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Wikipedia- perhaps the most important website on the net?

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posted on Aug, 22 2005 @ 01:35 PM
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Googling a subject will get you too much information, some not even related. Wikipedia will at least be focused on the subject at hand. It's organized better. I really love the hyperlinks within the subject. The site was truely amazing when I needed some knowledge on the ancient city of Sippara.




posted on Aug, 22 2005 @ 02:22 PM
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Nygdan, I think your wrong in your assertion that wikipedia will never become an authoritative source of information. Thats quite a generic statement in the first place, who gets to decide whats authoritative and whats not? I'd say the general consensus amongst the population is the closest thing you get as a determinant of authority, thus the more people who use wikipedia, the more its authority will grow.
I also think your looking at the site the wrong way, by its nature of openness, collaboration amongst users should improve articles over time, much like a Darwinian evolutionary process.



posted on Aug, 22 2005 @ 08:25 PM
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Originally posted by picard_is_actually_a_grey
Nygdan, I think your wrong in your assertion that wikipedia will never become an authoritative source of information. Thats quite a generic statement in the first place, who gets to decide whats authoritative and whats not? I'd say the general consensus amongst the population is the closest thing you get as a determinant of authority, thus the more people who use wikipedia, the more its authority will grow.
I also think your looking at the site the wrong way, by its nature of openness, collaboration amongst users should improve articles over time, much like a Darwinian evolutionary process.


I have to agree with Nygdan here. As long as anyone can edit the site and there is no one checking the information no one should take it as fact. Now if they had some control over the edits before they were posted as fact then it might be a good source.



posted on Aug, 22 2005 @ 09:30 PM
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Originally posted by shots

Originally posted by picard_is_actually_a_grey
Nygdan, I think your wrong in your assertion that wikipedia will never become an authoritative source of information. Thats quite a generic statement in the first place, who gets to decide whats authoritative and whats not? I'd say the general consensus amongst the population is the closest thing you get as a determinant of authority, thus the more people who use wikipedia, the more its authority will grow.
I also think your looking at the site the wrong way, by its nature of openness, collaboration amongst users should improve articles over time, much like a Darwinian evolutionary process.


I have to agree with Nygdan here. As long as anyone can edit the site and there is no one checking the information no one should take it as fact. Now if they had some control over the edits before they were posted as fact then it might be a good source.

k, go and edit something on purpose that's wrong, you'll be surprised how quickly it will be removed. Infact just find me something thats incorrect in any entry or article.



posted on Aug, 23 2005 @ 12:06 PM
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Originally posted by picard_is_actually_a_grey
Nygdan, I think your wrong in your assertion that wikipedia will never become an authoritative source of information.

Unless it changes its entire setup, it can't be. As long as anyone can edit the articles, and as long as anyone can create them in the first place, its never going to be authoratative. Its useful, and its impressive how good it actually is, but its not something anyone can formally cite from.

Thats quite a generic statement in the first place, who gets to decide whats authoritative and whats not?

People doing serious academic work on the subjects. A history student would get his thesis rejected if he used things like wikipedia as his primary citations, for example.

I'd say the general consensus amongst the population is the closest thing you get as a determinant of authority, thus the more people who use wikipedia, the more its authority will grow.

Thats a very poor definition of authoratative.

by its nature of openness, collaboration amongst users should improve articles over time,

Why should this improve articles? I can go there right now make this stuff the text for the 'articles' in wikipedia. I'm not saying that the wikipedia is crap, I use it all the time, but its never going to be what some people seem to think it is. Its a very informal, not necessarilly accurate, source of information that is nice and easy to link to and use for internet discussions. Its a good starter for discussions, but not an end.

much like a Darwinian evolutionary process.

It shouldn't operate at all like a darwinian process. Its got nothing to do with it. Why should it? At best, you could say that pages that don't get cited on the rest of the internet get deleted, and theorize that pages get cited because they are accurate. But thats not true, pages get cited more often than not because they are sensationalistic, not accurate.



posted on Aug, 23 2005 @ 12:40 PM
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Originally posted by picard_is_actually_a_grey
k, go and edit something on purpose that's wrong, you'll be surprised how quickly it will be removed. Infact just find me something thats incorrect in any entry or article.


