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Fullmetal Alchemist Discussion Board > General Discussions > Open Talk > Debate District
MonsterEnvy
How do you make use of Wikipedia? Do you find it a reliablie source? Should all webmedia be based on the Wikipedia model, as it is? Is there serious danger in concepts such as 'Wikitruth' or, on a lighter note, Wikifriends? I'd like all of us to put aside our WikiLove for a moment, and focus on the issues at hand here.

Personally, I use Wikipedia all the time. However, I find that I don't question its accuracy nearly as often as I ought- I'm often only skeptical of information that is blatantly noted as not cited. I'm not a regular contributor- I just fix grammar and small mistakes, most of the time- but I've heard from many that the process is totalitarian and unfriendly to those who understand the topic. From what I've seen, the correct information is given to the site, validated, and then made permanent. When two people have conflicting views, it's usually relatively easy to verify one.

Please, add your POV to the topic and also tell me what you think of other mass media engines, such as YouTube.

However, remember that the thread is primarily about Wikipedia. If discussion on other webmedia sources becomes common, I'll make another thread specifically for that. Let's try to stay on topic!
Vash_the_Gunslinger
I use Wikipedia all the time as well. I think it can be sometimes unreliable, but so far I haven't seen much unreliability from it. I like to go to Wikipedia and look up things and get some straight answers. I have given some small changes to the site as well. Mostly grammical mistakes, but I try to help as much as I can.

Other web engines are alright. If I want to watch videos, I usually go to Youtube and search there. Sometimes, I can't find what I want on Youtube, but sometimes searching Yahoo! Video helps. On the forefront, I use Yahoo! for mail and other news things. If I was trying to search for answers on something, it is Wikipedia. If I am trying to search for videos, it is Youtube. I don't really like Google as a search engine or ask.com. Live.com from Microsoft is alright if I want to search for images. MSN is rolleyes.gif. That is pretty much it for that.
Edamame
I find Wikipedia to be a basicresearch tool, but I do not rely solely upon it. Wikipedia is like a double-edged sword- while it provides a slew of information, you have to decide what is fact and what is fiction. Not all of the articles are one-hundred percent accurate and this could prove to be quit a problem for young students who use Wikipedia as research tool. I usually use Wikipedia for basic background information and I'll read various articles just for fun. I have found some pretty interesting things on there, and every once in a while I will contribute tidbits of information or correct grammar. Personally, I am curious to know who validates all of this information and chooses what goes in and what stays out.
Regarding other mass media engines, I think that Youtube is at the top of my list for ways to procrastinate.
Funderful
I consult wikipedia when I'm in need of information, time to time.
But it's definitely not 100% correct, And full of spoilers.
Feh. Should have seen the warning.

I also read the articles for amusement when I have nothing to do.

Msn and Youtube are also excellent wastes of time. biggrin.gif
Yay for procrastination!
ἀρχή
I find Wikipedia style info valuable as a launching point to finding out information. Unfortunately too many people use it as their source for debatable issues.

Like any compiled resource, it's useful in helping to start/define an issue, but severly lacking in its ability to provide authoritative information. Even a dictionary is not an authority for definitions. It is another human being's attempt to consolodate a large amount of information into a single entry for others to use. As such, many nuances are at risk of being lost.

Basically my pet peeves online are to use dictionary.com and wikipedia quotes as authoritative information for very debatable items.

As far as "wikiality" (from Colbert) goes, the difference between Wikipedia and a general encyclopedia is that an encylopedia paid people to do fact checking laugh.gif
asunder
2 links that demonstrate the sheer futility/stupidity/lack of coherence that wikipedian editors & contributors have

Much wasted effort and inane discussion on whether or not to change CLAMP to Clamp
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Clamp_%2...#Requested_move

http://www.halfpixel.com/2007/03/18/delete...ics-case-study/

and I'm sure everyone already knows about the "Sinbad" incident. ....

not to mention that wikipedia staff member "Essjay" that claimed he had 3 degrees and was a professor while he was just a college dropout with no degrees. The worst is part of it was using the supposed expertise in arguments against other people in debating articles AND responding to a (regular) letter to another professor about how wikipedia should be used in research while pointing out his "credentials"....
kaizenyorii
the problem with wikipedia is that the articles usually state whats the popular view instead of whats factually correct. 20 dumbasses added together dont make one expert.
The Mad Bomber
Wikipedia is a fun/useful(depends) source for information, but the reliability is questionable yet still most of the articles seem to be correct or so I think. I use it constantly to learn new bits about history that interest me
Kenji
http://www.newsday.com/technology/wire/sns...0,2197698.story

I'm a little bit late because this article was printed out yesterday in my local newspaper...
Nepharski
If it's just pleasure reading, Wikipedia is fine (yes, I read Wikipedia for personal enjoyment). If it's for research, I might dabble in it lightly if after reading it it seems accurate, but more often than not I'll just scroll to the bottom and use the "Sources" links instead.
Scythoro
Wikipedia is a decent source when you have no clue about a certain subject at all. However, if you have to commit scholastic suicide, then quote wikipedia or use wikipedia as a source in a paper or project.
ἀρχή
It should be noted that using an encyclopedia as an academic source is not a good practice to begin with. This includes those infallible encyclopedias like Britannica laugh.gif
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