Friday, July 23, 2010

Wikipedia: The New History? « The Activist Network

Wikipedia: The New History? « The Activist Network

Check out the Activist Network. But this story about Wikipedia and Israel is tops. Having once edited Wikipedian, I can tell you this story is right-on. If you have time, some writing ability, and the stomach for it, I urge you to go to Wikipedia and give them the real facts about Israel. Here is what the activist network
has to say:

The Not So Silent War of Words

There is an information war being held on the online battlefield of Wikipedia. is an online encyclopedia which is user-base driven and claims 65,000,000 monthly visits from unsuspecting information-seekers. It is also used as a dependable source for research in the mainstream media outlets on a huge range of topics, including the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Unlike any other topic, it is so heated and has instigated its own online Wikipedia conflict, to a point where Wikipedia designated a special division called the IP (Israeli-Palestinian) Section to monitor edited information from contributing users.

The site works in a way that allows anyone with internet access and a user-name to edit Wikipedia articles. This means that although anyone can contribute, the contribution or editor is screened by the fellow editors of that article, not by Wikipedia. For example, if the majority of editors on a particular article are liberal, a conservative editor will be scrutinized and have difficulty retaining an edit before the majority liberal editors easily undo or re-edit.

Having said that, there is a certain amount of objectivity that is maintained in most articles, but many users are learning that when it comes to IP, Wikipedia is not objective or neutral, but filled with Palestinian sympathizers determined to undermine Israel’s legitimacy. They are using unethical tactics by Wikipedia standards to ensure the Israeli position is not presented in its articles. In fact, administrators who are supposed to be maintaining objectivity in IP articles are quick to block pro-Israel contributors and their edits for no legitimate reason.

It has gotten to a dangerous, out-of-hand situation simply because there are many more pro-Palestinian editors than Israel supporters. Lies are being disseminated virally. Thus, any pro-Israel contributor is easily labeled and dismissed as a biased source, while the Palestinian supporters hide behind their screens and continue to shape anti-Israel public opinion and rewrite history. For instance, if one looks up “Deir Yassin,” an article titled the “Deir Yassin Massacre” will be pulled up on Wikipedia. Deir Yassin by numerous accounts was not a massacre and many attempts to change the title were dismissed without giving any weight to the legitimate sources referenced. Clearly, the article itself is riddled with questionable facts and half truths, but the point is that one does not have to get beyond the title to see the bias. For more recent examples of the edit wars we are up against, take a look at the Gaza Flotilla article or the Helen Thomas article. You may be frustrated by what you read, but if you don’t remain apathetic you can actually do something about it.

You see, unlike other media outlets, there is no barrier to entry to Wikipedia, so in minutes you can get involved and make a difference. The more Wiki editors we are, the more impact we can have in countering the heavy anti-Israel slant. This is all you have to do to become an editor:

1) Log on to

2) Click top right to create an account – which requires no personal information

3) Create a non-provocative user ID so as not to give credit to accusations of bias

4) Preferably begin by editing non-controversial articles so as to gain a respected reputation and avoid being labeled as a single purpose account. All edits must be sourced (see Wiki guidelines for acceptable sources)

5) Gradually begin edits on IP articles, taking great care to reference solid sources

Because Wikipedia is a numbers game, once there are enough pro Western editors working in tandem, the anti-Western folks and their sympathizers will hopefully be held to a higher standard of proof. Wikipedia is known to minimize pro-Israel editors relative to the pro-Palestinian editors and they have banned pro-Israel editors from the site without cause, so be sure to keep all correspondence civil so as not to give them an excuse.

If you have any technical questions about editing and more complex Wiki behaviors, or for short instructional seminars, please email....

Contact information at the site here. Go take a look around.

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