[nSLUG] Wikipedia (Was: "Cat5e vs Cat6")

Ian Campbell ian at slu.ms
Mon Nov 2 04:50:51 AST 2009


On Mon, Nov 02, 2009 at 03:49:39AM -0400, Mike Spencer wrote:
> 
> Daniel Morrison <draker at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> > I'm getting really annoyed at people pissing on wikipedia.
> 
> Of course I had to go look at the page and sure enough, it says
> something about him that can instantly be verified as untrue by seeing
> him in person but otherwise would be very hard to validate or
> discredit.

That problem isn't unique to Wikipedia. That's why journals,
newspapers etc. publish retractions.

> Nice object lesson.  OTOH, if I want to get a quick backgrounder on,
> say, Caroline of Ansbach or the 30 years' war, I'm not going to be
> thrown very far off track if there's an error or even a plausible but
> meretricious insertion.

You might, look at the recent controversy over the Battle of
Agincourt. That has the potential to be 594 years of error.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/25/world/europe/25agincourt.html

... anyway. It's an encyclopedia. There's a reason you don't cite
encyclopedias, they're just a starting point.



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