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Wikipedia Forcing Editors To Disclose If They're Paid

Soulskill posted about 3 months ago | from the because-people-who-edit-wikipedia-for-money-will-happily-obey-rules dept.

Wikipedia 135

mpicpp sends word that the Wikimedia Foundation is updating its Terms of Use to keep track of editors who are paid for the changes they make. This follows last fall's discovery that a small industry had arisen around public relations firms running Wikipedia editing campaigns for paying clients. The Foundation now says, "If you are paid to edit, you will need to disclose your paid editing to comply with the new Terms of Use. You need to add your affiliation to your edit summary, user page, or talk page, to fairly disclose your perspective. ... Specific policies on individual Wikimedia projects, or relevant laws in your country (such as those prohibiting fraudulent advertising), may require further disclosure or prohibit paid advocacy editing altogether." They add, "undisclosed paid advocacy editing is a black hat practice that can threaten the trust of Wikimedia’s volunteers and readers."

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Transparent Loot (-1, Offtopic)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about 3 months ago | (#47256143)

Transparent loot While breeze they shoot Seems as big a win As visible chin Burma Shave

Re:Transparent Loot (0, Troll)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about 3 months ago | (#47256163)

Transparent loot
While breeze they shoot
Seems as big a win
As visible chin
Burma Shave

(break failure)

Re:Transparent Loot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256215)

Are you being paid to first-post nonsense?

Re:Transparent Loot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256365)

Sorry, I keep forgetting that we've entered the Age of Humorlessness.

Re:Transparent Loot (1, Funny)

NotQuiteReal (608241) | about 3 months ago | (#47256963)

This is a "news" forum, not open mic night... maybe.

Re:Transparent Loot (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 3 months ago | (#47257163)

This is a "news" forum.

News to me..

Re:Transparent Loot (2)

MRe_nl (306212) | about 3 months ago | (#47257333)

(pushes ColdWetDog offstage)

"I for one would rather first post rubbish for free on slashdot than be paid to edit Wikipedia. That sounds like a thoroughly unpleasant task, certainly on certain subjects".

(braces for impact)

Oh, good (3, Funny)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about 3 months ago | (#47256197)

That'll put a stop to it.

Re:Oh, good (4, Insightful)

Kkloe (2751395) | about 3 months ago | (#47256327)

this is most probably so if editors who are caught doing stuff when being paid for it and not disclosing it can have all that they have done removed without the need to do a investigation if what they wrote is truth or not

Re:Oh, good (1)

fredprado (2569351) | about 3 months ago | (#47256673)

If it is true let someone who is not paid by an interested party to do it again.The only mistake is that people affiliated to political parties should also be ineligible to be editors,

Re:Oh, good (5, Interesting)

s.petry (762400) | about 3 months ago | (#47256847)

You can't restrict this to just political party affiliation. Most 3 letter government agencies pay for edits under various programs, each as potentially nefarious as the former.

Try correcting something on the Sarin Gas page for example (I had this edit war personally) where someone from a Government IP address last year added a statement that "Assad and Syria were proven to have used Sarin on it's own population". The UN investigations have repeatedly shown that the FSA rebels have used chemical weapons against the populace, and the FSA has been caught smuggling materials from Turkey on several occasions. The UN has never ever concluded that Assad or the Syrian army has done any such thing.

After making a simple correction to "The US alleges" the edit war was on, and every day a new Government IP would have new edits attempting to make it appear factual that Assad had used Sarin on the Syrian population. Every day I would remove and correct information. I don't get paid to edit, so gave up after about a month. It was simply too much time to invest. This is one of many pages edited purely for propaganda purposes by the US Government (ARIN [whois] is free to use, so you can easily see what agency is making edits, even when anonymously).

Re:Oh, good (1)

preaction (1526109) | about 3 months ago | (#47257017)

Perhaps you were supposed to [citation needed]?

Re:Oh, good (1)

s.petry (762400) | about 3 months ago | (#47258019)

Because Sarin Gas and Wikipedia are not enough information? Come now, you know how to find it.

Re:Oh, good (1)

JazzLad (935151) | about 2 months ago | (#47258309)

Yeah, he meant on their assertion that "Assad and Syria were proven to have used Sarin on it's own population" you should have appended it with [citation needed]. Would have thought a Wikipedia editor would have gotten that one ...

