Jeanette Hofmann on Wikipedia between Emancipation and Self-Regulation

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"Internet governance epitomizes the liberal idea of self-regulation. It is based on the belief in the superiority of private or societal organization over bureaucratic authority and related modes of government intervention. Wikipedia is an important offspring of this tradition. Its development is driven by the aspiration for new, emancipatory forms of collective knowledge production.

Against the backdrop of the recent controversy among German Wikipedians, my presentation will address a blind spot characteristic to many self-regulatory efforts. Using the terminology of de Sousa Santos, this blind spot can be described as the relationship between emancipation and regulation or expectation and experience. Modernity, according to De Sousa Santos, is based on the pillar of emancipation and the pillar of regulation. Whereas regulation provides order, emancipation strives for a "good order". Self-regulatory efforts, including that of Wikipedia, need to balance rationalities originating from experience with those driven by expectations."