Conservapedia:In the media

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Wigocp.svg This Conservapedia-related article is of largely historical interest, and not necessarily the focus of RationalWiki today.
Conservapedia was a major focal point in the early history of RationalWiki, but long ago ceased coming up with new ways to appall and amuse.
Our energies are now spent debunking other, fresher examples of religious fundamentalism and creationist claims.
For RationalWiki's less ancient content, try the cover story articles or a random article.
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The latest sightings are at the top.

All dates are Common Era unless otherwise noted.

January 2017[edit]

January 23: How Will Wikipedia Navigate the Trump Era? mentions “Post-truth Politics”. There is a picture of Andrew Schlafly in the article.

A decade ago, conservative activist Andrew Schlafly, son of famed anti-Equal Rights Amendment campaigner Phyllis Schlafly, launched Conservapedia, a site very much intended to “fix it.” Conservapedia was modeled on Wikipedia, but its mission was to present an alternative to what Schlafly perceived to be the original site’s liberal bias. According to Schlafly, traffic to the site grew 50 percent over the course of 2016. He told Inverse that Conservapedia hosted 20 million visits in November (though the source cited for those figures was, inevitably, Conservapedia).

RationalWiki users reflect on the article.

December 2016[edit]

December 5: Southern Poverty Law Center: President-elect Donald Trump has tapped U.S. Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) to be the administration’s nominee for director of Health and Human Services mentions Conservapedia.

Andrew Schlafly is also a homeschool advocate and a founder of the website Conservapedia, which has promoted ideas like public schools make homosexuals; atheists tend to be fat, which impedes brain function; liberals don’t think lying is wrong and evolution is racist and fundamental to Nazism and communism, as well as the idea that evolutionists no longer debate creationists because, the site says, creationists tend to win the debates.

December 5: The Register's article Take that, creationists: Boffins witness birth of new species in the lab links to RationalWiki's article on the Lenski affair:

Lenski demonstrate that over time the bacteria could evolve into a new type that could grow using entirely new food sources. This angered the creationist editor of Conservapedia and led to an exchange of letters with Lenski that resulted in one of the most epic scientific smackdowns in history.

November 2016[edit]

November 27: Data is the Real Post-Truth, So Here’s the Truth About Post-#Election2016 Propaganda. Conservapedia's role as "a wiki- informational resource" is mentioned.

July 2016[edit]

July 27: Télérama: Conservapedia, l’Internet parallèle et inquiétant des ultra-conservateurs américains (translated: Conservapedia, the parallel and disturbing Internet of American ultra-conservatives). Ken responds.

January 2016[edit]

January 15: Time Magazine's article These Are Wikipedia's Top 15 Moments describes Conservapedia as:

But perhaps the most amusing alternative wiki may be Conservapedia, which defines itself as "a conservative, family-friendly Wiki encyclopedia" and whose contributor guidelines are cast as "commandments."

September 2015[edit]

September 8: Kyle Kulinski releases a video titled Conservapedia, Stop Embarrassing Yourself on the Secular Talk YouTube channel.

September 2: Kyle Kulinski releases a video titled Fact Checking Conservapedia's 'Secular Talk' Entry on the Secular Talk YouTube channel.

June 2014[edit]

June 3: Finnish Helsingin Sanomat newspaper: Keskiajan paluu on aiempaa lähempänä (translated: The Return of the Middle Ages is nearer than before) mentions Conservapedia and its denial of the theory of relativity

June 2013[edit]

June 4: "극우 누리꾼, 해외 사이트에서도 “광주 폭동…”" (translated: Right-wing netizens, even overseas sites cover "Gwangju uprising ...")

June 1: Conservapedia and a link to The Conservative Bible Project makes the Daily Telegraph in an article about Hay on Wye festival. "[1]"

December 2012[edit]

December 29: Swedish blog "Conservapedia bjuder på ett och annat gott skratt, eller?" (translated: "Conservapedia offers an occasional good laugh, right?")

