Due to the fact that that Wikipedia is “collaboratively edited,” leaving open the potential for error and misrepresentation of facts, many academics have long advised pupils to avoid using the site as a source. Still, the online encyclopedia of sorts does have many truthful posts and contributors and encouraged to fact check and source information posted on the site.
But where does Wikipedia, which has more than 22 million articles, get all of its information? WebEmpires.org “crawled the entire database of English Wikipedia to compile a list of Wikipedia’s top sources.” What it found was more than 22 million websites, which it then proceeded to rank by number of times it was used as a source in articles.
The top five sources of information are as follows (see the full list here):
- Google Books
- BBC News
- New York Times
As Web Empires points out, some of you may be wondering about the #2 spot — Web Archive. This site archives content from websites that have been taken offline, for various reasons. Web Empire writes that it expects Web Archive to take the top slot as the most used Wikipedia source in the “near future.”