Sunday, November 18, 2007
One of the Things I hate to do
At least Wikipedia's articles about the subdivisions of that country -- the Regions or States, the Zones, and the Woredas or local districts -- are much more current than many other sources. It's not uncommon to find materials published in the last few years which still refer to the provinces that existed in Emperor Haile Selassie's time -- about a generation ago.
I well know the reasons why this is the case: the agencies responsible for this are underfunded and understaffed -- as well as a constant brain drain from the public sector to non-governmental organizations, if not out of the country. But alot of these barriers could be overcome with help from volunteer online groups if the information were somehow made available.
Until then, I'm forced to apply the rules in a way that I really don't want to, because the alternative is to do assert no quality control whatever. Better to have information that is reliabbly correct, but out of date, rather than information that may be current and correct -- but not at all reliable.
Technocrati tags: Africa, Ethiopia, online information, wikipedia
The problem isn't with the subject; I can think of plenty of other topics I could usefully contribute to. The problem is that our edits ought to encourage people knowledgable in the topic to contribute -- and deleting these contributions with only a comment that "we need a source" can't help but discourage these people.
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