Independent bigs up the 'Wanky Balls festival'
Massive Attack of Wikipedia cobblers
It is a truthiness universally acknowledged that a single journalist should not use Wikipedia as a source without independently checking its veracity.
Nevertheless, examples of howling wikifacts make it to print with unerring frequency, with the result that such errors are now largely ignored as "dog bites man" tales of the web age.
We hacks are therefore indebted to Saturday's Independent for a particularly stark reminder that Wikipedia is not to be trusted, even on apparently benign trivia.
The paper ran brief article on the Big Chill festival, which was held over the weekend and was by all accounts great fun. But such success may never have arrived had organisers stuck to its rather less appealing alleged original name.
The piece is sourced to the respected French news agency AFP*. A quick browse of Wikipedia's revision history suggests a different provenance for the hitherto unknown Wanky Balls festival, however. Ouch.
Wikipedians have already erased the mythical event from their Big Chill page, so future historians have blogger Kat Arney to thank for keeping the image record above. ®
*AFP in fact just provided the picture.
"Whom can one trust now half the media is owned by Murdoch and other half have been proven to be idiots, liars or both??"
Didn't you just describe the same "half" twice?
Wikipedia is probably more reliable than most of Murdoch's rags. At least it occasionally cites its sources, which is one step beyond Murdoch's crew.
it's in a newspaper, it can be rewritten on Wiki with the indie as a source.
ctrl+c then ctrl+v That's Journalism!
A long time ago...
...way before there was a Wikipedia a journalist told me "the internet is a mine of information, much of it wrong". These days I think you could probably replace the word much with most. And yet many journos still treat anything they find on the net as gospel.
The worst thing is the cyclic citation. Do research on some Wikipedia articles and you will find that the citations point to other online sources, which point to others and so on eventually back to the original Wikipedia article. I wonder what the lowest hop count is at the moment. Probably 2.