[Taxacom] Wikipedia rewrites

Tony.Rees at csiro.au Tony.Rees at csiro.au
Thu Feb 5 18:50:54 CST 2009

Doug Yanega wrote:

I would strongly encourage folks like Kleo, or Paul, who have 
obviously had negative experiences on WIkipedia, to look over the big 
"List of Policies" 
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:List_of_policies) and see if 
that looks like a system where "anything goes". There is nothing that 
they have not thought of and do not have a policy to deal with - 
ingenious fools may have their day on Wikipedia, but that's ALL they 
get. Ultimately, they will lose, *unless* no one opposes them.


I would just like to correct my previous post - the ingenious fools reference was intended to raise a smile (it certainly did for me when I first encountered it), and not intended as a critique of Wikipedia in particular - though it is certainly applicable in the area of development of software products which occupies a percentage of my time, plus web-searchable taxonomic databases (if you look at logs to see the species names users actually enter...)

In my limited contributions to Wikipedia (~100 edits over a 2+ year period), I would guess that over 99.5% have stood the test of time, and those that have not, have *sometimes* been improved by others - for the balance, I have argued the toss in a few cases, but mostly reached the limit of effort I am prepared to expend arguing against the more persistent (there are always one or two...) and walked away, on the basis that someone else can always go in to bat later if the argument is defensible. So - generally a positive experience, and there is no doubting that the information already held in Wikipedia is a very valuable information collation exercise (and points to much more of the same), which I for one would definitely not be without!

Regards - Tony

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