Charlottesville Realtor Association to write Neighborhood pages on Wikipedia

Courtesy of C-Ville

Savage emphasizes the project is still taking shape, but the basic concept is that CAAR would begin a Wikipedia entry with some information about a neighborhood and expect “homeowner associations, people who live or used to live in the neighborhood, realtors, and other locals to contribute.” CAAR would pilot the idea initially with about 10 neighborhoods. “If you were planning on buying a home in a neighborhood, you would probably appreciate reading about it.”

I said in the article:

Jim Duncan, “speaking purely as a realtor and blogger,” lauds CAAR for “stepping into Web 2.0.” Yet despite considering himself “really quite indifferent to the whole matter,” he can imagine two problems. First, placing editorial power in the hands of readers, sometimes called crowdsourcing, does not entirely eliminate the possibility that “realtors could go on Wikipedia solely as a venue to advertise themselves.” If nobody revises a glowing self-report, it remains for others to find.

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8 Comments

  1. michael guthrie October 28, 2008 at 15:23

    I am not truly savvy as it relates to Web 2.0 but isn’t the concept that wikipedia sites sort of police themselves. If so, I can only imagine a Realtor getting so much flack from others on the site that their self promotion would turn into public condemnation.

    Reply
  2. Dave Phillips October 28, 2008 at 16:20

    I think you are correct Michael. Any attempt to puff up yourself on Wikipedia would be a mistake. Check out this neighborhood wiki I found when looking for Forest Lakes on Wikipedia.
    http://tinyurl.com/6cc5qw

    Reply
  3. Charles McDonald October 29, 2008 at 07:00

    It seems to me that this is not a place for CAAR to spend it’s time and recourses. I am pleased to see that CAAR is only going to do a limited amount of work on this and not try to control or expand it indefinitely…

    As a local REALTOR and blogger myself, I see that there is a lot of information on the web regarding neighborhoods already.

    Jim you make a good point that many agents will use it to “advertise themselves”. Sometimes things like this need to be tried. But with the current market conditions, I would rather see CAAR focus directly on it’s members who (as the CAAR Mission Statement clearly states) are their primary customer.

    From Mission Statement: “CAAR’s Primary Customers are the professional agents and the companies they represent”.

    Reply
  4. michael guthrie October 29, 2008 at 07:50

    I have a somewhat different perspective on what Charles is saying here. I think piloting some wiki neighborhood shows CAAR is focusing directly on its members. Charles and a hand full of others do a great job of blogging and using technology to enhance their business. Most Realtors however don’t have time or the technological savvy to take advantage of the benefits Web 2.0 provide. Hopefully and with little time or money expended CAAR can provide the impetus for communities to auto fill their wiki site and then all Realtors will be able to point their clients to these sites as a place where they can get a better understanding of what the neighborhood has to offer.

    Reply
  5. Charles McDonald October 29, 2008 at 08:08

    @Michael – I see your point and you are swaying me to this “limited” amount on CAAR’s effort…

    as I said before, “I am pleased to see that CAAR is only going to do a limited amount of work on this and not try to control or expand it indefinitely… ”

    CM

    Reply
  6. Jim Duncan October 29, 2008 at 08:41

    @ Michael –

    Most Realtors however don’t have time or the technological savvy to take advantage of the benefits Web 2.0 provide.

    And therefore, whose job is it to push the members along? It’s not the Association’s. I see the Association as providing access to or awareness about such tools, but to do it for the members … I’m not sold on that. The Association is not about creating a level playing field – nor should it be.

    Thank you both for the discussion and the viewpoints. I’m not convinced, and think that this is not one of the Association’s core competencies, but I’m always willing and open to being proven wrong.

    A secondary issue is this – how much time/scope will be involved and what is the cost? (but that’s an internal discussion) If we are not prepared to do it well and comprehensively …

    Reply
  7. Charles McDonald October 29, 2008 at 08:56

    @Jim – This is where we agree… I am also concerned on the cost/time/scope involved. I would like to see the Association spend time and money for its “Primary Customer” directly…

    From Mission Statement: “CAAR’s Primary Customers are the professional agents and the companies they represent”.

    There are a lot of agents that need help directly right now vs CAAR developing wikis… just my opinion…

    Reply
  8. michael guthrie October 30, 2008 at 19:43

    minimal cost and time.
    scope will be determined by those who go to the site and populate it. if folks don’t participate, the scope will be minimal as well.

    Reply

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