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January 2, 2008

Wikipedia’s Other Competitor Beats Google at the Name Game

On Monday, while Bill was musing on Google’s newly-announced Knol, I came across another alternative to Wikipedia — this one with a far better name.

“Knol(l),” in my mind, is tied inevitablly with the word “grassy;” not the mental association Google wants me to have, I’m sure.

Citizendium_Logo.gifContrast that with Citizendium, a portmanteau of “citizen” and “compendium.” Even though the term “citizen journalism” may not be flavor of the month any more among web trend-setters, the name does a great job of conveying what the project is about — as does “Wikipedia” itself.

The name “Citizendium” also has a “by the people, for the people” feel to it, even though Citizendium, like Knol, emphasizes the credibility and identity of its authors. They’re using a service called BeenVerified to establish author credentials. “BeenVerified” is itself name and tagline in one: “You can believe what I say: I’ve BeenVerified.”

Google has the fame and money that Citizendium lacks, but I’m still hoping the best name wins. And I suspect that people will start referring to Knol as “Googlepedia.”

Hat tip to John C. Havens and Media 2.Open.

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Posted by Diane Prange at January 2, 2008 7:51 AM
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1 Comment

Thanks for the hat tip and great post. Also great to find out about your site/firm. Happy New Year and best,

John C. Havens

-The site for the book is up at: We'll be featuring more information from our other interviews there.

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