Watch CBSN Live

Science Journal Says Wikipedia On Par With Britannica. Um, Not So Much, Says Britannica.

Back in December, online encyclopedia – written and edited collaboratively by anyone – encountered a nice wollop of Wiki-controversy. You might recall it was jumpstarted by former journalist John Seigenthaler, who penned an op-ed in USA Today about the exercise in "Internet character assassination" that was his Wikipedia biography. It resulted in weeks of controversy about the legitimacy of the oft-cited resource.

And right around then, the science journal Nature "conducted a peer review of scientific entries on Wikipedia and the well-established Encyclopedia Britannica" that concluded Wikipedia "is about as accurate on science as the Encyclopedia Britannica," wrote BBC News of the study.

Well, Encyclopedia Britannica is none too thrilled with that result, the BBC reports today, calling Nature's study "fatally flawed," and requesting that the findings be retracted.

In a document on their website, Encyclopaedia Britannica said that the Nature study contained "a pattern of sloppiness, indifference to basic scholarly standards, and flagrant errors so numerous they completely invalidated the results".
Nature has rejected Britannica's accusations. Expect a flood of Wiki-commentary in the coming days.