Religion and Politics on Wikipedia (Edited)

Brian Sandberg: Historical Perspectives

Despite its encyclopedic pretensions, Wikipedia is an unstable and undependable as a repository of knowledge. Since each entry can be endlessly edited and re-edited by Wikipedia workers and users, none of the information provided on the platform is reliable.

Topics involving intersections of religion and politics seem to be among the most problematic entries on Wikipedia.

The BBC reports that “Researchers from the University of Oxford and three other institutions analysed logs of the changes made to Wikipedia pages to identify those in the throes of an ‘edit war’. Such a conflict involves editors of pages making changes that are almost instantly undone by another editor.”

Wikipedia’s model allows to “editors” (who usually do not have research expertise) to edit each other (and also contributors who are experts). Wikipedia also permits relatively open access to users, who can engage in malicious editing of entries. Meanwhile, corporations, sports teams, and other…

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