Making Wikis Work for Scholars

Inside Higher Ed:

“Information on computer science subjects in Wikipedia is likely to
be accurate and informative, often using unique resources to illustrate
concepts that are not available to print media,” wrote de Medeiros in
an e-mail. “This probably derives from the fact that computer
scientists use the computer as their main form of access to scientific
articles and journals, that they take advantage of electronic forms to
disseminate their research, including instructional materials in
various formats. Researchers and educators of high caliber are probably
behind most Wikipedia articles in computer science.”

In all likelihood, tech-savvy scholars are among those keeping such
isolated corners in the digital stacks of Wikipedia relevant, up to
date and accurate. For computer science, especially, many topics on
Wikipedia are in a form polished and accessible enough to assign to
students as reading, and the subjects aren’t controversial in a way
that would inspire the sort of back-and-forth citation wars that cause
some articles to fluctuate wildly between competing versions. But other
topics get assigned from Wikipedia as well — not least in courses about
digital culture itself.