Ooga Labs to launch free encyclopedia

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Medpedia, a free public website slated to launch by the end of 2008, hopes to offer the largest collaborative online encyclopedia of medicine.

The website, funded and managed by Ooga Labs, differs from Wikipedia in that prospective content contributors must apply with Medpedia in order to become editors. “Initially, editors will be limited to only MDs and PhDs,” explained James Currier, founder and chairman of Medpedia. “Editors will have to fill in an extensive profile, including credentials, which are easily verifiable,” he said. 

Medpedia's core will be comprised of a professional network, noted Currier, although anyone using the site can offer content suggestions or corrections, subject to editorial review. 

Medpedia plans to incorporate ads onto the site in the future, utilizing third-party ad networks such as Google's Ad Sense for text ad serving, acknowledged Currier. However, the site is not intended to be a “marketing bonanza,” and won't contain banners, for instance, he said. The site's users will be able to flag ads they deem inappropriate, at which time editors will review the ads, and potentially prevent them in the future, according to a statement. 

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