The purpose of Wikipedia is to persuade users to use the website. Wikipedia targets the general public to use their website for a non-profit organization. Wikipedia is a reliable source because it cites its sources and gives knowledgeable facts. On the website Wikipedia, under the source entry “Wikipedia” goes into detail about all the attributes and information about Wikipedia and how it came about and why it is a reliable site to get information from. Wikipedia has become the largest and most popular general reference work on the Internet.
Wikipedia is a reliable source because of its vandalism program in which it is able to detect and remove vandalism within a few minutes. Also with Wikipedia being a free online encyclopedia it allows for open structure, which lets the public write and change anything about any topic. On the Wikipedia website under the topic “Wikipedia”, found that “a non-scientific report in the journal Nature in 2005 suggested that for some scientific articles Wikipedia came close to the level of accuracy of Encyclopedia Britannica…”(preface).
With that being said, it justifies that Wikipedia’s reliability is just as effective as that of a profitable encyclopedia that is written by experts. Many feel as if Wikipedia isn’t a reliable enough sources because it contains articles written based on authors interpretations of research that other have done. Schools sometimes do not allow their student to find research or facts on Wikipedia because they second-guess Wikipedia’s creditability as a whole. Some questions that might come into play is, why wouldn’t you cite the original source, and what relevance does someone else interpretation have? Even though anyone can edit Wikipedia, it is still reviewed and their vandalism program and bots that search for errors remove inaccurate information quickly. For the most part, you have extremely small chances of finding unreliable and inaccurate information on Wikipedia. Wikipedia also gives blue text indicates links to other Wikipedia entries or to sources for the entry to help the reader go more into depth about their topic. Encyclopedias are mainly written for people who do not know a great deal about a specific subject and would like to find out more.
With Wikipedia being that online non profitable encyclopedia it allows people to search any subject and conveys enough information to a reader who knows little or nothing about the subject. For example on the Wikipedia website I searched for credible information about “Michael Jordan”. In the article “Michael Jordan”(2013), from Wikipedia informs the general public about the legacy of Michael Jordan. The authors provide knowledgeable facts about his early years in life, his stats and game averages and also include references to support their facts.
Their purpose is to give as much knowledgeable and supportive facts about Michael Jordan’s career and life. The article targets and helps any user looking to find information about Michael Jordan and Wikipedia does this all by citing its sources and using references. A great example of a way Wikipedia is a reliable source is the picture is figure 6, shows a plaque of Michael Jordan’s achievements at the United Center. Wikipedia also has through out the text blue highlighted text that can lead the reader to links to other Wikipedia entries or sources that relate to the subject of choice.
Wikipedia has lead me to believe that it is a very reliable source because of its citing and credible facts I received about Michael Jordan’s career. Wikipedia lead me to new facts about Michael Jordan’s career such as, “During the Bulls’ playoff run in 1993, controversy arose when Jordan was seen gambling in Atlantic City, New Jersey, the night before a game against the Knicks. In that same year, he admitted to having to cover $57,000 in gambling losses…”(14).
With Wikipedia bring up this problem about Michael Jordan’s life and citing where it came from and giving me alternate links that lead me more into depth with this problem proves that Wikipedia is reliable. Some come to the conclusion that Wikipedia has a weakness and is not a reliable source because it is an open source website which means anyone can edit it. Its weakness is what makes it so great. Anyone can edit it. This brings a huge variety of information as well as great depth and large bibliographies. Wikipedia also goes above and beyond to correct and edit sources have citations and staff are always checking edits.
In Wikipedia’s disclaimer that may it apparent that Wikipedia may be inaccurate and misleading and it is ultimately they users decision and to use their judgment call. But how is some random website that is Googled up more reliable then Wikipedia? In my personal experience Wikipedia has lead me to valuable and reliable information about the topic at hand and has gave me pictures, facts and sources to back my information up with. Works Cited “Wikipedia. ” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. ,1 Apr. 2013. Web. 10Apr. 2013. “Michael Jordan. ” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. , 10 Apr. 2013. Web. 1 Apr. 2013.