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But it could have just as easily been replaced with the same bad 
version, even by another person. 

The real issues are how Wikipedia implies a level of authoritativeness 
to its users and at the same time assumes virtually no level of control 
on its 'information'. While they bump off an occasional known vandal, or 
work with an especially irate citizen, they also acknowledge that there 
are "Notable Weaknesses of Wikipedia" 

The most telling quotes?:
 "Unlike other encyclopedias, the volunteer writers of articles in 
Wikipedia do not need to be experts or scholars" 

:The guidelines should encourage better "quality" sources." 

Why do they feel it important to highlight quality?

Then it is exacerbated by companies like pulling the 
information from 'pedia, adding a disclaimer of non-responsibility (You 
understand and agree that the Content is provided "AS-IS" , and promoting 
themselves as a quality resource for research and selling the service.

Sorta like those urban legends, strawman arguments, or 'did you see what 
(latest political news) said' blogs and emails: You know to check 
something authoritative enough to verify it before passing it on.  When 
would 'pedia be considered authoritative enough to pass muster for your 
information needs?

Robert Eiffert
Librarian, Pacific MS  Vancouver WA
Librarian in the Middle Blog:

It is not the answer that enlightens, but the question.  -Eugene Ionesco

Brent Bradley wrote:

>    I understand your point, and you are correct: he could have simply changed the 
>information on Wikipedia. He would not, however, have been able to change the 
>information on or But simply changing the text would 
>not have erased the erroneous information. Wikipedia saves previous posts, 
>allowing users to see the history of the site and see what edits have been made. 
>Beyond that, what is the potential negative to not being able to discover the 
>identity of this person? According to the article (and I'm not sure this isn't 
>true), the original creator cannot be tracked. If that is true, anyone can slander 
>anyone on Wikipedia with no fear of retribution. Perhaps this person simply knows 
>well how to cover up their tracks. Perhaps with enough resources (money) anyone 
>could be tracked. I simply don't know, but the story is chilling. I am concerned 
>that the ability to slander has the potential to be a fatal flaw for this type of 
>site. It must be addressed.

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