Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Nerdy Journalism Friends, this one's for you

I was recently handed a copy of a genuine article written in the Jordan Times on January 12, 2010. Right between two delightful, not to mention cheery, articles about backlash toward Israel and Palestinian reconciliation talks was a photo box that showed a local with an enormous swordfish he caught down in Aqaba.

But that wasn't what made the article interesting. What WAS interesting was that the journalist had thought to include a bit of helpful trivia about the usual size of swordfish... trivia found on the best friend of journalists everywhere - Wikipedia.

How many times did we discuss Wikipedia in pretty much ALL of my journalism classes? When is it EVER ok to use Wikipedia as a source? Why would you ever want to when Wikipedia provides such handy links to actual reliable sources at the bottom of their pages?

This spawned a rash of Wikipedia jokes and Facebook threads from many of my Western friends here in Jordan. My Jordanian friends don't particularly see what all the fuss is about.

Kudos to Ali for the photo.

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