Southern gospel and wikipedia

I’m surprised that there are not more southern gospel wikipdians out there sloughing off work, using up their employers’ bandwidth and generally obsessing over sg content on wikipedia. I seem to recall David Bruce Murray mentioning in passing somewhere that he’s contributed a bit to wikipedia (though I could be wrong), and you’ll see a few regular names pop up in predictable places (Daniel Mount and Quartetman, for instance, are all over the Cathedrals entry). But in general there’s not much representation of sg on wikipedia (I guess in Murray’s case it would cut against his own self-interest to populate a bunch of wikipedia pages with the same sort of content he’s building at sghistory.com). No Rex Nelon, no Janet Paschal, no Lefevres, no J.D. Sumner, no Gold City. No Jeff and Sherri, much less any Hinsons, Rambos or Hemphills.

Which is a bit strange. Check out any message board and you’ll see there are enough webheads among the sg online faithful - the kind of personalities that love the battle-royale style of word wars that regularly erupt at wikipedia over how to historicize or describe someone or something - to make me wonder what’s up. And too, I’m just cynical enough to be surprised there isn’t more using and abusing of wikipedia to perpetuate old fueds or post (in order to sabotage) wikipedia entries about opponents or rivals. I guess wikipedia’d have to matter more in sg before anything like that would happen.

Is the dearth of sg content just another instance of southern gospel being years behind the rest of the world in catching on to new phenomena? I have a friend who compulsively fights with other wikipedian avatars over obscure culinary matters such as what precisely constitutes etouffe and how many mint leaves a mojito takes, so it can’t be that sg is just too obscure or insular a culture that those who want or need to know already do and the rest of the world be damned, right? Though come to think of it, that kind of counter-intuitive thinking is a very southern-gospel way of approaching something like wikipedia. Or maybe the average discussion-board personality doesn’t come with the bookish ability or slightly nerdy interest to do the requisite research for wikipedia publication? No matter, you’d think more groups and artists would create pages for themselves, a la myspace, for the pure promotional value. Or not.

Update: I was wrong about Rex. H/t, Bobby. Also, scroll down the bottom of this page about the Homecoming Tour to see a list of a lot of common sg names without wikipedia entries (all names in red are entryless).

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Comments

  1. David Bruce Murray wrote:

    My frustration with Wikipedia grew as I would post information and then have someone come behind me and totally destroy it. That’s one of the reasons I started SGHistory.com, so I could have some control over who posts there.

    So far, about 90% of what you see on SGHistory was either posted by Daniel Mount or me. I agree…you’d think more would be SG historians would jump in and contribute information to the mix.

    If anyone wants to help me in this effort to preserve SG history, just drop me an email. All I require is that writers put what they have to say in their own words. I had one guy who thought it was OK to copy articles from Wikipedia and post them on SGHistory.com. In addition to a written history on each artist, I have a format laid out for discographies, and lists of group members.

    Daniel also came up with the idea of linking to sound clips and having individual pages for popular songs with a list of links to all the artists who have recorded it. There are only so many hours in the day, though, and if this site is going to become a complete representation of SG history, we’re going to need more help.

  2. Bobby wrote:

    Actually:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rex_Nelon

  3. Trent wrote:

    What is wikipedia?

  4. Thomas wrote:

    Trent,

    When you click on the link Avery provided, you will find a page with these words: “Welcome to Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit.” It’s a site that’s worth a look.

  5. Terry S wrote:

    Thanks for the mention. Gold City is on there and I just did some additions as well as more corrections on the Stamps entry. I have also done quite a bit on the Oaks.
    I was going to help Daniel and David on their site, but simply have more to do than I can keep up with these days. I hope to start working again on a website I started back several years ago, but don’t hold your breath. :-)

    David touches on a good point. A great thing about Wikipedia is that people can change things on there. A bad thing is that people can change things on there. :-) It depends on what a person changes and their knowledge I guess. Another drawback is that people have different writing styles. There have been times I have probably made something less flowing in order to put more info there. I try to keep as much of the previous people’s work as I can, but would rather see more info there than it be the prettiest looking thing. :-)

  6. Terry S / quartet-ma wrote:

    Sorry, in case someone doesn’t know this, Terry S is quartet-man. :-) Thanks for keeping this site going Doug. I don’t get here as often as I used to, but enjoy catching up when I do.

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