To know me is to know that I have a hard time admitting failure or weakness. Though it is obvious I am not perfect, I do not relish the idea of shouting that fact to the multitudes. So a few weeks ago, I read about and blogged about my love/hate relationship with Wikipedia. Through the week’s learning my take-away was that Wikipedia is a tool that we teachers need to stop poo-pooing. Particularly I needed to stop putting the resource tool down!
For the next few weeks, I was on a crusade to share my revelation with others. Every morning in the staff room, I would busy myself by admitting my weakness and sharing all I had reflected on about Wikipedia. But instead of embracing my ideas, I was read the riot act by my colleagues who were using my former counterarguments as their own. On my quest to bring my colleagues around, I had done the opposite. And I regularly left the staff room feeling rather disgraced.
But then, everything changed. In one swift moment by a boy band member I’d never heard of before, my determination was back with a vengeance!
Here’s the back story:
I am a mother of two. My youngest is 9 and mildly obsessed with music. She is particularly obsessed with the boy band, “One Direction.” So when I learned they would be hitting the stage here in Johannesburg, my husband and I conspired to secure tickets for her 10th birthday. Just three days before their March 28th debut, the teeny-bopper world was aghast at reports that Zayn Malik was leaving the band. Since I didn’t know much about the band (except for a few of their high-rotation radio songs), and didn’t know how this news would affect my daughter’s birthday gift, I decided to check the internet for more information. And there it was. My former nemesis: Wikipedia. I clicked and was forever transformed!
Upon clicking on Wikipedia’s “One Direction” entry, I saw two immediate changes to 1D’s page (see screenshots below). Though the announcement had only come 4 hours before (according to BBC and CNN), the first line of their Wikipedia entry had reflected Malik’s exit. Additionally, three references were added to the bottom of the entry for those who desired more information. Where in the encyclopedia world does information change this immediately?
With a few clicks of the mouse, my new-found appreciation for Wikipedia had been validated. And I could resume my position atop the “I’m-not-usually-wrong” platform because now, I have my very own concrete argument to use around the staff room’s coffee pot. Be afraid. Be very afraid.
On a side note: Yesterday’s concert at FNB stadium was, according to my daughter and her two mates, “Epic! It was the best night ever!” From an old lady’s perspective, I’m not sure if One Direction would have been any better with that guy Zayn, they were certainly not bad without him!