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Why I Don't Use Wikipedia In Debate

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  • Why I Don't Use Wikipedia In Debate

    The abomination that causes misinformation! http://deeperwaters.wordpress.com/20...ia-for-debate/

  • #2
    I largely agree. There have been too many times that someone has quote-mined a Wikipedia page, only for me to find that the quote in question is either unsourced or else taken wholly out of context from the original source.

    I'll admit that I very often use Wikipedia as a starting point when investigating a topic which is new to me, but I have been trying to distance myself from citing Wikipedia as if it was an authority.
    "[Mathematics] is the revealer of every genuine truth, for it knows every hidden secret, and bears the key to every subtlety of letters; whoever, then, has the effrontery to pursue physics while neglecting mathematics should know from the start he will never make his entry through the portals of wisdom."
    --Thomas Bradwardine, De Continuo (c. 1325)

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    • #3
      It's great for information on Majin Buu.

      Majin-Boo.jpg

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      • #4
        Originally posted by jpholding View Post
        It's great for information on Majin Buu.

        [ATTACH=CONFIG]2539[/ATTACH]
        Bah, I'll gladly go to the primary sources in order to do research on THAT subject.
        "[Mathematics] is the revealer of every genuine truth, for it knows every hidden secret, and bears the key to every subtlety of letters; whoever, then, has the effrontery to pursue physics while neglecting mathematics should know from the start he will never make his entry through the portals of wisdom."
        --Thomas Bradwardine, De Continuo (c. 1325)

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        • #5
          I'll at least say Wikipedia is better than Conservapedia.
          "I am not angered that the Moral Majority boys campaign against abortion. I am angry when the same men who say, "Save OUR children" bellow "Build more and bigger bombers." That's right! Blast the children in other nations into eternity, or limbless misery as they lay crippled from "OUR" bombers! This does not jell." - Leonard Ravenhill

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          • #6
            Originally posted by KingsGambit View Post
            I'll at least say Wikipedia is better than Conservapedia.
            From now on, the only source I will cite will be Rationalwiki.
            "[Mathematics] is the revealer of every genuine truth, for it knows every hidden secret, and bears the key to every subtlety of letters; whoever, then, has the effrontery to pursue physics while neglecting mathematics should know from the start he will never make his entry through the portals of wisdom."
            --Thomas Bradwardine, De Continuo (c. 1325)

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            • #7
              Originally posted by KingsGambit View Post
              I'll at least say Wikipedia is better than Conservapedia.
              And that sets the bar about as low as it can go.

              I'm always still in trouble again

              "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
              "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

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              • #8
                Wikipedia is good to find collections of sources, then of course citing from reliable sources linked by the superscript[x]. I used to edit quite a bit, mostly drums and percussion pages. High-interest pages usually have a lot of people watching to make sure nonsense isn't added, and there's also a lot of debate about questionable items. It's not really like there are Wikipedia staff waiting to erase things they don't like, it's all about volunteers, and as such, if the consensus is that a source is unreliable or biased, information doesn't get in. It's basically like, if you care about seeing something included, and if you can show objective reasons why it should be, then the more people you have on your side, the greater chance it will make it into Wikipedia.

                You can view some discussion about Tyson's quotes here and reasons for and against including it, kind of dry but interesting.

                Idea tally

                Since RfC's are not meant to be votes, but rather to help solicit viewpoints towards building consensus (based on strength of arguments), I looked through the comments above to try and find common arguments used by both sides. I totally admit this is imperfect work, but here is what I came up with:

                Against inclusion

                Has not been covered by a mainstream outlet (12)
                Sources are not reliable or notable enough (8)
                Politically motivated (8)
                Began on a small blog (4)
                Public speakers make errors all the time, this is not significant (3)
                Interference from canvassing (2)
                Objections to RfC process (2)
                Beyond this particular instance, accusations of a pattern of activity are not supported (1)
                Lack of factual coverage (1)
                Wikipedia should not be treated as a news site (1)
                Original quotes not covered, no reason to cover now (1)
                If included, there must be context of how it became a bigger issue (1)

                For inclusion

                There is now enough coverage to warrant mention, including news sources, and prominent figures such as Tyson himself (14)
                Should be at least mentioned (7)
                Pattern of activity (6)
                As a prominent scientist he should be held to a higher standard (2)
                Neil deGrasse Tyson is a prominent scientist and this provides context on him (2)
                Tyson's statement is shown to be false (2)

                Talk:Neil deGrasse Tyson/Archive 7

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