English Wikipedia is allegedly anti-expert. This fails to explain why you can hardly move on the wiki without bumping into someone with multiple degrees, or how it got tagged “unemployed Ph. D. deathmatch.”
I submit that English Wikipedia does not have a bias against experts (although there are editors who clearly do), but that massive collaboration is hard. The main problem is how to work with idiots you can’t get rid of, who consider you an idiot they can’t get rid of. “Assume good faith” is not a platitude, it’s a warning that someone really can be that clueless and that sincere idiocy is ten times as hard to deal with as knowing trolling; it’s a nicer way of phrasing “don’t assume malice where stupidity will suffice.” Summary of the summary: people remain the problem.
Academia has evolved mechanisms to deal with antisocial idiots (throw them out) and antisocial experts (put them to work in a locked room and keep them away from humans); wikis are still working on the problem. Antisocial experts on a wiki — unquestionably expert, unquestionably unable to collaborate on a wiki — are really special. Thankfully they’re usually too weird to then go blogging about it …
How do other wikis cope with this? Other Wikipedias? Citizendium doesn’t seem to have had this yet that I know of, but that could just be early days. Ideas?
Edit: You’re allowed to comment, you know. The same post on my LiveJournal is going great guns!