Teaching Evolution

A blog devoted to teaching evolution, both in our schools and in our communities.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Wikipedia: Hands Off Intelligent Design

I love Wikipedia. Obviously, only an idiot would take an online encyclopedia that allows anyone to post anything as gospel, but if you just want some general information on a topic, it's probably the single best resource available. The reason is that there's a lot of knowledge among the millions of people who use it, and most of those people are eager to share their knowledge in a way that makes a meaningful contribution.

The problem comes when there's a dispute. Who decides who's right and who's wrong? Checking out the Intelligent design Wikipedia page, I see that it's one of the few pages on the site that can't be edited. There's a disclaimer at the top saying, "This page is protected from editing until disputes have been resolved on the discussion page."

I don't know how long that disclaimer has been up there or what Wikipedia's policy is for resolving such disputes, but I certainly hope a site as smart as Wikipedia will ultimately make clear on the intelligent design page that it's a pseudo-science and a critique that in no way diminishes evolution.

See also Wikipedia's pages on evolution and the creation-evolution controversy.


At 2:26 PM, Blogger DannyNoonan said...

Did you see the Wikipedia page onthe film, "The God Who Wasn't There"? Someone who disagreed witht he film's content tried to delete the page. The deletion was vetoed by the board of editors.

At 2:37 PM, Blogger MDS said...

Yeah, that was interesting. I haven't seen "The God Who Wasn't There," but I hope to at some point.

I'm not sure what protections Wikipedia has in place regarding people who care more about their own personal agendas than they do in putting together a comprehensive and accurate encyclopedia. It would really suck if a small minority were able to bring down such a great tool.


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