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Reliable Sources

VelCrow
Posts: 1,282
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10/13/2014 9:04:36 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Often I've read debates where they cite wikipedia or creationist websites which doesn't sound to credible. Any suggestions on how to find proper sites for references?
"Ah....So when god "Taught you" online, did he have a user name like "Darthmaulrules1337", and did he talk in all caps?" ~ Axonly

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vwv
Posts: 666
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10/13/2014 9:14:03 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/13/2014 9:04:36 PM, VelCrow wrote:
Often I've read debates where they cite wikipedia or creationist websites which doesn't sound to credible. Any suggestions on how to find proper sites for references?

As silly as this sounds, the resources on Wikipedia pages are usually your best bet.
Mirza
Posts: 16,992
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10/13/2014 9:15:01 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/13/2014 9:04:36 PM, VelCrow wrote:
Often I've read debates where they cite wikipedia or creationist websites which doesn't sound to credible. Any suggestions on how to find proper sites for references?
Wikipedia has many references. Scroll to the bottom of an article, and you will find references to the many arguments and statistics that are mentioned. In addition, you can simply look in Google and find good material, and check the credibility by finding some background information about the author(s) of a book, website, and more.
vwv
Posts: 666
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10/13/2014 9:24:03 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/13/2014 9:15:01 PM, Mirza wrote:
At 10/13/2014 9:04:36 PM, VelCrow wrote:
Often I've read debates where they cite wikipedia or creationist websites which doesn't sound to credible. Any suggestions on how to find proper sites for references?
Wikipedia has many references. Scroll to the bottom of an article, and you will find references to the many arguments and statistics that are mentioned. In addition, you can simply look in Google and find good material, and check the credibility by finding some background information about the author(s) of a book, website, and more.

That is basically what I said... Lol
Daltonian
Posts: 4,852
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10/13/2014 9:31:18 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/13/2014 9:04:36 PM, VelCrow wrote:
Often I've read debates where they cite wikipedia or creationist websites which doesn't sound to credible. Any suggestions on how to find proper sites for references?
Wikipedia -- if the article is complete -- is actually a better bet in terms of reliability and neutrality than many sources you'll find used.

People may tend to dismiss it's usage haphazardly or "because my opponent said I couldn't cite Fox News" rather than appreciating that it's content is very highly neutral for a 2nd hand source.

Directly linking case studies or organizations themselves (ex: APA) is always better than linking to an encyclopedia (which wikipedia is) if you can, though.
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VelCrow
Posts: 1,282
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10/13/2014 9:31:22 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/13/2014 9:15:01 PM, Mirza wrote:
At 10/13/2014 9:04:36 PM, VelCrow wrote:
Often I've read debates where they cite wikipedia or creationist websites which doesn't sound to credible. Any suggestions on how to find proper sites for references?
Wikipedia has many references. Scroll to the bottom of an article, and you will find references to the many arguments and statistics that are mentioned. In addition, you can simply look in Google and find good material, and check the credibility by finding some background information about the author(s) of a book, website, and more.

Noted. Is there any way to refute the credibility of a source?
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Subutai
Posts: 3,921
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10/13/2014 10:16:31 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Try to look for peer-reviewed journals, as primary sources are always more reliable than secondary sources (due to errors in "translation", so to speak). Wikipedia's not bad, especially with its massive list of sources for each article (I'd tend to look there first). It's notoriously hard to find reliable articles with anything politically related, as even journals can have special interest concerns, so try as best you can there.
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bsh1
Posts: 28,026
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10/13/2014 11:23:50 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 10/13/2014 9:04:36 PM, VelCrow wrote:
Often I've read debates where they cite wikipedia or creationist websites which doesn't sound to credible. Any suggestions on how to find proper sites for references?

I think Wikipedia is pretty credible, actually. At least for online debating where it's veracity can be checked by comparing it to other websites.

As for creationist websites and other sites with ideological agendas, those are usually not acceptable. However, if I say something like "creationists believe X" then it would be fine for me to cite a creationist website, because obviously that website will give a good insight into what creationists think. It all depends on how the sources are used.
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imabench
Posts: 21,760
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10/13/2014 11:30:14 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Wikipedia is decent for topics that are kinda general and deal with straightforward evidence, like citing how many people died in a certain battle or just giving a casual definition of an idea. Using Wikipedia routinely in debates that are arguing over something very complex is when it becomes a problem.

Just about any website that seems 'preachy' or is biased towards a particular stance on an issue is usually a bad source, so any website that DOESNT seem preachy or inclined towards a certain position is a good source.

Its usually best to avoid using blogs as well
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1Historygenius
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10/14/2014 12:10:33 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Here's the thing. You will probably run into academic studies with people who have opinions behind their studies or are forwarded to an agenda. Nevertheless, they may put forward good research. Everyone has an opinion today, some based on research they found, some before that. Find other research to counter that. It is difficult to say a study is unreliable just because it gives a certain conclusion. Organizations worked and push money for good research.
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