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Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005, 12:33 am
njyoder: Wales whitewashes his own article.

Wales has violated a very clear Wikipedia guideline and decided to edit his own article to whitewash facts. He made several changes to exclude the very important role of Larry Sanger, including denying that he's a co-founder. He also edited it, to state as a matter of fact, that Bomis had no soft pornography. Looking through the google cache, somehow I have to wonder how he defines pornography if here are buck naked women in provactive poses and ones chewing on each other's teets. His only defense is that he dosen't think that R-rated movies can be pornographic, but given the obvious R-rated soft pornographic movies on Showtime and Cinemax late at night, his point doesn't stand.

As a result, Wales made alterations to the Bomis website to erase all the evidence. The babes.bomis.com site has now been taken down to hide its content and he altered the robots.txt so that it would be excluded from archive.org. There are still some images in google's image cache (which I now saved), but they will be gone from the cache since his modification. He's obviously trying to engage in revisionsit history, it's hypocrisy of the worst kind.

Wikipedia Founder Edits Own Bio

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 05:38 am (UTC)

Agreed. People used to tell the story about Wikipedia being started from pornography money in #wikipedia

One day, Jimbo happened to be there. He said it wasn't true. So I asked him for the truth. He wouldn't divulge it.

Same thing happened on Wikipedia-l. He claims Wikipedia wasn't founded on soft porn, but he refuses to explain babes.bomis.com which was still up at the time.

I've not liked him for some time now, but I didn't think he'd stoop so low as this.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 05:44 am (UTC)

Yeah, and the sad part is the numerous people have blind faith in him and will defend all of his actions regardless of how hypocritical they are. I've seen him advocating overriding community consensus when it pleases him as well. He CAN do what he wants with the website, but that doesn't make it honest to do. He presents it as being an open encyclopedia, so it is both dishonest and a slap in the face to all the numerous editors when he violates its principles.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 06:07 am (UTC)

Retconning baaaaaad. -_-

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 06:24 am (UTC)

If we lived in a more civilized/advanced society where there wasn't a stigma against porn which would automatically make it impossible for you to become any sort of public figure (which Wales must necessarily become if wikipedia is to grow much further), then he wouldn't have had to do this.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 06:34 am (UTC)

If Wales was more civilized, he wouldn't have lied, whitewashed the truth and violated his own principles. I'm sorry that you think Wales should act like a archetypal politician to garner support.

If he had just been honest from the beginning, it wouldn't have mattered. The small number of people who would stop using the encyclopedia because he made porn wouldn't have any significant effect.

Oh and Arnold Schwazanegger has become a big public figure despite engaging in highly promiscuous behavior. Hell, he was elected mainly by conservatives.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 06:59 am (UTC)

Is there something that can be done?

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 07:11 am (UTC)

You can't really punish Wales, since he has the highest authority. You can, however, fight to have his article represent the facts correctly. This will be hard since it appears some admins are reverting good faith edits (ones suggesting he has photos of "soft pornography" ratther than "glamour photography") as vandalism.

Fortunately, my latest edit stating that Sanger contested Wales' statement regarding founding has stuck. Given the way I phrased it, it would be be even more of a blatant NPOV violation for them to try to remove it.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 07:02 am (UTC)

Damn, I liked being ignorant. Wikipedia was a cool new thing. I don't want to know, at a place were good-faith edits are the philosophy, that the founder is being hypocritical. I even donated 40 bucks to the previous fundraiser!

And yet, I don't have any regrets, or anything. I still support it. We could just call this... growing pains or something.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 07:13 am (UTC)

Keep in mind that Wikimedia is very well funded, they have all the money they need to run the servers (although that doesn't prevent all kinds of technical screw ups). So running Wikimedia websites is a non-issue.

The money is being filtered through the Wikimedia foundation, largely to donate to their pet charities (e.g. money to starving kids in Africa). I don't think most people have any idea about that though, they probably think their money is necessary to run the website, when really it's going to charities they are unaware of.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 07:52 am (UTC)
adapt: enough.

