Thursday, December 10, 2009

Now Wikipedia lies even in its pledge drive

These days there's something else at the top of Wikipedia articles for lazy college students to ignore: quotes of letters from recent donors hoping to encourage others to donate to Wikipedia. A lot of those messages are predictably hagiographic but can't really be faulted as lies.

But today I saw one that is just way too much of a whopper to swallow. Supposedly William Knecht donated $50 to Wikipedia, saying that "As a professional scientist, Wikipedia is my go-to source for ideas and concepts new to me. Donate for this? You bet!"

A scientist for whom Wikipedia is a go-to source? Given the high regard professional scientists have for scientific journals with their peer review rigmarole, I seriously doubt any professional scientist would be willing to admit to making Wikipedia their "go-to source," much less donating money to it. Come up with more believable lies, Wikipedia.

1 comment:

  1. Fuck off. As a scientist too, a young twenty-something scientist who grew up with the internet, I know that Wikipedia is revolutionary in terms of introducing new concepts to me. Notice he said "...concepts new to me" as in zero knowledge. Wikipedia is the equivalent of going and asking your next door neighbor or friend about something they know that you don't. You may not get the exact truth of the matter if its highly complicated, controversial or new, but you will be able to intelligently hunt out new and more reliable sources, be that news outlets or scientific peer-reviewed journals.