The truthiness of wikiality

Here’s a Wired post on a Colbert Report segment at Wikipedia in which Colbert skewers the notion of citizen created and voted on facts.

Like all good satire, Colbert brilliantly exposes the Achilles heel of Wikipedia — that a lot of what people believe true is actually false, but that doesn’t change reality, or, potentially a Wikipedia entry — while also not necessarily being convincing.

And that’s only because, so far at least, Wikipedia seems to be working. It also creates a bit of a straw man in that any single Wikipedia entry is not actually voted on by masses of people (in such a model, most people would be less than perfectly informed), but are generally just the pet project of a few (or less) well-informed, passionate people on that specific subject. Wikipedia is a worthy target of satire only because it is essentially good at what it does.

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