Wikipedia grammar hits new low?

I can’t make heads or tails of a lot of this Wikipedia page on the Soviet famine. What’s worse is that the authors are trying.

I’m not the sort of person who usually posts criticisms of Wiki like this, but geesh! I don’t even recognize a lot of this as even English grammar.

It sounds like it was written by a Russian without much English writing experience. You could always try to clean it up a bit. :wink:

I don’t know about the OP, but I would hesitate to clean up a Wikipedia article on a subject I didn’t know much about (hence I was reading the article on Wikipedia in the first place). I might inadvertently make a mistake.

So? Someone else will fix your mistakes. And, anyways, if you’re just putting what they are saying in proper English, why should it matter?

I hope my contributions to the German wikipedia aren’t that bad.

Yeah, good point, I knew someone would inevitably suggest cleaning it up. But the absolute worst places are where they use slang/jargon to the point that I’m not 100% sure what they are referring to in some places!

For instance, what the heck is a “torgsin”?

Wait, nevermind, it has a Wikipedia entry. Perhaps if I get time this weekend my first foray into Wikiediting will be to link the Famine entry to the Torgsin entry, even if I’m still not completely sure what that paragraph is supposed to mean!

I frequently fix grammar and spelling on articles I don’t know anything about. (Usually I’m reading the article precisely because I don’t know anything about it!) The nice thing about contributing to Wikipedia is you can do anything between fixing the odd typo to writing entire articles.

Because the usage and diction in the linked article are so bad that it’s frequently unclear what the text is supposed to mean. Thus any attempt to clean it up by someone who is unfamiliar with the subject matter is likely to introduce factual errors.

On the other hand, a factually erroneous but technically correct report may be more enticing to a true expert who may be willing to change some numbers and so on but doesn’t wish to essentially write a whole article from scrap.

True enough, Sticks. If this were an article on Enlil or Ereshkigal, I’d go in there swinging.