Month: August 2018

Fru Astrid Grib af Thit Jensen

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Lillesøster Thit gir den hele armen med mord og død i psykologisk portrættering af en kærlighedsbefængt 28-årig kvinde, hvor tiltag til sprog a la storebror aldrig helt letter. Vældig meget kunst og melodrama hvor 40 sider lader en kvinde gå fra forelskelsens vanvid til vanvid. Kærligheden er voldsom, ugengældt, balstyrisk, overdreven men også uudtrykt; ganske kontrastfyldt mod brorens skolemesteragtige forhold til kærlighed.

Fra Librarything.

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A viewpoint on a viewpoint on Wikipedia’s neutral point of view

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I recently looked into what we have of Wikipedia research from Denmark and discovered several papers that I did not know about. I have now added some to Wikidata, so that Scholia can show a list of them.

Among the papers was one from Jens-Erik Mai titled Wikipedian’s knowledge and moral duties. Starting from the English Wikipedia’s Neutral Point of View (NPOV) policy, he stresses a dichotomy between the subjective and the object and argues for a rewrite of the policy. Mai claims the policy has an absolutistic center and a relativistic edge, corresponding to an absolutistic majority view and relativistic minority views.

As a long time Wikipedia editor, I find Mai’s exposition is too theoretical. I lack good exemplifications: cases where the NPOV fails, and I cannot see in what concrete way the NPOV policy should be changed to accommodate Mai’s critique. I am not sure that Wikipedians distinguish so much between the objective and the subjective; the key dichotomy is verifiability vs. not veriability, – that the statements in Wikipedia are supported by reliable sources. In terms of center-edge, I came to think of events associated with conspiracy theories. Here the “center” view could be the conventional view while the conspiracy views the edge. It is difficult for me to accommodate a standpoint that conspiracy theories should be accepted as equal as the conventional view. It is neither clear to me that the center is uncontested and uncontroversial. Wikipedia – like a newspaper – has the ability to represent opposing viewpoints. This is done by attributing the viewpoint to the reliable sources that express them. For instance, central in the description of evaluation of films are quotations from reviews of major newspapers and notable reviewers.

I don’t see the support for the claim that the NPOV policy assumes a “politically dangerous ethical position”. On the contrary, Wikipedia is now – after the increase of fake news – been called the “last bastion”. The example given in The Atlantic post is the recent social media fuzz with respect to Sarah Jeong where Wikipedians reach a work with “shared facts about reality.”

Scholia is more than scholarly profiles

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Scholia, a website originally started as service to show scholarly profiles from data in Wikidata, is actually not just for scholarly data.

Scholia can also show bibliographic information for “literary” authors and journalists.

An example that I have begun on Wikidata is for the Danish writer Johannes V. Jensen whose works pose a very interesting test case for Wikidata, because the interrelation between the works and editions can be quite complicated, e.g., news paper articles being merged into a poem that is then published in an edition that are then expanded and re-printed… Also the scholarly and journalistic work about Johannes V. Jensen can be recorded in Wikidata. Scholia currently records 30 entries about Johannes V. Jensen, – and that does not necessarily includes works about works written by Johannes V. Jensen.

An example of a bibliography of a journalist is that of Kim Wall. Her works are almost always addressing very unique topics, – fairly relevant as sources in Wikipedia articles. Examples include an article on a special modern Chinese wedding tradition in Fairy Tale Romances, Real and Staged and an article on furries It’s not about sex, it’s about identity: why furries are unique among fan cultures.

An interesting feature about most of Wall’s articles, is that she let the interviewee have the final word by adding a quotation as the very final paragraph. That is also the case with the two examples linked above. I suppose that say something of Wall’s generous journalistic approach.