delirium at hackish.org
Fri Oct 6 16:26:24 UTC 2006
Jimmy Wales wrote:
>There are two entirely separate issues here. Imagine that a grant is
>secured to hire people as "evangelizers" and initial admins in, say,
>African languages. Great. Or, imagine that a health education
>organization decides that the best way to educate the public on health
>issues is to have staff contribute their work to Wikipedia. Great.
>Now imagine that someone sets up a website that strongly implies that
>paying him will get a company a good article in Wikipedia, and follows
>that up by posting blatant PR puffery and claiming that it is NPOV.
>That's a very serious problem, especially in an era when we are seeing
>increasing attention paid to "how to manipulate wikipedia for the good
>of your client" by the lower dregs of the PR industry.
Those are some pretty extreme oppositions, though. What if a company
decides that the best way to educate the public on what their company
does is to have their staff contribute a neutral article on the history
of the company to Wikipedia? Your first email seemed to suggest that
this is always wrong. It's true that a company paying someone to edit
an article about themselves is at great danger of producing a
non-neutral article, but I'd argue many NGOs and non-profits present
similar risks, since many have specific political aims they wish to
promote as part of their mission.
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