Ten Philadelphia tech organizations that should have Wikipedia entries but don't - Technical.ly Philly


Jun. 16, 2009 12:11 pm

Ten Philadelphia tech organizations that should have Wikipedia entries but don’t

Philadelphia generally and its technology and innovation communities specifically are dismally represented in the Web 2.0 powerhouse.

Look, this is down right embarrassing.

Earlier this month we retweeted Viddler founder Rob Sandie. He was self-promoting, but damn it if we didn’t agree with him. Why didn’t the growing video-hosting service have a Wikipedia entry? Now that Google News has begun to link to the Web’s largest community-edited encyclopedia, it’s clear it’s bypassed mainstream and shot straight to influential.

So, it’s become something of shorthand for the importance of a subject, person or organization. But, as we found, Philadelphia generally and its technology and innovation communities specifically are dismally represented in the Web 2.0 powerhouse.

When someone answered Sandie’s call to create a Viddler Wikipedia page, it was deleted because, as one Wiki editor wrote, the article was “about a web site, blog, online forum, webcomic, podcast, or similar web content that didn’t assert the importance or significance of its subject.”

Sounds like a call to make clear the Philadelphia technology scene is significant. Below, we share our list of 10 members of our community that don’t have Wikipedia entries, but should, including Viddler.

We respect the mission of Wikipedia, so don’t consider this spam posting. Rather, we think our community is very underserved by the online encyclopedia. This, my friends, is basic stuff we need to get down. Who’s stepping up?

    1. Viddler — How about 800k unique monthly visitors and growing fast? While they have virtual offices throughout the world, Sandie is a proud fixture of the Philadelphia technology community.
    2. University City Science Center — The oldest and largest urban incubator and research park in the world has earned itself a graf in the University City Wikipedia entry.
    3. Independents HallCo-working has an entry, but few, if any, of the major players in the co-working movement are there. Time magazine recently asserted telecommuting and freelancing will become an increasingly larger part of work in the future.
    4. Philebrity — Love ’em or hate ’em, Joey Sweeney has become something of the voice of a portion of the city. 20k monthly uniques isn’t anything to sniff at, but perhaps more importantly, Philadelphia magazine has called Sweeney and what he represents the city’s future.
    5. EvolveIP — Evolve burst on to the scene in 2007, raising an unheard of $15.4 million in financing from private entities. According to Pricewaterhouse Coopers, it was the largest information technology investment in Philadelphia since 2001.
    6. BioAdvance — Philly is among the best regions for life sciences in the country. So how come one of the prouder parts of that innovation scene doesn’t have a page? Where is Philly’s biotech presence on Wikipedia?
    7. USA Technologies — If you were wondering who is the industry-leader in wireless vending machine payments, it just so happens to be a Malvern-based firm and they ain’t on Wikipedia.
    8. Avencia — Talk about an urban company doing innovative work. They own legislative data and are fast growing, so why don’t they get any love?

Individuals who need a Wikipedia page


  • Jim MacMillan — Dude has a Pulitzer Prize, so we forgive him his relentless tweets to 45,000 Twitter followers.
  • Maria Rodale — The Lehigh County woman behind health and environment news site, Rodale.com.
  • Alex Hillman and Geoff DiMasi — The godfathers of IndyHall probably deserve the nod.
  • Arthur Kade — OK, this just makes us giggle, but, if only briefly, he did catch the attention of segments of our city.
  1. The Skorpion Show— The DIY talk show from North Philly brings in more than 4,000 views per episode. Two of the duo�s videos have broken the one-million viewer mark. They have a following, so why aren’t they on the Wik-Wik?
  2. Wireless Philadelphia — The group and the initiative, which admittedly fizzled, brought national attention to Philly for innovation in fighting the digital divide.

Oh, and when you’re done with all of these, you ought to spruce up RedLasso and First Round Capital and make sure our community gets whatever credit you think it deserves.

We’re a mature yet still growing technology scene, so it sure seems like we ought to be represented in the Wiki behemoth.

Yes, there is WikiPhilly.com, which needs some beefing up itself, but we need to start where the world’s eyeballs go, so why not put our best foot forward on Wikipedia?

Is this a stupid idea? Who’s going to do it? Did we leave anyone out? Or is some group listed here not deserving?

This just might be a semi-regular department we may or may not call Top Ten Tuesdays. There’s no judging in brainstorming.

Staff writers Brian James Kirk and Sean Blanda contributed to this report.

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