|Many of these questions arise frequently on the talk page concerning homeopathy.
To view an explanation to the answer, click the [show] link to the right of the question.
Q1: Should material critical of homeopathy be in the article? (Yes.)
: Yes. Material critical of homeopathy must be included in the article. The articles on Wikipedia include information from all significant points of view. This is summarized in the policy pages which can be accessed from the Neutral point of view
policy. This article strives to conform to Wikipedia policies, which dictate that a substantial fraction of articles in fringe
areas be devoted to mainstream views of those topics.
Q2: Should material critical of homeopathy be in the lead? (Yes.)
: Yes. Material critical of homeopathy belongs in the lead section. The lead must contain a summary of all the material in the article, including the critical material. This is described further in the Lead section
Q3: Is the negative material in the article NPOV? (Yes.)
: Yes. Including negative material is part of achieving a neutral article
. A neutral point of view does not necessarily equate to a sympathetic point of view. Neutrality is achieved by including all
points of view – both positive and negative – in rough proportion to their prominence
Q4: Does Wikipedia consider homeopathy a fringe theory? (Yes)
: Yes. Homeopathy is described as a fringe medical system
in sources reliable to make the distinction
This is defined by the Fringe theories
guideline, which explains: We use the term fringe theory in a very broad sense to describe ideas that depart significantly from the prevailing or mainstream view in its particular field of study.
Since the collective weight of peer-reviewed studies does not support the efficacy of homeopathy, it departs significantly enough from the mainstream view of science to be considered a fringe theory.
- ^ Jonas, WB (February 2008). "Should we explore the clinical utility of hormesis". Human & Experimental Toxicology. 27 (2): 123–127. PMID 18480136.
Q5: Should studies that show that homeopathy does not work go into the article? (Yes.)
: Yes. Studies that show that homeopathy does not work are part of a full treatment of the topic and should go into the article. Wikipedia is not the place to right great wrongs
. Non-experts have suggested that all the studies that show homeopathy does not work are faulty studies and are biased, but this has not been borne out by the mainstream scientific community.
Q6: Should another article called "Criticism of homeopathy" be created? (No.)
: No. Another article called "Criticism of homeopathy" should not be created. This is called a "POV fork
" and is discouraged.
Q7: Should alleged proof that homeopathy works be included in the article? (No.)
: No. Alleged proof that homeopathy works should not be included in the article. That is because no such proof has come from reliable sources. If you have found a reliable source
, such as an academic study, that you think should be included, you can propose it for inclusion on the article’s talk page. Note that we do not have room for all material, both positive and negative. We try to sample some of each and report them according to their prominence
. Note also that it is not the job of Wikipedia to convince those people who do not believe homeopathy works, nor to dissuade those who believe that it does work, but to accurately describe how many believe and how many do not believe and why.
Q8: Should all references to material critical of homeopathy be put in a single section in the article? (No.)
: No. Sources critical of homeopathy should be integrated normally in the course of presenting the topic and its reception, not shunted into a single criticism section
. Such segregation is generally frowned upon as poor writing style on Wikipedia.
Q9: Should the article mention that homeopathy might work by some as-yet undiscovered mechanism? (No.)
: No. The article should not mention that homeopathy might work by some as-yet undiscovered mechanism. Wikipedia is not a place for original research
Q10: Is the article with its negative material biased? (No.)
A10: No. The article with its negative material is not biased. The article must include both positive and negative views according to the policies of Wikipedia.
Q11: Should the article characterize homeopathy as a blatant fraud and quackery? (No.)
A11: No. Inflammatory language does not serve the purpose of an encyclopedia; it should only be done if essential to explain a specific point of view and must be supported from a reliable source. Wikipedia articles must be neutral and reflect information found in reliable sources. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia and not a consumer guide so while scientific sources commonly characterise homeopathy as nonsense, fraud, pseudoscience and quackery - and the article should (and does) report this consensus - ultimately the reader should be allowed to draw his/her own conclusions.