even more ambitious and its tools a bit more refined. It does, however, validate the Mahalo model.

And as Matthew Ingram suggests, Mahalo may be an early casualty as the heavy artillery arrives.

TechCrunch is even clearer on Google’s motivation: they wished to create a monetizable version of Wikipedia. However they do raise questions on whether this initiative will have any long-term lasting value.

What is quite clear is that this will markedly affect the normal Google search process. Although new web pages often rank well in a honeymoon period, Danny Sullivan feels already that knols are doing even better than might be expected in the search results. It all just makes it that much more difficult to rank well with organic search engine optimization (SEO).

Instead it means you will be seeing even more Google Adsense ads. That clearly is the name of the game. Whether this ubiquitous presence for AdWords will induce AdWords blindness is an interesting question. It certainly may give opportunities for other advertising services such as Performancing with its Targeted Blog Advertising.

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3 thoughts on “Knol – Wikipedia With Ads”

  1. It’s so much more Content, content, content plus more content. My concern is how much SERP real estate knol whatever will take up. I can already hear all of the search marketers throwing fits about another Wikipedia to deal with in the SERPS.

  2. I don’t think that knol can be directly compared with wikipedia. Wikipedia is not capable of being referenced in academic works. Knol though it is beta it will become the internet reference for many academic works.

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