Top 10 Reasons Why Academics Should Edit Wikipedia

Top 10 lists are all the rage with the kids on the internets these days, so I thought I’d give it a shot with a list of reasons professors, graduate students, and other academics should be editing the Wikipedia [sic]:

  • 10.) It may be likely to assist in the overcoming of the predilection (i.e., inclination) to compose impenetrable prose, instead fostering the increased utilization of brevity.
  • 9.) You can cite your own work as a reference.
  • 8.) Articles in JSTOR don’t have hyperlinks.
  • 7.) You can write as many pages as you want, and use color images on every one.
  • 6.) Accessing Wikipedia articles doesn’t require a subscription.
  • 5.) It’s fun, easy, and gives you a warm feeling inside.
  • 4.) You have a responsibility to spread knowledge.
  • 3.) It’s easy to spot plagiarism when you’re the original author.
  • 2.) It fosters interest in what you do, and in the long run will strengthen the job market in your field.
  • 1.) People will actually read what you write.

Are there better reasons I missed?

224 thoughts on “Top 10 Reasons Why Academics Should Edit Wikipedia”

  1. Before the wiki revolution, each time science advanced a new generation would bring out a new generation of textbooks. With the wiki revolution the bits of your work that are superseded will be replaced, and as language changes other bits will be rephrased. But those of your words that are still valid for future generations are likely to be read long after other works have come out of copyright.

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