Articles with obsolete information

There are certain articles on this site that have become obsolete, in the sense that the information contained therein is no longer accurate or pertinent. This applies primarily to the how to articles found on this site. There a few options for me, when articles pass into obsolescence as the content become outdated: delete, amend, or leave as they are.

For each of these options – delete, amend, or leave – there are pros and cons.

For a nimble site focussed on the most relevant and up-to-date information, deletion would be a good and natural choice. Yet, deleting something goes against my instinct as someone who has studied history: while obsolete information may be of little practical use for here and now, for those who are interested in tracking the changes or development of something, it is vital to know what had preceded the present.

If the changes are minor and insignificant, then amending existing posts would be a good solution, as it keeps the article at the same location. However, the same considerations as above apply, and as changes are repeated, it will become difficult to track the alterations.

Leaving articles with obsolete information may serve the interests of future historians, but they ill serve those who need accurate, up-to-date information.

In most cases, I leave articles with obsolete information as they are, while noting that changes have occurred, and pointing to a new resource if such is available or applicable. Otherwise, I amend articles and bring them up-to-date, if the content are substantively the same, and it does not warrant a new article.

Naturally, this is a judgement call on a case-by-case basis, and I will not always get it right and it would not be in everyone’s taste, however I hope this page has explained adequately why some articles remain on this site, even after the content have become obsolete.