Wednesday, February 01, 2006

No Rest for the Wiki

Wikipedia's decision to block congressional IP addresses may not prevent the interested alteration of material about legislators by legislators on the popular online encyclopedia, given how many people do institutional computing from home. But at least Wikipedia is explicitly frowning on the use of the taxpaying public's computer networks and machines for disinformation campaigns.

For those who haven't been following the story, not only were the Wikipedia entries on senators and congressmen padded with additions from their laudatory official biographies, but -- according to a local Washington newspaper -- congressional staffers also deleted salient historical facts, such as the existence of embarrassing campaign contributions and unfulfilled campaign promises. This is an interesting inversion of the political vandalism problem that I discussed at the recent Blogs and Wikis panel at UCI.



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