Week 10 – A1 – Have you edited Wikipedia?

Baker’s How I fell in love with Wikipedia.

1. Is there anything new for you in the article? Does it make you more or less likely to consult Wikipedia, or does it make no difference?

It was interesting reading about the behind the scenes of Wikipedia i.e. how posts are created, edited and deleted. Also I was not aware of the movements inside this tool such as the “Article Rescue Squadron” or “WikiProject Proposed Deletion Patrolling”.  I was also impressed by the ‘fighting’ for the deletion, retention of articles. This shows Wikipedia’s fluidity were articles are not permanent.

This article does not really make much of a difference on my usage of Wikipedia.

2. If you have used Wikipedia in the past few weeks – whether for H800 or for other reasons – review your use of it.Where have you found it most and least valuable? Are there certain types of topic that you feel happy looking up in Wikipedia? For example, do you consult it for factual information such as names and dates, and/or explanations of technologies, and/or insights into broad topics such as ‘learning’?

I tend to use Wikipedia when doing sporadic searches on Google.  Many times Wikipedia tops the search list and therfore I take a glimpse at the article in question.

3. Why is a Wikipedia entry not generally regarded as acceptable as a reference in an academic journal?For one view on this, you could search on ‘citing Wikipedia’ within Wikipedia itself! And if you are involved in supporting learners in some capacity – interpreting ‘support’ very broadly to include professional and personal contexts – what advice would you give them about how they could use Wikipedia?

The articles on Wikipedia are written by anonymous authors. Even the language used might not have the standard required by the researcher.

Searches on Wikipedia should be followed by the verficiation of the author and citations available.

“Without the kooks and the insulters and the spray-can taggers, Wikipedia would just be the most useful encyclopedia ever made.” Baker



4. How does your use of Wikipedia compare with, say, your use of Google or GoogleScholar? You may like to think back to your tutor group discussion of the graph in Week 1a Activity 4.

5. And if you haven’t used Wikipedia recently, think about why that is. Are you using other online sources, or books, or…?

Currently I am doing  more academic work due to H800. Thus when I want to search specific information I tend to go directly to Google Search & OU library. Maybe the search for specific topics might take longer, but I perceive that the end result  is of a higher quality.


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