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Because Wikipedia is restrictive
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(+2, -5)
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Wikipedia has many positive points and can be useful, but also has policies which restrict the users, for example, NPOV and no original research. Clearly there are many other websites, widely known to exist, which don't have such policies, but so far as i know there are no websites which have deliberately the opposite policies: must express bias, must involve original research and the like. I'm not sure how far this can be taken because i expect there to be contradictions.

If you've just had a perfectly sensible edit deleted for the fifteenth time, someone keeps blanking your self-promotional page, you quote the text of a war memorial only to have it deleted again by some adolescent who's never been there, or people are dubious about your painstakingly investigated and well-supported statements about Lily Allen's role in the reptilian humanoid conspiracy, come over to www.aidepikiw.org and let rip with whatever you wanted to say.

nineteenthly, Dec 10 2009

Wiki Opinion http://opinion.wikia.com/wiki/Main_Page
A wiki site with a different focus than an encyclopedia. [Jinbish, Dec 10 2009]

The Conservapedia http://www.conservapedia.com/
American Conservatives struggling against, well, everyone. [Aristotle, Dec 10 2009]

Wikiversity wants your Original Research! http://en.wikiversi...o_with_Wikipedia%3F
Part of the idea, possibly. [Aristotle, Dec 10 2009]

deletionpedia http://deletionpedia.dbatley.com
An archive of pages which have been deleted from Wikipedia. Not quite the same thing, though. [mouseposture, Dec 10 2009]


       I think Wikipedia's greatest flaw is that it does not accept original research, thus thwarting would-be amateur historians or investigative journalists.
Aristotle, Dec 10 2009

       I agree it's a flaw, and one thing which i'm not sure about concerning this idea is that it would simply reverse _all_ policies. Maybe there should be tags associated with each edit, and filters allowing the person reading it to change what text they see according to how they preferred their bias. So if they wanted things which were just original research, they could set their preferences accordingly, for example, or if they preferred misspellings and grammatical errors they could have those (because i'm sure everyone does those deliberately just to annoy people).
nineteenthly, Dec 10 2009

       //Wikipedia's greatest flaw is that it does not accept original research//   

       I disagree entirely (so I'm hoping that you're being sarcastic). Wikipedia is an online encyclopedia - it's supposed to be for existing facts that have already been verified through appropriate channels.
Jinbish, Dec 10 2009

       A flaw can also be a strength, depending on what you're looking for.   

       Thanks for the link, [jinbish]. So that's where rant central is. I always thought it was here before.
nineteenthly, Dec 10 2009

       [Jinbish] By not accepting original research it means that Wikipedia can't cover things that have been ignored by the appropriate channels. Good history covers that kind of thing, uncovering and documenting what otherwise might have been missed.   

       Whether an encyclopedia should seek to encourage good history is another, separate issue.
Aristotle, Dec 10 2009

       Bimming Historical Neo-Polarists! - Good History/Bad History? - where's the "Shades of Grey" History these days? Grrr, I shall write to my MP immediately.
zen_tom, Dec 10 2009

       You're right. Wikipedia can't cover things that have been ignored elsewhere - it's a shame in many ways, I know, but you can't expect it to.   

       Wikipedia seems to have editors with their personal 'foibles' and it's is a bit up its own arse with its system - but if it opened up the 'original research' concept then it would be open day for everyone from the honest researcher to the trolling fool to post anything they like from a unverified extension of the Mandelbrot Set to the real cup size of Britney Spears's underwear.   

       In my opinion, Wikipedia's strength, and the basis for its popularity, is that it is seen to have a degree of accuracy and editorial reliability based upon the communal structure. If you take that structure away then doesn't it just become another Internet forum?   

       Ironically, as an academic, I'm not a fan of Wikipedia and want to spit fire & brimstone when reading student reports that cite it.   

       (By the way, the f'bone isn't from me)
Jinbish, Dec 10 2009

       This would still have structure, it would just be the opposite kind of structure. Things could be marked as POV, original research and so on, and filtered accordingly. That's a structure.   

