Wikipedia and Its Contribution to Society

Topics: Wikipedia, Nupedia, Encyclopedia Pages: 3 (846 words) Published: December 2, 2008
Over the years Wikipedia has bloomed into an easily accessible online encyclopedia in which anyone can contribute to its pages. This online collaboration idea stemmed from founder Jimmy Wales. Looking to combine two of his favorite hobbies, he wanted to fuse his love for getting lost in Britannica or the World book and the internet, where he had met many great people. The emergence of the website was in 2001 and it quickly developed into one of the most largely used websites. Now currently, according to, Wikipedia is ranked eighth most popular website in the world and in the U.S., it is ninth. The fact than anyone can modify Wikipedia is a controversial issue. It is both good and bad that people can revise it’s pages because people have different intentions of editing the encyclopedia. In can take minutes just to edit a page in which you see something is lacking or incorrect, but on the flip side, someone can go on to vandalize as well. Because of this, the information on the pages can be unreliable, therefore, students are not allowed to use Wikipedia as a source. Although there is risk that someone may deliberately want to harm Wikipedia, it’s “open source approach” (Heron, par. 3) can allow this encyclopedia to be used in a different way. One can search for the names of favorite celebrities, movies, and find out information which cannot be found in a convention encyclopedia. Also, because of the wide-range of contributions, there is opportunity to search for different components of the information as well. Such as episode guides for your favorite television shows, a list of who was in it, and references to different sources for further information about it. Although Wikipedia still has some issues to resolve, but it can beneficial to people who want to find out information on a wide range of topics.

Unlike other references, you can be up to date on what’s going on in the media on top of other normal subject areas. Wikipedia is one of the only...
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