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Posts Tagged ‘Wikipedia’

Wikipedia editing scandal

Wikipedia cannot say that it was not warned long ago about the corrupt practices going on behind the scenes by some members of its volunteer army of supposedly unpaid editors; an unhealthy culture of manipulation, secrecy, bullying and censorship, driven mostly by the root of all evil: money.

By John Donovan

Like many other people, I am a great admirer of Wikipedia and use it frequently.

The Wikipedia organization is laudably conducted on a non-profit making basis, has no subscription charges and does not allow advertising on Wikipedia articles.

It does however have a serious flaw in respect of Wikipedia articles about businesses.

I have rung alarm bells for several years that such articles are wide open to manipulation by anonymous parties with commercially driven motives.

I forecast that an editing scandal would inflict damage to the reputation of Wikipedia. read more

Integrity of Wikipedia corporate articles corrupted by editing scandal

On 12th October 2010, I published an article containing the warning: “…it is only a matter of time before the culture of subterfuge and deception at Wikipedia results in a scandal.” My prediction has come to pass…

By John Donovan

Jimmy Wales is to be congratulated on being the joint founder of Wikipedia and for the non-profit basis on which the organization is operated. He is obviously a man of integrity deserving of the highest praise.

Unfortunately, many contributors to Wikipedia do not share his high ethical standards and take full advantage of the fact that it is possible to edit Wikipedia corporate articles completely anonymously for financial reward, removing or suppressing negative information. Parties can completely hide any trace of their identity and motive, even their ISP addresses. read more

DOCTORING THE INTERNET

The company also said it had a team which ‘sorts’ negative Wikipedia coverage of clients.

Daily Mail, Wednesday, December 7, 2011 Page 12
Main article: Call to probe lobbying firm ‘that boasted of its access to Cameron’ By Jason Groves, Political Correspondent
Secondary article published under the headline: DOCTORING THE INTERNET
LOBBYISTS claim knowledge of ‘all sorts of dark arts’ that could help corporations and foreign regimes boost their reputations on the internet.
Executives from Bell Pottinger told undercover reporters that they could set up bigus internet blogs to ‘drwown out’ criticism.
They also claimed they could use sophisticated techniques to bury bad news stories on Google by moving them down the search results page.
The company also said it had a team which ‘sorts’ negative Wikipedia coverage of clients. LINK TO DAILY MAIL ARTICLE

RELATED ARTICLES

EXTRACT FROM RELATED ARTICLE BY JOHN DONOVAN PUBLISHED IN OCTOBER 2010

Headline: Ku Klux Klan culture at Wikipedia: secrecy and censorship

“As the founder of MyWikiBiz, I am someone who has, and continues to, manipulate information in Wikipedia on behalf of paying clients. Call it dirty work, but for the most part, I think the way the Wikimedia Foundation is scamming the public about how it is (not) governing the world’s “knowledge” is a far worse state of affairs.” (SEE COMMENT AT FOOT OF ARTICLE BELOW)

By John Donovan

Money is said to be the root of all evil. I have no doubt that it is undermining the integrity and balance of some Wikipedia articles corrupted by parties who have a financial interest in the content.

Wikipedia articles are supposedly written by open and transparent consensus. In reality Wikipedia is built on a platform of secrecy and concealment which leaves articles wide open to censorship and manipulation by anonymous parties with commercially driven motives. Since Wikipedia has articles covering major commercial enterprises, money enters the equation. read more

Wikipedia Foundation non profit status at risk?

COMMENT RECEIVED FROM USA

Wikipedia/Wikimedia is a non-profit organization/foundation. From their website they claim to be a 501(3c) corporation. As such it enjoys tax-exempt status here in the States.

If for profit businesses are contributing to Wikipedia, and Wikipedia is in turn sponsoring informational web pages on those businesses, which are nothing less than sanitized advertisements for those businesses, then the Wikipedia organization may be violating the terms of its non-profit tax-exempt charter and US law.

Given that businesses have found a clever way to ‘get around the rules’ and sanitize their Wiki pages for image and commercial promotional purposes it behooves Wikipedia to separate out the web pages of operating for profit businesses /organizations from the rest of their data base. This could become their ‘commercial’ data base for business propaganda for which they could charge an annual fee and corporations control what went on their pages. read more

Ku Klux Klan culture at Wikipedia: secrecy and censorship

Royal Dutch Shell management is obsessed with my Wikipedia editing/contributions. Among the documents Shell has been legally obliged to supply to me are several Shell internal documents and emails, some marked confidential, which discussed my editing on Wikipedia and the possible impact on shareholders and students. There was also discussion about the risk of Shell being caught if it tried to edit the material.

The energy blog sponsored by greenwashing champions, Royal Dutch Shell

By John Donovan

The article below “Could the answer really be blowing in the wind?”, comes from a blog site sponsored by the champions of greenwashing, Royal Dutch Shell Plc: 

http://scienceblogs.com/energy/about.php

Shell Connections: It is interesting to note that a Wikipedia Administrator, William M. Connolley, who has been hostile towards the content of the “Royaldutchshellplc.com” Wikipedia article and active in editing the “Controversies surrounding Royal Dutch Shell” Wikipedia article (deleting large chunks of content on grounds on inadequate quality of reference sources), is the same William M. Connolley who is now a contributor to the Shell sponsored blog. It’s a small world. No doubt in view of this development he will declare a potential conflict of interest before carrying out further editing on Wikipedia articles relating to Shell.  read more

Multimillion dollar lawsuit against Shell longest running insider trading case in New Zealand: trial resumes today, 19 May 2008

Former Southern Petroleum investors, who are seeking tens of millions of dollars from oil giant Shell in New Zealand's longest running insider trading case, have been told the price paid for their shares could have been up to 14 times greater.

Shell Oil weighs appeal of $66M verdict

DUNCAN, Okla. (AP) - Shell Oil Company is considering an appeal of a $66 million verdict against the oil giant this month awarded by a Stephens County jury in a royalties payment case.

Plaintiffs win $66 million from Shell Oil after making the mistake of relying on Shell’s “honesty and integrity”

The verdict awards the plaintiffs about $13 million for owed interest payments of about $1 million, plus interest, and $53 million in punitive damages. Calvert said his clients were relying on Shell, then Maynard's, honesty and integrity.

"When someone gets a statement from an oil company, it is very difficult to discover if something has been concealed or hidden,” he said. "So, there is a certain amount of trust required by the system, and Shell breached that trust.”

Some Oil Companies Settle Suit Over Chemical Cleanup

Rick Wallace of Wallace, King, Domike & Reiskin, who represented Chevron and Shell in the settlement, said that the companies should not be penalized, because MTBE was added in response to federal rules seeking to promote cleaner combustion.

Oil companies could face payments in addition to $422M in gasoline additive lawsuit settlement

Companies including ConocoPhillips, Chevron Corp., BP PLC's BP America Inc., Royal Dutch Shell PLC's Shell Oil Co., Valero Energy Corp. and Marathon Oil Corp. agreed to pay $422 million (€275 million) to settle lawsuits claiming wells were contaminated by MTBE, a chemical that was once a key gasoline ingredient.

Shell Oil under investigation by U.S. Department of Justice for potential violations of U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

By John Donovan
17 March 2008

Shell had today announced that it is under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice for potential violations of the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and has also instigated an internal investigation.

Shell has also confirmed that it is cooperating with active investigations being carried out by the US Department of Justice and the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. Shell has admitted that it may face fines and costs.

The following is taken from page 15 of the *Royal Dutch Shell Plc 2007 Annual Report published today… read more

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