We All Float Down Here, Georgie…
The original stated purpose of Wikipedia was this:
Our goal with Wikipedia is to create a free encyclopedia; indeed, the largest encyclopedia in history, both in terms of breadth and in terms of depth. We also want Wikipedia to be a reliable resource. — Larry Sanger, co-Founder of Wikipedia
Now, this seems pretty easy to grasp for me. You compile information, allow people to peruse it, allow more people with expertise in fields to add on to it, and you have a global encyclopedia, created by all, for all. So long as you can show references and create a non-biased article, I feel you should be able to create and maintain a Wikipedia page.
Lately, however, there seems to be a growing crowd of Wikipedia editors which seem to be pushing a strange ideology of deletionism. Deletionism is when (to me, in any case) Wikipedia’s content is not about the number of articles but strictly on controlling the content of articles which meet their “rigid” guidelines. I quoted rigid because, quite frankly, some of their guidelines for “notability” are a joke.
Take, for example, this article on (actor? writer? wannabe?) Greg Siff. He’s been on TV less times than that walking cesspool of herpes, Sookie, and he has a Wikipedia entry that is merely tagged for a lack of references. You’re telling me, with a straight face, that this guy is notable? By the very “strict” standards of Wikipedia editors I’ve been having low-scale battles with, this article should be deleted.
I have nothing against Greg Siff. Honestly, I didn’t even know who he was until I Googled “Worst Movies of All Time” and From Justin to Kelly showed up. Apparently Greg had a role in it. But I’m trying to make a point here: I think it should remain on Wikipedia, along with every other article, so long as it maintains neutrality and can be referenced.
I want to sit down with one of the Admins of Wikipedia over coffee (I’ll treat, naturally) and ask them “When did you decide to become the very thing you despised?” They probably won’t understand my question, so I’ll probably have to explain. “You created Wikipedia because a group of elitists were controlling what information got out and what did not. Now you are becoming those elitists. Why?”
Seriously. The rebel who stood against “the man” has become “the man”. Our dreams of a informative society has been sequestered by a pack of formerly unwashed hippies.
What makes it worse is that I feel I am not a notable author (yet), and therefor have not even started to create an author bio page there. I don’t feel I need one. One book and two short stories does not constitute a “notable” author to me. Hey, I’m reasonable.
Why can’t they be?