Monday, December 21, 2009

ZenTiger Wiki Gate

The Wikipedia is great for background material, but the more contentious the issue the more we need to be suspicious of it. This latest scandal is a little like ClimateGate, but with the assumed power of community collaboration taken for a ride.

This becomes another example [and here's another and another] of why it's becoming increasingly harder to label AGW skeptics "deniers". [Hattip: CR]

U.K. scientist and Green Party activist William Connolley would take on particularly crucial duties.

Connolley took control of all things climate in the most used information source the world has ever known - Wikipedia. Starting in February 2003, just when opposition to the claims of the band members were beginning to gel, Connolley set to work on the Wikipedia site. He rewrote Wikipedia's articles on global warming, on the greenhouse effect, on the instrumental temperature record, on the urban heat island, on climate models, on global cooling. On Feb. 14, he began to erase the Little Ice Age; on Aug.11, the Medieval Warm Period. In October, he turned his attention to the hockey stick graph. He rewrote articles on the politics of global warming and on the scientists who were skeptical of the band. Richard Lindzen and Fred Singer, two of the world's most distinguished climate scientists, were among his early targets, followed by others that the band especially hated, such as Willie Soon and Sallie Baliunas of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, authorities on the Medieval Warm Period.

All told, Connolley created or rewrote 5,428 unique Wikipedia articles. His control over Wikipedia was greater still, however, through the role he obtained at Wikipedia as a website administrator, which allowed him to act with virtual impunity. When Connolley didn't like the subject of a certain article, he removed it - more than 500 articles of various descriptions disappeared at his hand. When he disapproved of the arguments that others were making, he often had them barred - over 2,000 Wikipedia contributors who ran afoul of him found themselves blocked from making further contributions.

1 comment(s):

KG said...

It's a shocker, isn't it?
Many thanks for the link Zen.

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