If you don’t know what a wiki is, it’s an online collaborative reference web site. The largest and most well-known is Wikipedia.org, a general knowledge online encyclopedia that has garnered rave reviews. What makes a wiki different from a traditional web site? Anyone can edit it. Usually in real-time or almost real-time. So if you’re looking at a reference listing about your hometown and want to correct an error or add a pertinent fact, you can do so. Despite this openness, several reports by the BBC, Time Magazine and NPR have shown that wikis are remarkably accurate and have quickly become well-respected research tools for various professionals.
Enter TaxAlmanac.org, a wiki for accountants and tax professionals focusing on tax law and related topics. Sponsored by Intuit as a non-revenue generating site, TaxAlmanac.org offers the promise of a revolutionary leap forward in how tax professionals research tax laws and create and share knowledge.
“Our goal is to transform tax research and to improve the effectiveness of tax professionals everywhere,” said Intuit’s Toby Joplin, who has helped guide the project. TaxAlmanac.org draws on the power of the tax and accounting community, with all content on the site continually written, edited and verified by tax professionals from across the country. As such, the system takes advantage of the collective knowledge of these professionals, tax lawyers, scholars and others in the field — people who may not know everything individually, but who each offers expertise or practical experience in specific areas.
The site includes key information that tax professionals find useful when conducting research, including the Internal Revenue Code, Treasury Regulations, Tax Court Cases, and a variety of Articles. TaxAlmanac.org currently contains more than 8,000 articles.
Joplin said that Intuit, whose products include the Lacerte and ProSeries lines of professional tax preparation software, has sponsored and helped develop TaxAlmanac.org to provide the tax profession with a resource that takes advantage of the collective knowledge of the entire community.