Verifiability, Not Truth

Wikipedia's core sourcing policy, Wikipedia:Verifiability, used to define the threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia as "verifiability, not truth". "Verifiability" was used in this context to mean that material added to Wikipedia must have been published previously by a reliable source. Editors may not add their own views to articles simply because they believe them to be correct, and may not remove sources' views from articles simply because they disagree with them.

The phrase "the threshold for inclusion is verifiability, not truth" meant that verifiability is a necessary condition (a minimum requirement) for the inclusion of material, though it is not a sufficient condition (it may not be enough). Sources must also be appropriate, and must be used carefully, and must be balanced relative to other sources per Wikipedia's policy on due and undue weight.

Wikipedia's articles are intended as intelligent summaries and reflections of current published debate within the relevant fields, an overview of the relevant literature. The Verifiability policy is related to another core content policy, Neutral point of view, which holds that we include all significant views on a subject. Citing reliable sources for any material challenged or likely to be challenged gives readers the chance to check for themselves that the most appropriate sources have been used, and used well (see below).

That we have rules for the inclusion of material does not mean Wikipedians have no respect for truth and accuracy, just as a court's reliance on rules of evidence does not mean the court does not respect truth. Wikipedia values accuracy, but it requires verifiability. Unlike some encyclopedias, Wikipedia does not try to impose "the truth" on its readers, and does not ask that they trust something just because they read it in Wikipedia. We empower our readers. We don't ask for their blind trust.

Read more about Verifiability, Not Truth:  Definitions, Why Not?, "But I know The Truth!", "If It's Written in A Book, It Must Be True!", Editors Are Not Truth Finders, History of This Phrase On The English Wikipedia, See Also

Other related articles:

Verifiability, Not Truth - See Also
... WikipediaCiting sources WikipediaNeutral point of view WikipediaNo original research WikipediaVerifiability WikipediaWhat Wikipedia is not WikipediaTruth, not verifiability. ...

Famous quotes containing the word truth:

    Most books belong to the house and street only, and in the fields their leaves feel very thin. They are bare and obvious, and have no halo nor haze about them. Nature lies far and fair behind them all. But this, as it proceeds from, so it addresses, what is deepest and most abiding in man. It belongs to the noontide of the day, the midsummer of the year, and after the snows have melted, and the waters evaporated in the spring, still its truth speaks freshly to our experience.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)