"Wikiality" Quicktime video
Wikipedia is a handy tool if you use it properly. It is great for describing very current issues, popular culture and media resources. It can be useful to gain background knowledge on a topic about which you know very little. Be aware that the great strength of Wikipedia - that anyone can add and maintain the information - is also a great weakness.
The following video segment originally aired on the Comedy Central television program "The Colbert Report" July 31, 2006. This segment illustrates in an entertaining way, for better or for worse, how Wikipedia is used. Use the Mozilla Firefox browser to watch the clip:
- "...the revolution will not be verified" unless you double-check facts with other sources.
- use Wikipedia to gain access to other resources on your topic.
- avoid using Wikipedia information to make important points in a research paper.
- when in doubt, check out the "History" tab on the article you are reading.
- Read the Wikipedia Disclaimer, and proceed with caution.