Re:Oh, good (1)

Prien715 (251944) | about 3 months ago | (#47257033)

Someone from a Government IP address last year added a statement that "Assad and Syria were proven to have used Sarin on it's own population"....Every day I would remove and correct information

I thought the grammar police worked for the government?

Re:Oh, good (1)

fredprado (2569351) | about 3 months ago | (#47257165)

You are right. Wikipedia should have better rules and checks against propaganda and manipulation from whatever source it may be, or it will become increasingly irrelevant and unreliable for anything that is related to History or Politics.

dumbasses (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47257675)

You do realize that the government is a collection of people? Yup, all of my edits show up under a military IP. It's me, I'm not paid to edit shit, mostly to just sit here in case we decide to end civilization.

Re:Oh, good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47259327)

Whats more is you now are most likely being watched closely by those same people.

Re:Oh, good (1)

jafiwam (310805) | about 3 months ago | (#47256765)

this is most probably so if editors who are caught doing stuff when being paid for it and not disclosing it can have all that they have done removed without the need to do a investigation if what they wrote is truth or not

They should also black-list the payers of this type of activity. A week or two for each infraction. There's one important aspect about Wikipedia and that is it isn't about marketing and selling shit. They have the rest of the entire Internet for that, so it shouldn't be tolerated.

Re:Oh, good (2)

almitydave (2452422) | about 3 months ago | (#47257999)

this is most probably so if editors who are caught doing stuff when being paid for it and not disclosing it can have all that they have done removed without the need to do a investigation if what they wrote is truth or not

They should also black-list the payers of this type of activity. A week or two for each infraction. There's one important aspect about Wikipedia and that is it isn't about marketing and selling shit. They have the rest of the entire Internet for that, so it shouldn't be tolerated.

Perhaps a dire warning should appear in banner form at the top of any article about a company that pays shills to edit Wikipedia stating that it has been caught doing so, and that information about that company on Wikipedia portraying it in a positive light can't be trusted.

Re:Oh, good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47258955)

And of course, a small donation to Jimmy will get it removed.

Re:Oh, good (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 2 months ago | (#47259289)

Perhaps a dire warning should appear in banner form at the top of any article about a company that pays shills to edit Wikipedia

Excellent idea, it's not enough to punish dishonest shills, their paymaster can always hire a new shill. Kill the profit and commercial entities will cease this practice.

Re:Oh, good (1)

AthanasiusKircher (1333179) | about 2 months ago | (#47259315)

Perhaps a dire warning should appear in banner form at the top of any article about a company that pays shills to edit Wikipedia stating that it has been caught doing so, and that information about that company on Wikipedia portraying it in a positive light can't be trusted.

Wikipedia editors have all sorts of biases. When an article is popular enough to get the attention of lots of editors, there usually are enough to keep it from becoming too crazy.

But start dipping into the more esoteric subjects on Wikipedia, and you're bound to encounter little "fiefdoms" where an editor or a small group have established their domain of truth. It's not so much that they don't have adequately sourced information most of the time, as the sources they use are not indicative of current scholarly consensus or even accepted facts.

It often takes a huge edit war with a new editor or group fighting wiki-lawyering battles to dethrone these folks, and the fear is that the article will just get reverted back a month later when the conflict has died down and people have stopped looking.

Bottom line: if you want to start putting up "dire warning" banners about editors who have been caught putting misleading (or outright false) information on a page, you'd have to warn readers than a significant percentage of the information on Wikipedia can't be trusted.

Re:Oh, good (3, Insightful)

i kan reed (749298) | about 3 months ago | (#47256335)

No, but it's step 1.

If [asshole practice] isn't explicitly against the rules, then that's the first defense any person who engages in [asshole practice] rushes to.

Editing again... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256513)

"Wikipedia Forcing Editors To Disclose If They're Paid"

That sounds like it was written by a high school kid. A more palatable headline would be:

"Wikipedia Forcing Editors To Disclose Compensation"

Now that sounds like could have been written by a professional (even though the notion is laughable here at slashdot). Pro tip: competence in writing earns you respect, even if you don't give a damn yourself about competence in writing.

Re:Editing again... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256553)

Pro tip: competence in writing earns you respect, even if you don't give a damn yourself about competence in writing.

