The magazine RNA
that they are requiring researchers publishing research on
families of RNA molecules in the journal to write a
summarising their findings.
The notion is that the paper in the
magazine is original research and the Wikipedia article that will also be peer
reviewed <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peer_review>, will be a summary.
There are several problems:
- Wikipedia is an encyclopaedia with different subject linked by
hyperlinks. It is not a collection of summaries of scientific articles. This
means that information that is relevant in one research paper is likely to
find a home in many Wikipedia articles. This makes a traditional peer
review, where the review takes place before publication, problematic if not
- The proposed Wikipedia article is a summary of a scientific paper.
Scientific papers do not provide a neutral point of
they should not be neutral.
For Wikipedia NPOV is essential and people
get banned for pushing their point of view.
- The subject matter is so specialised that a typical Wikipedia admin
will not be able to judge it. This allows for a lot of misunderstandings and
- Writing a scientific article and writing a Wikipedia article requires
different skills. Wikipedia serves the general public and its articles
should reflect this. A different vocabulary, a different style of writing is
I think there is a need for more discussion before this actually starts
NB the article<http://www.nature.com/news/2008/081216/full/news.2008.1312.html&…
proposes this is a paid for article in Nature, there is also a press
release <http://www.sanger.ac.uk/Info/Press/2008/081217.shtml> about this.