I was trying to think today what "killer apps in social media" means, and it's hard to think of any for Second Life. I guess my own feeling is that it is a killer app all on its own, but one still getting developed and spread. Not everything follows the Gartner hype-cycle charts like lock-step. Why should it? Human affairs aren't "laws of nature" that you can always reliably analyze and chart like science.
One thing that is truly evil, unquestionably, is Wikipedia. It's evil in its reach and scope, and its danger to knowledge and wisdom. I was just reading George Orwell's 1984 again, and I realized that it's here already. Usually, when you read 1984, you think of the issue of "Big Brother Watching You," or you think of how these spies are posing as dissidents but then betray Winston, but you don't focus so much on his job. Sure, you remember the "memory hole" that he pushes factual news down every day as he rewrites it, but his act of constant revising and rewriting and lying used to feel like it was abstract and in the future.
Now it doesn't.
I realized this comparing my impressions from reading this book 35 years ago, 30 years ago, 20 years ago, and now. Winston's job -- rewriting history to fit with new Party directives spinning the facts and history as he know he personally witnessed it -- is a lot like the function of a blogger or Wikipedia or anyone on the Internet who can just rewrite a page and republish it, sometimes without showing that it was edited. Things get cut, erased, and don't even show up in Google anymore, and you have to look for them on the Way Back Machine.
But nowhere is knowledge pulled and tugged and manipulated more than on Wikipedia. It's like what some critics say of it: it's a cult, and back of it is one Big Lie that you are supposed to swallow as religious truth -- that it is "open to anybody" and "everybody corrects it" and mistakes and bias become opaque to thousands of citizens of good will. Baloney. Anyone who spends any time studying Wikipedia, if they are in good faith with the concerns of an open society, becoming slowly appalled, then chilled. The Byzantine system of editing orthodoxies and myriad bizarre rulings and conventions make the Catholic Church or the Kremlin look like school kids with an ABC book. It's awful. I stumbled on all those weird sets of pages describing all their editing orthodoxies and I just...boggled. Special terms. Sordid little wars. Executions at dawn...
A fascinating page shows the pictures and RL locations of some of the anonymous manipulators behind Wikipedia on one controversial subject. Largely male, largely geeky, largely in their 30s-40s. No doubt this guy's criticism page is biased, too -- I have no idea what all the politics are -- but just seeing all the *types* there I marvel at how much it's like the Second Life JIRA and the AWG.
I never knew until recently that there is a creepy function that certain Wikinistas up in the stratosphere of the Wiki FIC take on, called Checkusers. Checkusers, well, check users, they monitor their IP, their statements, they assess whether they are "sock puppets" or "trolls" blah blah blah. The more you read about all this, the more you think that Winston Smith's office should be renamed Wikipedia, not Ministry of Truth. That sub-committee of a sub-commission that he was dumped on towards the end working on Newspeak was the obvious result...
But the scary thought came when I tried to think what would happen if you made Wikipedia be the killer app to Second Life -- or visa versa.
So, say, you'd have all those Wikinistas develop SL personas, accompanied sometimes by bots, and their avatars would be the experts you could access in social media who aren't "experts," which Wikipedia hates, but, "good citizens" like what Rob Linden blessed on the JIRA. And when you went to a topic on a page, let's say, you could click and drop down into SL and see pictures and movies and 3-D builds and most of all, the Wikinista, by this time, with a ratings system on his profile, with Ban-link no-go lists in effect on his land -- the works. And this would be thrilling for many users, as they could chat on topics like Hamas or Creative Commons or the Open Source movement with, uh, the experts. It would be like a Myspacification of Wikipedia, but only with the tool of the intellectuals, since it is the intelligentsia -- or rather, that sort of lesser, mediocre more hungry part of the intelligentsia that tends to fall more for cults -- who would find it compelling.
Except, maybe this wouldn't work as they might think, but would be the means to overthrow Wikipedia. Oh, I don't mean like Weblins -- those little obnoxious and irritating anonymous gremlins can't really catch on for adults who will always find them creepy and annoying. But Second Life avatars who have heft and personality and leave a trail and build interactive parcels. Different.