October 2012[edit]

October 5: Rachel Maddow mentions Conservapedia in the opening segment of The Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC. Full transcript: "When we are horrified by the real information in the world, and we want to wall ourselves off from it and create a more comforting fake truth for ourselves... in America when we have that impulse it looks like this:" (commentary on Republicans' take on polls) "It was the same dynamic at work when they invented Conservapedia. Remember Conservapedia? If something that you read about the world on Wikipedia makes you uncomfortable as a Conservative, Conservapedia is guaranteed to only contain information that makes you feel OK. So, if you are discomforted by the idea that the human species is the result of millennia of biological evolution, for example, Conservapedia has you covered, don't worry. On Conservapedia not only has evolution been debunked by the obvious fact that humans and dinosaurs coexisted... not only did we coexist, but in fact, according to Conservapedia, dinosaurs are actually still here: dinosaurs have been seen in Papua New Guinea twice since 1990. It says so on Conservapedia. So, if you don't like the real world, invent your own." — The video includes an example of Ken's Mainpageleft art.

September 2012[edit]

Raw Story covers Phyllis Schlafly and Karl Rove in the Todd Akin kerfuffle. Her son is mentioned, and his project is described as "a wildly inaccurate 'conservative alternative' to Wikipedia."

August 2012[edit]

The Sydney Morning Herald has a look at what Conservapedia has to say about various car manufacturers. Like everybody else, they go, "WTF?" [1]

March 2012[edit]

Conservapedia earns a mention in the introduction to Chris Mooney's "The Republican Brain," where they are described as "the right-wing answer to Wikipedia and ground zero for all that is scientifically and factually incorrect, for political reasons, on the Internet."[2]

January 2012[edit]

January 30: Schlafly quoted for comment in New Jersey news article "Secular, liberal 'hippie' NJ parents buck homeschool trend": "The public schools have become a battleground in the contest over values, particularly sexual-related issues, and that’s unfortunate. I think a lot of homeschooling parents, conservative and liberal, would prefer their children not be pawns in these cultural wars."

January 17: Conservapedia earns a passing, but scathing, comment in Larry Womack's column, criticizing media and its audience. Womack says the following about Conservapedia and Andrew Schlafly: "Even Fox News isn't a safe enough haven for some lunatics on the right side of the aisle. One "Christian" felt so threatened by Wikipedia's arrangement of fact that he had to develop his own Conservapedia. When he eventually realized that the Bible didn't agree with him any more than science, history or the arts, he decided to re-write that, too. I imagine this man does a lot of angry crying. I also imagine that somewhere a teacher is reading a paper that cites a Conservapedia article, sighing and thinking it's just not worth the fight with the parents."

November 2011[edit]

November 08: Conservapedia makes Skeptoid's list of Top 10 Worst Anti-Science sites, who says of it, "If you want to know about dinosaurs, geology, radiometric dating, the solar system, plate tectonics, or pretty much any other natural science, Conservapedia is your Number One resource to get the wrong answer."

October 2011[edit]

October 28: Conservapedia's articles on Counterexamples to Relativity, evolution and fat atheists are mentioned in this article on science and politics, complete with a very fitting description of Conservapedia: "a kind of Wikipedia for ideologues on the right who want their facts and definitions to line up with their political beliefs"

August 2011[edit]

August 11: A NewScientist article laments how Conservapedian physics operate;

Coming from a physicist who authored the book The Physics of Christianity, in which he claims that without Jesus’s resurrection, our universe couldn’t exist, I am forced to question the meaning of “crackpot”. It’s no matter, though, because Tribe’s grasp of general relativity is irrelevant – he was not writing a scientific paper, he was merely creating an analogy. But for Andy Schlafly, founder of Conservapedia and son of anti-abortion activist Phyllis Schlafly, the analogy was apparently enough to turn him off Einstein for good.

July 2011[edit]

July 10: The New Jersey Star Ledger publishes a feature on home schooling in New Jersey and Conservapedia in specific, entitled "New Jersey home schooling: The Wild West of education." The article highlights many of the oddities on Conservapedia, as well as Andy Schlafly's bizarre exam questions, whilst hinting that if home schooling were regulated, Schlafly wouldn't get away with this kind of teaching. Conservapedia's reaction? Waaa! Conservative columnist George Berkin followed up with a defense of CP "Public high school group-think."

