I like this article I think that it is an important point to make and an important problem with the acceptability of any form of collaborative software however the fix is completely inappropriate.
I don't know what kind of organisation you were working in. However I can garentee that any actions where management has disapproved of something and then it was created in 'secret' would have massive repercussions, if anyone else has encountered acceptability problems and has a better fix then just implementing the project in secret I would really appreciate to know how you fixed it.
Posted by Nick Cliff at Dec 12, 2007 17:19
Based on some of my experience working with organizations on wiki adoption, I have a feeling the spirit of this pattern is more about de-emphasizing the word wiki, rather than acting in total secrecy. I think the pattern page needs to change to reflect this. What do you think?
Blog on Wiki Patterns <sup></sup>
Posted by Stewart Mader at Dec 12, 2007 17:42
I'm not sure. You are correct that de-emphasizing the word makes people more comfortable but does this drive them away from editing incorrect articles because it isn't a wiki?
People know what the word means but a word is often taken out of context and a lot of people are pessamistic about internet users. When in reality there is a good deal of moderation in public wiki's (I know today I've correct several repeated words/sentences and punctuation) and in a private wiki it is just that, private.
I think that sometimes people need to be made comfortable with the idea of a wiki. For this to happen they must understand the importance that while people can change the wiki negatively, there is often a revert option to restore the former glory of the article. However I do realise that this is another pattern in this wiki.
Posted by Nick Cliff at Dec 12, 2007 23:11
One thing is for sure, by definition Wikiphobic people cannot be convinced that wikis are good, so don't waste too much time and energy convincing them. Those afraid of spiders will never like them, so there's no point in convincing arachnophobic people that spiders are nice.
The word “secretley” was removed. The existance of the site shouldn't be secret; it should be known all users. What I meant is that the site's nature can be left unspecified to the Wikiphobic people. Anyway in my experience Wikiphobic people won't even bother looking at the site so the result is the same.
Posted by eproulx at Jan 31, 2008 09:24
I already have a lot of direct experience of managers, friends, family and even seasoned software developers being scared of with the whole notion of a wiki. The only real solution I have found is to indeed de-emphasize the word 'wiki'; whether people claim to understand the word or not, calling a wiki site a normal website has helped a lot in pushing that website forward.
So I go for dropping the word 'wiki' for everyone but the people maintaining or doing detailed updates to wiki sites.
Posted by H at Nov 28, 2008 05:09
Making people more trusting of any technology cannot be achieved by lying to them. This is poor business practice and self-defeating in any environment.
The word ignorant in the first sentence may be accurate, but I found it offensive. This site was located in an effort to locate information that can be used to build trust in collaborative online writing. I found nothing useful here.
Posted by Linda Pinda at Aug 30, 2009 17:45