WWU's Paul Piper to present 'Information and Knowledge as Commons: The Case of Wikipedia' tonight at 5:15

Wednesday, March 3, 2010 - 10:36am

Western Washington University’s Paul Piper will present "Information and Knowledge as Commons: The Case of Wikipedia", the fourth  installment this academic year in WWU’s Turning Points faculty lecture series, at 5:15 p.m. on Wednesday, March  3, in Communications Facility room 110 on the WWU campus.

The event is free and open to the public.
According to Piper, in the past eight years a collaborative, volunteer effort by ordinary citizens from all over the world has achieved one of the largest projects in the history of humankind.  Although very different in scope and materials, this project is analogous to the building of the Egyptian or Mayan pyramids, or the construction of the Great Wall of China.  This enormous construction project has been completed without slavery, without hierarchical management, and without significant capital.  In his presentation, Piper will discuss this project which, of course, is Wikipedia, the world’s largest encyclopedia, the world’s largest website, and possibly the greatest effort of human collaboration ever.
Since 1998 Piper has been a Western Washington University librarian.  He has been infatuated with the Internet since the late 1980s, particularly the impulse to freely share information which fueled much of its early development.  In addition to being a librarian, Piper also writes on Internet issues, fiction and poetry.
The Turning PointsFaculty Speaker Seriescelebrates the wealth of knowledge and talent on Western’s campus. The series features hour-long eclectic talks by faculty and staff who are experts in their fields. All lectures are free and open to the public – no tickets are required. Five to six lectures are presented each academic year.
For more information about the Turning Points Series faculty speaker series call (360) 650-7545 or visit http://www.wwu.edu/turningpoints/. For those attending Turning Points faculty lectures, no parking permit is required to park after 5 p.m. in the gravel lots 12A and the C lots south of the Communications Facility, near Fairhaven College.  Parking meters require payment all hours.