Argument: Wikipedia should have a peer review process before edits are accepted

Issue Report: Is Wikipedia valuable?


Mike Langberg, “Wikipedia needs safeguards that work,” The Mercury News (11 Dec. 2005) – “Wikipedia keeps getting in trouble because its open model—where anyone can write and edit entries—is an invitation for character assassination, ideological crusades and outright vandalism, as well as legitimate scholarship. […] The result of Wikipedia’s open editing system is predictable: Most contributors provide useful material, while a small number of “trolls” repeatedly deface the encyclopedia. Wikipedia is also plagued by endless “revert wars,” where dueling groups keep reversing each other’s changes to controversial articles. This undermines the credibility of Wikipedia, which now offers an unprecedented 857,000 articles in English, along with versions in more than 100 other languages. Wikipedia is becoming a first reference stop for millions of people, from schoolchildren to journalists, including me. But many of these users don’t realize a small percentage of articles are flawed. Even more troubling, there’s no way to know when you’ve hit one of those defective entries. That’s why I never put a fact from Wikipedia into one of my columns without first double-checking it elsewhere. […] Wikipedia is now big enough, with a core group of 13,000 active volunteers, to pre-screen all of its contents. New entries and edits could still be submitted—even anonymously—by any visitor to the Wikipedia site but would be placed in a kind of holding pen until one of the trusted volunteers took a look and said OK.”