I know there's a lot of web luv out there for Wikipedia, but it's always chapped my hide how fast and loose that user-compiled information source can be with the facts. Sure, if I was to trust the words of former President Reagan, I would accept that facts are stupid things. Why be so uptight if a historical date is a little off or if someone James Frey-ized a famous person's bio with a little hearsay? C'mon! Relax, dude. It's kinda, sorta informative. It's a triumph of populism! Who needs those uptight brainiacs at Encyclopedia Brittanica fact-checking minutia up in their ivory towers? This is information remixed, yo. Truthiness is where's it at. As my hero Colbert would say, "Don't look it up in a book, look it up in your gut." And the Internet's unofficial gut is Wikipedia.
Sure, I sometimes turn to the site if I need to research something in a down and dirty way, fully knowing that the information I'm reading could be iffy, wobbly or even erroneous. One moment of non-truth came when I was researching the Chateau Marmont hotel, the Hollywood landmark where James Belushi met his maker. The Wikipedia entry listed the location of this storied establishment as Scottsdale, Arizona. WTF? If something as glaring as that appears on the old Wiki-Wiki, how are you supposed to take it seriously when it comes to important information?
All that makes this article from The Onion all the more hilarious and spot-on: Wikipedia Celebrates 750 Years of American Independence. The headline says it all, but the article is worth a read, too. Enjoy.