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   Re: [xml-dev] Aggregated content, fact checking, PICS, Atom/RSS (wasRigg

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1) If there are 8 billion Web pages, there is no way anyone can rate 
even a meaningful subset of them by hand. Google's voting system, while 
imperfect, strikes me as a pretty good way to do this automatically.

2) The problem with any system of "experts" is deciding who the experts 
are. Main-stream journalism may at least be fact-checked, but it's not 
clear the world will ever agree that those writing about a particular 
topic are indeed "experts" to anyone beside their peers. If you don't 
believe this, read US and European articles about the same topic and see 
if you think they're even covering the same event.

3) The Web is a like a great, big bar with a zillion drunken 
conversations. You'll meet some interesting people, discover some 
dubious facts, and have a good time, but anyone who trusts it implicitly 
is asking for trouble, and all the ratings in the world are never going 
to convince the black helicopter crowd [1] that the UN isn't really 
invading the US.

-- Ron

[1] For non-US readers, there are a number of people in the US who are 
convinced the UN is out to conquer the US militarily. For example, see 
http://sss.org/lbh/helos.html, or just get the T-shirt at 
http://www.jeffersonstate.com/blackhelicoptercrowd.html. And while it is 
easy to dismiss such people as lunatics, you might not want to do so to 
their face in a crowded bar.


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