Knol – Wikipedia Replacement from Google ?
Google finally launched Knol on July 23rd after a long testing period. Knol is a Google product that would allow users to create pages of knowledge on any topic they choose. This is very similar to Wikipedia though not exactly like Wikipedia. the difference is that Knol is a moderated form of Wikipedia.
In Wikipedia people can collaborate their knowledge on a particular topic which is great. However, this is also one of the weaknesses of wikipedia as it leaves a scope for factual errors or vandalized data. In Knol when a new page is created it is set to “moderated collaboration” by default and allows people to contribute to the article, however the updates can go live only after they are moderated/ approved by the original author of the article.
As with all other Google products, Knol is extremely easy to use and yes, it has got options to integrate adsense too. the author can also control sharing licenses, collaboration rights, invite reviewers and do similar functions.
Another major difference between Knol and Wikipedia would be Knol being very focussed about the authors. The authors for each Knol is clearly mentioned on the top right of the page and Google believes that whio writes a Knol is definitely going to be a major factor.
They are doing this by inviting authors to “Verify Name” using a button under their picture. Verification can be done through cell phone, as Google can match names to mobile phone records, apparently. Do this, and you get a PIN code sent to your phone to complete the process. Though this method is not yet working with Verizon and AT & T subscribers.
There is an alternative verification process which is through Credit card information. Now that is another crucial data about yourself that you are giving to Google – as if they didn’t already had enough. The verification system works only for US users at this point.
Another point of difference between Knol and Wikipedia is that there can be numerous Knols on the same topic whereas Wikipedia will always have a single entry on one topic.
Also, though Google mentioned that the Kol pages would not enjoy the authority of Google’s core domain and they will be ranked based on PageRank and the number of luinks pointing to them, its just two days now and Knol pages are already showing up on certain fairly competitive keywords. Try search any of the terms how to backpack, facial cosmetic enhancement. Though some of them have already acqired good number of links there are other knol pages that are on Google without much of link support which indicates that Knol is already enjoying some authority domain status. We are yet to see how Google treats Knol pages moving forward and it is also to be seen whether with the growth of Knol if the dominance of wikipedia in Google SERP comes to an end.