Google’s Knol – Share Your Knowledge

Google's KnolGOOGLE HAS STARTED A PROGRAM called Knol (no longer available) – which is short for a Knowledge unit. They say it is Wikipedia-like, in that readers can add or edit content, but my first impression of Knol was that it is Squidoo-like. As on Squidoo, authors write about a subject that they are an authority on (expert for Squidoo) and can include ads – I am assuming in the form of Adsense – and Google will share the revenue with the author.

Google says, “A knol is an authoritative article about a specific topic.” You can write articles about  (nearly) any subject (to see excluded subjects, go to Knol’s Content Policy).  Authors can use HTML and add images and link to related information. You can also collaborate with other authors on your articles. Readers can leave comments and ratings at the end of the articles, just like on a blog.  Readers can also ask questions, or add a review.

Originally by invitation only, anyone can now write and publish a Knol.

If you already have a Google account, just click on “Share What You Know. Write a Knol” and you will go to your account sign-in page. Otherwise, just sign up for a Google account, and start writing your first Knol.
Click on Help for what Knols are and how they work, and for all the how-tos on writing Knols. There is also a link to a Forum  (the forum is still there, but Knol has been discontinued) to discuss and find help with Knols, and with tips and tricks on writing a good Knol.

The Home Page contains several Featured Knols, plus a page full of a “Plain old bag o’ knols” – which you can use as examples to see what a Knol is like.

The featured Knols show a star rating for the Knol, but the Plain old bag o’ Knols don’t. I hope that in the future, the plain Knols will show their ratings, too. Knols are so new right now, that the star ratings have possibly been earned with only 1 or 2 votes. Time should make these ratings more accurate.

If you go to the browse link at the bottom of the home page, you are presented with a list of Knols, and a next link for several more pages of Knols, in no particular order. Hopefully, in the future, Google will add categories for the Knols. For now, there is a search box at the top of the home page.

Google says that once the Beta is opened to everyone, they will have no control over the quality of the articles, BUT, they consider themselves pretty good at determining the quality of an article, and so they will determine where the articles show up in the SERPs.

Have you written a tech-related Knol? If so, give us a link in the comments!

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