[WikiEN-l] Age fabrication and original research

David Goodman dgoodmanny at gmail.com
Wed Oct 7 02:25:56 UTC 2009

Quite apart from  the incredible range available from a research
library, the great majority of Wikipedians, even experienced ones, do
not use even those sources which are made available free from local
public libraries to residents. Many seem not to even think about using
anything free on the internet except that reachable through the
Googles.  if Google News reports a newspaper or magazine behind a pay
wall, they do not even think of looking for it in other databases or
web sites  that they may have available.   (I'm judging from
experience at AfD and other rescues. Many of the relatively few
dedicated article writers, non-academic as well as academic, are of
course very competent at research in their areas, and I frequently
learn about   resources new to me when they join in a discussion. )

None of this surprises me -- I've seen it in other settings.  it's the
challenge of the library profession that we have not found a way to
get people to use any resources they are not thoroughly familiar with.

David Goodman, Ph.D, M.L.S.

On Tue, Oct 6, 2009 at 8:32 PM, Ray Saintonge <saintonge at telus.net> wrote:
> Gregory Maxwell wrote:
>> On Sat, Oct 3, 2009 at 12:00 PM, Ken Arromdee wrote:
>>> The idea that a newspaper article that quotes the date from the primary
>>> source is going to do any more sanity checking than you would...  isn't true.
>> [snip]
>>> In this context, the secondary source is "I found a reference to a newspaper
>>> article which quotes the date".  It's not going to discuss the conflict the
>>> way you describe--it's just more acceptable because it better fits the rule.
>> So I went to some effort in a previous message to slam newsmedia as a
>> secondary source.  It usually isn't in any meningful way.  But the
>> problem there is the misguided belief that it is, not the preference
>> for secondary sources.
>> I don't know how it is outside of the US, but primary education in the
>> US places news media (and encyclopaedias!) as high quality sources of
>> digested information. When I first got access to a university library
>> (along with journals, and specialist reference works) it was a
>> incredibly eye opening experience for me. I expect that as more
>> references works become accessible online along with open access
>> journals people will recognize that newspapers are not usually good
>> secondary sources and the norms on Wikipedia will change... but that
>> will take time.
> That's an interesting observation.  News media and encyclopedias are
> easily accessible sources, but the people who depend on them don't even
> take the next step of going to popular weeklies like "Time" which at
> least goes beyond the immediacy of the daily newspaper.  Those who have
> used a university library know what you mean, but one can't escape the
> fact that the majority does not go to university, and that a significant
> proportion of those who do attend a post-secondary institution do their
> best to avoid going to the library, and only attend there under severe
> duress.  Having open access to journals is only a part of the battle;
> grokking there importance also needs too be better communicated.
> Ec
> _______________________________________________
> WikiEN-l mailing list
> WikiEN-l at lists.wikimedia.org
> To unsubscribe from this mailing list, visit:
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikien-l

More information about the WikiEN-l mailing list