Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Wikipedia Too Malleable to Be Reliable Evidence
By Mary Pat Gallagher
New Jersey Law Journal
April 22, 2009
A New Jersey judge who allowed a lawyer to plug an evidentiary gap with a Wikipedia page has been reversed on the ground that the online encyclopedia that "anyone can edit" is not a reliable source of information.
"[I]t is entirely possible for a party in litigation to alter a Wikipedia article, print the article and thereafter offer it in support of any given position," an appeals court held. "Such a malleable source of information is inherently unreliable and clearly not one 'whose accuracy cannot reasonably be questioned,'" such as would support judicial notice under New Jersey Evidence Rule 201(b)(3).
hat tip: Sharon Blackburn, Texas Tech librarian extraordinaire