On 9/30/05, JAY JG <jayjg(a)hotmail.com> wrote:
If we were making paper encyclopedias, this inclusionism deletionism
thing would make sense. Both sides would have a case. But unless the
information is false, unusable, or otherwise profoundly
unencyclopedic, it should stay, we have enough "room". Possibly some
articles will never be used, but thats better than people failing to
find what their looking for.
The "Wikipedia isn't paper" argument is just the first item in a long list
of [[Wikipedia:What Wikipedia is not]], and that is well worth reviewing.
The guiding principle here is "Wikipedia is an encyclopedia". Just because
there is room for something in an encyclopedia article doesn't mean that it
should be in the article. We are *editors*, and that implies discretion in
what we do and do't include.
In the paper days, editors were filters, using their discretion to
only let through what they thought was "important enough" because each
additional page had a definite cost far in excess of zero. What they
also did was use their discretion to sort the information into useful
blocks, which became individual articles.
Now that we aren't restricted by the bounds of the printing press,
book weight, and shelf storage space, the first half of the editors'
jobs above are being deprecated in favor of the second. It still
takes discretion and judgement to sort information into articles, so
the skill of an editor is still important.
The goal is for
everyone to have access to the sum total of human knowlege.
Facts and knowledge are not the same thing.
Of course they aren't but the "sum total" will always include an awful
lot of what looks like trivia, because what is trivia is *always* a
POV issue. For example, for some, the KPCOFGS classification of
living beings is simply trivia, while for others, it's vital
information. It depends on the POV of the reader.