Staredit Network > Forums > Serious Discussion > Topic: Wikipedia
Wikipedia
Oct 16 2007, 3:45 am
By: frazz
Pages: 1 2 3 >
 

Oct 16 2007, 3:45 am frazz Post #1



So, Wikipedia. Is it accurate? Is it referenced? Is it reliable?
1. Wikipedia is updated constantly. If some smart guy comes along and replaces George Lucas' biography with "A gay guy who ruined Star Wars," it will be removed momentarily. Chances are, if you refresh in ten seconds, it will already be reverted.
2. Wikipedia is referenced. If you're not sure about something, check the citations; pretty much all major or semi-important articles are well referenced.
3. From the above statements, it can be deferred that Wikipedia is generally and consistently reliable.

I really don't see any significant disadvantages to using Wikipedia. If you're writing a high school or college paper on geology, chances are your teachers won't let you use Wikipedia. Given, most teachers won't let you use any sort of encyclopedia; but if you can use an encyclopedia, you should be able to use Wikipedia.

EDIT: Please people, read the post before you reply. Don't say that wikipedia is unreliable without at least responding to the points given above. Please try to read past posts as well. Reading a topic with constantly restated points and arguments is just a pain.
Thanks.

Post has been edited 1 time(s), last time on Oct 16 2007, 5:21 am by frazz.



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Oct 16 2007, 3:51 am MasterJohnny Post #2



Agreed however schools do not consider Wikipedia to be reliable because they are updated all the time and the updates may not be from the same person



Philosophy deals with unanswered questions. Religion deals with unquestioned answers. I am a Mathematician

Oct 16 2007, 4:32 am MillenniumArmy Post #3



Teachers and professors have been disallowing wikipedia as a source for any of your papers or research for quite some time.


I believe that the best sources sources for anything are hard copies, like books and such. Information on the internet can easily be misleading, inaccurate, erroneous, or sabotaged. Many professors that I've taken require that you use some hard copies as your sources.



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Oct 16 2007, 5:08 am Laser Dude Post #4



Quote from MillenniumArmy
I believe that the best sources sources for anything are hard copies, like books and such. Information on the internet can easily be misleading, inaccurate, erroneous, or sabotaged. Many professors that I've taken require that you use some hard copies as your sources.
Is that to say that you can't use Wikipedia's source citing feature to cite the hard-copy documents from which the article was written?



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Oct 16 2007, 7:15 am MillenniumArmy Post #5



I mean when it comes to the actual information for researching purposes, not references. Also when my teachers and professors ask for hard copies, they require that you either turn in the books/magazines/newspapers/etc with your research or just simply make copies of the pages used with all the information used highlighted



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Oct 16 2007, 8:04 am Minority Post #6



Ehh... Wikipedia isn't perfectly reliable, but it is a whole lot better than a lot of people make it out to be. If you're not sure about the validity of something you see there, then just check the references at the bottom of the page. I often use Wikipedia to find sources for my schoolwork, even though I'm not allowed to directly cite Wikipedia.



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Oct 16 2007, 9:27 am Screwed Post #7



Wikipedia isn't completely reliable, it can sometimes be truth based on numbers. Itmight be biased because of that... an example is issues relating to Taiwan's Political Status. The view is more biased towards the Chinese view since 'unfavourable' content that is pro-Taiwan is edited out or overwhelmed by excess pro-China inf. This is probably due to the majority being Mainland Chinese people.

However some sources are excellent though. It is really organised and easy to look up information. That's why I love it so much.



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Oct 16 2007, 1:54 pm BeDazed Post #8



And people who supports something may delete the criticisms against what they support. It's been done by Japanese government officials and alot of other unaccountable nations and organizations.



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Oct 16 2007, 2:03 pm AntiSleep Post #9



Wikipedia ipbanned the united states congress buildings because of that.



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Oct 16 2007, 4:10 pm frazz Post #10



Quote from MillenniumArmy
I mean when it comes to the actual information for researching purposes, not references. Also when my teachers and professors ask for hard copies, they require that you either turn in the books/magazines/newspapers/etc with your research or just simply make copies of the pages used with all the information used highlighted
My point was that if you can use an encyclopedia, you should be able to use Wikipedia. There's no reason for the opposite. Given, most of my professors didn't want encyclopedia sources anyway.



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Oct 16 2007, 5:05 pm MillenniumArmy Post #11



I was replying to laser_dude



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Oct 16 2007, 6:02 pm Moose Post #12



Quote
Wikipedia is a Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORPG) in which participants play editors of a hypothetical online encyclopedia, where they try to insert misinformation that they are randomly assigned when they create their accounts, while preventing contrary information from being entered by others. Players with similar misinformation to promote will generally form "guilds" in order to aid each other.
http://www.encyclopediadramatica.com/index.php/Wikipedia




Oct 16 2007, 6:17 pm Kellimus Post #13



Quote from AntiSleep
Wikipedia ipbanned the united states congress buildings because of that.

