Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Vicious warrior of the week: Dave souza

Why would anyone be proud of being a "wiki sloth"? Slightly worthier of being proud of, he's a "rouge admin." What the hell does that mean? Apparently it's "Wikipedia humor." What, not even a chuckle? Not surprising. The so-called humor disguises the extreme brutality of the rouge admins, of which Dave souza is an excellent example.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Wikipedia kills Sarah Palin

Did you hear that Sarah Palin died in her home earlier today? Supposedly,

Sarah Palin died in the early mourning [sic] of February 17, 2010, estimated 4:37 AM due to an increased blood pressure in the brain while she slept. Stress brought on by the criticism she has received since running for presidency is believed to have caused this. Sarah Palin's children and husband were asleep at the time leaving them unable to rush Sarah to the hospital. Paramedics arrived on scene not until two hours later, when Sarah Palin's husband woke up, and tried to revive her but by that time she was dead.
No, you haven't heard that? That's because you get your news from a reputable source, like CNN.com, or even Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update. Not from Wikipedia. At 01:00 Greenwich time (already February 18 over there), HeliAce added that paragraph quoted above to the Wikipedia entry on Sarah Palin. It wasn't until 01:36 that it was reverted.

Now, half hour and change is not bad compared to how long it took for the slander against John Seigenthaler to be removed from Wikipedia. But when you take into account that Sarah Palin is these days far better known than John Seigenthaler, a half hour to revert false information about her on Wikipedia is way too long. Supposedly the article is on the watchlists of almost seven hundred Wikipedia users.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Brutal warrior of the week: Bradeos Graphon

Supposedly Bradeos Graphon got married, which explains why he hasn't edited Wikipedia since July of last year. At least his main account hasn't, since July of last year. Even if the wife really does exist, a wiki-warrior as vicious and brutal as Bradeos Graphon would most likely not go into hibernation. It is interesting to note that after he edited his user pages to announce his marriage, he made one edit to an article on tai chi chuan. Hmm...

Friday, February 12, 2010

Reviewing Wikipedia's accuracy: Tulsa Port of Catoosa

Next in my review of Wikipedia's accuracy is the article about the Tulsa Port of Catoosa. The short article hasn't been edited since November of last year. The first thing I looked at was the coordinates given for the place, I plugged them into Google Maps and they seem to be correct.

I think the administrators of the port would be happy with this article. Most of its content seems to be lifeted straight off http://www.tulsaport.com/profile.html with only the PR hyperbole removed. In fact, the last edit to the article last year removed the company's claim that it is the "most inland river-port" in the United States.

However, the claim that the Tulsa Port of Catoosa "is located 15 miles from the Tulsa International Airport" merits further scrutiny. I asked Google Maps to give me driving directions from Tulsa International Airport to the Catoosa port, and it said 15.3 miles. Well, it would be petty of me to make a big deal over 0.3 miles. However, the port's website says it's just 7 miles from the airport, and remember that I gave Google the coordinates I got off Wikipedia. Neither Wikipedia nor tulsaport.com give the criteria for their distance measurements. I'm guessing the port people are measuring from the outermost gate of the port to the outermost gate of the airport, and I won't venture to guess how Wikipedia is measuring.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Applying Wikipedia's rules to Yahoo! Answers

One of the great unwritten rules of Wikipedia is that you don't criticize Wikipedia on Wikipedia. Sure, there is an article called "criticism of Wikipedia," but outside of that article, you're not allowed to criticize Wikipedia in any way. Doing so on your user page is one of the surest ways to get your user page deleted.

Recently, Eddie on Yahoo! Answers asked "Why do some Wikipedia admins insist that the rules of Wikipedia be applied all throughout the Internet?" GrimJack, a notorious Wikipedia apologist on Answers, answered the question with another question: "Do you have any specific examples of this?"

Well, I have a specific example for you: Nihiltres and Coffee seem to think that since Gregory Kohs was banned from Wikipedia, that means he also needs to be banned from Yahoo! Answers. The bastards have gotten him kicked off as both "MyWikiBiz" and "Try MyWikiBiz," the latter within days of the account being signed up. Supposedly Gregory Kohs uses multiple accounts on Answers, but no doubt the hypocritical Nihiltres and Coffee do so too, and on Wikipedia as well (in fact, they might be the same person).

Much more importantly, Gregory Kohs violated the unwritten rule of Wikipedia: You shouldn't criticize Wikipedia, which Nihiltres and Coffee and their various apologist sockpuppets on Answers wish to have extended to Yahoo! Answers. The reason this is important is that so many people turn to Answers to ask whether Wikipedia is reliable or not. There needs to be someone there to tell them that no, Wikipedia is not one bit reliable, and point them to the websites that tell the truth about Wikipedia, like Wikitruth (obviously), Wikipedia Review, Wikipedia Watch, MyWikiBiz, this blog, and even respectable newspapers of record like the New York Times and USA Today.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Vicious warrior of the week: Carlossuarez46

Carlossuarez46 boasts to being a native speaker of both English and Spanish. But something interesting happens when you go to his user page in the Spanish Wikipedia. There he says he wants to be contacted in his user page in the English Wikipedia! Apparently, the Wikipedia wars in the nearly two dozen other language Wikipedias he has user pages in aren't heated enough to his liking. Only the fighting at en.wikipedia.org gives him the adrenaline rush he needs, en.wikipedia is the only platform suitable for him to exert his vicious aggressions. So there you have it: Carlossuarez, warrior and liar.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Reviewing Wikipedia's accuracy: Regimental Sergeant Major

Next in my review of Wikipedia's accuracy is, quite appropriately for a blog about Wikipedia warriors, the article on Regimental Sergeant Major. It could be the case that the article is factually accurate, but they do a lousy job of explaining the concept. From the very first line any reader with a passing familiarity with American military ranks will be confused. A Regimental Sergeant Major is a Warrant Officer in the Royal Army? What? I know they do things differently in the United Kingdom, but that sounds like a huge difference.

You see, back in high school, I was in Army ROTC. I seriously thought about joining the Army, but I have not inhaled, if you catch my drift. Still, I remember what I was taught about the difference between officers and enlisted personnel. A Sergeant Major is a senior enlisted rank. And while no Sergeant Major would mind terribly being addressed as "Sir," I doubt a Warrant Officer would much like being addressed as "Sergeant Major." There has been a lot of discussion on this particular point in the article's talk page, but it looks like a very confused argument between weaklings who would be turned away by even the most overzealous recruiters.

The article mentions that the equivalent in the U. S. Army is Command Sergeant Major, which is an E-9 rank. But the article says nothing about why it's WO-1 in the various military branches of the Commonwealth but not the American military.

Now, I realize that I set out to gauge accuracy, not clarity of presentation. So I will have to table this part of the review until I can consult with someone more knowledgeable on the British military.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Vicious warrior of the month: Encephalon

Among the warriors chosen last month, Encephalon stands out as an example of the warrior spirit, of viciousness and brutality. That's why he's warrior of the month this month.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Brutal warrior of the week: BorgHunter

A Star Trek geek at heart, BorgHunter proudly displays the "Starfleet barnstar" on his user page, an award which was supposedly bestowed on him by the fictional Federation Council. If you've ever wondered why Wikipedia is so disconnected from reality, this gives you a hint why.