Tracking Wikipedia’s Manipulations

wiki2.jpgIn 2006, we learned that staff mem­bers on Capi­tol Hill logged into Wikipedia and gave a par­ti­san air-brush­ing to the biogra­phies of var­i­ous Con­gress­men and Sen­a­tors. Mean­while, in 2005, 15 para­graphs were mys­te­ri­ous­ly delet­ed from a Wikipedia entry on Diebold, the major Amer­i­can vot­ing machine ven­dor that has found itself at the cen­ter of recent elec­tion con­tro­ver­sies. And soon enough, these edits were traced back to a Diebold IP address.

All of this raised the ques­tion: Just how often is Wikipedia the vic­tim of biased edit­ing? And to what extent can cor­po­rate and polit­i­cal entries be trust­ed? Accord­ing to Wired, some of these ques­tions may be soon put to rest. A new web site called Wikipedia Scan­ner pro­vides a “search­able data­base that ties mil­lions of anony­mous Wikipedia edits to orga­ni­za­tions where those edits appar­ent­ly orig­i­nat­ed…” Much more eas­i­ly, users can now get a bead on just how preva­lent these spin jobs are, and, more impor­tant­ly, they can help keep these par­ti­san edits under bet­ter con­trol. Will Wikipedia Scan­ner (and pro­gram like it) help save Web 2.0? Per­haps so.

Sub­scribe to Our Feed

Relat­ed con­tent:

by | Permalink | Comments (0) |

Sup­port Open Cul­ture

We’re hop­ing to rely on our loy­al read­ers rather than errat­ic ads. To sup­port Open Cul­ture’s edu­ca­tion­al mis­sion, please con­sid­er mak­ing a dona­tion. We accept Pay­Pal, Ven­mo (@openculture), Patre­on and Cryp­to! Please find all options here. We thank you!

Leave a Reply

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.