by The Unpaid Critic
Neelix’ namesake, a character from the “Star Trek” TV series
One of Wikipedia’s most active editors left abruptly last week, with little notice or comment. Why would Neelix, a Wikipedia admin and campus ambassador who had been editing since 2006, suddenly quit the project which had occupied so much of his free time for so many years? At first glance it looked like he was the target of a bullying campaign from an internet forum, but a closer look reveals a much more interesting story.
Hipinion Tara Teng was Miss World Canada 2012. In late March 2013, Neelix created an article about her on Wikipedia. About a year later, a discussion titled “this is the story of an abolitionist as told by her stalker” was started on a web forum called Hipinion. Based on the length of the article and amount of detail included,
…continue reading Unpaid Advocacy on Wikipedia
There may be a few of you out there who, like myself a few short hours ago, did not know that Lily Cole is the successful supermodel who put the “LOL” in “Lolita.” And then, just a few years ago, she adopted the business model that was first perfected by Bono, and augmented her career by becoming a social activist. All this inevitably attracted the attention of Wikipedia’s own Jimmy Wales, who gave his support to Cole’s project called “Impossible.com,” described as an “altruistic social network.” Those of you who have followed Jimmy’s career may now be asking, “Altruistic? But Jimmy is a devotee of Ayn Rand, who rejects altruism.” But as it turns out, Ms. Cole has made her own unique contribution to this debate:
When you give, you release chemicals – oxytosin [sic] – that make you happy. The act of giving is self-involved, it has enriched my life.
…continue reading Wikipedia and pop culture ~ a special symbiosis
by the Masked Maggot
I saw something today that reminded me that we Wikipedia critics should remember something: the vast majority of the volunteers who write the encyclopedia-article-like pages are in general just good people interested in learning and sharing knowledge. Here’s what I saw (an excerpt from this):
When asked by people why I contribute to Wikipedia my response is not based on altruism (a useful side product), but on pragmatic utility. Wikipedia functions as a “magic notebook”: when I come across an interesting fact which I would like to remember, Wikipedia offers an extension to my natural faculties. I can record the fact, along with any appropriate reference, on the relevant Wikipedia page. I can even start a page where no page existed before. And I don’t even have to remember where I made the note. If I have put in suitable links
…continue reading Happy New Year 2015