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There are people who read Wikipedia, and other who edit it. There are people who read articles and talk about Wikipedia, and other who still edit it. According to the number of articles on Africa on Wikipedia (in any language), it seems that people who make researches, write and discuss about Africa don't edit Wikipedia. Maybe they discuss about it. I personally believe it would be effective to add content on Africa on Wikipedia: there are chances we would stop repeating over and over the same discussions (publications, conferences, workshops, exhibitions, e-mails, round tables...). If basic knowledge - with a good historiographic perspective and bibliography - is even available on Wikipedia, maybe we would feel the obligation to move on. Maybe it's different in other areas, but "contemporary African art" is definitely trapped in the repetition of background information. Wikipedia shouldn't be the source for students' researches: it should be the objective of students' researches. Through their researches, they can edit Wikipedia, add/upload contents to it, improve it, and they can learn how to be an active internet user (which is what contemporary literacy is: being able to modify wikis and open an independent website if you wish, with different rules from Wikipedia where you can publish your original researches, interviews and archive). Plagiarism (in all directions) would also be so much easier to identify. Human Sciences are definitely too far from open source and collaborative work. A little wiki education wouldn't be that harmful. > Date: Monday, 1 October 2007 > From: Leigh Fellner <email@example.com> > > Wikipedia's "global conversation" philosophy is endearing in a > "hey, let's > put on a show!" kind of way. But in practice it's a Battle of the > Ideologues, where attrition leaves the loudest, most persistent > (and often > the most obnoxious) voices as the "authorities". While the same > accusation > could be made of other sources, - such as people, newspapers, books, telephone calls... - > Wiki's unique in that (a) there's no > expectation that sources be cited: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Citing_sources > , and (b) until recently contributors and > editors were anonymous. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Tutorial_(Registration) > Wiki [A wiki is a medium which can be edited by anyone with access to it, and provides an easy method for linking from one page to another. Wikis are typically collaborative websites, though there are now also single-user offline implementations.] > has somehow managed to combine the worst > qualities of print media and weblogs into a cyberversion of call-in > radio, > with the added bonus that the information is constantly (and, I > believe, > until recently invisibly) morphing. > > Probably the best discussion of the mess that is Wiki is here: > http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2006/02/12/ > bias_sabotage_haunt_wikipedias_free_world/