I’ve always been a strong user of Wikipedia and I’m sure many many other people are as well.  I feel that as a first reference, you can’t really look to any better place.  When many people first thought of Wikipedia, I feel (and this is completely speculation) that there first inclination was to view it as a source of factual information about history / as a general encyclopedia.  However, I feel like that this is readily and drastically changing and it is becoming a common source to look for information about any and everything you would want to know about.  The first thing that shows up in Google often times is a Wikipedia article related to your search.  Because of this I feel like people are led or pushed towards reading Wikipedia as a means of learning about just about anything.  This is why I feel Wikipedia is an awsome source, however, this can also makes it somewhat dangerous.

I love Wikipedia because I can search just about anything.  From the most obscure old cartoon show that I once forgot about to The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster; it’l have some sort of information you are looking for.  While I do not feel like there is much danger is using Wikipedia for well known subjects that’s already been well researched (you can pretty easily re-check facts), I do see a danger in articles about more obscure subjects.  For example, an article written about a lesser known artist could be false and we would have no way of telling if it is or not.   However, I do feel as though that this is compensated for since the person doing the research and adding the Wiki article probably has some sort of self motivation to want to do it in the first place.  This means they likely have some intensive to get the information correct, though this could also give teh article a biased voice or feeling.

The last point that I really liked was the idea of Wiki as recorded history, but not just history, culture as well.  Wiki is constantly evolving and things that are currently happening are constantly being updated to older articles.  For example, my favorite artists One Be Lo is on Wiki who is a very unknown but one of the most talented lyricists of all time.  As his career progresses, I expect the article to ultimately reflect his career and hopefully get updated with his latest achievements, upcoming projects, and future plans.  So not only do I know what has happened in the past, but I get a glimpse of what we may see in the future.

One response to “Wiki

  1. Yes, I think your point about the progression of Wikipedia often mirroring the progression of a specific artist. As you formulate it, the artists on Wikipedia have their pages change in a dynamic way that reflects their career paths. I think that history — and the fact that any user can view the history of a specific page — is a key part of Wikipedia’s value. If people want to look at our interpretation of 9/11 right after it happened or our interpretation of an artist at a particular time, they can look at a Wikipedia page’s History or that Wikipedia page’s talk History in order to get our perspective on the issue.