Knol is scheduled to be closed down at the end of April 2012. Knol was Googles attempt at a Wiki style reference website and was launched in 2008. Although it reached over 100,000 articles within a year of its launch, in part due to allowing contributors to make money from their pages through Adsense, it never really became popular with the masses.
What grabbed my attention when I received an email about the closure this afternoon was that Google are encouraging users to migrate their pages to WordPress.com.
As part of Google’s prioritization of product efforts, we will be retiring Knol. From now through April 30th, 2012, Knol will work as usual, but we’ve made it easy for you to download your knols to file and/or export them to WordPress.com. From May 1, 2012 through October 1, 2012, knols will no longer be viewable, but can be downloaded and exported. After that time, knol content will no longer be accessible. We hope that this timeline provides you ample time to transition your content. For more information, please visit our FAQ: https://knol-redirects.appspot.com/faq.html
The Knol team
On the Knol website itself there is a large announcement giving users the option to migrate to WordPress.com or directly to their computer (which they can later upload to WordPress.com).
I’ve never contributed to Knol so I haven’t went through the migration process itself though it does appear that the process is very straight forward after signing up to WordPress.com.
You may have noticed above that the announcement on the Knol website is slightly different from the announcement they sent via email.
Knol will be discontinued as a service, but we’ve worked with Solvitor and Crowd Favorite to create Annotum, an open-source platform based upon WordPress that allows you to continue authoring and publishing scholarly articles. You can migrate your knols to WordPress and continue your work with Annotum.
Annotum is a script that is based on WordPress. The Annotum Base design has been available for WordPress.org and WordPress.com users for a few years. Rather than being an alternative option to WordPress.com, Annotum will allow users to publish content through WordPress.com.
I have no doubt that the closure of Knol will bring a lot of new users to the WordPress platform over the new few months.