I don't mean to put ideas into their heads or anything, but the killer app to Second Life isn't a mass entertainment platform or mass business platform (as much as these areas will still grow and be useful), as the platform is too heavy, expensive, and wonky to work well enough for those millions, say, the 13 million that are going to overthrow representative democracy in America who gave funds to Obama. With its fanning of Obama sites and Capitol Hill and such, M might be aspiring to put a claim in on the 13 million, but so many of those people are Web 2.0 who hate avatars and 3-D interactivity because they hate, well, life. They'd have to become more live and accountable and less remote and cycnical in a live interactive chamber like SL and its communities, and they instinctively run from it, after they are done griefing it -- if they bother with it at all.
However, there's a certain contingent -- the openspace artist types, the JIRA contributors, the Burning Man Buildings, all the SLeft, who love Wikipedia as much as they love green tea frozen yoghurt, who could make a sort of mini killer app for the knowledge workers of the Internet, who are, of course, the 10 percent of the content makers of the Internet that the rest of the 90 percent uses, and has little control over, or interest in. Those folks like Joi Ito who run ICANN and run all kinds of stuff, and love spimes, and simply view themselves as entitled Masters of the Metaverse.
Tish doesn't quite come out and say it, but her enthusiastic interview with this Wikipedia dude, and discussion of Second Life, means she is thinking somewhere in the back of her mind about how Second Life, with its avatars, is like Wikipedia, with its, um, avatars (boy are they really different, though) and how Wikipedia, when you get down to it, is really a virtual world (she doesn't quite say that, but I'll say it for you -- it is). And, maybe they could create a synergy.
But let me just pick out some of the awful quotes for you, to get the full monte of what this Kremlin or Vatican sort of entity is like -- if it were to use Second Life for evil, and not good (and I'm betting that unless the Lindens really weight it terribly and manipulate the results, it could in fact tend more to good than evil).
(I won't dwell on the cutesie and cloying notions of "hacking" fanned here by Ugotrade, as if these elitist coders actually have any influence on the world, people, the environment, with their exotic manipulations of things like "wikitecture" (barf). But, you have to worry because they're looking.)
I don't plan to give a dime to Wikipedia, and I'd urge you not to, either; buy yourself a good set of Funk and Wagnall's on ebay or something to keep to compare and contrast, as the Newspeak and manipulations from the Ministry of Truth will get worse, not better.
A GLOBAL FIC DECIDING KNOWLEDGE FOR US ALL
Imagine this, from Jimmy Wales:
"At its core, Wikipedia is driven by a global community of more than 150,000 volunteers -- all dedicated to sharing knowledge freely. Over almost eight years, these volunteers have contributed more than 11 million articles in 265 languages. More than 275 million people come to our website every month to access information, free of charge and free of advertising."
Quite simply put, 150,000 of anything in charge of 275 million of anything without their vote or even payment is monumentally scary. I mean, when Hollywood or Bollywood make movies, individual people get to vote with their feet and have the power of the purse to make a movie succeed or fail. You can't exercise that sort of vote over Wikipedia. Catholic churches are folded if no parishioners come and put money in the collection basket. The Kremlin can't get people to keep pretending to work when they are pretend-paid. And so on. There isn't anything really in the history of mankind that has worked any other way -- those with powerful influence and control over people at least have some curb over themselves with dues-paying or movie-tickets or labour.
Who are these 150,000 volunteers in this, uh, "global" community? They're like...anonymous computer engineers from Edmonton, Ontario or something. Most of them aren't really spread across the globe; most of them aren't really from all walks of life. If they had to put up their names and credentials and pictures, the way the experts on ask.com have to, they wouldn't have a following. It's not only their carefully-kept anonymity or fierce obscurity that gives them power, it's the arcane editing wars and the devevlopment of a powerful orthodox religion which makes the glory days of Catholicism or Communism, as I said, look puny by comparison, because while both were all-encompassing and sought to control every aspect of human life, you had certain obvious ways to keep the record apart from their manipulations, oh, like Luther's 99 theses or dissident samizdat.
A POWER CURVE LIKE YOU WOULDN'T BELIEVE!
I mean, look at the sort of "power curve" on the content here, of the sort feted on Connectivism's moodle or what we know about VWs -- it's 5 percent, not ten or twenty percent. Imagine, only 150,000 people, writing 11 million articles for 275 million people! Why, if you started out saying that's how it would be run, people would rebel! Why, part of the shill of Wikipedia was that "everybody" would get to edit this "open" system so it wouldn't be like those awful nasty white guys running encyclopedias and stuff, right? I bet if you took all the encyclopedias of the world in all languages, and all the reference books, and such that were the equivalent of Wikipedia in, say, 1960, it would equal more than 150,000 people. And even if there were less of them, they'd be signed, known experts accountable to boards and bosses and the general public, in open institutions, not online in sock puppets. Whatever you think of conservative ideology, this page of claims of biase on Wikipedia has many truths in it.
