<CPOV> Universal Encyclopedic Vision : Up Sides & Down Sides

Jon Awbrey jawbrey at att.net
Wed May 26 13:15:50 CEST 2010

Juliana & All,

I think that most long-time observers of Wikipediatrix eventually come to the
conclusion that the whole tempest over deletionism vs. inclusionism is basically
just a red herring (in a teapot?) -- all the Wikipedia gamers who are really into
the game try to delete stuff they don't like and try to include stuff they do like,
and the only real question is where the balance of power lies at any given moment on
any given piece of turf.  On second thought, that is the micro-political question --
the "Big Picture" macro-political question would require us to identify the global
controls on the process, the catalysts, coercions, and conductances that shape the
overarching "system of practices".  (I use that term advisedly in preference to
"community of practice" because I don't think the WMF-WP-WV system qualifies
as a genuine community.)

I'll have to leave the matter of WP:NPOV to another time ...

I'm still not sure I understood what Herschel was getting at, and he seems to be
out of the loop at the moment, so I may just be free associating a little bit,
but some of it reminded me of the things that various post-modernists were
always saying about the dimmer aspects of the Enlightenment.  I will need
to go look up some old books and papers before I can recall what that
was all about.

No, I don't think encyclopedic horizons can block inquiry except in the minds
of people who try to live inside their urly bounds, but if that becomes a big
segment of the wider population then it will have a non-trivial impact on the
overall vitality of whatever culture is thus infected.


Juliana Brunello wrote:
> This is very interesting. Just some thoughts that occurred to me
> when I was reading it:
> First, I could not avoid thinking on the current wars between
> inclusionists and deletionists. If the deletionists should win (or have
> they already won?) then there is the problem of Wikipedia purporting just
> what a minority of editors considers to be "important knowledge".
> Following that thought, I came to the NPoV issue: can one judge what
> important knowledge is with NPoV in mind? I do not think it is possible,
> actually, it is very contradictory.
> The discussion you mentioned also points to the concept of encyclopedias
> being "inherently feudal" ... "set out to put a stop to the origination of
> new knowledge". I have to disagree with that. No original research inside
> an encyclopedia does not mean no original research outside it.
> Juliana
>> Re:
>> http://p10.alfaservers.com/pipermail/cpov_listcultures.org/2010-May/000135.html
>> Incidentally, Herschel Krustofsky raised a similar question
>> almost exactly two years ago in The Wikipedia Review, here:
>> http://wikipediareview.com/index.php?showtopic=18623
>> Once again, I don't think I caught the full drift of what he was saying --
>> and this even though, as I now tardily recognize, it echoes themes that
>> I once studied rather intently.  Oh well, blame it on the burnout nova.
>> At any rate, this CPOV thread inspired me to raise HK's old WR thread back
>> from
>> the depths of our meta-discussion sediments, and some CPOVers may find
>> study there.
>> Jon Awbrey


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