Wacky Wikis That Can Cut: Edgy Alternatives to Wikipedia

As a regular Wikipedia contributor, I've found it's not easy to be as remiss with your entries as many would tend to think. Wikipedia editors pull down anything they deem spamy, overtly commercial, or suspiciously fabricated with lightning-bolt speed. And when they think an article's content is a little off-kilter, they're not at all afraid to slap it with a loud label that questions an entry's neutrality, accuracy, or credibility.

Which is all fine and good. With Wikipedia regularly taking hits from the media both online and off, Wiki gatekeepers have become increasingly dedicated to guarding the veracity and integrity of this mega-contribution site as jealously as possible.

Which has left Wikipedia wanting on some fronts, from my POV. But there's no need to fret: As far as edgy Wikis go, there are a couple that are a cut above the rest.

As a "slang dictionary” built around user definitions, UrbanDictionary.com has been able to tap directly into the online pipeline by capturing the evolution of e-language with Polaroid-style instancy, leaving "innovative" and "serious" propositions like Wikipedia in the dust.

Thanks to the veritable flood of contributions from opinion-prone, avant garde onliners hellbent on molding, owning, and leveraging everything from techno idioms and pop-speak phenomena to niche-centered language, UrbanDictonary has become the go-to resource for e-trend setters, Internet anthropologists, and cool hunters alike.

And then there are sites like Encyclopedia Dramatica, which turn the notion of the Wiki on its head by taking on an unapologetic, eff-you attitude with a decided punk rock style. If sarcasm, irreverence and dark humor are not your cup 'o tea, better hightail it back to the land of mainstream online media (yawn), and leave this site to the big boys.

So remember: If you wish to ready yourself for a stint as a high-profile blogger/commenter or evolve into a bona fide online connoisseur, make note of keeping UrbanDictonary and Encyclopedia Dramatica at the top of your del.icio.us bookmarks list. If anything, they'll help you find your way in an ever-changing digital landscape. Thoughts?


Alvaro said...

I love those pages!!!

That's what internet is about after all: FREE SPEECH

Who thinks wikipedia is a serious reference for getting information anyway?

Lacy said...

I like using wikipedia as a cliff's notes -- a nice place to start my research.

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