[Foundation-l] Paid editing comes of age

Arlen Beiler arlenbee at gmail.com
Tue Dec 21 13:33:15 UTC 2010

So for every article we have 960 active editors? I assume you wrote that

On Thu, Nov 18, 2010 at 6:50 PM, Risker <risker.wp at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 18 November 2010 18:33, David Gerard <dgerard at gmail.com> wrote:
> > On 18 November 2010 23:09, John Vandenberg <jayvdb at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > > Am I 'paid editing' when I write articles during 9-5 ?  Is that bad?
> >
> >
> > The problem with paid editing is when it violates content guidelines,
> > such as NPOV.
> >
> > Someone paid to improve the area of linguistics in general? (This has
> > happened.) Fine by me.
> >
> > Someone paid by (say) a museum to write articles on the contents of
> > their collection? Could risk NPOV, but the idea is probably a net win.
> > And the photos!
> >
> > Someone paid by a company to monitor their article for negative
> > information and edit it accordingly? Could violate NPOV. The very
> > proper way to do this is to openly introduce yourself as a PR person
> > on the talk page, supply information as appropriate and never touch
> > the article text itself; this can be problematic for you if there's
> > little actual interest in the article, though, and so little
> > third-party editor traffic.
> >
> > Someone paid by a person to keep rubbish out of their BLP? Trickier.
> > In a perfect spherical Wikipedia of uniform density in a vacuum, they
> > shouldn't go near the article on them. In practice, BLPs are our
> > biggest problems, for reasons I needn't elaborate on. Usually if they
> > contact info at wikimedia.org with a BLP issue it gets an experienced
> > volunteer on the case, and the BLP Noticeboard is an excellent and
> > effective way to get experienced attention to an article.
> >
> > "Paid editing" is, of course, not one thing.
> >
> I'll repeat what I said on enwp's Administrator's noticeboard here for a
> different audience:
> "We are extraordinarily ineffective at providing neutral, well-written,
> relatively complete and well-referenced articles about businesses and
> individuals - even as of this writing we have tens of thousands of
> unreferenced and poorly referenced BLPs - and equally bad at maintaining
> and
> updating them. Given this remarkable inefficiency, and the fact that a
> Wikipedia article is usually a top-5 google hit for most businesses and
> people, there's plenty of good reason for our subjects to say "enough is
> enough" and insist on having a decent article. We've all seen the badly
> written BLPs and the articles about companies where the "controversies"
> section contains every complaint made in the last 10 years.  We aren't
> doing
> the job ourselves, and it's unrealistic to think that we can: the
> article-to-active editor ratio is 1:960 right now[1], and getting higher
> all
> the time. I'm hard pressed to tell someone that they can't bring in a
> skilled Wikipedia editor, following our own policies and guidelines, to
> bring an article they're interested in up to our own stated standards. As
> to
> COI, one wonders why financial benefit seems to raise all these red flags,
> when undisclosed membership in various organizations, personal beliefs, and
> life experiences may well lead to an even greater COI. "Put it on the talk
> page" only works if (a) someone is watching the article, (b) that someone
> doesn't have their own perspective that they feel is more valid, (c) and
> someone is willing to actually edit the article.  Those three conditions
> aren't being met nearly enough (see editor-to-article ratio above). We've
> created the very situation where organizations and people are no longer
> willing to accept that they have to put up with a bad article about
> themselves. And precisely why should they be prevented from improving our
> project?"
> As to the Volunteer Response Team, they are a very small group of
> volunteers
> who are usually swamped with requests, and they often wind up having to
> negotiate with the existing "interested" editors to clear out BLP
> violations
> and clean up the articles to meet our own standards, sometimes having to
> fight tooth and nail to do so.  (I should clarify that there is a large
> group of volunteers, but only a few who are actually responding to tickets
> on a regular basis, not unlike most wiki-projects.) It is challenging for
> subjects of articles to find their way to submit a request to have their
> article fixed, too.  And remember that 1:960 ratio - even if every active
> editor on enwp made it their business to do nothing but maintenance and
> improvement of existing articles, we couldn't keep up with the workload.
> Risker/Anne
> [1] <http://stats.wikimedia.org/EN/TablesWikipediaEN.htm>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> foundation-l at lists.wikimedia.org
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l

More information about the wikimedia-l mailing list