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Re: Wikipedia and Wikispecies



Hi Demetrios,

"Free info" for the masses is cool.
But to allow another author to @$&^ with someone's intellectual property
is NOT cool.

Playing the role of devil's advocate for a moment........

I see nothing productive, either from a scientific point of view, or from
a free speech point of view, for  Wilkipedia to allow Alan Feduccia, PhD
to come in and edit or delete a prior contribution on bird evolution
written by Mark Norell, PhD (or visa versa).

Maybe I'm missing something from your  posts.  If so, please correct me.

<pb>
--
"Who could have possibly envisioned an erection - election - in Iraq at
this point in history?" - George W. Bush, Washington D.C.,  January 10,
2005.



On Wed, 02 Feb 2005 19:36:05 -0500 Demetrios Vital
<demetrios.vital@gmail.com> writes:
> > And that's the problem.  There's no assurance the information's 
> trustworthy,
> > nor is there any way to know whatever you write there won't be 
> deleted or
> > altered by someone who knows less.  Makes the whole venture 
> worthless in my
> > mind.
> 
> The point is that it is free, not worthless.  Professional 
> journals,
> encyclopedias, and textbooks are expensive, inaccessible to many, 
> and
> usually not written in, say, Esperanto.  (There are even a very, 
> very
> small number of Wiki articles in Klingon.  Yes, Klingon.)  Have you
> seen how expensive children's books are these days?!  I can't 
> afford
> many of them, and I'm a working adult!
> 
> I'll continue with children's books as an example.  How many kids'
> books are there with terrible illustrations, inaccurate info, and 
> high
> price tags?  Lots, though, thankfully, fewer and fewer with the 
> former
> two.  So just because a kids' book is published with some
> inaccuracies, does that make the venture of reading worthless?  No 
> one
> would say it would.  And unlike kids' books, you can change 
> Wikipedia
> if inaccurate info is entered.
> 
> Now, wikipedia is not a peer-reviewed journal, and nor should it be. 
> 
> But if some of those peer-reviewing professionals shared their 
> basic
> knowledge for free in this community, it probably would not be
> deleted.  Wikipedia has been around since the late nineties and has
> seen its share of edit wars.  (One founding member told me about 
> the
> huge edit wars between German and Polish members over proper names 
> of
> certain towns!)  The vast majority of members strive for accuracy, 
> and
> if you'll notice, there are no creationist ideas in any entry.  
> People
> with less-than-ideal stances on education and knowledge are weeded
> out.  Smart people who know what they are talkign about are 
> generally
> not weeded out.  That's why the entry on Dinosaurs actually uses 
> terms
> like "non-avian dinosaurs" and seems to responsibly present ideas
> gleaned from paleontology.
> 
> Imagine a journal peer-reviewed by the world.  Would you add or 
> edit
> entries on Victorian period British aristocrats?  No, but the
> 14-year-old who does has produced historically accurate and
> well-written articles that have been fact-checked by historians. 
> Where else could a 14 year old easily have the ear of the world to
> share their passion?  What about the braniac 14-year-old dino
> enthusiasts?  SVP is expensive, Wikipedia is not.
> 
> Anyway, the rest of this belongs off-list.  Please consider sharing
> your (plural) expertise with the world.
> 
> Goodnight,
> 
> Demetrios
> 
>