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A conservative rival for Wikipedia?

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by Handel, Feb 28, 2007.

  1. Handel

    Handel Rookie

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    Strange. You would think that, if they think Wikipedia is biased, they'd try and form a "less" biased version of it, rather than one that promotes its bias in the very URL :confused:

    http://www.newscientist.com/blog/technology/

    Unfortunately, the site is down (probably was raided) But I was able to get this piece.. Argh...

    A friend of mine wrote a text for European Union (he was joking). Don't know if he was able to put in Conservapedia.

    Last edited: Feb 28, 2007
  2. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Rookie

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    Wikipedia is part of the complete dumbing-down of America and the world. I struggle all the time to get my daughter to look things up in books and cross-check references using other sources. She told me last week that her teacher accepted references from Wikipedia for research work. When I talked to the teacher a couple of days later about it, she said that she doubted my claim that Wikipedia was not accurate on many entries.
  3. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    There was a comparative study about a year ago, comparing Wikipedia to Encyclopedia Brittanica. Evidently, their accuracy was rated about the same.

    But going to the encyclopedia should not count as research at, say, the high school level and above. Kids should know how to at least use the library (whether or not they use it online, which nowadays, they should.) Usually someone has written something similar to or touching on your subject matter, and it's the only way to be aware of the "general stream" of knowledge to that point.

    By the way, on the main premise -- Wikipedia provides self-correcting mechanisms, which conservatives make use of all the time to challenge the accuracy of "biased" articles. It looks like that process is just too frustrating in Conservative land. I'll be interested in seeing whether the "alternative" service provides similar mechanisms.

    PFnV
  4. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I doubt your claim, too. Do you have any examples? Most the the Wikipedia articles are very well sourced, though like in any book there are some errors. Wikipedia has a pretty good model to guard against errors and dishonest entries. That said, as you and PatsFaninVA seems to point out, students should use some primary source material when writing a paper.

    http://chronicle.com/free/v53/i10/10a03101.htm
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/4530930.stm

    As far as the Conservapedia goes, it sounds like nonsense. It's very premise is flawed.
  5. Harry Boy

    Harry Boy Look Up, It's Amazing PatsFans.com Supporter

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    If the Liberals like and support Wikipedia then you better think twice about letting your children use it as "Gospel".

    The progressive liberal is on a rampage to destroy America as we knew it, they are also hell bent on rewriting America's History Books.
  6. Pujo

    Pujo Rookie

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    Wikipedia is not reliable, and that's coming from someone who uses it a lot. While it's very useful to get a quick overview of something, and the references it provides are great for digging deeper into the topic, I've ran into (and edited out) plenty of outright misinformation in articles. I wouldn't call Wikipedia an encyclopedia, it's more of a collaborative website on everything under the sun.

    The conservapedia idea is just stupid. It's like giving up on the search for scientific truth if it conflicts with your political beliefs.
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2007
  7. QuiGon

    QuiGon Banned

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    I agree 100%. As further evidence of this, I submit the fact that Patters uses it as his #1 source for reference. (His #2 source is a nationally known holocaust denier, but I digress).

    I read an article recently about a university that informed its students that Wikipedia is not a legitimate reference. I wish more would follow suit.
  8. QuiGon

    QuiGon Banned

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    It's a great place to go if you want to find out Franklin Pierce's birthday or the atomic weight of helium. But if you want to research a topic that is even remotely controversial, it is no better a reference tool than this forum.
  9. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Can someone post an example of where Wikipedia is unreliable? Sometimes it's incomplete, but overall I think it's quite reliable. I've often cross-checked what I've read in Wikipedia and have never been disappointed. What is the evidence that's it's unreliable? The links I provided above seem to support the contention that it's quite reliable.
  10. QuiGon

    QuiGon Banned

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    Well, there was that guy (which I have already posted to this board but apparently you missed that) who was accused of being involved in the Kennedy Assassination... but that's not really a big deal, is it...?

    The fact that someone as biased as you finds it reliable pretty much rests my case. Of course, you also find the Institute for Holocaust Review reliable... :rolleyes:
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2007
  11. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Can anyone besides the unfriendly and rude QuiGon :rolleyes: post something other than that one error that was widely reported and led to Wikipedia tightening its processes. I provided two links to reliable sources that showed that Wikipedia is quite reliable. It doesn't mean it's perfect, but no book is.
  12. Harry Boy

    Harry Boy Look Up, It's Amazing PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I posted an example as to why it is unreliable, "Liberals Like It"
  13. maverick4

    maverick4 Banned

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    Wait a second. So the creator of conservapedia thinks the truth, as submitted and accepted by the populace, is liberal?
  14. Pujo

    Pujo Rookie

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    Lol, that reminds me of the scene in Holy Grail when King Arthur is being insulted by the French guy in the castle and finally asks, "Is there someone else I can talk to?"

    Seriously, Patters, Wikipedia is so full of errors you just need to read 2 or 3 articles to spot them. They usually get corrected quickly, but new ones appear in their place. I could give you 50 entries from my edit list of errors I've corrected, but I don't want people to know my Wikipedia login so you'll need to take my word for it. Wikipedia hasn't "tightened up" their process in any sense, either, it's exactly the same as it always was - anyone can make edits, and anyone can correct those edits.
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2007
  15. Pujo

    Pujo Rookie

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    Lol, Stepehen Colbert says he doesn't like reality because it has a decidedly liberal spin.
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2007
  16. QuiGon

    QuiGon Banned

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    Could you please give a source or reference for that statement...? I would be very interested in reading the study directly and getting a little bit more in depth beyond "there was a comparative study about a year ago".
  17. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I don't know, Pujo, maybe in certain subjects it's weaker than in others. But, when it comes to history and literature, I think it's overall quite accurate. Then, as one studied showed, it's apparently quite accurate in the sciences as well. At least in a comparison with Brittanica, it does respectably. If you don't mind, give a couple of actual examples of the kinds of errors you've found. I'd be honestly quite curious.
  18. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    In post 4, I provided a link to an article on that subject, as well as another relevant link. :rolleyes:
  19. QuiGon

    QuiGon Banned

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    See, this is why I ask for references. There a very important little fact you and PatsFaninVA left out... he said "...comparing Wikipedia to Encyclopedia Brittanica. Evidently, their accuracy was rated about the same."

    But, upon checking the article, that's not the entire truth. The report doesn't say Wikipedia is as accurate as Britannica... it says Wikipedia is as accurate in science as Britannica. As I have gladly admitted, Wikipedia is a great source for completely non-controversial information. So Wikipedia is great for non controversial stuff like the atomic weight of helium or Newton's 3 Laws or Franklin Pierce's birthday. But the instant you get into something even remotely controversial, like global warming or the Theory of Evolution or the righteousness of nuking Japan or the War in Iraq then Wikipedia is no better a reference tool than any thread from this forum where everyone is spouting off their opinions.
  20. Pujo

    Pujo Rookie

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    You're right, certain subjects are better than others. They have pretty good CompSci and some good physics info. Next time I run into some gross errors, I'll give you a link. The types of errors I'm talking about range from incorrect statistics to outright mistruths, but the biggest thing I see is original research. People making connections between things based on their own experiences, instead of sources. Again, next time I run into examples, I will show them to you instead of editing them out.

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