With so many YASNS (yet another social networking site) on the web, a Wiki for feeding your brain (not necessarily with facts), blogs and opinion/editorial sites, what is available for those who feel a higher purpose? Main stream media purports to bring you facts but instead they bring you biased speculations, circumstantial evidence and opinionated viewpoints while rarely producing any facts.
Google has stepped up to the plate to provide a venue for higher knowledge. The Knol. A knol is a way for people (not Google) to put their reputations and facts on the line, unlike a wiki that is viewed as mostly facts, but edited by the general public with or without verifiable facts. The wiki encourages citations and verifiable sources and provides a means to help promote accuracy and policing of the facts, but this is not 100% guaranteed as is stated in the Wiki’s disclaimer.
The Knol’s purpose is not understood by many, such as those that seem to think it is a market place to their wares as depicted by Will Johnson and his knol here.
For a better explanation of the purpose of a knol, take a look at this one. Maybe with a concerted community effort, we can help the Google knol concept flush out the “opportunists” and garage salesmen from its pages. Fortunately knols provide a star rating system, comments section and if the author allows, the ability to edit or collaborate on a knol. What tools are available beyond the star rating really adds to the credibility and reputation of the author.