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  • We exist to shine the light of scrutiny into the dark crevices of Wikipedia and its related projects; to examine the corruption there, along with its structural flaws; and to inoculate the unsuspecting public against the torrent of misinformation, defamation, and general nonsense that issues forth from one of the world’s most frequently visited websites, the “encyclopedia that anyone can edit.”
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How Jimmy Wales rode Tony Blair’s coattails

How Jimmy Wales married worked his way into Tony Blair’s circle and rode his coattails to legitimacy and comfort.

…continue reading How Jimmy Wales rode Tony Blair’s coattails

Wikipedia’s Balkanisation

By Andreas Kolbe, with input from Eric Barbour

Wikipedia is the encyclopedia anyone can edit – anonymously, under an assumed name. Credentials are unnecessary. The Wikimedia Foundation does not even make any provision to verify the credentials of actual subject matter experts who are happy to edit under their real names. As a result, such experts have no more standing in Wikipedia than any other anonymous contributor. At the same time, contributors are free to claim qualifications they do not have – sometimes with amusing (or terrifying, depending on your point of view) results.

Wikipedia is also one of the top Google links for almost any topic under the sun. Enter anything at all in Google, and a Wikipedia article is usually found near the top of the search listing – a reflection of the site’s top-10 Alexa ranking. This visibility, combined with the ease with which anyone can change content at any time, makes Wikipedia an irresistible magnet for social entrepreneurs, activists and extremists of all kinds.

Politically motivated Norwegian mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik famously exhorted his sympathisers to edit Wikipedia to create new truths in support of his right-wing agenda. He even edited it himself (as did Pentagon shooter John Patrick Bedell and Sandy Hook shooter Adam Lanza). Advice on how to edit Wikipedia can be found on white supremacist website Stormfront.

According to the Wikipedia myth, the presence of extremists among its editor base poses no problem. Opposing activists, so the thinking goes, will balance articles. At best, however, this adversarial approach produces articles dominated by duelling extremist sources, with moderate and mainstream opinions underrepresented; moderates simply don’t care enough to engage in daily wars over article wordings. At worst, as the number of Wikipedia administrators continues to dwindle and the number of articles rises to

…continue reading Wikipedia’s Balkanisation

Jimmy Wales, Kazakhstan, Tony Blair and Wikipedia: A Timeline

For an overview of this story, please see last week’s post, Jimmy Wales in: The Dictator and I.

The following timeline, compiled by a group of Wikipediocracy site trustees, chronicles some less-well-known facts about the development of the Kazakh-language Wikipedia, its ties to the Kazakhstan government, the Wikimedia Foundation, Jimmy Wales, Tony Blair, and other related persons and entities. We hope that this raw data will aid further discussion of this topic in the New Year. To view or participate in a forum discussion on this topic, please click here. If you have additional relevant information not included here, please contact us at media@wikipediocracy.com.

2007 16 January 2007 – Jimmy Wales is named a Young Global Leader by The World Economic Forum in Davos, as is his eventual wife, Kate Garvey, formerly Tony Blair’s diary secretary. Tony Blair also speaks at the event, his third consecutive annual visit. (Blair will become co-chairman of the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in 2008, and Tony Blair Associates will later form deep business ties with the Kazakhstan government. Garvey will go on to a director role with Freud Communications, where she will count the Tony Blair Faith Foundation as a client. She will wed Jimmy Wales on 6 October 2012 – his third marriage.) 30 March 2007 – Oralgaisha Omarshanova disappears. She is a journalist working at Zakon i Pravosudiye (Kazakh: Закон и правосудие), a newspaper based in Almaty, Kazakhstan, investigating and publicizing government corruption. September 2007 – Jimmy Wales and other World Economic Forum Young Global Leaders attend the WEF “Summer Davos” summit (“Annual Meeting of the New Champions”) in Dalian, China. 2008 January 2008 – Tony Blair co-chairs the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos. 14–16 March 2008 – Richard Branson assembles a meeting between Jimmy Wales, Tony Blair, Vinod

…continue reading Jimmy Wales, Kazakhstan, Tony Blair and Wikipedia: A Timeline