Dynamic IP addresses fix that issue.



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Oct 16 2007, 6:36 pm AntiSleep Post #14



http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Wikinews_investigates_Wikipedia_usage_by_U.S._Senate_staff_members



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Oct 16 2007, 6:39 pm Doodan Post #15



When I first started visiting Wikipedia a couple of years ago, I vandalized some articles for laughs (who hasn't?), and sometimes it would take days for the staff to notice. They must have a larger staff now, because I see vandalism get reverted very quickly, and one time I changed the spelling of "colour" to "color" (both spellings were used in the same paragraph - I just thought it should be consistent) and in less than a minute a staff member sent me a message saying I should not "Americanize everything" and he/she changed all instances of "color" to "colour" in the article.

Also, I'd say the quality of the writing in general is much better than I remember it being back then. That, plus the quicker correction of articles leads me to believe that Wikipedia is gradually becoming more reliable.

It sure beats hard cover books in the respect that you can "article hop" by following the tons of links in an article. I've started at WW2 and wound up reading about ants after following enough links. Personally, I like that, lol.



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Oct 17 2007, 2:20 pm frazz Post #16



Quote from Doodan
When I first started visiting Wikipedia a couple of years ago, I vandalized some articles for laughs (who hasn't?), and sometimes it would take days for the staff to notice. They must have a larger staff now, because I see vandalism get reverted very quickly, and one time I changed the spelling of "colour" to "color" (both spellings were used in the same paragraph - I just thought it should be consistent) and in less than a minute a staff member sent me a message saying I should not "Americanize everything" and he/she changed all instances of "color" to "colour" in the article.

Also, I'd say the quality of the writing in general is much better than I remember it being back then. That, plus the quicker correction of articles leads me to believe that Wikipedia is gradually becoming more reliable.

It sure beats hard cover books in the respect that you can "article hop" by following the tons of links in an article. I've started at WW2 and wound up reading about ants after following enough links. Personally, I like that, lol.
Just so you know, Wikipedia doesn't really have much of a "staff." The people that contact you telling you not to do something are generally just people. The people that kill your retarded(no offense) vandalism are generally just people as well.
Wikipedia's greatest strength is very much like the strength of Linux; it's open source, and a lot of people are willing to contribute.

Just on a side note, Wikipedia is actually just as citeable as any encyclopedia. Every article has a history of all past edits, going back as far as 2002 in some. This means you can just cite which version of the article you're using, much like you would with an encyclopedia.



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Oct 17 2007, 2:39 pm Akar Post #17



If your going to use wikipedia, cite the sources at the bottom of the page.



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Oct 17 2007, 6:35 pm Kellimus Post #18



Quote from frazz
Quote from Doodan
When I first started visiting Wikipedia a couple of years ago, I vandalized some articles for laughs (who hasn't?), and sometimes it would take days for the staff to notice. They must have a larger staff now, because I see vandalism get reverted very quickly, and one time I changed the spelling of "colour" to "color" (both spellings were used in the same paragraph - I just thought it should be consistent) and in less than a minute a staff member sent me a message saying I should not "Americanize everything" and he/she changed all instances of "color" to "colour" in the article.

Also, I'd say the quality of the writing in general is much better than I remember it being back then. That, plus the quicker correction of articles leads me to believe that Wikipedia is gradually becoming more reliable.

It sure beats hard cover books in the respect that you can "article hop" by following the tons of links in an article. I've started at WW2 and wound up reading about ants after following enough links. Personally, I like that, lol.
Just so you know, Wikipedia doesn't really have much of a "staff." The people that contact you telling you not to do something are generally just people. The people that kill your retarded(no offense) vandalism are generally just people as well.
Wikipedia's greatest strength is very much like the strength of Linux; it's open source, and a lot of people are willing to contribute.

Just on a side note, Wikipedia is actually just as citeable as any encyclopedia. Every article has a history of all past edits, going back as far as 2002 in some. This means you can just cite which version of the article you're using, much like you would with an encyclopedia.

If its so citeable and reliable, why is it that every English teacher throughout High School, and my instructors here in college, say that if we use Wikipedia as a source, we'll get docked points?


Its only unreliable because anyone can go and write on there.



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Oct 17 2007, 6:37 pm AntiSleep Post #19



It is a good place to look for sources for further research.



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Oct 18 2007, 4:45 am ClansAreForGays Post #20



Quote from Kellimus
If its so citeable and reliable, why is it that every English teacher throughout High School, and my instructors here in college, say that if we use Wikipedia as a source, we'll get docked points?
Honestly, it's because they aren't as educated on wikipedia as the average computer nerd that uses it.

Wikipedia gets kids interested in soaking up knowlege, when school board officials start researching into how appealing wikipedia can be to a young mind they'll go ga-ga over it and encourage it. I can see this happening in about 5 years.

For now, Wikipedia has a special section to shut up those dinosaur professors, http://en.wikisource.org/wiki
It's just ever article doesn't have it.




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