Wikipedia giant takes on a new social venture

By Holly S on 21 November 2019

Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia has launched WT:Social, a new social media agency created to rival the Facebook giant. With a promise to not run advertisements or sell user data, the undiluted space prioritizes quality over engagement. Also they pride themselves on not being algorithm-led, instead letting the content feed through in real-time. By eradicating the algorithm, you are left with a fairer space, especially in terms of opinion and thought to be discussed. 

In addition to this, they also seem to take the traditional ‘Wikipedia’ community approach, allowing users ‘to directly edit misleading headlines, or flag problem posts.’ By relinquishing control to the user, WT: Social is giving the user more autonomy over the digital space, creating a level of trust between user and owner. 

The platform is dissected into ‘Subwikis’ which creates community spaces, in which you can join, whether your interests are in gardening, veganism, or home renovation – there are many to choose from. 

The idea of a collaborative editable social networking space is not a new one, but in the age of inclusivity it could just be the next big thing. If WT:Social can grow its ‘Subwikis’ effectively and honestly, they could create a powerful platform enabling users to share and consume news. 

For the Millennial generation who grew up sharing opinions on the Facebook ‘wall’ and posting real-time Instagram stories – and with the new Gen Z generation taking back their political voice, with Extinction Rebellion and the like, WT:Social has come at the right time. We lack a platform in which we can combine unfiltered up to date freedom of thought and news updates. We are ready for a platform which informs and shares news in a way that’s engaging for the younger generation while still being a cross-generational communal digital space.

They say there is a short waiting list to sign up – but as number 177,736 in that list, I’m not so sure. You can, however, bypass that waiting list with a small sign-up fee. Wales hopes to attract upwards of 50 million users to the platform. We're not sure if he'll get to 50 million, but us and 177,735 other users will just have to wait and see.

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