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Main > Archives > 2007 > December > Wikia: Friend or Foe to Search?

Monday, December 24, 2007

Wikia: Friend or Foe to Search?

Coming soon: Jimmy Wales will launch the Wikia open source search project to directly compete with Google and other search engines.

This competition will be healthy for the industry, but will likely meet with much more resistance than Wales' other efforts.

The idea of a transparent search engine is good. No more guessing about algorithms, but it will invite publishers to unabashedly prime their content for Wikia.

A major impediment to its success is that unlike Wikipedia, successful commercial products exist, and users may not be so happy to jump ship. Also, creating a search algorithm is more complex than writing some entries, so participation may not be nearly as high. Search is a one trick pony -- unless Wikia also provide some directory services also.

If Wikia is a success and steals market share from Google it could reduce search marketing dollars. If users are happy and there are no ads (and fewer Google and Yahoo searches), then it could shrink revenue and force search marketers to attempt new tricks. There will likely be a lot of resistance from publishers and marketers who have invested time and money in gaming Google and now have to start anew.

Via: Washington Post.

By John Gartner at 05:18 PM | Comments (0)

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