Wikipedia’s declining stats

From Paul Furber at Brainstorm:

Wikipedia lost at least 300 million views in 2015, dropping it from the fifth most viewed website on the planet down to the tenth. This is a good thing for a number of reasons. It started as a good idea in 2001 — an encyclopaedia that anyone could edit. Unfortunately, it’s now a quagmire of bureaucracy, infighting, corruption and agenda-pushing.

Try to edit any article that an established editor regards as their pet project and you’ll find your edits reverted in double quick time, regardless of whether you have reliable sources for your edit. Complain about this and you’ll get banned. You personally may be a reliable source, but that won’t matter: Wikipedia doesn’t even allow people to correct information about themselves unless it comes from a third party.

Some editors are untouchable no matter how many rules they break. And the number of arbitrary rules behind the scenes is staggering, all of them tagged with strange acronyms like WP:BLP and WP:NPOV. More.

The moral of the story is, creative disorganization is fun but it is still disorganization, and that matters.

Co-ordinated smoke signals would be a big improvement.

See also: How Wikipedia can turn fiction into fact (Sourced enough times, the fiction becomes “troo”)

Wikipedia hacked by elite sources now (The main problem is that the people who use Wikipedia do not care whether it is false or true. “Wikipedia is my library” is the new diagnostic for irresponsible laziness.)

and

Mathematician complains Wikipedia is promoting “pseudo-science” of multiverse (Then there were the minor revelations that core articles “don’t earn even Wikipedia’s own middle-ranking quality scores” and that some “editors” are paid by outside sources.)

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  • Drunk_by_Noon

    Wikipedia is crap.
    Long ago, and not much after it was founded, it was taken over by the SJW, crazies, and paid interests farming their own Wikipedia personae.
    The sooner it goes away the better.

    • Reddit is following in Wikipedias footsteps.

      • Drunk_by_Noon

        Other than the occasional Google search about some technical subject I have never spent much time there.
        It sounds like I didn’t miss anything.
        Most on-line “communities” eventually devolve in cliques and fiefdoms that are not worthy of any effort or involvement.

        Except for here… well, here and 4chan, the only two remaining reliable sources of free and fair information on the web.

        • dance…dancetotheradio

          The things I search for on wiki are technical in nature and not usually prone to any sjw revisionist motives.
          When I need quick confirmation of the impedance of rg6 coax cable I use wiki.
          Or when I need to know the standard for the maximum length of an rj45 Ethernet cable.

          • Drunk_by_Noon

            100m

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            Since when do you quote anything in metric?

          • Clausewitz

            Sadly Telecom went metric back in 85. That way they could charge you by the Km instead of the Mile and you ended up paying more.

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            Trudeau did the same thing with the gas tax in 1980.

          • Drunk_by_Noon

            Since a bunch of commie loving fags wrote our specs.
            Were it up to me I’d be measuring cable run lengths in fathoms and furlongs.

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            Sidenote, I ordered a bunch of stuff from stores last week.
            They made a typo and I ended up with 8000 feet of RG59 instead of a thousand.

          • Drunk_by_Noon

            Doe!
            Any chance of actually using that much coax in a lifetime at work?
            I guess if you are using a thousand, you probably could eventually use 8,000 too.

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            I used a thousand feet installing the new cell phone boosters.
            Now, we just need some for the new satellite clock signals and just to have some on hand.
            One reel was good enough.

          • Drunk_by_Noon

            So eight spools will be eight times better! 🙂

          • Clausewitz

            Only to the first connection, with every added connection divide by 2 unless you add in repeater nodes.

          • Drunk_by_Noon

            1990 called, they want their token-ring connection back! 😉

          • Clausewitz

            Never used that IBM Token Ring shit. Too many collisions in the data stream, total unreliability, and in the end Token Ring never supported many of the open source applications my data networks were designed for. The thing you got right is that I was doing data design up till 98, then I went back to school.

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            Yes, Cat5.
            You’re right.

          • Exile1981

            I found a wiki article that was very wrong about something. I tried to correct it and someone undid the edit. To add insult to injury one of references they quoted was written by me, but they got facts wrong quoting my article.

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            Oh, you string theory guys are all the same.

          • Exile1981

            Mine was on the history of the small town i live in. I used the old town records and old CPR records to write an article years ago. Then wiki got the dates wrong.

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            Well, you know, history is open to interpretation.

          • Exile1981

            i’m tired but i’m going to avoid being bated into that debate.

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            I’m not trying to get a debate going.