June 2011[edit]

June 20: Penn Jillette responds to user:Conservative's "atheists are fat!" drivel. Predictably, Ken comes in his pants.

January 2011[edit]

January 8: "A parallel online universe" by Emma Jane of The Australian describes CP as "a disturbing parallel universe where the ice age is a theoretical period, intelligent design is empirically testable, and relativity and geology are junk sciences."

January 12: Wired Magazine lampoons Conservapedia's articles on "Atheism and obesity," "Hollywood values" and their list of "examples of bias in Wikipedia" in an article entitled, "Ten Impressive, Weird And Amazing Facts About Wikipedia." Predictably, Conservapedia see this coverage as a good thing.

January 15: Conservapedia earns a passing mention as the "most amusing alternative wiki" in Time Magazine's article on the Top 10 Wikipedia Moments.

December 2010[edit]

December 06: The Discovery Institute's "Evolution News and Views" website describes Andrew Schlafly's foray into L'affaire Lenski as "misguided."

November 2010[edit]

November 01: Ms. Magazine quotes Conservapedia's "article" on "Richard Dawkins and the women and minority population" (written by none other than Conservative!!) as a source in their Will “New Atheism” Make Room For Women?" article. Blag Hag responds by saying, "Yeah, an article must be excellent when it's using Conservapedia to prove its point."

November 11: Paul Fishbane (professor emeritus of physics at the University of Virginia) writes about Conservapedia's take on the Theory of Relativity, saying "Recent right-wing rejections of Einstein’s theory of relativity echo Nazi dismissals of what they called ‘Jewish Physics’".

November 17: In an article entitled "From Conservapedia to Brooklyn Rock," The Indypendent mentions Conservapedia's list of "greatest conservative songs." It takes note of the "virtually anything by Toby Keith" comment, having previously labeled him "jingoistic" in the introduction. The article goes on to say "some of its selections are quite a stretch."

October 2010[edit]

The October 2010 issue of Scientific American lists Conservapedia as a complete fallacy (scoring it 0 on a 0 to 100 'fallacy-versus-fact' scale), describing Conservapedia as "the online encyclopedia run by conservative lawyer Andrew Schlafly, (which) implies that Einstein's theory of relativity is part of a liberal plot."

September 2010[edit]

September 3: TerryH volunteers to be the head of agitprop, writing a propaganda tract insightful journal article on Andy's American Civics class (and how CP is growing rapidly!) for The Examiner. He also neglects to mention that he is a sysop on Conservapedia, and forgets to mention that by linking to his blog from Conservapedia, he is using it to earn an income.

September 27: Conservative pundit, Rowan Scarborough, makes a passing reference to Conservapedia in an article decrying WikiPedia's treatment of conservative and liberal election hopefuls. Hilarity ensues as Karajou and Ed Poor take to the comments section, to enforce the impression CP is run by thugs and bullies. Quote of the day so far: "That's a major difference between Conservapedia and Wikipedia that anyone could see immediately: we will not tolerate a liar on the site."

August 2010[edit]

August 3:In an article entitled "Is Wikipedia biased against Israel?" in Emunah Magazine Conservapedia gets a passing mention when the author says, "Indeed the bias was pronounced enough to prompt the creation of the conservative wiki called Conservapedia with its article called 'Examples of Bias in Wikipedia'." Bonus points for Karajou turning up in the comments, bleating about how liberals tries to edit his site "and discovered the hard way that we’re not going to put up with their behavior."

August 17: JTA, the "Global News Service of the Jewish People," picks up on Conservapedia's "Relativity is liberal conspiracy" nonsense. Schlafly takes a hammering, from statements including "replace ‘liberals’ with ‘Jews’ in [that] sentence,” the words might as well have been written by a Nazi circa 1930s-era Germany" and "Scientists looking at the list [of counter-examples to relativity] say many are irrelevant, some misinterpret the science and many are flat wrong. Additionally, Schlafly did not respond to repeated efforts to interview him for the article.

