Is Wikipedia reliable?

The user who visits Wikipedia to learn about some subject, to confirm some matter of fact, is rather in the position of a visitor to a public restroom. It may be obviously dirty, so that he knows to exercise great care, or it may seem fairly clean, so that he may be lulled into a false sense of security. What he certainly does not know is who has used the facilities before him.


Wikipedia is smarter than me.


Wikipedia seeks to be unbiased.

This is particularly important with controversial subjects.

This page in a nutshell: Articles must not take sides, but should explain the sides, fairly and without editorial bias. This applies to both what you say and how you say it.


Overall, we rate Wikipedia Least Biased based on a wide variety of content that often covers pros and cons, right and left. We also rate them Mixed for factual reporting due to possible inaccurate or incomplete entries as stated by Wikipedia themselves, that may reflect the personal biases of the top editors and a complete lack of transparency regarding the qualifications and who the editors are.


Wikipedia is famous.

You can find whatever viewpoint you want on the internet.
A known source is less likely to be biased.

Wikipedia articles are full of footnotes that link to sources.

Wikipedia is a tertiary source.
It collects and summarizes primary and secondary sources.

Wikipedia comes up first when you google a lot of stuff.

This isn't necessarily a good reason to use Wikipedia.
I'm just saying Wikipedia "wins" by default.
When I google something, I may not be looking for wikipedia, but there it is.

Wikipedia represents the consensus.

I think this is a good thing, like google showing the most popular hits first.

Others disagree.

It is quite as conceivable that an early version of an entry in Wikipedia will be written by someone who knows the subject, and later editors will dissipate whatever value is there. Wikipedia seeks not truth but consensus, and like an interminable political meeting the end result will be dominated by the loudest and most persistent voices.

...from /tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/article2267665.ece

Wikipedia carries more weight with the secular crowd than Christian websites.

We should not limit our googling to our "pet" Christian websites.
That's called confirmation bias.

More information is good.
Don't be scared you will be proven wrong.
Also, maybe you are wrong.

Believers have doctrinal and experiential reasons for trusting the Bible.
But the doctrine of the inerrancy of the Bible stands up extrememly well to scientific examination.

A quantitative study on the stability of the New Testament compared early manuscripts to later manuscripts, up to the Middle Ages, with the Byzantine manuscripts, and concluded that the text had more than 90% stability over this time period.[117] It has been estimated that only 0.1% to 0.2% of the New Testament variants impact the meaning of the texts in any significant fashion.[117]


Wikipedia is fast.

Wikipedia:Go ahead, vandalize

Here's how Wikipedia says it fights vandalism of its pages:

Wikipedia is up-to-date.

While you read this, Wikipedia develops at a rate of over 1.9 edits per second, performed by editors from all over the world.


Wikipedia is well-written.

It sounds good.
It sounds like Data from Star Trek: TNG.
It is concise while also touching on relevant related information on a subject.

Wikipedia is exhaustive.

It provides both an overview and a deep dive into subjects.