       How do the two fit together, [Jinbish]? Why don't you like it when students quote it? Is it just because it's lazy?
nineteenthly, Dec 10 2009

       I've always felt that the Wikipedia should actually recommend a place for publishing original research so it can then be referenced by this 'pedia.   

       Compiling content for the Wikipedia can often give people a hunger to undertake the kind of broader research that this site simply won't touch.
Aristotle, Dec 10 2009

       I don't want anything from Wikipedia particularly, i just think there's a place for something else.
nineteenthly, Dec 10 2009

       That would be an argument for people to understand what makes stuff valid. Also, they do that already, all over the web. This way they'd be doing it in plain view and rebuttals would be more straightforward.   

       Very interesting link, [Aristotle]. I'm working on an unrelated project at Wikiversity now, as it happens. The problem is that the people likely to be able to make valuable contributions are not very IT-savvy.
nineteenthly, Dec 10 2009

       [nineteenthly]: Just on the academic note, I'm not a fan of referencing Wikipedia for a number of reasons:
i) It's a web document and is ephemeral.
ii) It's a wiki - and therefore subject to editing from anyone.
iii) It's an encyclopedia written by many, many authors so it can be disjointed.
iv) It's too often cut-and-pasted into reports.

       Each of the above aren't exactly killer reasons. Web references, while not the best, are becoming more and more accepted (referenced with a time of access); Wikipedia is actually reasonably reliable; plagiarism isn't exactly new.   

       The main reason I don't like seeing the references to it, though, is the laziness aspect. I'd far prefer students to be more thorough and keen to search for other sources (which are readily available). What Ifind is that reports that are poor tend to contain references to Wikipedia and About.com - it's not necessarily that the reports are poor because they reference them.
Jinbish, Dec 10 2009

       Would it not be fairly easy to fake good references simply by sticking the external references at the ends of the Wikipedia articles though?   

       Plagiarism depresses me, as it suggests the plagiarist is not involved with the matter in hand, which is sad for them and calls into question their authenticity and the direction of their life. I used to spend a lot of time on Yahoo Answers, and there are a lot of homework questions simply stuck on there for answers. Some of them are about astronomy. Now, i can't conceive of a mind which has been so turned off education not to want to pursue astronomy with a passion because to me it's a truly awesome subject, yet clearly there are people who are prepared to do that. Something must have gone terribly wrong for these people for them to want to do that.
nineteenthly, Dec 10 2009

       //Would it not be fairly easy to fake good references simply by sticking the external references at the ends of the Wikipedia articles though? //   

       Perhaps - but then they can be judged on their understanding/use of the external reference. I don't mind them learning from WikiP - I just don't want them to get the habit of relying on it.   

       Thankfully, plagiarism is usually easy to spot. Students tend to forget that that what Google gives, it taketh away. Inconsistency in language or subject from paragraph to paragraph, or sentence to sentence can be enough to spark suspicion. Formal vocabulary or complex (correct) grammar structures that otherwise appear out of place are a dead giveaway.
Jinbish, Dec 11 2009

       //there are no websites which have deliberately the opposite policies//

Aren't these called 'blogs', nineteenthly? If you view the interweb as just a single, vast resource then it is teeming with such websites and there is nothing to stop you from adding your own page to it any time you like.
DrBob, Dec 11 2009

       So, the way to fake it would be to use a chaotic writing style!   

       The thing is though, suppose they're pursuing something for vocational purposes. If the subject doesn't interest them and that's widespread, as opposed to coasting through a unit, to me that seems to mean that they either don't really need the content of the subject, the style of thinking or other skill involved, or that they're condemning themselves to a career in which they aren't emotionally involved. That doesn't sound like a good way to spend one's life.   

       [DrBob], blogs are not fully collaborative. There is no continuous text which users produce between them, just entries plus comments. Google Wave, on the other hand...
nineteenthly, Dec 11 2009

       //The thing is though...//   

       That's a whole new debate and probably a digression too far for here. (maybe continue on overbaked? )
Jinbish, Dec 11 2009

       I'm afraid i've given up on Overbaked, because despite it seeming to be a good idea it's hardly ever used. But you're right, this is the wrong place.
nineteenthly, Dec 11 2009


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