Skip to Main Content Launches Community Search Ahead of Wikia

Posted on 12.30.2007
Fresh off Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales' announcement of his impending community-powered search engine Wikia, has drawn first blood, announcing their community search engine, ready for use.

EarthFrisk promises better results and less spam by eliminating the traditional algorithm- and link-based search and will rely on community involvement in the way of votes and comments to produce search results. It all hinges on their color value (CV) system. When a search result is returned, users have the option to log in, then vote and comment on the result. EarthFrisk says that this method keeps results from being manipulated by bogus links and that their CV ratings "cannot be manually altered by any one company." By downloading the EarthFrisk toolbar, users can get a quick view of a site's "value" by looking at the CV bar for a color-coded rating. In a quick test of the new service, presumably because of limited use, all of the results have returned a "green" rating.

EarthFrisk returns results from many major outlets from a variety of categories - Search Engines (Google, MSN, Yahoo, Ask, Clusty), Social Media (Digg,, Technorati, Stumbleupon, Reddit), and Information (Wikipedia, Brittanica, Dictionary, Infoplease WebMD).

A couple of nice features at first glance:
  • A preview pane pops up when moused over (why has Google not included this simple feature?). But so far, many of the previews are blank and read "forbidden request."
  • Search only certain resources, such as Google, Digg or Wikipedia.
In the end, just like everything community-powered, the real value will only be seen when users actually participate. And with every social media outlet imaginable, taking even more time away from people could be a tall order.
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