Encyclopaedia Britannica fights back with social media

Publishing giant gives bloggers and Web publishers free access to WebShare.

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Publishing giant gives bloggers and Web publishers free access to WebShare

Encyclopaedia Britannica is fighting back against other information heavyweights such as Wikipedia with social media to get themselves back into play amid a crowded ring of Internet players.

Britannica recently launched the WebShare program, which offers users the ability to link to topics from Britannica articles.

“There’s much more than just what you find at Google on the first click,” Britannica CEO Jorge Cauz told Ragan.com. “If people want to have reliable, authoritative information, something that is factually correct, objective, updated and understandable, then they have Britannica.”

The 32-volume Britannica goes for $1,400 or Web access for $70 per year. Bloggers, Web publishers and anyone who writes for the Internet, however, get WebShare for free.

Britannica’s foray into social media can only be seen as an attempt to lure users away from Wikipedia, a site Cauz acknowledges is larger, but whose information is not fact-checked or backed up by experts.

“Our tradition has been always to have the expert voice,” Cauz said.

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