Internet Entreprise Digital Index
The Digital 100 Power Index - The Daily Beast
Jun 25, 2012
To paraphrase Gandhi: First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. And then—when you black out the sixth-largest website on the planet for an entire day—you win.
This is what Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales learned about power on Jan. 18, 2012. The online encyclopedia had once been a novelty: written by everyone, it could contain errors from anyone, as when Stephen Colbert doctored the entry for George Washington in 2006, asserting falsely that he had not owned slaves. But the idea behind Wikipedia was powerful enough to survive pranks, as the service grew to become an essential reference tool for hundreds of millions of users. And late last year, when two bills working their way through the U.S. Congress threatened the site’s ability to function, Wales knew it was time to flex his digital muscles. In coordination with other web giants, Wikipedia went dark in protest, a blunt demonstration to lawmakers of just how dependent the wired world had become on its model. Less than 48 hours later, the legislation was dead.