Digital Universe seeks to improve on the ground broken by Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia that allows anyone to contribute and edit articles. Wikipedia's volunteer model offers an impressive body of content, boasting 1 million articles in English on everything from art deco to nuclear physics.
But Wikipedia's open system has also led to the publication of fraudulent articles, and authors sometimes have undisclosed conflicts of interest, critics have charged.
Instead of relying on anonymous volunteers, Digital Universe will pay experts, mostly academics, to write encyclopedia articles and to round up outside video, audio, online chats and other resources.
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