Debate:Where do you personally look for facts and information on topics "When did Brahms live" or "Why did Monet paint grainstacks?"
Does anyone here seriously look to Conservapedia as a source of factual information? Are there any specialized topic areas in which an outside commentator might say "Conservapedia's articles on X are better than Encarta's?"
My own answer is: if I'm interested in something, I try to formulate a good Google query that's likely to turn up something I'm interested in. (Sometimes that requires lateral thinking). I then use Google and examine the first twenty or so results. If Wikipedia is among them, yes, I tend to read Wikipedia first as a good overview and orientation. Anything important to me I cross-check. Often I find the Wikipedia article unsatisfying and find that one of the other Google hits is better.
So far, I haven't found any reason actually to use Conservapedia. If, for some reason, I needed to find out about a topic in one of Conservapedia's pet areas... like vaccination, or baraminology, I might use it as an entry point into information about minority views on controversial points... mostly because working on Conservapedia has brought these topics to my attention. But that hasn't happened yet.
Conservapedia may be able to survive as a sort of group blog, but I don't think it will become an encyclopedia—even a specialized encyclopedia—until people start saying "Go to Conservapedia for information about X." Even in the case of creationism, CreationWiki appears to be a much better source than Conservapedia; my impression is that creationists are trying to use Conservapedia to publicize creationism, but not to produce an "encyclopedia of creationism" (that role being better filled by CreationWiki). Dpbsmith 09:12, 8 April 2007 (EDT)
P. S. Johannes Brahms (no Conservapedia entry), Birth: May 7, 1833 in Hamburg, Germany Death: April 3, 1897 Encyclopedia of World Biography, 2nd ed. 17 Vols. Gale Research, 1998. Obtained online courtesy of my public library.
P. P. S. Google search on "claude monet" grainstacks symbol, where I included the word "symbol" in hopes of narrowing the search to entries that would tell me why he painted them. Neither Wikipedia nor Conservapedia in first hundred hits. Top hit, no good; second hit, MFA Boston turns up a lovely image of a Monet grainstack with the explanation:
- In 1890 and 1891, Monet painted a group of pictures of the stacks of wheat in the fields near his home, exhibiting them as a series to great critical acclaim in 1891. Traditionally, the motifs in Monet's series paintings have been seen merely as vehicles through which he could explore the interaction of light, color, and form over the course of the day and in different weather conditions. But scholars have recently proposed that Monet was equally interested in the meaning and significance of the motifs themselves. Grainstacks, for example, are traditional symbols of the land's fertility, the local farmers' material wealth, and the region's prosperity.
Similar search using "haystacks" instead of "grainstacks" yields similar results. Wikipedia article says he painted haystacks but gives no further information. Conservapedia does not mention any Monet subjects except waterlilies. Dpbsmith 09:22, 8 April 2007 (EDT)
Conservapedia seems to be reinventing the wheel. Since the main focus of its articles are to prove that the right is better than the left, much is left out. Scientific articles are mostly articles about creation science. Historical articles seem to talk about the US no matter what they're discussing. Biographical articles tend to focus on the subject's political views. And many articles on neutral topics don't exist (nothing on Guatemala for instance). This is fine for a political blog, but I don't see how conservapedia expects to be a resource, when its article on Moscow says 'Moscow is the capital of Russia' and nothing else. Czolgolz 09:28, 8 April 2007 (EDT)
I don't think any amount of time will bring conservapedia to any sort of "general encyclopedia" status. There is simply too much information out there for the selected group of people that subscribe to conservapedia to catalog efficiently. The reason wikipedia is so thorough is because they have a larger population of people contributing. Conservapedia's viewpoints (and very severe and in some cases biased mods) generally turn off many people that could contribute a wealth of information. Aaronp 12:18, 18 May
- It's a question of quality against quantity. Yes, Conservapedia has fewer articles, but that's because the site is more strict about who gets to edit content, and more through in vetting data. There are some fields like art criticism that's dominated by liberals. It makes sens that, at this young state in Conservapedia's development, these topics would be lightly sparse. As the site grows and more Conservatives enter traditionally liberal fields, the expertise needed to grow Conservapedia will likewise grow. --AlexC 10:55, 12 January 2009 (EST)
If I can't get to the library I've been finding Google Scholar to be incredibly useful. --RobinGoodfellow 19:18, 8 July 2008 (EDT)