Wikipedia has launched a tool designed to automatically highlight low-quality edits to articles.
There are about half a million changes to Wikipedia articles every day.
Editors and ordinary users will now be able to quickly check how likely it is a proposed alteration is “damaging”.
Other projects to engage artificial intelligence (AI) in the task of evaluating Wikipedia edits have not always been well received.
Some, for instance, have automatically downgraded the input of new editors, which has been seen as problematic for well-intentioned newcomers.
ORES aims to get around this by judging purely the content of an alteration.
“The thing to note is it doesn’t judge whether the facts that people are adding are actually true, because fact-checking is immensely difficult, it’s looking at the quality,” said Dr John Carroll, a computational linguist at the University of Sussex.
“It should help a great deal with Wikipedia,” he added.
Dr Carroll own start-up, iLexir, provides software to automatically check the quality of written English in essays by foreign language students.