What is and is not 'good' writing is subjective.

I have no problem with the first title. Language is about communication, and if you get the message across, then all is well.

Re:Editing again... (1)

cream wobbly (1102689) | about 3 months ago | (#47256737)

I don't see how the GP didn't successfully make a subjective observation:

That sounds like it was written by a high school kid.

Re:Editing again... (1)

cream wobbly (1102689) | about 3 months ago | (#47256663)

There's me thinking you were getting at the use of the word "forcing" to describe a new policy requiring disclosure.

Wikipedia policy requires editors to disclose compensation

(Note how I did that for free.)

Re:Editing again... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47258087)

Pro tip: Saying "Pro tip" makes you sound like a 12 yo girl on the internet.

How's that taste? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47258993)

Now that sounds like could have been written

I love it when grammar Nazi's eat crow. :D

Re:How's that taste? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47259025)

I also love it when I do the same thing. Is there some kind of "law" for this thing similar to Murphy's Law? If there isn't, there should be!

Lipstick on a Pig (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256463)

Paid or not, they are "anyone".

That wikipedia is taken seriously as a source of information still astounds me. When anyone can post and say anything, its no better than asking your friends at the local Bar.

Lookout! Here come the Wikipedia Stooges to mod this down!

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256507)

When anyone can post and say anything, its no better than asking your friends at the local Bar.

[Citation needed]

You are writing in an unencyclopedic way.

Works fine for many topics ... (1)

perpenso (1613749) | about 3 months ago | (#47256649)

That wikipedia is taken seriously as a source of information still astounds me.

It depends entirely on the topic. Want to know about some mathematical concept, it usually works just fine. Some non-controversial historical fact, again, it usually works just fine. Want to know about something that is a politicized issue, good luck, although still possibly a better source than the news shows where many get their info.

Here's a hint: look at the references, they are often an indicator of the quality of the page and a great source of additional information.

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (5, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 3 months ago | (#47256789)

That wikipedia is taken seriously as a source of information still astounds me.

What's astounding is how valuable and reliable a resource Wikipedia has become.

I know people love to scoff at Wikipedia (especially when they're losing arguments) but the fact remains that as a "source of information", this free website that allows anyone to edit posts has become the most useful and important reference resource the world has ever known.

Wikipedia is a hell of a lot more transparent than any encyclopedia ever published, and as long as you realize that Wikipedia is the beginning of your research, not the end, it will never steer you wrong. What's surprising is that the same people who look down their noses at Wikipedia probably believe that the Encyclopedia Britannica was an accurate source of unbiased information.

It remains living proof that the "crowd" can make something awesome and that free can be great.. Even the people who scoff at the idea of Wikipedia and who love to tell you who that they can't believe anyone uses Wikipedia use it regularly. And if they find information that goes against their own beliefs, they can always tell themselves, "Well, it's just Wikipedia" and can go on believing whatever crap they were going to keep believing no matter what information they were given.

I'm trying to think of a readily available reference that's ever been as useful as Wikipedia, and I'm not coming up with anything. Maybe someone can offer a suggestion?

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 3 months ago | (#47256881)

I'm trying to think of a readily available reference that's ever been as useful as Wikipedia, and I'm not coming up with anything. Maybe someone can offer a suggestion?

Google [google.com] ?

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 3 months ago | (#47256899)

archive.org is pretty useful too.

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 3 months ago | (#47257037)

Ah, now archive.org is a wonderful site, that I have supported for years. However, it is not as comprehensive as Wikipedia and is limited to material that is in the "public domain" or has Creative Commons licensing. I can not look up the spellings of pre-Columbian Mayan rulers on archive.org. But if I need footage from a 1947 documentary on ant colonies shot by one of the greatest nature cinematographers of all time and want to download it so I could edit the footage into a home-brewed monster movie, Archive.org is where I'm going.

It's not really like Wikipedia, but archive.org is a fantastic site and a very good community of users. Valuable, for sure. Anyone who is not familiar with it needs to go take a good look.

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47257411)

In fact archive.org has very comprehensive [archive.org] material.

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about 3 months ago | (#47258029)

Where oh where is a +1, Troll mod when you really need one? :)

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (4, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 3 months ago | (#47256975)

Except Google has been polluted by paid search results.

