Tech

More British Believe in Wikipedia Over Mainstream News

By | Aug 11, 2014 09:04 AM EDT
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Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales said in the annual three-day Wikimania conference of the site's movement in London on Sunday that more British people trusts Wikipedia more than the mainstream media.

YouGov, the international online market research agency, offered a poll to approximately 2,000 British adults, and the results suggest 64 percent of the participants trusted the writers of Wikipedia articles to be truthful to "a fair amount" or "a great deal," according to Phys.org.

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In comparison, 13 percent of the participants trusted journalists on tabloids such as The Sun; 45 percent believed journalists on breadsheet newspapers such as The Guardian and The Times; and 61 percent trusted the journalists from BBC news.

"British people trust Wikipedia more than the news," Wales told the conference. "The thing that's really impressive here is the BBC has an excellent reputation... and we're trusted slightly more than the BBC. That's a little scary. But it's something we have accomplished."

The founder acknowledged that the online database, which relies on people for its corrections and contributions, was "flawed" but said that the members of the public "turn to us for reliable, solid information... We do a decent job of it."

However, the survey carried out by YouGov listed the prominent Encyclopaedia Britannica as the public's choice for the most dependable source of information with the vote of 83 percent of the respondents.

"I'm not going to rest until they trust us more than they ever trusted Encyclopaedia Britannica in the past," Wales said.

The Wikimania conference ended with a moment of silence in order to honor the list of contributors who had recently died in 2013.

The list included the 22-year-old geography student from Ukraine, Ihor Kostenko, who received a bullet to the head in pro-European protests in Kiev earlier in February. The founder of Wikipedia honored him as the "Wikipedian of the year."

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