Experiment: A Wiki For Canadian Investors

I have a tendency to be very impulsive. A while ago a reader had suggested creating a wiki on TFSA accounts (I’ll explain what a Wiki is down below). I had no idea how to set up a wiki at the time. Then, over the weekend I stumbled across some information on the engine behind Wikipedia (the most famous Wiki of them all). I looked at it a bit and thought, what the heck? Let’s set one up! So a few hours later www.WikiLoonie.com became self aware was launched!

What is a Wiki?

As I mentioned, the best example of a wiki is Wikipedia. The short story is that a wiki’s content is created and edited by many different people. You could edit pages on www.wikiloonie.com if you wanted to (or you could just read them). The idea is to create a vast resource of information built upon the collective expertise of “the many”. When you edit a page, it will be reviewed over time by readers and editors and they may in turn delete your contributions if it is felt that the information is inaccurate, sloppy, or promotional. You may also be asked to provide references through links to other resources on the web. (You can also fulfill these requests for references for other people’s material as well.)

Given enough users, a wiki should become a robust encyclopedia of knowledge for certain subject matters.

What is WikiLoonie all about?

The goal of www.wikiloonie.com is to provide Canadian-centric investing and personal finance information only. If people start writing about Modern Portfolio Theory, I’ll just create a redirect to Wikipedia’s entry on it as it is not specific to Canadians. You *should* find information on RRSPs, TFSAs, GICs, insurance strategies, regulatory bodies in Canada, persons of note in the Canadian financial services or industry, etc.

How Can You Help?

It’s bare right now. I’ve only just set it up and created one lonely (and un-finished) page on RRSPs. I plan on making my RRSP book available on WikiLoonie.com in its entirety. I’ll change the tone to be more objective, as that’s what a wiki should be. In the meantime, I’d like to invite you to contribute.

  • If you are a blogger, why not write a page about your blog, or pick a topic to write about
  • If you are a journalist, why not start a page about yourself with a brief bio
  • If you are an investor, why not create a page about a simple topic (i.e. Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC)) and either attempt to write the article or leave it blank for someone else to finish
  • If you are creating a page to promote a business, be warned that anything that looks too “salesy” has a funny way of getting “fixed” by the community

The great thing about a wiki is that many people can/will contribute and edit articles and given enough people, we should have a fine resource for Canadians that hopefully becomes more expansive and more objective over time. I have a feeling it will take some time before it’s really useful, but we’ve got to start somewhere!

I don’t know if this is going to catch on, so it’s definitely an experiment, but I am hopeful.

How Do I Actually Contribute/Edit/Create a New Page?

I’m not going to sugar coat it: you’ll need to spend half an hour or so reading the guide to editing a Wiki before you can confidently go in and start editing stuff, but don’t worry – it’s really simple once you put about 30 minutes into it. Then it will become just like using a word processor.

Here’s a simple guide #1.

Here’s a simple guide #2.

NOTE: for this wiki, you MUST be registered to make edits.

Preet Banerjee
Preet Banerjee
...is an independent consultant to the financial services industry and a personal finance commentator. You can learn more about Preet at his personal website and you can click here to follow him on Twitter.
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Showing 5 comments
  • Melissa

    Great idea Preet, I am a big fan of wikis. I have already bookmarked it and am looking forward to watching the content grow.

  • Marianne O

    Excellent idea. Am reading up on the editing process and will take a crack at it soon.

  • Premium Finance

    Good read. Very informative. This can help a lot of people who are having a hard time with their personal finances.

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