August 20: Maclean's lists Conservapedia in it's Newsmakers section, saying "The site attempts to answer such vexing questions as, 'Why do non-conservatives exist?'"

January 2010[edit]

In his January 9 New York Times article "Of Individual Liberty and Cap and Trade", Cornell economics professor Robert H. Frank referenced Conservapedia's article "conservative parables" to praise University of Chicago economics professor and 1991 Nobel laureate Robert H. Coase, whose “extraordinary insight was that the free market always reaches the most efficient level of productive activity, in the absence of transaction costs.” A Chinese website translated it two months later.

A French translation of the Rolling Stone magazine article "Obama's Big Sellout" on Courrier International, "Wall Street continue à faire la loi" (English translation on Google), references Conservapedia's article about Barack Obama in a sidebar:

Le portail Conservapedia, le Wikipedia de la droite américaine, explique dans son article consacré à Obama que les banques de Wall Street qui ont bénéficié du plan de sauvetage ont figuré parmi ses meilleurs soutiens pendant la campagne électorale.

In English, according to a local French speaker:

According to Conservapedia, an American right-wing version of Wikipedia, the Wall Street banks which benefited from Obama's bailout were among his strongest supporters during the electoral campaign."

January 6: Local newspaper article "Conservapedia founder: We're fighting Wikipedia's liberal bias" by Rob Jennings, Parsippany (NJ) Daily Record, summarized in the Star-Ledger "Morris County resident, son of famous activist, runs 'Conservapedia' website." The article is reprinted on this right wing message board.

December 2009[edit]

December 3: The Conservative Bible Project makes the AP. (ABC link)

December 7: An opinion piece appears in the Christian Science Monitor slamming the Conservative Bible Project.

December 8: Conservapedia founder Andy Schlafly appears on fake conservative pundit Stephen Colbert's television show and giggles nervously.

November 2009[edit]

November 15: In an article on the 40th birthday of the 'net, Conservapedia is described as "unintentionally hysterical" under a heading describing Wikipedia.

October, 2009[edit]

Conservapedia strikes it big on the blogs with the Conservative Bible Project (see further references in the main article). The news has even made it to television and print (though not in America).

October 7: Andy appears on Fox News, being interviewed by Alan Colmes, discussing the liberal bias in the Bible. He comes off second best.

October 18: Andy manages to piss off the, who quote Biblical scholar and Wheaton professor Doug Moo, "Silly is probably as kind as I could be about it".

October 22: A report at religiondispatches handles Andrew's bimbo deftly.

October 22: Even Joseph Farah at WorldNutDaily thinks the project is "incredibly stupid and misguided".

September 2009[edit]

Richard Dawkins publishes The Greatest Show on Earth, which makes a passing, and disparaging, reference to Andy and the Lenski affair.

May 2009[edit]

May 11: Humeur site includes Conservapedia among its Five terrifying bastardizations of the Wikipedia model. The article leads to a flurry of new (and probably doomed) user registrations at CP.

April 2009[edit]

April 23: Vanity Fair carries a scathing report on the "Bastion of the Reality-Denying Right". [2]

February 2009[edit]

February 17: Pravmir, the Russian Orthodox Church web site, mentions Conservapedia in an article discussing Christian "clones" of popular web sites. The original in Russian, and a translation, scroll down about halfway.

January 2009[edit]

January 23: A post on Wonkette attacks a parody article posted on Conservapedia: Senate Democrats from States with Republican Governors on the grounds that it constitutes a hitlist. The offending article, which had been edited by several Conservapedia administrators prior to deletion, disappeared when CP's server crashed a couple of days later, and has since been protected from recreation.

December 2008[edit]

December 3: The Yale Daily News uses Conservapedia as an example of "...the tendency toward groupthink. This is easy to see on political Web sites like Huffington Post or Conservapedia that are largely ideologically homogenous".[3] Andy thinks they are complimenting Conservapedia (since his reading comprehension is so poor),[4] because in the previous paragraph they write: "But user-generated content needs to be taken more seriously by the regular media in order to remain relevant."

