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Did I call it or what?

I've been meaning to write about this for a few days, but I kept getting sidetracked. An article in Nature finds that the online encyclopedia Wikipedia rivals the Encyclopedia Britannica in terms of accuracy.

I speculated on this very topic back on December 4.

...I'm quite sure there are errors and inaccuracies in Wikipedia, and I doubt that anyone who understands the project would ever believe otherwise. But how many errors and misrepresentations can be found in dead tree encyclopedias...

Well, I guess now we know. But there's a much bigger issue here than vindication for Wikipedia.

Everyone I know who uses Wikipedia for convenience recognizes the project for what it is -- a voluntary, organic effort by unpaid amateurs -- and they interpret what they read accordingly. But how many people do likewise with the Encyclopedia Britannica?

In short, the problem is not (as the New York Times snobbishly suggested) that we don't question Wikipedia enough. The problem is that we question dead tree media and references too little.


If only Wikipedia had those cool transparency pages that showed the layers of organs in the human body. ;-)

Yeah, those were cool. They never lasted long, though. My cousins promptly tore them out through zealous overuse. ;-)

And Wikipedia has Britannica crushed in terms of its extensive articles on comic book characters.

Er, or so I am told...by a loser. Who I don't usually hang around.

...I've said too much.

CRB, you're so right those cool transparency pages were the best...

As for accuracy, well, take everything with a grain of salt, including the stuff in Britannica.

The best thing about Wikipedia is the price. I like free things.

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