In fact, the number is smaller, there is a 2006 reference to Wales saying that only 615 editors make 50 percent of the edits. The article is about "sabotage" harming Wikipedia's "free world" -- sounds like a Soviet talking. Anybody in a MMORPG or a Virtual World who saw that only 615 people made the changes to the world where 2 years later, 150,000 made content for 275 million would feel they were in a very controlled, claustrophobic world that was overrun with game-gods and their wizard psychopants.
Then perhaps the historical role of Second Life, as biased and elitist as it is, is to democratize Wikipedia out somewhat more, to give it more credibility. Sort of a glasnost and perestroika exercise before the mammoth, totalitarian structure collapses because people stop using it, and even linking it in their forums wars, and use their social networks direct experience and revised online newspapers where credible journalists and a smattering of reputable citizens' TV reporters turn out current events better than hidebound Wikipedia, mired in warring orthodoxies and hysterical manipulations.
Years ago, before there was the Internet and Wikipedia, journalists and scholars and non-profit researchers used Facts on File, still in existence. It had a lot more visibility and authority then, and was something updated and more current than an Encyclopedia Brittanica. You had huge ring binders of it on your desk, and the updates constantly came in the regular mail. So all it takes to overthrow Wikipedia, or at least to provide a democratic alternative to its monstrousness, is for a very smart, connected, transparent and better-willed movement of 150,000 people to make a commercial Facts on File that gives up the opensource shill, and sells ads, and opens itself up to the kind of democratic voting and commenting that newscred has done a lot better than Digg.
Of course, Wikipedia's fake claim that it exists for free and on donations overlooks the powerful tool it is to sell Google's ads, by being the first result on most every search. If Google doesn't contribute to that big pot of millions Jimmy is always begging for, how can it go on?
DEMOCRATIZE WIKIPEDIA AND MAKE IT ACCOUNTABLE THROUGH SECOND LIFE
Second Life could become part of those 150,000 intellectuals around the world who provide the live antidote to the dead Wikipedia, even if some of them are enthusiastic Wikinistas already creating the problems and not the solution to democratizing Wikipedia. That's because the user public to which they need to become more accountable will be present, as they are present, and interactive.
No wonder Google wants to kill Second Life, and deliberately created Lively in order to kill it off today, and invalidate the space, instead of validating it, as M naively claimed.
Let me walk you through some typical Wikipedia editing and content controversies that could be ended -- or at least mitigated -- with just a dollop of the same Web 2.0 goodness that it claims as its heritages: through voting, through commentary, through alternative user-generated content, through avatars that can talk and create and make their own parcels to display content.
In Ugotrade's interview with Jonathan Hochman, a Wikinista responsible for "controlling blight" on Wikipedia and fighting "vandals," he invokes the infamous waterboarding essay, one of many controversial essays.
Under international law, specifically the UN Convention Against Torture, it's fairly easy to concede that waterboard *is* torture, and that these international standards, and the Geneva Accords, should apply. But the whole reason we could even have the scandals is that lawyers disagree. Lawyers for Bush could mount the case for waterboarding being merely unpleasant treatment not amounting to torture not only because they were evil Bush lawyers, but because at the end of the day, as with all human affairs, you only have a gut and a religious sense. Many lawyers, especially British or leftist, have no trouble saying with heartfelt rage, OMG, that is torture. Many American officials -- and laywers -- had no trouble saying, with heartfelt rage, OMG, that isn't torture, we know what REAL torture is. And international law and its commentary seems to counter them. But guts of people work differently. They mount a kind of reasoning with its own logic. If you just simulate drowning, but not actually do it, it's not really torture, abusive as it is, so say the proponents. Yet of course the international legal mind, with its dominant culture, will come back and say, oh, but psychological mistreatment *is* torture, too. Ultimately it is, *because we say so*. Because, *we feel it to be true*.
