Weekly Wide Web

When Facts Collide With Nonsense

Wikipedia has been around for so long (at least in Internet time) that it's hard to remember a time when most search results didn't include at least one of these crowd-sourced encyclopedia pages.

My son is in the fourth grade and ostensibly learning how to do research for the first time, and it's actually become somewhat of a challenge to find information outside of the Wiki cloud. Original information isn't impossible to find, but between Wikipedia's millions of pages, websites using Wikipedia as a source, and blogs citing pages that cite Wikipedia ... if something appears on Wikipedia, it might as well be true, because quite a bit of the Internet is going to believe it.

As a fan of Tumblr-hosted novelty sites, I was thrilled to learn about CitationNeeded.tumblr.com after a friend of mine linked to it on Facebook. Essentially, the blog collects context-free quotations from Wikipedia that are tagged with the "citation needed" demand by one of the site's strangely dedicated citizen editors, in attempt to stick to what can actually be verified.

Apparently no one yet can provide definitive proof that '90s children's television character "Doug" had a voice "reminiscent of Dave Mustaine, lead singer of the thrash metal group Megadeth," or that Phil Collins' song "Sussudio" was "received mostly positively, and has been mentioned in numerous moments in pop culture."

At this post-post-modern moment in time, if someone took the time to type those "facts" out, they might as well be true. Right?


We continued to try to make sense of the goings-on in Phoenix with our Blogislature feature; for example, we pointed out how Pima County was excluded from money intended to fight gang violence; and we shared the letter that Arizona CEOs sent to Senate President Russell Pearce asking him to knock it off with the immigration bills.

In other news, we told you that the mini-dorms in Jefferson Park are no longer counted as single-family residences; shared a video interview with Luis Alberto Urrea; and profiled potential mayoral candidate Pat Darcy.

We told you how a sumo wrestler ran in the Los Angeles Marathon; made a shameless grab for latex-fetish traffic with a photo of the new Wonder Woman costume; previewed the new look of a gay bar on the northwest side; let you know that one of Tucson's AM sports/talk stations now has an FM frequency, too; showed you what a million-dollar dog looks like; and shared the lineup for the next season at Beowulf Alley.

On the Chow front, we let you know that Kampai Sushi switched owners and became Bushi Traditional Japanese and Asian Cuisine; shared a craft whiskey recipe from Hotel Congress; shared a food-truck factoid; complained about rising grocery prices; and basked in the choices offered by the Coca-Cola freestyle soda-dispensing machine.

In music, we shared Linda Ray's videos from the South by Southwest music conference; covered the sparsely attended Sound Strike panel there; kept you updated on the latest Rebecca Black news; looked at famous rock hairstyles in poster form; reminded you of the "Wild About the Cats" music video; shared a seemingly unlikely gospel version of a Cee-Lo song; and paid tribute to the late star of G-Funk, Nate Dogg.


"Gosh, these Dupnik bashers are right. A sheriff shouldn't take political stands. Sheriffs should be shrinking violets who are quiet and never comment on policy or politics, just like Arpaio and Babeu."

—We assume commenter Tedski is being less than sincere ("SB 1621, Featuring the Stick-It-to-Sheriff Dupnik Clause," The Range, March 17).


This week on Tucson Weekly TV, we wrap up Linda Ray's SXSW coverage with live footage of Eleventh Dream Day, the Autumn Defense and Hungry Kids From Hungary. We also continue the live music with a song from Wye Oak's in-store performance at the Zia Records on Speedway Boulevard. Finally, we'll be at the Festival en el Barrio Viejo this weekend, so look for post-fest coverage on The Range.

We also preview this week's first edition of the Tucson Fringe Festival by talking to some of the performers involved. Considering the inaugural festival includes a rock opera about a Circle K clerk and a comedian dealing with losing her house to arson, among other productions, we hope this is an event that's here to stay.

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