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Abstract

The offline relationships between scholars and institutions have shaped the gateways to publishing, and the nature of the work published. The trust and credibility relationships that are part of those offline academic networks are an essential component of the authenticating strategies that frame both publication and citation, something made increasingly visible through online social networking tools. Although crowd-sourced projects such as Wikipedia and Project Gutenberg attest to the incredible dynamism of online work, the digital humanities have been less successful at bringing together the energy of online discussions and the quality scholarship of print publications. By considering how data is trapped in the silos of digital medieval projects, and using RegEx searches to generate philological data from the Piers Plowman Electronic Archive, I suggest that it is the democratization of interoperable digital tools, along with updated frameworks for trust and authority, that are essential for progress in the digital humanities.