I’ve been told many times by professors not to use Wikipedia as a valid source when researching, but since we at IndyCar have entered the Wikipedia world I’m not sure why it wouldn’t be the first online stop when researching absolutely anything. There is a huge misunderstanding when it comes to the way Wikipedia gathers its information. Yes, anyone can contribute to it, but there are Wikipedians out there that are watching your every move. Anything added with bad intention will be caught and deleted in a matter of minutes. Every edit must have legitimate sources behind it. Editing Wikipedia is not something to be taken lightly.

Dario Franchitti's Wikipedia Page

Dario Franchitti's Wikipedia Page

In the past couple weeks we have dived right into the world of Wikipedia in hopes of spreading the knowledge we have of open wheel racing. We plan to share our links for external sources so that Wikipedia users can refer to our sites as an additional source of information. By adding in our indycar.com links and YouTube videos we’re hoping to improve the Wikipedia experience for every one. We are also being careful not to violate the Wikipedia Conflict of Interest policy (another reason Wikipedia editing shouldn’t be taken lightly).

Dario Franchitti's IndyCar Driver Page

Dario Franchitti's IndyCar Driver Page

This project will be on-going and we are definitely newbies when it comes to Wikipedia. We have much to learn but have high hopes for the future of open wheel racing knowledge that will be spread due to this project. My entire opinion of Wikipedia has been changed and I plan to refer to it more often in the future for whatever I may need information on.

How often do you use Wikipedia? What do you usually use Wikipedia for?


There are 17 comments for this post.

  1. Doug on July 11, 2011 5:47 pm

    Not ALL profs are opposed to Wikipedia. I actually encourage my students to use it in my astronomy class as a starting point for learning about the planets and missions that we’ve sent to them.

    I’m really happy to see IndyCar.com taking a more active role in the further development of Wikipedia and enhancing what can be found there.

  2. Scott Bloom on July 11, 2011 6:10 pm
    Scott Bloom

    Wikipedia could use more informative editing of its racing articles. Glad to see someone who knows something will add on.

  3. Michael on July 11, 2011 6:23 pm

    One thing that irks me, particularly regarding drivers of the 50s, is that the information is posted from an F1 standpoint – ie since Indy was part of the F1 schedule in the 50s the focus is on F1 points earned and championship standings. While this facet needs to be included, it should not be the focus.

  4. TheChrisD on July 11, 2011 6:24 pm

    You really will have to be careful about WP:COI, especially if you are just going to be adding links wherever it seems necessary, particularly if they are not inserted as citations for other facts on the pages.

    I suggest whoever it is that will be engaging in these edits pay attention to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_American_Open_Wheel_Racing – which is the overarching Wikiproject for IndyCar (and CART) related articles.

    Another particular thing that you could do to aid Wikipedia is to license some of your Flickr images so that they can be used there. There are a good few shots taken in recent months that would be really helpful on particular articles, but since those images are tagged as All Rights Reserved currently, they cannot be used.

  5. Chris on July 11, 2011 6:28 pm

    So you are taking to censoring wikipedia now?

  6. Andy on July 12, 2011 1:07 am

    Below is a google map (link below) I made of almost every American Open Wheel racing venue since 1905. Most of the “points” are located where every track location is/was located. Because this is still a work in progress, some track locations aren’t exact. These are denoted with a black dot. If this could be of use, have at it.


  7. Jeff Downer Indianapolis Indiana on July 12, 2011 7:17 am
    Jeff Downer Indianapolis Indiana

    A great way to document and preserve IndyCar history. The multi-media resources are going to be a welcome component.

  8. NaBUru38 on July 12, 2011 9:18 am

    I’ve written several articles on the Spanish-language Wikipedia. For example, I created Andretti Green, Ganassi, Forsythe, Newman/Haas, Panther, Penske, Rahal Letterman, Boesel, Briscoe, De Ferran, Dixon, RHR, Kanaan, Power, Pruett, Rahal father and son, Rutherford, Sneva, Sullivan, Tracy, Al Jr, Bobby Unser, Vasser, Wheldon, Indy Lights, Star Mazda, Baltimore, Cleveland, Edmonton, Denver, Houston, Miami, St Pete, Surfers, Toronto, Trois-Rivieres, Vancouver and several courses. I also mantain many other articles.

  9. Kaldari on July 12, 2011 1:35 pm

    I agree with ChrisD that it would be awesome if some of IndyCar’s Flickr images could be Creative Commons licensed. They would be great to use for illustrating Wikipedia articles.

  10. Sarah Stierch on July 13, 2011 4:25 pm
    Sarah Stierch

    +1 to Kaldari!

    What a cool and great opportunity to move beyond just the links and sources. I grew up going to the race, and to see this happen, is super cool.

  11. Eric Hall on July 14, 2011 4:27 pm
    Eric Hall

    YES… you guys took the words out of my mouth! if every fan wrote or babysat one article, we would have a legitimate public history book and very few errors.

    +1 on the picture front, there are many driver, track, team, and event articles that we do not have pictures for, any help with them would be great.

    Thanks again INDYCAR for being awesome.

  12. snorgin on July 19, 2011 10:38 pm

    Actually, I recall hearing about a study which stated that Wikipedia contained less factual errors than Encyclopedia Brittanica. Anyone?

  13. crazyfbs on July 27, 2011 11:33 am

    A page detailing the points system would be nice, along with lots and lots of photos!

  14. Mitch Doner on July 29, 2011 8:44 am
    Mitch Doner

    I have been uploading the majority of the IndyCar Series-related photos (http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Manningmbd) on Wikipedia, but would love help. If anyone has any other high-quality images, please take a moment out of your day and throw it up on Wikipedia.

  15. Attention all Historians: IndyCar Need Us, A Call to Action | anotherindycarblog on February 23, 2012 9:21 pm
    Attention all Historians: IndyCar Need Us, A Call to Action | anotherindycarblog

    [...] and an unbiased viewpoint. INDYCAR is aware of the decrepit state of its collection and has actively asked historians to help contribute and cleanup some of the mess. Unless we start fixing this stuff it [...]

  16. Wikipedia and IndyCar Need Our Help! | anotherindycarblog on February 7, 2013 8:11 pm
    Wikipedia and IndyCar Need Our Help! | anotherindycarblog

    [...] is aware of the fluctuating quality of pages dealing with American open-wheel racing, and has actively asked historians to help contribute and cleanup some of the confusion. Unless the indycar community at [...]

  17. Wanda Strickfaden on October 22, 2014 12:45 am
    Wanda Strickfaden

    Right away I am ready to do my breakfast, when having my breakfast coming
    again to read further news.

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