The dependence on wikipedia

Aug 2019
218
North
Wikipedia is fine as a quick reference.
It’s far from perfect, but it’s capable of some great detailed works, aslong as you don’t take it as gospel.... I find it’s usually more balanced than many “historical” books. And is mostly useful for topping up knowledge on a subject I may have read about a while ago but haven’t committed to memory, also good for fairly shallow debates on topics I have a mild interest in, but no time/desire/money for an in depth study.

Any disputed claims are nearly always flagged for being disputed or unsourced so you know what is reliable and what is iffy.

I think there is some snobbery involved. “I got my facts from books, not Wikipedia”. (Though Wikipedia gets its facts from the same books).
Being in a book does not make the information more reliable.
I can think of several examples of deliberate hatchett jobs, bad research or agenda driven drivel from my own area of interest (napoleonic warfare, British military history)
There is also the trouble of many youtube history videos having been influenced or inspired by wikipedia. So it's get wikipedia stuff, make a good ecranization of it and voila: you get the masses devouring the "truth".
 
Last edited:

Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,963
Romania
I think we should rely on wikipedia like sources, they are just more efficent and people can stigmitize them all they want, they are superior in terms of learning more information in less time and this superiority FAR outweighs any risk the information you are receiving is inaccurate(and you are likely to find contradicting info on Wikipedia if this is indeed the case that will make you clarify). In terms of the one site and it being alone I agree, I strongly support the concept of topical focused wiki's. Issue is unless you do intensive research on a given topic the alternatives(whether they be topic specific wiki's, or reference sites made by experts with a convenient interact) won't be as obvious unless you look for them. Those sites are out there but looking for them is really really annoying and google is very unhelpful in directing you to obscure reference pages. To find those wikipedia like alternatives that are superior on a given topic you got to invest the time to find them and at that prospect many people just go back to wiki.
How can you distinguish between the valuable information and the inaccurate one if you get your knowledge on the subject from the article?
 

Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,963
Romania
There is also the trouble of many youtube history videos having been influenced or inspired by wikipedia. So it's get wikipedia stuff, make a good ecranization of it and voila: you get the masses devouring the "truth".
Wikipedia is not a reliable source of information, for someone who is searching in a hurry to find some basic information about a subject it can often be useful, the same as it can be misleading.
 
Aug 2019
218
North
Wikipedia is not a reliable source of information, for someone who is searching in a hurry to find some basic information about a subject it can often be useful, the same as it can be misleading.
But it's the in-hurry searched info that leads to global misconceptions.
 

Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,963
Romania
The inaccurate information is extremely rare and will be contradicted by other information on related wiki articles and will seem off.
My apologies, but you don't know about what you are talking, I often find inaccurate information in the Wikipedia articles concerning my main domain of interest. BTW, you didn't answer my question.
 
Jun 2017
2,967
Connecticut
But it's the in-hurry searched info that leads to global misconceptions.
Can you cite an example where wikipedia has caused "global misconceptions. The value wikipedia has provided has FAR, FAR, FAR, FAR outweighed any damage of this nature when misinformation and the harm it causes is mentioned it is almost always hypothetical. Have always gotten the impression wikipedia bashing has been gatekeeping for less convenient sources. Less convenient sources are nice and anyone who wants to be an expert on a given topic is going to venture to find every piece of information they can, that's the nature of the process of becoming an expert but generally society is much better served by wiki's as a whole.