But the Wikipedia article gives no sense of the controversy, and how legal minds could actually come to this disagreement. It simply adopts the point of view of international law as the fact, and treats the Department of Justice intepretation as an aberration and a lie. That's all well and good, but Wikinistas don't apply that same sort of "justice" to pages on, oh, Chechnya or Hamas or Zimbabwe, adopting the point of view of the higher values of an international justice circuit filled with good will, against an individual country that is violating human rights. It fails to deliver the equivalent of American expertise that counters that same Department of Justice flawed notion of torture. Wikipedia invokes this "people of good will" grouping selectively -- and that's what will lead to its downfall.
In fact, this particular waterboarding article shows how it is a result of constant tugging by fierce advocates of this or that position; the article opens saying that waterboarding *is* torture, because numerous experts say so (the UN, or human rights groups); it continues later on to say that wateboarding is *considered* torture by those same experts...losing its surety. Who gets to say their say-so is the say-so?
Christopher Hitchens, the controversial journalist, even volunteered to undergo waterboarding to see if it was torture or not; he lasted 19 seconds and later said, "It *is* torture". Everybody on the "right" side of the waterboarding issue was happy to have his "say-so". But Hitchens' "say-so" about the alignment of Hamas with the vicious regimes of Iran and Syria -- oops, that say-so can't find its way into the Hamas entry on Wikipedia, now can it? Hitchens voice, critical on *that* topic, is as drowned out as a waterboard victim's. Hitchens, so beloved for the waterboarding entry, is missing-in-action on the Hamas entry, because the Wikipedia Technocommunist Hand Has Writ, and Having Writ, Moved On.
The waterboarding article is an example of what Wikipedia hopes to achieve, and why it is so beloved by geeks and world federalists and socialists of all types: create a world government that sets standards *and imposes them on people's consciousness and enforces them* without democracy, and without the rule of law. In this case, I happen to agree with that international standard about torture; most conscientious people would. But it raises a troubling consequence: if facts are decided by a small, putative international elite trumping sovereignty and an individual Department of Justice's legal definitions, who keeps a watch on them? And if they are selective about using international sentiment to trump this particular DOJ because they hate America and identify with American torture victims, but don't do anything about Vladimir Putin's torture victims, or Hamas terrorism, then...who is in charge of real justice?
Wikipedia says Hamas is an elected political party. I and others -- and many experts way above my level of authority -- would call it a terrorist organization.
Here is an example of how Wikipedia stands on its head, constantly, every day, in every, all over the place, and why it needs overthrowing:
When it wanted to proclaim waterboarding as torture, it invoked that international justice set made up of the EU, Canadians, etc. But now when those very same entities have either declared Hamas to be a terrorist group or restricted it in some way step forward to say, "Hamas is a terrorist group, it commits terrorism, it is responsible for terrorism, we ban it," now all of sudden, they are a mere group of countries with an opinion. Some other force -- some leftoid geeky unaccountable force of Wikipedia -- gets to decide that Hamas isn't really a terrorist group but is an elected political party.
And that's just it -- Wikipedia admittedly has a "liberal" bias (i.e. a leftist bias, as a true liberal outlook would be more pluralistic) and relies on a kind of set mentality to make politically correct determinations. But that international justice set, if you will, is selective -- and horribly morally blind in many places. It cares about Gaza; it is indifferent to Zimbabwe. It can scream incessantly about the U.S. inadvertently killing civilians at a wedding party in Afghanistan; it can disappear and never be heard about the Taliban deliberately targeting and murdering humanitarian workers and schoolchildren in cold blood. And so on.
In fact, take a look at the entry for Zimbabwe. Pinochet *is* a dictator on Wikipedia. Waterboarding *is* torture on Wikipedia. Agreed! But Mugabe -- why, he is merely "accused by human rights groups like Human Rights Watch" of "human rights violations". Wikipedia can't bite the bullet and say that this mass murderer and tyrannical freak enabling tens of thousands of cholera deaths now *is* a dictator -- like Pinochet. Wikipedia could turn to Human Rights Watch or Amnesty International as the experts of the international justice circuit to invoke waterboarding as definitively torture. Great! But now it's time to definitively describe Mugabe as a dictator, as those very credible sources told you by reporting on his massive human rights violations -- and Wikipedia wilts. It limps. It can't overcome its global leftoid bias that sees every African strongmen still as a victim of whitey, that sees every Palestinian terrorist as somebody with an unhappy childhood entitled to blow up people.
