04 February 2011

Crowdsourcing produces effective articles

Writing can be a chore but research by Aniket Kittat at CMU compared articles produced by crowdsourcing sub-components of the writing task (e.g. producing an outline, researching topics, writing up the article) to crowdsourced articles produced by single authors and articles in the Simple English Wikipedia. Readers rated the articles that had been written by multiple authors higher than the individually-written articles and equivalent to the Simple English Wikipedia. Kittur proposes crowdsourcing writing components as a fruitful way of overcoming crowd workers' reluctance to take on difficult and low-paid tasks (such as article writing) as a whole. Extending the process to researching a purchase (comparing information for three family cars) Kittur found that individual crowd workers simply would not take on the task as a whole, but research summaries could be produced, again by breaking down the task and crowdsourcing it.

[via ACM Technews]

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