Wikipedia:WikiProject Wikipedia reliability/Self-published source usage report

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This is the first prototype of a monthly (or quarterly) report that provides an overview of the use of self-published sources across Wikipedia projects, as part of Wikipedia:WikiProject Wikipedia reliability.

The report is automatically generated by a program that calls the Mediawiki Search API, then performs subsequent searches and look-ups to determine projects, resolve ambiguities, etc.

The report is generated to encourage various Wikiprojects to remedy the situation by either finding WP:RS sources to replace the self-published items, or tag (or delete) them if the statements they support can not be verified.


This is the very first version of the report, has not been discussed by the community at large and may contain some errors and/or omissions. However, it does point out serious problems with the use of self-published sources across Wikipedia projects.

Examples include:

  • Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences states that one of its notable alumni is Louise Evans (‘49) - named 2001 International Scientist of the Year by the American Biographical Institute's 1000 World Leaders of Scientific Influence, while the page on American Biographical Institute states that its awards are "frequently denounced as scams".
  • The article Hanging Rocks uses the book The Glories of War 2004 by S. Farrar as a reference ten times. There is a link to Google books, and the person who used that book as a reference probably did not know it was self-published and used it support ten different statements.

Future versions will include the ability to check ISBNs on WorldCat to determine the publisher name, even if the name does not appear within a reference, and only the ISBN is used. That activity will take up significant computer time and was hence not included in this version.

The current report does not include all the self-publishers in the list of self-publishers, and is intended as a prototype, but others will be added soon.

This lists in the report may include some proper uses of self-published items, e.g. the discussion of market-share by self publishers, etc. Those need to be remedied in future versions.

Self-publisher analysis[edit]

Appearance counts are now based on direct uses of publisher names in the list of self-publishers and cases where just an ISBN leading to the publisher, or variants in spellings are not handled yet.

This is a first release report and needs much more work. It will eventually provide information that is harder to get just by search, e.g. a search on publisher Lulu (company) vs Lulu (singer), etc.

American Biographical Institute[edit]

American Biographical Institute: Approx. direct appearances: n/a yet.


AuthorHouse: Approx. direct appearances: 887, in 261 Wikiprojects.

Aventine Press[edit]

Aventine Press: Items in this report related to this self-publisher need to be double checked, due to the ambiguity of the name.

Books LLC[edit]

Books LLC: Approx. direct appearances: n/a yet.


BiblioBazaar: Approx. direct appearances: 838, in 98 Wikiprojects.

Blurb, Inc.[edit]

Blurb, Inc.: Approx. direct appearances: 198, in 1 Wikiprojects.


CafePress: Approx. direct appearances: 63, in 1 Wikiprojects.


CreateSpace: Approx. direct appearances: 435, in 10 Wikiprojects.

Famous Poets Society[edit]

Famous Poets Society: Approx. direct appearances: n/a yet.


iUniverse: Approx. direct appearances: 1605, in 20 Wikiprojects.

Lightning Source[edit]

Lightning Source: Approx. direct appearances: n/a yet.


Lulu: Approx. direct appearances: n/a yet.

Outskirts Press[edit]

Outskirts Press: Approx. direct appearances: n/a yet.[edit] Approx. direct appearances: n/a yet.


PublishAmerica: Approx. direct appearances: 69, in 2 Wikiprojects.

Tate Publishing[edit]

Tate Publishing: Approx. direct appearances: n/a yet.

Trafford Publishing[edit]

Trafford Publishing: Approx. direct appearances: n/a yet.

Vantage Press[edit]

Vantage Press: Approx. direct appearances: 1038, in 6 Wikiprojects.


Xlibris: Approx. direct appearances: 660, in 15 Wikiprojects.

Xulon Press[edit]

Xulon Press: Approx. direct appearances: 160, in 3 Wikiprojects.

Yudu Media[edit]

Yudu Media: Approx. direct appearances: 86, in 1 Wikiprojects.

Wikiproject analysis[edit]

This is a partial list at the moment, and will be extended within a few days after a larger search of the article main space has completed.

The Wikiprojects with the largest number of pages with self-published references are: