WikiGenes: Authorship Matters

The current press coverage of WikiLeaks could result in greater awareness of wikis in general. One wiki that deserves attention is WikiGenes. With the tag line “Evolutionary Knowledge”, WikiGenes offers a collaborative platform for researchers across genomic fields.

WikiGenes: Evolutionary Knowledge

Authorship Matters – WikiGenes author Robert Hoffmann, PhD and Branco Weiss Fellow, is serious when he says that authorship matters. WikiGenes ensures that each author’s contributions receive credit in a new way that could reach far beyond WikiGenes should it catch on. The WG authorship tracking technology highlights the specific text contributed by each author cited at the top of each wiki entry.

When you click on Author A’s name, all the text that Author A contributed is highlighted in your browser window. Click on Author B’s name and the highlights switch to all of Author B’s contributions. See the technology in action on this brief page on Directed Molecular Evolution authored by 4 collaborators.

When posting about authorship tracking on WG, Hoffman appends the single quoted and italicized text:

‘Fair credit for authors; always know your sources’

Call for Contributors – Researchers drawn to this sort of collaboration (and attribution) may be interested in contributing to an experimental new WG project conceived by Myles Axton, editor of Nature Genetics. Axton is inviting contributors to collaborate using WG prior to publication in Nature Genetics. Please see the public invitation on the WG site for details.