It’s been another year, so it’s time to re-evaluate my theory that Wikipedia is becoming a standard reference and will soon be the number one hit for notable people in the world. Consider my two previous discussions here:
- The Formation of a Standard Reference from two years ago.
- The Formation of a Standard Reference, Re-visited from last year.
Again, I will Google for all the people in my list, and show how their results compare to last year and the year before that.
- Bill Clinton: Wikipedia page is 1st (2nd last year / 3rd the year before)
- Condoleezza Rice: 1st (2nd / 2nd)
- George W. Bush: 1st (2nd / 8th)
- Jesse Owens: 2nd (3rd / 5th)
- Ted Turner: 1st (2nd / 5th)
- Bill Gates: 1st (2nd / 7th)
- Johann Gutenberg: 1st (1st / 9th)
- Pat Robertson: 1st (3rd / 9th)
Those results are compelling: the average placement of the Wikipedia page is:
- This year: 1.14 (first in all but one case)
- Last Year: 3.57
- Two Years Ago: 6.85
Clearly, the Wikipedia page for a notable person is fast being considered the single most important representation of them on the Web.
Two years back, I also checked four media personalities — Cary Grant, Brad Pitt, George Lucas, and Client Howard — to see where the IMDb ranked in their results. This year, their IMDb page was first for all of them. So, the average looks like this:
- This year: 1
- Two years ago: 1.75 (two firsts, a second, and a third)
Last year I introduced books to the mix, in an attempt to prove that a book’s Amazon listing is equivalent to a person’s Wikipedia page. Here are this year’s results, compared to last year’s:
- Confessions of an Economic Hitman: Amazon page is 2nd (last year it was 1st)
- How to Say It: 1st (1st)
- Purple Cow: 4th (3rd) (ironically, the Wikipedia page is now first)
- Battlefield of the Mind: 1st(1st)
- Architecture for Dummies: 2nd (3rd)
- Content Management Bible: 1st (1st)
- Managing Enterprise Content: 2nd (2nd)
These results are much more mixed. Average placement of the Amazon page:
- This year: 1.85
- Last year: 1.71
The Amazon page ranking actually got worse.
Until next year…