Conservapedia: Fundies Take Their One-A-Day Plus Irony

The Watcher over at Fundie Watch alerts us to Conservapedia, the “fair and balanced” internet encyclopedia.

No information source is 100% accurate, and it’s almost impossible to write something completely without bias. Conservatives complain that Wikipedia has a liberal bias, so what do they do? Do they come out with “Neutered-pedia”, an encyclopedia that actually is as unbiased as possible? No! They come out with “Conservapedia”, an encyclopedia so far to the right that it would fall off the right-hand edge of the Earth, if the Earth were flat (as many fundies still seem to think).

I fail to see how making the same mistakes as their opponent, but in the opposite direction (and to a larger degree), solves the problem they complain about.

Wikipedia does have problems. I link to it frequently here, because it is a good source of information on just about anything you can think of. I also believe that its error rate is comparable to other reference sources. (I have, for example, found errors in numerous books on various topics. I’ve even found an error or two in textbooks.) The bottom line is that you can’t believe absolutely everything you read in any one source.

Name one book that is 100% accurate. I dare you! (Savvy readers will realize that I’m baiting the fundies. They have a book that they believe in 100%. Ironically (there’s that word again!), that book is one of the least credible ever written!)

You have to be a wise information-consumer. Know the credibility of what you are reading/hearing/seeing. Who is behind it? What are their qualifications? What are their biases?

Wikipedia is good but not perfect. Their model of collective editing has certain strengths that other sources don’t have (for example, I corrected an error of fact in the Jack Benny article). It also has certain weaknesses. I always keep a tiny bit of doubt in the back of my mind whenever I am reading anything there, but I also keep a tiny bit of doubt when I am reading stuff elsewhere. The size of that doubt changes, depending on the source. (In fact, go back and read my review of Who Was Jesus? You will notice comments throughout the review where I’m trying to assess the credibility of the author and various claims made in the book.)

Conservapedia has a page called Examples of Bias in Wikipedia. In his article about Conservapedia, the Watcher makes fun of some of the more outlandish claims. To be fair, though, a few of the complaints are legitimate. What caught my eye wasn’t the crazy claims that the Watcher already laughed at or the (very few) legitimate claims. I love fundie irony. Here’s one:

In short, Wikipedia is not objective. It is accurate only within its selective use of facts that are convenient to promote a predetermined outcome.

Kind of sounds like the way fundies try to use their feeble understanding of science to “prove” that evolution is impossible!

2 Responses to “Conservapedia: Fundies Take Their One-A-Day Plus Irony”

  1. Saros Says:

    Theres a good reason why Wikipedia is liberally biased.
    I think it was best expressed like this:

    “Reality has a well known liberal bias” — Stephen Colbert

  2. The Watcher Says:

    There are a few valid complaints, yes, but those are no fun to attack 🙂 So I left them out. Besides, with so much fodder, why hamstring myself?