Conservapedia Challenges 'Anti-Christian' Wiki

The latest alternative to Wikipedia is putting a conservative Christian spin on the idea of web-based, user-controlled encyclopedias.

Conservapedia, the new online encyclopedia launched last November, has branded itself as “a much-needed alternative to Wikipedia, which is increasingly anti-Christian and anti-American.”

“Conservapedia is an online resource and meeting place where we favor Christianity and America,” the front page of its website reads.

Conservapedia's project leader, Andy Schafly, describes the site as “a new way of learning about history and science,” according to a reporter from the New Scientist. The website claims to provide “concise answers free of ‘political correctness.’”

Schafly originally created Conservapedia together with 58 high-school-level students and home-schooled children, and he suggests it could ultimately be used by teachers as a reference point.

According to Wired News, Schlafly says “the site is intended as a resource for the general audience, but without the defects of Wikipedia.” Schlafly, the son of famous conservative politician and activist Phyllis Schlafly, is a conservative writer and attorney.

Schlafly argues that Wikipedia’s content displays a liberal bias, and that the site runs an excess of gossip, vulgarity and long-winded writing which has become unusable as an education resource.

“We have clear principles that we display, whereas Wikipedia pretends to be neutral and ends up biased,” says Schlafly, according to Wired News.

One of the most viewed entries currently is “Example of bias in Wikipedia,” which includes how “Renaissance in Wikipedia refuses to give enough credit to Christianity” and how “Wikipedia often uses foreign spelling of words, even though most English speaking users are American,” according to CBS.

The anti-Christian bias also includes the frequent use of the dating term CE (Common Era) rather than AD (Annon Domini) to refer to the first year of the Christian calendar, according to Information World Review.

Despite criticisms by Schafly and conservatives like him, creator of the original Wikipedia, Jimmy Wales, was supportive of the new site.

“Free culture knows no bounds,” said Wales according to a reporter from the New Scientist. “We welcome the reuse of our work to build variants. That’s directly in line with our mission.”

Conservapedia is not the first faith-based version of Wikipedia that has emerged on the world wide web. CreationWiki, an encyclopedia of creation science, is currently being assembled by an international editorial staff of creationists and contains over 2,500 articles from a creationist point of view. Theopedia, an encyclopedia of Biblical Christianity, features over 1,413 articles and includes a statement of faith that all its editors are required to personally affirm to. Theopedia labels itself as “decidedly Reformed, and encourages evangelicals who are not.”

Christian Post Reporter Eric Young in Washington contributed to this report.

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