Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Slice of Singapore on Wikipedia (1st April 2007)

I read in the Straits Times, "Slice of Singapore on Wikipedia", by Jocelyn Lee (1 April 2007).

It is perhaps very interesting to note that Wiki has all the inherent flaws and dangers stated in the news piece, it is still one of the more popular places that people refer to for their work and entertainment.

It was stated at Wikipedia that is a multilingual, web-based, free content encyclopedia project. Wikipedia is written collaboratively by volunteers; its articles can be edited by anyone with access to the web site. The name is a portmanteau of the words wiki (a type of collaborative website) and encyclopedia. Its primary servers are in Tampa, Florida, with additional servers in Amsterdam and Seoul.

Wikipedia also added that Critics have questioned Wikipedia's reliability and accuracy.[9] The site has also been criticized for its susceptibility to vandalism,[10] uneven quality, systemic bias and inconsistencies,[11] and for favoring consensus over credentials in its editorial process.[12] Wikipedia's content policies[13] and sub-projects set up by contributors seek to address these concerns.[14] Two scholarly studies have concluded that vandalism is generally short-lived[15] and that Wikipedia is roughly as accurate as other encyclopedias.[16].

I interpreted the above as machiam like

I tell you hor, you want to read my blog, can loh, but got people say my blog, no email address, no nice fonts, no colour, no content, content expressed why only personal views, etc. so you see, you want to read, is your problem loh. You want to quote from me, can lah! but hor, please tell me and if wrong, don't scold me hor!.

in more decent English....

Wikipedia says...You have been warned that using me as a source of info gives you the potential of this and that a problem, so what i am telling you is, you can use, but please please verify the facts that people use here. It is always a good exercise to verify and cross verify things you find on the net and don't suka suka just use. Remember even books have facts that are correct at one point in history and wrong if placed at another point in time, not to mention that even books have infactual data too.

Come to think of it, newspapers too make mistakes and while newspapers are corrected internally, Wiki can be corrected by a worldwide audience and the good part of it, no apologies needed.

Always a disclaimer to all information sources...always there.

In my Ah Beng language I would say

"my guarantee to you hor for using Wikipedia is, if people see already and know it is wrong, will change one, very fast, no need to call press centre and say this and that wrong, and wait for next day then change. Also hor, FREE one, no need pay and pay!"

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