I think Wikipedia provides the contents that have been created by the audience.
Needless to say, the audience can write and edit each article on Wikipedia while it is possible for them only to read the articles. According to Wikipedia (2016), there are 38 million articles in more than 250 languages. In addition, 27,556,750 registered editors and 133,339 active editors are said to exist in the English Wikipedia (ibid.).
It is obvious to say that the audience is vital for maintaining Wikipedia because the contents are edited by the audience. Especially, the active editors have played an important role to update the information. While it is generally accepted that the information of Wikipedia is not always reliable, there are 500 million unique visitors to Wikipedia every month (Cohen, 2014), so the editors of Wikipedia have enormous implication for a large audience. In addition, “an article is not considered to be owned by its creator or any other editor and is not vetted by any recognized authority (Wikipedia, 2016).” This means even if the editors are essential for Wikipedia, they are not privileged under its policies.
Since 2001, Wikipedia has provided encyclopedic knowledge. From the beginning, the audience has greatly participated in creating the contents.
- Cohen, N. (2014). Wikipedia vs. the Small Screen. The New York Times, 9 February. Available from http://mobile.nytimes.com/2014/02/10/technology/wikipedia-vs-the-small-screen.html?_r=1&referer= [Accessed 22 February 2016].
- Wikipedia (2016). Wikipedia. Wikipedia. Available from https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia [Accessed 22 February 2016].