[Foundation-l] Wiki Scanner & wikinews

Brian Brian.Mingus at colorado.edu
Tue Aug 21 21:12:29 UTC 2007

I completely agree with this point. The evidence should be presented in a
"fair and balanced" way, and rather than spinning it as "A Fox news
employee," it should simply be stated that an edit from the Fox News Corp.
was made to an article related to them. The nature of the edit should also
be explained - did it make them look favorable, or a competitor look less
favorable? Allow people to draw their own conclusions.

On the other hand, if your point is that, because we cannot absolutely
verify that any of these people were actually acting in the best interest of
their employer because we weren't there to see it happen and didn't
interview them about their motivations, that there is likely no phenomenon
here to discuss, you would have veered far and wide of common sense. It's
pretty clear that Wiki Scanner has uncovered some dirt. So cover it, but be
fair and balanced :)

On 8/21/07, Gregory Maxwell <gmaxwell at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 8/21/07, Brian McNeil <brian.mcneil at wikinewsie.org> wrote:
> > Okay, you've been living under a rock if you haven't heard of the
> [snip]
> > Comments/feedback? Are we unduly crucifying Fox? :-)
> Oh lets see... How about the little detail that without confirming
> evidence there is no reason to believe that an edit made from a Fox IP
> was an action endorsed by Fox?
> With the widespread existence of things like open wireless access
> points we can't even be sure if any particular edit was made by
> someone employed by For or even using a Fox owned computer.
> Yet the Wikinews article seems to happily go on and describe every
> action coming from a company IP was an action of that company.
> "the BBC had edited", "FOX News, and its parent company, News
> Corporation had a history of unproductive edits" "FOX also edited"
> "the CIA had been editing" "FOX's edits" "AP had made a few edits"
> So would you also say that countless other Wiki(p|m)edians are editing
> on behalf of their employers every time they edit from home and forget
> to log out of their VPN? When they edit during a coffee break?
> Is the only thing protecting me of an accusation of "Greg's employer
> defends Fox in Wikipedia Whitewashing scandal" the fact that Gmail
> doesn't send IP addresses?
> It's sad to see us peddling the same sort of irresponsible journalism
> that we've seen from the commercial market on this matter. At least in
> their cases we can give them a pass due to a lack of understanding of
> the technology.
> Whats your excuse?
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