And it's certainly not free. In fact, given their level of data collection and the lack of transparency, you could say it's among the most expensive and least reliable ways to collect information.

Do you know of a way to challenge Google search results or rankings?

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 3 months ago | (#47257239)

You obviously didn't check the link....

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 2 months ago | (#47259465)

you could say it's among the most expensive and least reliable ways to collect information.

You could, but it would make you sound foolish to anyone born before 1990. Public information is messy, uncertain, and contradictory no matter what the format, sorting the shit from the clay is a teachable skill. Bitching about a search engine not handing you the answer you want on a silver platter won't improve your skills, it just gives you an excuse to wallow in your ignorance.

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

praxis (19962) | about 3 months ago | (#47257027)

I don't think google.com is a reference. It indexes a variety of information. It does not vet the information.

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47257887)

I'm trying to think of a readily available reference that's ever been as useful as Wikipedia, and I'm not coming up with anything. Maybe someone can offer a suggestion?

urbandictionary.com [urbandictionary.com] ?

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (3, Insightful)

AthanasiusKircher (1333179) | about 2 months ago | (#47259257)

That wikipedia is taken seriously as a source of information still astounds me.

What's astounding is how valuable and reliable a resource Wikipedia has become.

There's a difference between accurate and reliable. Wikipedia's accuracy, overall, is astoundingly good for a crowd-sourced entity. Wikipedia's reliability, on the other hand, is TERRIBLE.

Why? Because it's the encyclopedia that "anyone can edit." The whole conception of Wikipedia was great, and we've built up this amazing base of reasonably good information. But it's constantly fighting against the "barbarians at the gates." From the petty squabbles, wiki-lawyering, and edit wars to the constant barrage of vandalism and spam, it's a wonder the damn thing appears as "together" as it is on any given day.

But if you start to look hard, you see the cracks. Anyone who uses Wikipedia on a regular basis has seen random vandalism. I've seen vandals who have fun just changing random digits in dates or something. It's insane. Say all you want about Encyclopedia Britannica's errors, but it is relatively stable -- when you opened the book the next time, it wouldn't have randomly inserted typographical errors and deliberate mistakes thrown in.

Wikipedia is a hell of a lot more transparent than any encyclopedia ever published, and as long as you realize that Wikipedia is the beginning of your research, not the end, it will never steer you wrong.

Except when you happen upon a page in the middle of vandalism or some stupid edit war and see something that's completely misleading. Back when I used to edit Wikipedia occasionally, I'd go looking for the stuff. It's much more common than you'd think, and every new bot they create to try to keep things clean is fighting a useless war against stupidity.

It remains living proof that the "crowd" can make something awesome and that free can be great.. Even the people who scoff at the idea of Wikipedia and who love to tell you who that they can't believe anyone uses Wikipedia use it regularly.

I don't scoff at Wikipedia, but I don't believe a damn thing I read on it until I've verified it elsewhere. Too many random edits and too many encounters with all sorts of vandalism have taught me to be suspicious.

I'm trying to think of a readily available reference that's ever been as useful as Wikipedia, and I'm not coming up with anything.

How about a BETTER Wikipedia? If we truly have achieved this great resource, isn't it time to change the rules? What works best to grow your mom-and-pop restaurant into a small chain over a few years isn't necessarily the way to stay on top as a stable global business over a period of decades. It's time to lock down good pages on relatively stable topics, verify expert editors and get them to oversee future changes.

I'm all in favor of allowing anyone to still submit suggested edits, but maybe they could be on some other version of the page than the default that most people see from search engines -- the "unstable" or "experimental" bleeding-edge version. And consensus of knowledgable editors can move suggested changes to the "stable" version when they are justified.

That's the only way you're ever going to get something that's actually "reliable," to use your term. Right now, there's way too much time spent by volunteers fighting back the barbarians at the gates (and often new volunteers who are unfamiliar with Wikipedia's convention and stumble into random disputes or fights without knowing it... and thus are driven away). Instead, that energy could be focused on creating a stable, established baseline version, without worrying that any new IP address showing up could be trying to destroy what others have created.

Wikipedia is okay, but it could be great. But it reached a plateau in terms of administrative function maybe 5-7 years ago. It's time to move onto the next stage.

