Wiki-Wasted

The decline of Wikipedia, which is wracked by "crushing bureaucracy".

The question isn't whether the existence of a charity encyclopedia is a waste of money and man hours; it clearly is. 

The waste of money is obviously bad for humanity. For-profit versions such as Encyclopaedia Britannica still exist, creating value-added jobs and informing the public, despite the obvious disadvantage of not being free. Meanwhile, the role of Wikipedia in the for-profit world, e.g., providing some of the information that pops up in Google, could just as easily be played by a for-profit encyclopedia at a very low cost.

In fact, if Wikipedia never existed, Google almost certainly would have given the world a free and accurate encyclopedia for the same reason it has given us free email, free cloud storage, and free you-name-it: to attract eye balls for advertisers.

The bottom line: money given to the 501(c)3 Wikipedia Foundation is simply a tax free wealth transfer to Google's shareholders.

Are the man hours similarly wasted? Looking at which Wikipedia entries are most carefully compiled, edited and curated, it's clear that time spent editing Wikipedia may only be diverted away from equally useless pursuits like watching Pokemon and porn (and Pokemon porn).