Data integrity issues live at the heart of any reference material, but Wikipedia and the rapid-release cycle of Internet content has created a whole new level of controversy.
The Onion has put together a fine example of this in their fun article: Wikipedia Celebrates 750 Years Of American Independence
“At 750 years, the U.S. is by far the world’s oldest surviving democracy, and is certainly deserving of our recognition,” [Wikipedia founder] Wales said. “According to our database, that’s 212 years older than the Eiffel Tower, 347 years older than the earliest-known woolly-mammoth fossil, and a full 493 years older than the microwave oven.”
I love reading the razor-sharp work of the Onion, but I have just two words for them: Pot. Kettle. Black.
Take, for example, their recent analysis of the recent cease-fire by Hizbullah:
As the cost of rocket fuel soared to $630 per gallon Monday, Middle Easterners who depend on the non-renewable propellant to power 10-kilogram rockets have been forced to severely restrict their daily bombing routines, bringing this latest round of fighting to an unexpected halt.
“The way things are going, I wonâ€™t have any money left over for other necessities, such as anti-aircraft missiles, land mines, and machine guns,” said Hezbollah guerrilla Mahmoud Hamoui, who is just one of hundreds of Islamic militants compelled to scale back their killing until rocket-fuel prices return to their pre-2006 levels.
That’s rediculous. Everyone knows rocket fuel hit $972 per gallon.