Is it worth leaving Facebook for WT: Social?

We have already tried the new social network of Wikipedia and here we give you our first impressions.

Laptop showing the WT: Social interface.

Laptop showing the WT: Social interface. / Photo: LatinAmerican Post Composition

LatinAmerican Post | Luis Angel Hernández

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Leer en español: ¿Vale la pena dejar Facebook por WT:Social?

Maybe at some point you have been tempted to leave Facebook, Twitter or another social network. Some have become battlegrounds among Internet users and a fertile place for fake news. In response to this, according to the newspaper El Financiero de México, Jimmy Wales, one of the co-founders of Wikipedia, has created WT: Social, the new social network that seeks to end everything you don't like about Facebook.

What is the origin of WT: Social?

To begin with, it is worth clarifying that WT already existed since 2017, in fact, they are the acronym for WikiTribune, a digital newspaper whose objective is to be home to verified news, where through collaboration the journalists could modify a story to avoid bias in the information. According to information from Europa Press, WikiTribune in Spanish was launched just last year, seeking to create a "neutral" place for the proliferation of "reliable" news.

One of the most notorious points of WikiTribune is that it was focused on the interaction between journalists and the community, which like Wikipedia survives thanks to user donations and also selling the news subscription. As for advertising: nothing. Now, in 2019 the platform has evolved to become WT: Social, as announced by Wales, according to El Financiero, at the World Business Forum (WBF) in October.

The objective of WT: Social is to give a forum to users to share news with their source and allow a discussion from it. So far it sounds exactly like Facebook, but the huge difference is that WT: Social will not use advertising as a way to survive, it will be the donations of users that sustain the project in the long term.

Two things that Facebook has not been able to solve effectively are offered by this new social network: security with data management since there is no publicity involved, as well as a more responsible management of the information published as the German DW newspaper highlights, as said by Wales: "We will empower you to make your own decisions about the content you receive and directly edit deceptive headlines or mark problematic publications."

You can also read: The digital gender gap is growing, what can we do?

The experience in WT: Social

First, the registration process is extremely simple and identical to any other social network, give your data, an email account and indicate a password to enter the site. Once registered, the first thing that asks you is to select the topics of your interest, something very similar to what happens on Pinterest or on Tumblr. And, as the Trecebits site highlights, there is an important difference here when compared to the most famous social network: the profile must be approved to access all its functions or make a payment of € 12.00 per month or € 90.00 per year. When you register, you enter a waiting list on which you ascend if you add friends, our number on the list is 13,349.

It has many functions almost identical to those of Facebook: your profile allows you to add a profile picture, a cover, follow people, add friends and join groups that are called SubWikis, which, as in Zuckerberg's network, refer to some particular subject. Just by putting a topic in your search engine, it gives you dozens of results with SubWikis that you can join and in different languages.

The interface is still not very friendly compared to that of Facebook, who, according to DW, Wales plans to dethrone as he commented on the WBF, is not a negative point in itself because it will surely improve over time. For those who are Pinterest or Tumblr users, it may be familiar from the beginning. To test we did the search for the word football, it did not yield many results, but it allowed us to see how the news is posted: a link to the source, an image of the news, a description made by who made the publication and below the box Ready to receive comments. The amazing thing is the Wiki stamp: the edit button.

We did another search on Evo Morales, at the time he was flying to Mexico, the results were few and there were almost no comments on that, while Facebook exploded with the news. There is still a lot of work to be a social news network that scares the Zuckerberg company, missing users and interactions, but Wikipedia is a sign that Wales knows what it does.

Are you interested in trying WT: Social? This is the link to enter. Share your experience in our social networks, we are interested in listening to you.

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