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Russia to Launch Wikipedia Competitor

Blue vivid image of globe and man on laptopIt seems that Wikipedia, reputedly the world’s most comprehensive online encyclopedia, just isn’t good enough for Russia.

According to the Reuters News Service, Russia’s Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library has announced plans to create its own online encyclopedia to give Russian citizens more “detailed and reliable” information about their country. According to a statement released by the Library, at least 50,000 books and archival documents from 27 separate libraries throughout Russia have already been collected as the first step in the creation of an “alternative Wikipedia.”

“The analysis of this resource” (i.e., Wikipedia) “has shown that is not capable of providing information about the region and the life of the country in a detailed or sufficient way,” according to the Library statement. “Integration of unique materials on the regions in a single electronic encyclopedia will allow to objectively and accurately present the country and its population, the diversity of the state, the national system of Russia.”

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Russia’s current President Vladimir Putin has reportedly labeled the Internet a “CIA Project,” and Russian authorities have recently been empowered to actively block certain websites without a court order. Will the advent of a Russian alternative to Wikipedia lead to blocking the real Wikipedia from Russian visitors?  Stay tuned!

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