On 12 February, British newspaper The Independent published "Wikipedia under the microscope over accuracy", which invited experts to rate eight articles (Muslim, Russian Revolution of 1917, Kate Moss, Ann Widdecombe, Tony Blair, In vitro fertilisation, Philip Larkin, BBC Radio 1, and Punt). Overall, the online encyclopedia seemed to do fairly well; Wikipedia editors are now reviewing the criticisms at the external review page in order to improve the articles.
The Boston Globe published a front page article entitled "Bias, sabotage haunt Wikipedia's free world" on 12 February, the first half of a two-part story. This long story gives a wide overview of Wikipedia and its strengths and weaknesses. Most of the errors mentioned in the first article have been corrected, as of Signpost press time.
The second half, "Many contributors, common cause", was published on 13 February, compiled from interviews with the Boston local Wikipedia group. A sidebar, "The idealists, the optimists, and the world they share" explored the personalities and editing habits of a few more Wikipedia contributors. (Note access to the articles will require payment after 14 February and 15 February, respectively.)
A discussion at the Village Pump noted a few errors in the piece.
The story from two weeks ago about edits to political articles coming from computers assigned to United States congressmen (see archived story) continued to make high-profile news this week, as it did last week (see archived story). Notably, several mainstream media stories cited the investigation performed by reporters from Wikimedia's own news site, Wikinews (see "Wikinews investigates Wikipedia usage by U.S. Senate staff members").
Articles this week included:
A smaller newspaper, the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, included an ironic quote in "Burns' office may have tampered with Wikipedia entry" on 9 February. James Pendleton, a spokesman for Senator Conrad Burns, said of Wikipedia: "They have exactly zero credibility. Because there is no fact-checking, anybody can go in and put in whatever they want."
The Lowell Sun, a Massachusetts newspaper which initiated the investigation into Wikipedia edits from Capitol Hill, published "Wikipedia founder: It's not about technology", a short interview with founder Jimbo Wales about how Wikipedia works.
Three weeks ago, Associated Press published a story about the "shutdown" of the German Wikipedia requested by the parents of a deceased hacker whose name was published against their will; AP later issued a correction clarifying the details. This week, they reported the German court's dismissal of the case, and the story was carried by several large news sources, including:
This month's Discover magazine states "Science entries in Wikipedia, the open-source online encyclopedia that anyone can edit, are nearly as error-free as those in Encyclopaedia Britannica, according to a team of expert reviewers." This figure comes from the comparative study performed by science journal Nature a few months ago (see archived story).
Gaming blog Joystiq quoted Microsoft Corporate Vice President J Allard as saying "We're going to take on the Wikipedia model", regarding player participation in world-building for computer and video games.
Wikipedia also made another appearance in a satirical article in The Onion, in "Mark-Paul Gosselaar Obviously Authored Own IMDb Trivia".