Digital Archiving Resources

Beyond the Encyclopedia: Collective Memories in
Wikipedia

Title

Beyond the Encyclopedia: Collective Memories in
Wikipedia

Subject

Collective memory

Description

Michela Ferron and Paolo Massa employ a quantitative study of Wikipedia as a digital archive in order to show how one can view memory as an active process. The authors begin with a discussion of Web 2.0 as public, private, and modifiable, but unable to be completely erased. They further assert that backups of the Internet, particularly in the case of Wikipedia, allowed them to conduct longitudinal studies about data. Ferron and Massa used an XML file to show the revision history of all pages of the English Wikipedia on September 16, 2010, arguing that a revision spike occurs near the anniversary of a traumatic event. They found that pages relating the September 11, 2001 attacks received an average of 10, 701 edits per day during the anniversary, and only 4,619 edits per day otherwise. Ferron and Massa compared this data to Wikipedia pages for non-traumatic events, like Woodstock and Apollo 11, which did not receive as much attention.

Creator

Ferron, Michela
Massa, Paolo

Date

2013

Contributor

Sara Raffel

Type

Journal

Bibliographic Citation

Ferron, M., and P. Massa. "Beyond the Encyclopedia: Collective Memories in Wikipedia." Memory Studies 7.1 (2013): 22-45. Web.

Files

Screenshot 2015-12-01 19.04.39.png

Collection

Citation

Ferron, Michela Massa, Paolo, “Beyond the Encyclopedia: Collective Memories in Wikipedia,” Digital Archiving Resources, accessed September 21, 2017, http://dar.cah.ucf.edu/items/show/268.