And interesting discussion about books

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Gwynn Compton
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And interesting discussion about books

Post by Gwynn Compton » 23 Apr 2002 11:54

Anyone can publish a book nowadays saying anything. Books are no better by defalt than web sites. You need to examine everything critically and his sites and data is well sourced and matches other data for other sources that I have read.
This I disagree with...

Books that are successful are generally those which have been well researched and draw logical conclusions. The noticably exceptions to this are books that bring up radical ideas, and they are dealt with by fellow researchers.

Books are also, generally, peer reviewed, especially from someone like Keegan (to which the above quote partially referred to). John Keegan is a university Professor, and thus if he published a load of rubbish, it certainly would be in his interests to do so.

Websites on the other hand are dubious in the fact that there is no system of peer review. Thus any person with any view can publish anything he/she wants, throughly researched or not. Until a system can be developed where material on the internet is reviewed by qualified people, anything you find on the internet must be read with caution.

Any thoughts on this?

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Erich
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Post by Erich » 23 Apr 2002 18:20

Gwynn......

it probably also depends on the web-site that you are searching.
At least for WW 2 military sites if the site has a good bibliography, or vets account section, and this could include sources and thank you's, then it should be in pretty good shape, without too many false-hoods. To be critical of a particular site is to know the sites background.

E

Mark C. Yerger
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Post by Mark C. Yerger » 23 Apr 2002 20:02

Anything historical without a bibliography, backing up footnotes or archive research is just copying other books. This excludes certain things like veteran done histories but most include sources at least. I see it all the time, such as the new MBI books on Leibstandarte and Das Reich. What a waste of paper. If it just shows the same common photos and well known data, why bother ??

Mark

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Richard Murphy
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Mark,

Post by Richard Murphy » 23 Apr 2002 20:26

I have too agree, there ARE a lot of titles that cover the same ground (Especially where photo's are concerned.), but surely it is the text that is important? And the quality (And accuracy!) of this can vary infinitely!

Regards from a part of the Park that gives "Waffen-SS Commanders" pride of place!

Rich

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Christian Ankerstjerne
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Post by Christian Ankerstjerne » 23 Apr 2002 22:20

Well, books are more trustworthy, but not much:

Books:
They are expensive to publish, but it's getting cheaper, and therefore, more information is out there. Many booklets are full of errors, and even actualy lies, and this is a downside.
It is easy to spot what is researched, and what is not (in most cases), however, and if you can get a look in it first, you'll be safe.

Internet sites:
Everyone can make a website. Even the big ones have errors, just like the books. As it is possible to make free sites, every teenager with a long self-esteem (like me ;)) can make a website, in order to make them feel important. This takes credit away from the good ones.
In general, you can not tell what is good or bad from the adress (Panzerfausts adress is huge, but correct, whereas I'm sure you can find a dot-com adress with errors. But you can't tell if a books is good from wheter it's hard-backed or not.
The web does, however, allow for large collections of information with little sale value (remember, books first purpose is making money for the publisher, and second to give information - you won't get a book published that can't sell) - would you, for example, ever see Skalman or Feldgaru in one book (like 10,000 pages ;))? no!

In general, use your 6th sense, common sense - and use both books and internet - they each add their important part to the puzzle. Use established names mainly, but with critisism - nonames can be just as right...

Christian

Mark C. Yerger
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Post by Mark C. Yerger » 24 Apr 2002 09:15

Richard

Thanks for the comment on my Commanders books.

Mark

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Andy H
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Post by Andy H » 24 Apr 2002 20:43

Books for the most part are all our main source of information, but what websites like Marcus's & Jason's plus others enable us to do is to look into Mark's,Richards, Erich's etc's study and gleem information from their collection of books, for I'm sure most here that post havn't got exactly the same books on their shelves, though I'm sure we all wish we could buy and store more books.

:D From the Shire

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Christian Ankerstjerne
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Post by Christian Ankerstjerne » 24 Apr 2002 21:17

Plus, winning the lottery, so that we could have more time to read the books we would have - and I would also like a Porsche sportswagon (and Jagdtiger), while we're dreaming :roll: ;)

Guess that is why forums are so attractive - information based on good books, but with zore costs...

Christian

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