Editing your own article is discouraged and often in poor taste, but not prohibited.

I've edited my own entry from time to time for accuracy and libel, readily admitting that it's not the best practice, but sometimes is the only option.

You'd probably do the same thing. So quick to judge.

This is a non-issue.

--- Adrian Lamo

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 07:55 am (UTC)
njyoder: Re: enough.

So you'd edit your own article to whitewash the truth? It's interesting that you don't think POV pushing and factual inaccuracies in your own article aren't forbidden.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 08:19 am (UTC)

For a moment, I thought you meant "Wales, Prince of". I don't know if Prince Charles has an account on Wikipedia, though...

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 08:36 am (UTC)

I'll let you be our brave champion of wikijustice while I keep myself busy with relatively meaningless articles about NFL has-beens and Southern colleges.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 04:00 pm (UTC)

Ditto, except for me it's primarily dead white scientists and, once in a blue moon, Japanese pop singers.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 12:14 pm (UTC)

Re co-founder status, a quick look at the page just now shows "On 15 January 2001, Wales, Larry Sanger and several others set up Wikipedia, a similar wiki-based site intended for collaboration on early encyclopedic content before submitting it to Nupedia for peer review." ... but yes, there is always a temptation to edit a page that is written about you (as, in fact, there is about me and the temptation to expand/explain it is very strong - so far I've managed to not do so). With any body of work there are always some parts which will be POV no matter how much you try for that not to be so ...

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 12:32 pm (UTC)

Minor edits and basic factual corrections/addictions are fine, but anything else is out. From a brief look at your article, that seems to be what you've done.

In large part, it's there to prevent self-congratulatory modifications. This is especially true because just because something is factual, doesn't mean it's appropriate. Someone might decide to, for example, list every single tiny award they've received since kindergarten, but it's really not appropriate to list insignificant things which aren't directly related to the person's claim to fame.

There is also the problem of trying to basically downplay or even delete criticisms. There is a slight problem with this and the RMS article. He will occassionally pop in and so something like put up a point-by-point rebuttal to every criticism made by him. He'll just insert "RMS responds that..." and basically make it a ridiculous, POV point->counter-point thing.

If you REALLY want something added that may be controversial, you should ask on the talk page and if it's reasonable, I'm sure other editors would oblige.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 02:13 pm (UTC)

On the grounds of WP:AGF, I must ask: were these edits before or after the guideline being stabilished?

Myself, I would have edit my own article in his place if it wasn't a guideline yet. No doubt about it.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 11:11 pm (UTC)

They were long after it was established, he knew better but didn't care.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 03:26 pm (UTC)

Oh, cry us a fucking river.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 03:50 pm (UTC)
miwasatoshi: Woo, tangent!

That sounds suspiciously like Justin Timberlake's career since the 2004 Superbowl.

Wed, Dec. 21st, 2005 03:55 pm (UTC)

This is the first time in a long time I've seen a dedicated troll don the metaphorical gear of a crusader.

Thu, Dec. 22nd, 2005 02:02 am (UTC)

I love how all of these articles are coming out from the same few people recently that are anti-Wikipedia and have no basis at all [need I mention the horrendously ridiculous pedophilia 'issue'?]

This is becoming much like an election, where we must bring up the whole Bomis thing every five fucking minutes.

As schnee says «Oh, cry us a fucking river.»

Thu, Dec. 22nd, 2005 02:05 am (UTC)

Did you even read the article? Please don't comment until you have, from start to finish.

Thu, Dec. 22nd, 2005 04:00 pm (UTC)

this is amazing, you people spawned 64 comments in about 2 days.
why does the original post have a date after the first 5ish comments were posted?
snaps for nathan

Thu, Dec. 22nd, 2005 04:40 pm (UTC)

Comment dates are given in your local time; post dates (IIRC) are not.