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

cream wobbly (1102689) | about 3 months ago | (#47256793)

The point the siblings are making (intentionally or not) is that you can trust what you read on Wikipedia when it's backed with credible sources.

Unless the bar you go to is frequented by librarians.

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47257369)

Well there is a bar in Columbus, Ohio that is called the Library. The bartenders could be called "librarians".

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

davydagger (2566757) | about 3 months ago | (#47257427)

as compared to what?

this "anyone" only sounds scary, until you realize that most mainstream information sources are produced and editted by the worst of people, for the worst of reasons. The worst possible sceneario for wikipedia are the form of scum who run traditional media(world wide, please thing of who runs most media sources world wide), showing up an engaging in edit wars, like we see now.

But lets face it traditional media, is all the scum, without any honest regular joes.

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about 3 months ago | (#47257989)

Pulling up http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L... [wikipedia.org] in the comfort and safety of my own home was heaps easier and cheaper than going to a bar where I'd be any chance at all to get useful info regarding that topic, especially when you figure in the airfare to Beijing and back.

BTW, you're aware that "lookout" is a noun, and "look out" is a verb, and that they're even pronounced differently, right?

Re:Lipstick on a Pig (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about 3 months ago | (#47258011)

Where I'd HAVE, bloody HAVE any chance at all blah blah blah, thanks very much.

*bangs head against monitor*

Re:Oh, good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256783)

It's not designed to. It's like Snowden's question to Putin. It's designed to get a statement on record that can then be examined for truthfulness. You can't be caught lying when you haven't made a statement on the record.

Re:Oh, good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47257995)

Yes I'm sure the Wiki on Blu-Ray will now include all the downfalls of that DRM filled format. Seriously, go try to edit it with anything bad, but true about Blu-ray, in less than 10 minutes it'll be deleted.

Enforcement? (2)

pushing-robot (1037830) | about 3 months ago | (#47256213)

Also, criminals are asked to kindly inform local law enforcement before committing their next crime.

Re:Enforcement? (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about 3 months ago | (#47256333)

And politicians will be required to tell us if they're dishonest, and police officers to notify us when they're on the take.

I predict this will do nothing at all for the problem.

People will ignore it, or someone will set up a 'think tank' or something which pays people for some suitably abstract thing, while in reality paying them to shill on Wikipedia.

Re:Enforcement? (1)

Jeff Flanagan (2981883) | about 3 months ago | (#47256529)

Presumably IP bans if anyone is caught editing for pay without disclosure. The policy has to be in place before they can enforce it and get rid of the corrupt editors as they're identified.

Enforcement? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256219)

It's a good idea, but how can it be enforced? And what about those who are affiliated with a particular company or government but not necessarily paid to make edits?

They aren't the problem (5, Informative)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 3 months ago | (#47256225)

I doubt that paid editors are a problem compared to the volunteer power tripping crazies that control the majority of Wikipedia.

Re:They aren't the problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256349)

How dare you imply such a thing!

Bah, where's the blasted Revert button on this page?

Re:They aren't the problem (5, Interesting)

TWX (665546) | about 3 months ago | (#47256377)

I used to try to contribute, but for this very reason I don't anymore. I already have to deal with self-important busybodies in things that I'm required to do, I'm not going to deal with them in things that are supposed to be enjoyable pastimes.

Re:They aren't the problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256615)

The British did support with paid funding of ISIS...

Re:They aren't the problem (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256935)

Same here. Even on articles about supposedly non-controversial subjects like vintage consumer-electronic devices, I got fed up with constantly having to defend my edits from being reverted or superceded by people who insisted that my contributions constituted "original research" or "personal recollections" because there was no link to a supporting source, even though my source was the actual service or user manual for the device in question. The reason there's no link? Because there was no "interwebs" back in the 1950s, 60s, or 70s when this device was sold, and none of the owners of the few surviving examples of it have scanned and uploaded their manuals.

Why not scan and upload mine, then? I *did* -- and then got dinged by the self-styled "original research police" for committing the unforgiveable sin of trying to drive traffic to my blog or web page by linking to "personal, original material" even though the "original material" was an unretouched 300DPI scan of the manufacturer's own service manual. Even worse were the ones who insisted on reverting my changes as "biased misinformation" because it contradicted what some guy said about it in a ten-second blurb during an episode "I Love the 70s."

