Harald Alvestrand harald at
Mon May 22 16:19:39 CEST 2006

John Cowan wrote:

>>I think Wikipedia is a good starting point for research, but useless 
>>when you want something authoritative (tbh, I think the autoritativeness 
>>of Encyclopedia Brittanica is often overstated too).
>The study to which Debbie refers in a later message has been widely
>debated; personally, I think the fact that it only examined a few
>articles invalidates it on its face.
>In general, the concept of "authoritative source" makes little sense to me,
>except in personal contexts (I'm an authoritative source on what I
>had for dinner) and performative ones ("US" is the ISO 3166 code for the
>United States of America because 3166/MA says so and they are authoritative).
>Otherwise, no one source should be treated as an authority on anything.
I personally think that a big value of Wikipedia is that it's very easy 
(AND encouraged!) to add pointers to outside sources. So one can start 
at Wikipedia and end up in places like the 3166/MA website. Much harder 
to do that from the Encyclopedia Britannica.

But we've now left the space of information relevant to ietf-languages 
far behind....

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