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How Wikipedia screws up an article – the Hannah Anderson Kidnapping

By Cornpone T. McGillicutty

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Well, folks, it’s time again to see how the sober, competent, and respected editors of the world’s free encyclopedia, Wikipedia, are handling their job—compiling and curating the “sum of human knowledge,” as Mr. Jimmy Wales once put it. As an aside, Jimmy is actually his first name, says so right there on his user page, so it ain’t disrespectful to be calling him that. Jimmy’s just folks.

Back ’round last August I was turning the pages of a newspaper, and read about some terrible goings-on out in California. The LA Times article was well-written enough, but I had a whole bunch of unanswered questions, so I fired up my computer, and visited Wikipedia. It’s durn near my favorite website, it just has so much stuff happening all the time.

Now, Wikipedia has its rules, and its little ways, and its customs. There’s a policy that Wikipedia is not news, but a pillar of Wikipedian belief is that rules should not get in your way if you all are improving the encyclopedia.

Boy howdy, folks were just improving the snot out of our encyclopedia at the Wikipedia article on the Hannah Anderson kidnapping. Just check out that there talk page.

Deep philosophical questions were being addressed, I tell you. The most important one was this conundrum: Are dogs people?

 

That was persistently and passionately argued and campaigned, for and against, fore and aft, on the talk page for this Wikipedia article covering this horrible tragedy in California. You see, folks, in an ‘infobox’ (a box to the right inside the main Wikipedia article, containing what are supposed to be the salient facts about the event), I saw next to the word “Deaths” this declaration: “3 people (including the

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