The Connection Between Wikipedia and Morons

Here is an interesting post at Crooked Timber. It points out the problems inherent in people's newfound reliance on Wikipedia for immediate information. While the "Wiki" idea is a good one for groups who want to consolidate and share information, "Wikipedia" is something of a disaster for the reasons mentioned over at the article.

I think the "Experts are scum" quote and the story about the Wikipedia article on consciousness speak to why so many people choose to ignore evidence and fact for what they've learned on TV or from some wingnut's book or from church (or Wikipedia). People are so stubbornly resolved to remain ignorant that they'll actually attack those who have authority and experience when those experts offer their help. The way the "Loxley" character treats Prof. Chalmers would be kind of hilarious if it wasn't indicative of a larger problem we have in America (although it appears the the people involved here were Brits...lots of "cheers" and "taking the piss" thrown around).

So what is the larger problem? Well, in short, America is a country full of people waving around one book that was written nearly 2000 years ago claiming that it has all the answers to life, the universe and everything. America is largely a nation of people who have no thirst for knowledge, no curiousity about the world around them, either that or they're too scared or lazy to do the research or discover answers for themselves. They want the easy way out. They want one book, one source for everything. At least you can edit Wikipedia I guess, the Bible you can only selectively quote or ignore for personal gain.

Does anyone else's brain hurt?

[via Pharyngula]



Blogger Isaac said...

EU to the US: Everything you can do, I can do better!

Blogger Lena said...

I agree on the unreliability of Wiki but Im addicted, I have always taken things in books with a like of salt as i do with the internet! but I think people believe it as all true. This is probably my arts degree that has made me think like this.
Dont even get me started on the bible but I think that the 10 commandments arent all bad. but the deadly sins could be deadlier Is that a word. God im stupid since Ive been here!! (I trust u noticed my play on words im amazing and tired better go away and correct my students writing ...awhhh think i have discovered the cause of the randomness and madness!)


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