Wikipedia vs Conservapedia

Wikipedia is a tremendous effort but it’s not perfect. It’s not immune to factual flaws bias and personal agenda. Wikipedia’s structure which co-founder Jimmy Wales has said is based on trust and confidence makes it open to abuse and whimsies of unscrupulous users.

Just the other week Ryan Jordan a Wikipedia editor who flaunted himself as a “tenured professor of religion” complete with a doctorate in theology and cannon law resigned after being exposed a fraud. He turned out to be a 24 year old college student who according to a number of news agencies based his expertise on books such as “Catholicism for Dummies”.

Wikipedia has its share of critics however a distinction must be made between those who criticize it fairly and those who criticize it unfairly. In this article we take a look at one site which has a vendetta against Wikipedia. This site is called Conservapedia and it is a conservative-evangelical wiki “encyclopedia”.


Conservapedia states that it “is a much-needed alternative to Wikipedia which is increasingly anti-Christian and anti-American”. It lists examples of bias and problems in Wikipedia such as:

– Wikipedia allows the use of B.C.E. instead of B.C. and C.E. instead of A.D. The dates are based on the birth of Jesus so why pretend otherwise? Conservapedia is Christian-friendly and exposes the CE deception.

– There is a strong anti-American and anti-capitalism bias on Wikipedia.

– Wikipedia often uses foreign spelling of words even though most English-speaking users are American.

– Wikipedia displays an obsession with English social distinctions such as obscure royality and with unexplained academic distinctions earned in the English college system such as references to “double first degree.” The entry on Henry Liddell illustrates this extreme form of Anglophilia that characterizes many entries in Wikipedia.

– Gossip is pervasive on Wikipedia. Many entries read like the National Enquirer.

– Wikipedia is six times more liberal than the American public.

– Wikipedia’s entry on abortion reads like a brochure for the abortion industry.

Examples of Bias in Wikipedia

To be completely honest some of the criticisms Conservapedia puts across are valid others however are misleading. A few are simply bogus.

After making a point about being fair and balanced one should expect Conservapedia to lead by example. So here are some interesting tidbits from different articles on it.

The entry on the Theory of Evolution says that “creationists can cite material showing that there is no real fossil evidence for the macroevolutionary position and that the fossil record supports creationism” and that “biblical creationists can point out examples where the scientific community was in error and the Bible was clearly correct”.

On Iraq the whole entry says: “A Middle-Eastern country invaded in 2003 and currently occupied by a U.S.-led coalition”.

On CE it states: “The term “Common Era” (CE) is an attempt to erase the historical basis for the primary calendar dating system in the Western world. “Common Era” has no real meaning and even the origin of this term is unclear.”

On Global Warming the entry says: “the theory is widely accepted within the scientific community despite a lack of any conclusive evidence though that is not to say there is no evidence at all” and “It should be noted that these scientists are motivated by a need for grant money in their field of climatology. Therefore their work can not be considered unbiased though no more than any scientist in any other field. Also these scientists are mostly liberal athiests untroubled by the hubris that man can destroy the Earth which God gave him.”.

Wikipedia on Conservapedia

Balanced debate? Yeah we’ve heard of it. If you read through Conservapedia’s articles you will see that they are all unashamedly one sided. The opposing point of view is never properly mentioned explained or sufficiently explored. After reading Conservapedia it becomes even harder to criticize Wkipedia for the lack of balance. And maybe that is the point.

In all likelihood Convservapedia will remain inconsequential and will never be a threat to Wikipedia. In terms of traffic Alexa ranks Wikipedia 11th while Conservapedia is ranked 59587th. Yes Conservapedia is biased but its existence does illustrate an important point about balance impartiality and fairness. Or rather what really constitutes a lack thereof.

Have you found examples of bias in Conservapedia or Wikipedia? Let us know in the comments below.

  • Larry

    wiki is very biased agaisnt Christians, Creation, and ID

    • blackylawless

      Then get in there on Wikipedia and make a contribution

      Otherwise, shut up, you idiot.

  • A Mark Like Most Of You

    Yes, on both sites, in equal measure. However, Wikipedia is a much larger site, Conservapedia has a much higher volume of bias(that is, every article on it). Wikipedia also tends be more thorough, less mean spirited and actually reads like something made by many people. Bias in Wikipedia goes many ways, against liberals, against conservatives, against Christians, against Muslims, and for those groups as well. Conservapedia is so repetitive it might as well have been written by one man.

    And so what if Wikipedia is bias against Christianity? Every religion spawned by Abraham has in turn spawned hate mongering murderous terrorists, every one. And bias against America? America is a continent, not just the United States. Get over it! See, wikipedia will detail the criticisms and apologists both and if one side ends up looking better than the other, so be it. Conservapedia only tells one side. Even when it uses facts it leaves out anything that might be educational but not necessarily useful for the purposes of indoctrination. In other words, a half truth is as good as a lie. It’s supposed to be liberals who indoctrinate instead of educate, that’s Dave Horowitz’s stance. Yes, Conservapedia is so guilty of what it claims to be against it makes it harder for responsible educated Christian Conservatives to maintain an image of credibility.