On the waterboarding issue, which was fought over strenuously, Jonathan cites "115 sources". I don't know if 100 of them are 100 professors who sent a petition saying in their view, it *was* torture. How many sources would Jonathan accept to edit Zimbabwe's entry? I'll bet he is less moved by some of those same professors and groups saying Mugabe *is* a dictator or Chechnya *is* a breakaway secessionist republic, etc.
THE WIKIPEDIA POLITBURO
But leaving aside that debate on the essence of waterboarding, which in the foreseeable future is likely to bring around even the Department of Justice, let's look at how Wikipedia handled the dispute. Says Jonathan:
"One of the things I did was to try and clear people out who were being disruptive. We actually had to go to arbitration over that article. It is like the supreme court of Wikipedia. There is a panel of 15 arbitrators. They hear the case. There is evidence, arguments and decisions. It is really like a simulated law suit. You get all the experience of a simulated law suit with the real threat that you could be banned. If they don’t like what you are doing they can actually ban you or restrict you from topics."
So, let me get this straight. It's not 150,000 volunteers. It's not even 615 editors who do 50 percent of the editing in 2006. It's only 15 abitrators. Like the Politburo of the Soviet Union (Wikipedia calls the Soviet Union a "constitutionally socialist state" lol), those 24 or so men who used to rule over one fifth of the earth's surface, with 293 million people as their subjects.
"Like" a simulated lawsuit? Oh, no. Oh, nothing of the kind. It's much more like a simulated troika. Lawsuits in real life in a democratic country involve adversarial defense by an independent bar; appointed or elected judges who have the checks of legislative and executive bodies to prevent abuses; public records; discovery procedures -- everything that makes an independent and credible and unbiased judiciary. 15 Wikinistas aren't a arbitrarion board; they are executioners.
As for "clearing out those who are disruptive"? What does it mean to be disruptive, in these feted and overheated orthodox chambers of horrid orthodoxy? It means to question the very fairness of the system -- which of course, you must do, if you love freedom and respect justice.
Tish does little to question any of this, except to say, "Who are the volunteers?" Indeed, one would love to know who these little Stalins are, serving on Wikipedia's execution board.
Jonathan goes further, to hold out Wikipedia as the model for all social media:
"Yes we were talking about how to defend the web against virtual blight. The thing I find interesting about Wikipedia is that because it is the eighth largest web site and possibly the second largest web site comprised of user generated content after YouTube. The problems that exist in Wikipedia are larger and more detailed than any other site. For whatever problem someone has for their social media site or their Web 2.0 site these problems already exist in Wikipedia and the solutions are there and they are transparent. You can actually see the history of what’s been done.
If there is, for example, a problem on Digg - some problem with sock puppetry or vote stacking - it happens, it goes away. You don’t get full disclosure. With Wikipedia you can actually go in and look at a dispute and watch it unfold. You can watch the arbitration cases that are filed, the arguments, the decisions, the logic, the rationale. You can see the successes and the failures and the different things people have tried to control blight. For example, we tried to resolve this dispute one way but it was a disaster, so we have tried something else and that worked."
But, that's not true. *Seeing* an edit war isn't the same as *being able to participate in it, and vote on it, like you can on Digg or newscred or in Second Life*. Hello!
Second Life has in fact acquired some use cases and decisions and practices that are more democratic and authentic than Wikipedia, and Wikipedia, if it is sincere (I don't believe that it is) should listen. Dissent and protest work to mitigate the harsh authoritarian power of this proprietary company. (Wikipedia is a proprietary company, too, merely hiding behind the shill of "the people" -- one entity collects the contributions and decides how to spend them, not the masses.). And alternative views are able to coexist side by side; if you didn't like Virtual Haj's take on Hamas, you can go to Israel, the sim, and hear the alternatives from people like Crap Mariner; all that Linden Lab is asked to do is not let Virtual Haj drown out Israel, *the way it does on Wikipedia*. And so far, libertarians more than technocommunists on their better days, LL has stayed out of the fray.
VOTING CAN DESTROY THE WIKITARIANS
Once, a very prominent Therein of There, who is actually in Second Life now but not as prominent, performed a completely "disruptive" act that had profound consequences, so I'm told (no one has ever written about this because all those There.com boosters on Terra Antiqua aren't interested, really, in democracy).