December 15: A San Francisco Weekly article uses Conservapedia's stance on the Truth as an illustrative example to introduce a piece about adults disagreeing.

July 2008[edit]

July 1: L'affaire Lenski is getting Conservapedia some mockery press attention at the on-line edition of the Guardian.

June 2008[edit]

June 14: Not only does Stars and Stripes mock Conservapedia in an article about strange religious beliefs,[5] but Andrew Schlafly decides to publicize the embarrassment.[6]

May 2008[edit]

May 17: Ben Caleca at the Michigan Daily unwittingly joins in the Ides project with some commentary and disgust on his blog.

January 2008[edit]

January 1: Damian Thompson's book Counterknowledge: How We Surrendered to Conspiracy Theories, Quack Medicine, Bogus Science and Fake History mentions Conservapedia on one page, right next to CreationWiki. He didn't like either of them.

January 12: Thom McCombs of the Vallejo Times-Herald responds to an anti-ACLU editorial (archived & not found). When referring to the writer of the opinion piece, McCombs says "Do they really believe the garbage that they get from Conservapedia and spew onto these pages, or do they just hate the Constitution, and think that swiftboating the ACLU is a way to bring it down?"

December 2007[edit]

December 6: In an article about GodTube, a sane writer for the Michigan Daily refers to CP as a "propagandist endeavor" (4th paragraph down)

December 25: An article featuring an interview with a hardcore Wikipedian - resulting in a very pro-Wikipedia article - mentions Conservapedia in the 12th paragraph.

November 2007[edit]

November 2: Conservapedia receives a mention in the AP article on GodTube (7th paragraph), published by CNN.

July 2007[edit]

July 1: Conservapedia gets a few mentions in an Observer (UK) piece on Jimmy Wales and Wikipedia.

July 13: Mark Pesce uses a comparison of the various encyclopedia articles to derive lulz from Conservapedia.

June 2007[edit]

June 4/6: "Conservapedia continues to attract mainstream press attention. Boston Globe columnist Alex Beam's comments on Pat Robertson reveal a case study on objectivity." - CP front page opinion of Alex Beam, regular columnist at the Boston Globe taking the piss out on CP.

June 6: *In the Guardian Unlimited: Is Wikipedia too liberal for you?

  • "A columnist just criticized Conservapedia, probably expecting to win support for it. Instead, the columnist herself is widely criticized by the public. See the column and the numerous public criticisms of it here." - CP front page on the Shinyshiny (a girls' guide to gadgets - hmmmm) article.

June 13: "Hate Wikipedia? Start Your Own" at

June 19: A Los Angeles Times article names names and mentions RationalWiki. (Free registration required to read)

The [15 year-old] girl, who is home-schooled, wrote an article for Conservapedia on Irish dancing and uses the site to research papers. But the biggest lesson she's taken away as a young conservative is: "There are people who want to destroy us."

June 20: The Register picks up the report of the LA Times. More mentioning of RationalWiki.

"Unlike the L. A. Times piece, the Register's article is mocking and tongue-in-cheek. I don't think it should be mentioned on the main page. I would be very annoyed if someone put this on the main page in a way that implied that this was positive coverage; it is not." - Dpbsmith's wise disclaimer in the editimg that gives the article link.

June 27: Conservapedia makes the big time!

On the Daily Show, Lewis Black reports on Conservapedia, complete with screenshots, a biased alternative to WikiPedia, since "you" are too biased. Featuring the article on homosexuality. [7] Despite driving significantly more traffic than other media references have, Conservapedia not only doesn't trumpet this on its front page, it deletes references to it.

June 29: The Institute for Creative Thought Crimes has a nice article (Conservapedia and The War Against Truth) about Conservapedia's Factual Relativism.

March 2007[edit]

March 1-2: "Conservapedia - the US religious right's answer to Wikipedia" - a boring, balanced piece from the Guardian: main newspaper article, technology section article

March 13: Robert Siegel talks with Andrew Schlafly about Conservapedia on NPR's "All Things Considered".

March 19: "Weird, wild wiki on which anything goes" Metro

March 21: Jimmy Wales thinks Conservapedia is biased, when interviewed by Time.