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Earlier this month, I discussed the LAT effort to reinvent its editorial page, which sought to incorporate Web ideas. [See "Newspapers look to the future."]

One of the ideas to create wikitorials. A wiki, of course, is a tool that allows people to collaborate on projects. [Read FCW's coverage of wikis in government.]

The LAT announced that it was going to create a wikitorial, which would allow people to contribute to an editorial. Poynter, the online journalims site, reports that the LAT launched… and then de-launched… its wikitorials after they were filled with… well, language and concepts that might only find a home on www.latimes.xxx.

Here is how Slate.com's Today's Papers reported it this morning:
Oh, Wiki, You're (Not) So Fine ... Last Friday, the LAT launched a "wikitorial" -- "an editorial in which readers took part in a grand, group, rewriting" -- or what's known in colloquial terms as a clusterf***. It was taken down Sunday afternoon.

This morning's LAT gives the gory details:

Sometime after midnight Saturday, [one Times editor said], he stopped monitoring the site for the night, and later pornographic images began to pour in.

One image that was repeatedly posted is infamous on the Internet for its depiction of a man's private parts.

... Meanwhile, with the wikiperiment getting all the attention, the LAT editorial page has quietly launched a more modest, much better innovation: Ripping on other papers' editorials, in near real time.

Ah... that bleeding edge.

Posted by Christopher Dorobek on Jun 21, 2005 at 12:14 PM


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