[WikiEN-l] BLP messiness

Delirium delirium at hackish.org
Sat Jul 14 08:54:16 UTC 2007

Thomas Dalton wrote:
>> What if the material is accurate and can be checked with a quick
>> google search?
> The burden of proof is always on the person adding the information.
> "Source" does not mean "somewhere which can be used to verify the
> information", it means "the place where the information came from".
> Only the person that added the information actually knows the source,
> so they should be the one citing sources. The whole idea of adding
> sources to existing articles is completely backward. We need to work
> on getting people to actually *use* reliable sources, not just cite
> them. If people were actually using the sources then they could cite
> them as they went along with almost no additional work.

This seems pretty at odds with the way Wikipedia writes articles. Yes, 
the original author *ought* to reference his or her article when 
written.  He or she also *ought* to write it in good English, with a 
nice introduction, include relevant facts without undue weighting, and 
so on.  However often many of these things aren't done, or are done 
imperfectly, so later editors fix them.  As long as the article is 
referenced to material that can corroborate its content, I don't see why 
it makes a different whether they're the same references the original 
author used. The point of references is to corroborate the content, not 
as some sort of metaphysical trail of editing. If someone was born in 
1855, and we have a reference stating they were born in 1855, what does 
it matter whether it's the *same* reference the original author of the 
article got the date out of?


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