Correction Wikipedia is good, actually.

Correction Wikipedia is good, actually.

Issue 44

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Arts & Culture

  • Words Robert Ito
  • Photograph Abelardo Morell. Courtesy of Edwynn Houk Gallery

Wikipedia is a great place to start if you need a quick primer on a topic you know next to nothing about, like, say, the cornetist Bix Beiderdecke, or the feeding habits of cuttlefish. The online encyclopedia is amazingly comprehensive, which makes it a godsend for harried students eager to flesh out an already late paper—or for journalists on a deadline. 

Users are generally counseled to adopt a “trust but verify” attitude toward its contents. If anyone can edit Wikipedia, after all, how trustworthy can it be?

As it turns out, pretty trustworthy. According to Amy Bruckman, the author of Should You Believe Wikipedia? Online Communities and the Construction of Knowledge, Wikipedia can be one of the most reliable sources of information on the planet, particularly if you’re talkin...

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