Sunday, May 06, 2007

Are we perhaps a weensie bit reductionist?

Today's rant is about Sudan at the 1968 Summer Olympics. Why Wikipedia needs an entire article to say "Yup, they were there" is beyond me.



I suppose the idea is that someone will come along and add endless details about each member of the Sudanese team and how they placed in each event they were in and so on and so forth. Yeah, right. That's going to happen.



I'm sure there are thousands more articles just like this one, too.



I've been copyediting for the past few days, just hitting "random article" and correcting whatever is wrong with the article I find. About one in four articles requires at least some changes, and about one in ten gets substantially rewritten. Most commonly, this occurs because the original is obviously either PR spam or blatant hagiography. It's obvious to me that we underestimate the number of PR agencies and the like that are editing Wikipedia. It's also obvious to me that there are not nearly enough people doing copyediting.