One Way to Fail A Class...

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Wikipedia seems to be an ongoing internet resource for finding information on literally anything you could possibly want.  The basics can be helpful when looking up certain words ot terms but one should be careful when looking up more serious issues on this search.

One of the issues dealing with this online search engine is the plagiarism that most likely occurs when getting Wikipedia information.  Wikipedia is a user oriented website so most of the information it gives makes sense to users and could easily be passed as an ordinary students work.

Plagiarism, which strikes Wikipedia users, also has had issues with blog users.  Students may not realize that professors and other students read blogs as well and they can't easily hide stealing someone else's blog entries.  This is an ongoing issue with almost any kind of research that is online.  Wikipedia is one website that deals with the most plagiarism problems.

Because this website is user oriented, so much of the information is unreliable.  There can be people that write on the online encyclopedia just to forward there "opinions" on subject matters but it is not neccessarily the facts.  It seems that teachers can not stress enough the dangers of using this website.  This becomes the reason why teachers know that a student plagiarized, because the information is not accurate.  Students need to be given a helpful list of reliable online resources they can use to research certain topics.  Because it seems all they know is the use of Wikipedia and other unreliable search engines like it.

Even though students know that they should not use Wikipedia for reliable information they still conduct research in it for fast facts.  According to a blog survey,"90% of students have used Wikipedia to complete an assignment, a surprising 73% of students have been explicitly told by their professor not to use Wikipedia."  On the other hand, I have had teachers that say it is okay to use Wikipedia because they just want the "basic" facts on a subject.  I would hope in the future that Wikipedia is plainly banned from use for research projects because no one can prove it to be 100% true facts.

There is one example of a student who blogged some information he found on Pope John Paul II from Wikipedia and you can tell from the information and the comments posted by other students that this is false information.  It is especially recognized as false if you are like me, and know a lot of information on Pope John Paul.  It just once again shows that this is a website to be taken lightly...and thats it.

It is always good for fast facts, but one should be careful not to take certain information too seriously.  Back to Writing for the Internet.


Christina Celona said:

You do have to question a website that doesn't even require people to log in before making changes to an article. People use Wikipedia because it's a fail-safe way to get information on any subject...but in the end, it may be more worthwhile (and less risky) to spend some extra time sifting through google results or even *gasp* visit a library.

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