[WikiEN-l] Wikipedia's destiny

Peter Mackay peter.mackay at bigpond.com
Fri Feb 24 06:16:41 UTC 2006

> From: wikien-l-bounces at Wikipedia.org 
> [mailto:wikien-l-bounces at Wikipedia.org] On Behalf Of Delirium
> Sent: Friday, 24 February 2006 16:55
> To: English Wikipedia
> Subject: Re: [WikiEN-l] Wikipedia's destiny
> Peter Mackay wrote:
> >Some public information, such as contained in registers of sex 
> >offenders or sale prices on house transfers, is generally relatively 
> >difficult to find and search. Sure, it's public info, but 
> it's not readily available.
> >
> >Having a Wikipedia article - a notorious Wikipedia article - is a 
> >different thing. For one thing, it will tend to rank high on 
> a Google 
> >search, whereas that Ohio register doesn't seem to be at all 
> prominent.
> >
> Are you at all familiar with the subject we're discussing?  
> Have you actually tried searching Google for "Brian Peppers"? 

Your tone leaves a lttle to be desired, but yes, I know what we are talking
about and yes, I Googled him before posting.

>  Information on him is quite readily available, quite apart 
> from any obscure sex-offender registry.  Wikipedia is not 
> even the highest-ranked result (snopes.com is), and there are 
> *161,000* hits.  It's not as if Wikipedia pulled some obscure 
> sex offender out of a registry and catapulted him to 
> notoriety---he was catapulted to notoriety by fark.com, 
> somethingawful.com, ytmnd.com, and various other high-traffic 
> places on the internet, and we just reported that fact.

I'm well aware of this, but it's immaterial. There's a lot of stuff on the
Internet, but we don't use the fact that information is available or even
prominent on the Internet as the overarching criterion for inclusion.

> >The reason the subject of the article was in WP is not 
> because of his 
> >crime(s), but because of his appearance. To my mind, by 
> including the 
> >article, we are not presenting a professional face to the world.
> >  
> >
> Neither of those is the reason.  The subject of the article 
> is in WP for the same reason [[en:Star Wars kid]] is: because 
> he gained notoriety as the result of an internet fad.

With all due respect, this is tosh. He's notorious because of his face.
Saying he's notorious for any other reason is evading the point.
> >And saying that the subject is now notorious and therefore 
> notable is a 
> >circular argument.
> >  
> >
> It's not circular at all.  If Wikipedia had made him notable, 
> that would be circular.

I think we'll have to disagree on this. Having a Wikipedia article - a
notorious Wikipedia article - makes a person even more notorious. We're part
of the process, even if you think we have no impact.

>  However, he became notable through 
> no action of our own, and now we're documenting it, like we 
> document everything people might look for information on.

Let them look for it on Snopes then. I'm with Jimbo on this one. We don't
need to assist in demonising people. Let's have some standards, please.

Peter (Skyring)

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