Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2023-03-20/In the media

Paid editing, plagiarism payouts, proponents of a ploy, and people peeved at perceived preferences: Everything is broken, again.
In the media

Paid Wiki.png
Firms offering Wikipedia editing services – including several who are banned – are looking for customers

We're banned! Hire us! has a piece on the "Top 10 Wikipedia Page Creation Services to Look for in 2023" that acknowledges the conflict-of-interest guideline and then goes straight on to recommend hiring a business. It's this kind of stuff that the paid editing policy was created to address ...

Several of the firms recommended by the article (or is it an advertisement?) are fronts for ABTACH Ltd, who are community banned. The fronts are listed at WP:PAIDLIST. – B

In brief

Consumer Reports - Hamilton Beach Digital toaster.tiff
A toaster. Not invented by Alan MacMasters, whatever you may have read on Wikipedia
  • Alan MacMasters hoax: German YouTube channel Simplicissimus features English-language interviews (with German subtitles) of the (former) students responsible for the Alan MacMasters "inventor of the toaster" hoax (see previous Signpost coverage and the archived hoax article). (The video includes a one-minute ad starting at 01:00.)
  • Disinformation event: A press release by the Italian Embassy in Washington, D.C. (Google translation) reports on an event featuring the U.S. State Department's James Rubin as well as the Wikimedia Foundation's Anti-Disinformation Strategy Lead Costanza Sciubba Caniglia. Held at the Embassy on 9 March 2023, the event focused on "Trust, Truth and Influence in the Digital Age". A recording is available on YouTube here.
  • Annie Rauwerda continues to be in demand: This time it's the Mozilla blog's turn to feature an interview with the Depths of Wikipedia creator.
  • Duck Duck Go AI "DuckAssist" summarizes Wiki articles: Tech Crunch (March 7); Ars Technica, Engadget, Search Engine Journal (March 8)
  • Plagiarism from Wikipedia turned into $1M city payout: "Author of plagiarized Santa Clara County book to keep $1M in taxpayer money" (San Jose Mercury News)
  • Birthday complaint: Kangana Ranaut complains that "Wikipedia is totally hijacked by leftists, most of the information about me like my birthday or my height or background is totally wrong … no matter how much we try to rectify it, it's warped again … anyway many radio channels, fans clubs and well-wishers start to send birthday greetings on 20th March … I don't mind but honestly many are confused because Wikipedia says my birthday is on 20th March and I celebrate on 23rd March, my birthday is on 23rd March …" Reported in the Indian Express, Hindustan Times and others.
  • ChatGPT is the Wikipedia of today: Kids used to be told not to use Wikipedia to cheat, muses a CNET article. Now they're told not to use ChatGPT. They didn't listen then and they won't listen now, the writer argues. (Incidentally, much the same goes for CNET itself; see News and notes.)
  • Golfer should feel inspired by his Wiki "Fairway Jesus" photo: Golf Digest muses that the increasing profile of golfer Tommy Fleetwood may "finally be enough for Wikipedia to update the decades-old profile photo of Fleetwood without his trademark Fairway Jesus look", quoting him as saying "It's not a great one, is it? I should get an update whether I win or not, really. We'll work on it". Well, we can get a new one in there any time if you release a new one under any of these free licenses!
  • Aussies on edit-a-thons: covers an edit-a-thon at the National Gallery of Australia.
  • Rancor over gay marriage userboxes: Anti-gay UK charity Christian Institute says that not allowing userboxes that state you're against gay marriage (per a deletion nomination some three years ago) is "censorship of marriage supporters". Elsewhere, their website clarifies their views on the subject, which are that gays should not be allowed to marry, and that all sex outside marriage is wrong.

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