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[ARSCLIST] Whacky-Packia outed for what it is -- Amateur Hour in Siberia

although that might be too much of an insult to Siberian amateurs!


of particular note:

"So imagine Keen's delight in learning about an adjustment to last summer's New Yorker article about Wikipedia. The article's author prominently cited a person identified as "Essjay," described as "a tenured professor of religion ... who holds a Phd in theology and a degree in canon law." Essjay had contributed to more than 16,000 Wikipedia entries, and often invoked his credentials to argue for changes in various articles. But as The New Yorker abashedly informed its readers some months after the story appeared, Essjay was not a religion professor but a 24-year-old college dropout. What's more, Wikipedia's cofounder Jimmy Wales said, "I don't really have a problem with it." (Wales subsequently recognized that fraudulent misrepresentation is not a great idea, and removed Essjay from his position of trust at Wikipedia.)"

I thought that New Yorker article was far too sympathetic to the "army of typing monkeys".

Hey, call it arrogant or elitist or whatever, but REAL knowledge is not something that just flows off the top of your head. People who are really expert in any field ARE elite and are so because they have invested great amounts of time and effort into becoming expert. Just because "anyone can publish" or "anyone can be a star" in today's idiotic Internet universe doesn't mean most of that material has any validity or is anything more than media pollution. This "everyone should express themselves" culture creates a haze of noise that masks real facts and real knowledge and is destroying the notion of truth in our society. The erosion of civility and functionality that follows the eroision of truth and facts is obvious and on-going.

One man's opinion, etc. I think Steve Levy's conclusions are too optimistic, BTW, and lean more toward Keen's thinking. Posted on this forum because I believe one of the great services of proper archiving is storing and preserving factual knowledge and cultural touchstones.

-- Tom Fine

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