What he did was create an independent voting system outside the rankings or official forums. And he had certain people who thought they were "all that" representing certain policies (I don't remember what they were) put up for a vote on an voting object that had a secret ballot. Where people could really say what they think, without fear of reprisals. And what the votes showed -- and no, you couldn't say to discredit it that it was merely alt-bombed -- was that these people who thought they were leaders weren't. They didn't have support. They were exposed as in fact unpopular. The consequences were devastating.
What if the Wikinistas' arbitrarion committee were put to a vote; what if you had to campaign and run for office, as in a normal representative democracy; what if you could see what the deliberations were and vote on them. What if you could *vote on* whether you think Wikipedia's entry on Hamas or Chechnya or Waterboarding or Zimbabwe were good research and fair coverage or not. Imagine if Wikipedia got dug like Digg! Funny, isn't it, that Wikinistas are huge boosters of Web 2.0 and voting on Digg...but they never, ever, ever apply it to themselves.
What if you could not only vote, as you can anonymously on Digg (which is why, actually, I hate Digg, because it is the same sort of Wiki-terror run by a handful of aggressive fucktards), or better yet, on newscred.com, which is more credible and transparent, but you could hold discussions and events, and put out content and text to display like a website, to which people could come and interact in real time.
If someone could get a credible alternative voting system going on the "authority" of Wikipedia, what readers -- those 275 million largely disenfranchised and trapped users -- really think of a bunch of lefty geeks calling Mugabe merely a leader who has committeed human rights violations, in the eyes of some, or a bunch of lefty geeks calling Hamas "a political party" and closing their eyes to its terrorism -- what would happen?
If someone -- Second Life -- were the social app -- the social antidote to Wikitarian excesses, where you couldn't jump over Zimbabwe's victims telling you your Mugabe page is for shit; where you couldn't keep drowning out the Jewish voices of reason on Hamas -- well, what then? Wouldn't it really be that Better World which even the Lindens want?
Well, Google might not report on it or jam it -- they will get like the Soviet Union and do that (and already do it). Don't forget how Joi Ito's Technorati.com could block my blog references criticizing his spime project for weeks.
Read Tish's interview to see the fascinating discussion of avatars and the ways that unelected types like Jonathan control them, then look at this:
HOW THE INNER CORE OF THE GROUP IS THE GROUP'S OWN WORST ENEMY
"Jonathan: The person is a great contributor to the community but they are telling noobies to f**k off, so you can’t allow that.
What do you do? Vested contributors are a major problem to some of these sites. They are vested in the community but they start misbehaving. You can’t block them, because if you block them there is a huge upsroar from all their friends and it causes a cataclysm. It requires very careful diplomacy to deal with some of these situations.
Tish: How many Wikipedia volunteers are there now?
Jonathan: Think of a Venn Diagram - a big circle. The total number of contributors are about one million different people that contribute. But there are probably about 5,000 active editors that are consistently and regularly contributing. And within that kernel there are fifteen hundred people that have administrator access and probably only eight hundred of them are active. People have a natural life span with the community. People come an typically stay for 6 months to 3 years. Usually after that they become bored, disillusioned or get into a conflict with someone. There is a natural tendency for people to stay for a while and move on. Some people stay longer, a few, but the majority will move on at some point. So it is a lot of fresh faces moving in."
Sound like Second Life? Yes, that's what the Lindens did on their forums. They had these heavyweight content makers and scripters, and they refused to discipline them.
Here the confessoin is that in fact 800 people (so it's up a little from the 615 of 2006) have administrator access, and are active. 800 people run your knowledge, every aspect of your personal and work life, the thousands of times you access Wikipedia to pick up news or facts.
800 people. Who are they?
And...they leave. We know from the burnout essays around the blogosphere that the way you leave this august inner feted circle is to burn out, or get into a conflict. What a system! A system that can't democratically create itself or democratically change itself.
No, Tish. I don't want "a small community of volunteers" who bring "global change". I and others want democratic participation, fair procedures, real openness -- and I will get it, and we all will, because Second Life and things like it will make all this better, and totalitarianism and Wikitarianism will not win. That's the revolution Web 2.0 will bring about in spite of itself. And Second Life, where logic and common sense and fairness can even prevail on the JIRA at times, may be the killer app that achieves this, in spite of evil Wikipedia.