Wondering Why?

Why Is Wikipedia Not A Good Source?

To start with, the most obvious reason is that on the website itself it is advised that one should not fully trust the information. In addition even the founder of Wikipedia Jimmy Wales strongly discourages the citation of Wikipedia as source in school projects, research and in interviews.

The reasons why Wikipedia cannot be trusted as a source are as follows;

  • The articles on Wikipedia may be bias as the writer is entitled to his own opinion. This may be a problem when the article stays for a long time before undergoing reviewing and scrutiny.

  • The information given in the articles may be incomplete as the writer of the article writes only what he or she has access to and feels like is enough information for him/her.

  • The articles in the Wikipedia may not be as objective as required. Even the most competent writers make mistakes yet they have the luxury and comfort of editors which lacks in Wikipedia.

  • Occasionally, falsified and malicious information can go unnoticed for months especially when missed by the reviewers. This can be devastating when an unsuspecting person uses this information.

  • Wikipedia relies only on the willing reviewers who are active to review the articles posted. Unfortunately over the years the numbers of the active reviewers have declined. This makes most of the articles and their authenticity to be in question.

  • Most of the articles depend on the consensus for authenticity; this is not reliable because of the lack of diversity of the editors. Majority of the editors are males of an average age of 27 years. This can lead to biasness when editing the articles.

  • The possibility of the existence of an editor with editing authority and having an agenda; this can allow a person to come up with his or her own views and agendas and with the use of his or her authority make the publications without being edited.

  • Another factor that may be considered is the long time that the editors may take to reach consensus.

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