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Do NOT cite Wikipedia…unless you are in Federal Court

To the chagrin of Legal Writing professors nationwide, citing Wikipedia as a source is gaining traction in Federal Court.

The evolution from a question “should a judge cite Wikipedia?” to Federal Court routinely citing the peer edited, open source encyclopedia has been quick.

It appears the marketplace of ideas is willing to evolve with technology. Also, this is a testiment to the integrity of Wikipedia and its editors. Though, in the interest of full disclosure, to make a point in law school, I edited an article about the War of 1812. I replaced the Secretary of War with my name. For 24 hrs, I played an integral role in the War that gave us the Star Spangled Banner. I was promptly removed by the editors a day later. Who remember William Eustis anyway?

As one may expect, the stoic and antiquated SCOTUS remains resistant to allowing Wikipedia to enter the annals of its opinions. This is not surprising since the SCOTUS refuses to allow cameras to capture oral arguments.

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