          • Exile1981

            Then obviously I was really tired. 🙂

          • Clausewitz

            Not if you use primary sources. Never trust a text book that doesn’t use Primary sources.

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            Ask any of my ex-girlfriends what history is.

          • Clausewitz

            I’ve revised my history with the ladies many a time. I revel in my own self delusion.

          • canminuteman

            Primary sources are not likely any more accurate. Read the history of the any war using the primary sources created by both sides, and you will get a different story. Lots of primary source history was written by people who were not there, lived hundreds of years after the fact and were being paid by someone to write it. Example, most of what we now of Anglo Saxon era England we know because of Bede.

          • Drunk_by_Noon

            If they lived hundreds of years later, or were not there, then they are not primary sources.

      • lolwut?

        Been there for years.

        Rebel Media links are auto-deleted from /r/Canada and several subreddits, Even attempting to post them will get you a shadowban.

        • V10_Rob

          And then they wonder why they too are going the way of legacy media.

  • FactsWillOut

    Denyse, it is your site that is full of pseudo-science.
    Multi-verse hypotheses are valid science, as is super-string and quantum loop gravity.
    I do agree that wikipedia is crap, but not all unorganized environments collapse: Open-source software is thriving.

    • Drunk_by_Noon

      Then why are we not all using Linux on the desktop?
      They might not all collapse, but they are self-limiting.

  • canminuteman

    I like wikipedia. I wouldn’t trust it on anything controversial, but most stuff isn’t controversial. For example, Just now I was trying to remember who was on the 1967 Toronto Maple Leafs, I found a team roster and biographies of all the players. What’s not to like about that? On just about any subject you are going to encounter you will find more information quicker at wikipedia than at any other single source, and unless it is a controversial subject on politics, or current events it is as accurate as any old printed encyclopedia. Who ever writes any article, gets the data from somewhere, and it eill be as accurate as the source material.

    • FactsWillOut

      Yep.
      Anything political is tainted, but math and hard science entries are usually pretty good, not to mention that they are well-referenced, to boot.

      • dance…dancetotheradio

        Except that time when I was at work and I clicked on a footnote to follow the reference to it’s source and a hardcore porn site popped up.

        • Clausewitz

          Your computer obviously knew you needed a time out from your work. 8-))

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            I didn’t want a time out from work, period.

    • Clausewitz

      It’s good for minutia and trivia, but in the end it is not peer reviewed and thus useless in an academic setting.

      • canminuteman

        Granted, so that means its only good for 99.5 percent of the population. And with global warming we are all becoming aware of the value of pear review. I suspect that it is just as accurate as the information I would have got 30 years ago if I went to the library and researched any particular topic. I would have found a dozen different sources that may or may not agree with each other.

        • Clausewitz

          In History, most of the books that are considered most accurate are older tomes. Most of today’s books are mostly Marred by Marxist ideologies and other assorted political revisionism.

    • Drunk_by_Noon

      Even THAT is not REALLY reliable.
      It’s pretty reliable by only because there is no motivation to muck with it.
      I bet, and with very little effort, I could put the Cat Man himself on that Wikipedia roster for the 1967 Maple Leafs.

      Wikipedia is only as reliable as their editors let it be, and if there is any money to be made, or an axe to grind, there will be changes made to make it support some kind of a narrative.

  • kkruger71

    As I tried to argue with someone a while back (who also took journalism), the problems with Wikipedia are not fixable, they were hardwired right in the concept. With anyone editing the people that are going to keep an eye on any level of subjective material are going to be the ones with the strongest feelings towards it. Therefore the information is going to end up skewed by them, and those with the strongest opinion on any topic tend to be the ones with the most one-sided views. Anyone unattached enough from the topic to present a balanced or neutral point of view is not going to take the time to fight for a balanced entry.

  • David Murrell

    I like Wiki for history and most technical subjects, but looking up major politicians or institutions reveals biases. For example, look up “CBC” or “Peter Mansbridge” yields glowing reports, but look up “Ezra Levant” or “Sun Media” yields long sections headlined as “controversies”, detailing long lists of supposed past sins. The controversies all seem to reside with conservatives.

    • Justin St.Denis

      Ain’t that peculiar? Actually, it would be if the SJW and Progressive crowds weren’t so bloody predictable.

  • Brenda

    Then there are the trolling attempts. I was looking up the biography of a tenth century German nobleman, and somebody had written that one of his children was ‘the greatest admiral the galaxy has ever known.’