Monday, December 21, 2009
The myth of Wikipedia's paid fact-checkers
For some reason, people believe that the Wikimedia Foundation pays people to fact-check Wikipedia's articles. Nothing could be further from the truth! No one gets paid to review Wikipedia's articles for factual accuracy. The WP:CITEWIKI page says "you should ... independently verify the accuracy of Wikipedia information." This means that the responsibility for checking facts on Wikipedia rests solely with you! The following sentence from the can-clinking appeal for donations from Jimbo Wales is quite telling: Wikipedia is "a community creation, entirely written and funded by people like you." There is no money whatsoever alloted to experts to write articles, nor is there money alloted to pay fact-checkers. As long as Wikipedia gets a lot more money in donations than it really needs to keep running, factual accuracy will never be a concern for them.