When Dublin university student Shane Fitzgerald posted a poetic but phony quote on Wikipedia, he said he was testing how our globalized, increasingly Internet-dependent media was upholding accuracy and accountability in an age of instant news.Yes, famous newspapers published a fake (and rather "purple") quote in their obituaries for Michael Jarre, while Wikipedia (the public encyclopedia) tested the quote, found it wanting and removed it.
His report card: Wikipedia passed. Journalism flunked.
The prof split his class into two groups. The first group, the John Henrys, had to study and learn exclusively from materials available at the library...no internet allowed. The second group, the Baby Hueys, could use only the internet for research and learning...no primary source lookups at the library. After a few weeks, he had to stop this experiment because the John Henrys were lagging so far behind the Baby Hueys that it is was unfair to continue.I'm not sure how it would work in Biblical Studies, quite a lot of our important works are still only available in print, though between EBSCO, Oxford Online and their like, not to mention Google Books and Scholar I suspect the results (at least in a blind test where the marker did not know to which group the student belonged) might be similar. But only if the students were taught first how to use the resources at their fingertips, and how to read with discernment and sharply critical faculties honed.
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