Editing something that one knows is false is morally wrong and I am not about to do it. You can if you want, but me never



posted on Aug, 23 2005 @ 01:01 PM
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Despite your criticisms of the nature of the site, you do actually admit "Its useful, and its impressive how good it actually is", so the evidence is to the contrary. I wouldn't simply brush aside my analogy of the process as being a 'darwinian evolution' because its quite apt, put simply ;positive improvements stay, negative improvements don't. Try it yourself, go edit anything that you consider is a downgrade to an article, be it inserting a false fact or even just a lousy sentance with no relavance. It wont stay there for long at all.
Thus as I've said before articles can only improve over time. Also as far as never being a definitive source of information, like I said that will change, just as the internet has become a valuable source for news. Infact many news channels cited wikipedia for further information on the 26th Tsunami disaster. I don't think your seeing the bigger picture here, where the site will be in 10 years time, including how our culture will also change.



posted on Aug, 23 2005 @ 02:03 PM
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Originally posted by picard_is_actually_a_grey
Despite your criticisms of the nature of the site, you do actually admit "Its useful, and its impressive how good it actually is", so the evidence is to the contrary.

I can think that a thing isn't good for certain kinds of uses and still see the pros and cons of it.



posted on Aug, 23 2005 @ 08:02 PM
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Surely no-one likes having to trawl through pages and pages of useless crap on google, just to find the phrase you typed regurgetated in a passage of unrelated information.

In assignments for my law degree at university, i am quite often told by my tutors to refer to wikipedia to add to my knowledge of social and historical issues.

How can you say that it isn't authoritative?

You have to accept that these people are trying to share with everyone else what they know about a particular subject. Believe it or not, there is someone from the wikipedia organisation who is making sure no-one is putting in absolute bull# (just like there is gonna be a moderator who edits out the last word!!!!!!)



posted on Aug, 24 2005 @ 09:25 AM
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Amazing how people can be in virtual agreement but still have a point of contention (potayto - potahto). Wikipedia is a great place to start, but I agree, if you're submitting something for publication, I wouldn't recommend citing Wikipedia as an authoritative source. Much of what you find on the Internet is as reliable as conversations in a bar. (Yes, Wikipedia has a higher standard than that but I'll wager few academicians would consider it authoritative).



posted on Aug, 24 2005 @ 10:20 AM
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Originally posted by yeahright
(Yes, Wikipedia has a higher standard than that but I'll wager few academicians would consider it authoritative).


I agree; their disclaimer says it all.


CAUTION: USE WIKIPEDIA AT YOUR OWN RISK!

PLEASE BE AWARE THAT ANY INFORMATION YOU MAY FIND IN WIKIPEDIA MAY BE INACCURATE, MISLEADING, DANGEROUS, MISSPELED OR ILLEGAL.

Wikipedia is not uniformly peer reviewed; while readers may correct errors or remove erroneous suggestions, they have no legal duty to do so, and thus all information read here is without any implied warranty of fitness for any purpose or use whatsoever.

en.wikipedia.org...:Risk_disclaimer


Sorry for the all caps but that is the way they have it posted on their site.

[edit on 8/24/2005 by shots]



posted on Aug, 24 2005 @ 10:47 AM
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Nomatter how good wikipedia looks, using a vast scope of internet sites to obtain information will always be better then to depend on 1 single site to get your information.

If you read information about topics from many sources, you can see alot of perspectives and alot of takes on the same subject. This will help you to come about with your own interpretation of the topic.

Getting your information from one centralized source will limit your views to what that source dictates.


Very important (and excellent) advice.

No source is omniscient. Be sure to corraborate things with many different sources, and only then does the "truth" start to emerge. Wikipedia does have a certain amount of respect here though, despite the edit capacity, and entries often link to other sources that can be verified for most things.







 
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