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Opening Arguments


If you're already skeptical about the stuff you read on Wikipedia, here's another reason to approach the site with caution:

Feminist groups at more than a dozen universities are planning to participate in another mass “edit Wikipedia day,” because the free, volunteer encyclopedia website is obviously horribly sexist.

Sarah Stierch, a Wikipedia contributor and researcher for the Wikimedia Foundation, said the problem isn’t just that most Wikipedia user are male. The layout of the website is itself “very masculine,” she said.

“It’s aesthetically very masculine in its design,” said Stierch in a statement to The Daily Dot, also noting that, “The average Wikipedia editor is a well-educated white male. Well-educated white males have been writing history and the story of the world since ancient times.”

To fix this, feminists at colleges around the country are launching another ‘Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon.’ Next week, feminists are encouraged to change rewrite the online encyclopedia to make it less masculine, according to Campus Reform.

The event is a follow-up to last year’s similar edit-a-thon, when feminist sympathizers were called to edit “feminist thought” into Wikipedia articles.

Yes, sir, that's what I want to meet my critical research needs -- less masulinity, more "feminine thought." As a matter of fact, I've noticedWikipedia doesn't cater to my hillbilly libertarian Taoism, so maybe I'll do a little editing myself. Good lord, women, this is by design a public domain that is intended to be created and edited by the masses, so please have at it. Just shut up about it. You will help increase the chaos and confusion in the world, and that's nothing to be proud of.

I'm not saying the encyclopedia people of old were perfectly neutral and objective in their presentation of knowledge -- everybody has predudices and most of us can't avoid letting them seep into our observations a little. But at least they tried, and you could use their information with a fair degree of certainty. I don't think people are even trying anymore to be straightforward online.

Google's Eric Schmidt has observed that every two days now we now create as much information as we did from the dawn of civilization up until 2003. As startling as that sounds, the pace is only going to accelerate. It's going to get a lot harder to separate the wheat from the chaff before it gets any easier. Be careful out here, people.

Posted in: Web/Tech