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October 09, 2007

Secret Editors — Do You Trust Wikipedia?

Do you trust Wikipedia? How did this trust or lack of trust develop?
What might be useful criteria for determining appropriate levels of trust?
Who edits Wikipedia?
...and so forth....

Read all about secret editors of Wikipedia.

Do you trust this article?

Posted by thyliasm at October 9, 2007 09:06 AM

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Comments

There are few, if any, sources I visit before Wikipedia. There are few, if any, sources that are easier to read than Wiki. Additionally, the fact that users are able to update the articles allows the information to be updated whenever an important change takes place.

Posted by: eplisner at October 9, 2007 06:35 PM

I trust Wikipedia on most things except for politicians, their issues and other controversial things, like religion. Other than that, I doubt somebody would get their jollies from changing the Glomar Explorer entry.

Posted by: srmschlg at October 9, 2007 06:58 PM

I have to admit that I tend to trust Wikipedia when I need quick information. I would never use it for formal paper, but I will readily look up background information for classes or my own personal knowledge.

The fact that there are "secret editors" on Wikipedia does not surprise me. When a site is open to editing, anyone should be able to edit it. This should be at least a bit comforting to those of us who rely on Wikipedia. After all, this means that definitions on Wikipedia are developed in a type of "democratic" process. Though we all know that this process does not always produce the best results (i.e. elected government officials...), it is often better than a dictatorial system, in which an individual is in complete control. Traditional encyclopedias might be viewed as a type of dictator-style mode of disseminating information, because one editor/group controls what goes into an encyclopedia. Wikipedia, on the other hand, theoretically has an infinite number of editors. And yet, we must be weary of who was the last to edit the particular Wikipedia page we are interested in. It is important to remember that Wikipedia is dynamic and never finished!

Posted by: leslieph at October 9, 2007 07:43 PM

wiki is a good place to start investigation, but as a whole, i wouldn't use it as a source on a paper.

—Why wouldn't you use it as a source on a paper?

Posted by: kymmer at October 9, 2007 08:19 PM

For the most part, I tend to trust wikipedia. If I need some quick information on a topic, wikipedia is usually the first site I go to. The fact that wikipedia changes constantly and information is always updated worries me at times since the information may not always be right. I like to double check on facts and information by visiting other sites before I search with wiki. I do think wikipedia is a great site and a great resource to use!

Posted by: cacovic at October 23, 2007 12:45 AM

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