So, yeah. It got to where it just wasn't worth my time dealing with them anymore.

Re:They aren't the problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47257661)

So were you getting reverted for citing offline sources, or getting reverted for posted information without citing sources?

Or what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256233)

What are they going to do if you don't comply?

Re:Or what? (1)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about 3 months ago | (#47256263)

Didn't you read TFS? They're being "forced" to. Bwahahahaha.

Good luck with that. (1)

dmomo (256005) | about 3 months ago | (#47256271)

Need we comment further?

Russian internet brigades (4, Interesting)

KiloByte (825081) | about 3 months ago | (#47256279)

And what about Russian or Chinese hordes of biased editors paid by their governments? They plague not only comment section of pretty much any mainstream news website, but also Wikipedia as well. Try for example the WWII [wikipedia.org] article -- it's so full of paeans of praise for the Soviet Union that someone who doesn't know better would take them for heroes who almost single-handedly liberated the world.

Re:Russian internet brigades (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256489)

Well, the Soviets were the ones who did most of the killing and dying in the Allies side of the conflict. I wouldn't call it "liberating" anything, though. Both USA and USSR significantly expanded their influence after the Allies victory, and the Axis would've done the same had it won.

Dying isn't a metric to be proud of ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256753)

Well, the Soviets were the ones who did most of the killing and dying in the Allies side of the conflict.

Yes, when your Generals are selected for political reliability rather than military competency your army does tend to do quite a bit of the dying. Its not really a metric to boast about.

Also a bit of that dying occurred because the Soviets started the war as an **ally** of the Nazis and Stalin refused to believe reports that the Nazis were about to betray their alliance. Yes, an ally. When you go beyond a public non-aggression pact and secretly agree to both invade Poland and take half the country each you are an ally. The Soviets remained loyal to their ally until they were betrayed.

Re:Dying isn't a metric to be proud of ... (1)

KiloByte (825081) | about 3 months ago | (#47257243)

And when it comes to loyalty to their new "allies" after the switch, how would you call shooting at English and American planes trying to help the Warsaw Uprising if they tried to go over Soviet-held territory, not even speaking about refueling there?

Russkies were a third side in the war, their relation to the free world was at most an uneasy truce because of a common enemy.

Re:Russian internet brigades (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256561)

And what about US hordes of biased editors paid by their government? They plague not only comment section of pretty much any mainstream news website, but also Wikipedia as well. Yada, yada, hypocrisy, yada.

Re:Russian internet brigades (1)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about 2 months ago | (#47258529)

For what it's worth, Hitler very likely would have won had he not been bogged down with Russia for so long.

Please stop this beta madness (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256301)

I've turned it off 6 times today. Usually I go to slashdot and open links I'm interested in tabs, since yesterday it has decided to randomly switch clicked links to beta, and switching to classic at the bottom drops me to the main page. So I had to close the tabs, find the story I want, and when I'm done, click classic, and repeat. This is ridiculous. When I tried to post this comment under beta, it disappeared after clicking preview perhaps because I don't use javascript for safety reasons. Soylentnews must be amused by their referrer logs at this point.

Re:Please stop this beta madness (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47258205)

My bookmark has said http://slashdot.org/?nobeta=1 [slashdot.org] since before the Slashcott.
I thought word had gotten around.

Ha! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256303)

Paid? HA! Editors revert and delete for the pure pleasure of it! They need no more payment than the joy the act brings! Oh wait... you mean, like, adding content or something? Who does that any more on Wikipedia? I thought that practice was a myth...

Uhhhhhhhhh :LIE? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256323)

Good luck! It's like abscam. ANY senator can be bought. They all already are!

Not Surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47256337)

Paid editing is exactly what will happen when you don't let companies simply edit their own pages. The community should be strong enough that if the company doesn't edit the page fairly, it is reverted, but instead, they decided to nanny-state the thing and tell companies off for doing so.

Not all companies are going to immediately edit their page from "Pepsi is ranked as the #X most purchased soft drink in the world" to "COKE SUCKS! BUY PEPSI NOW!" and Wikipedia should respect that.

Speaking of editors (1)

Yebyen (59663) | about 3 months ago | (#47256381)

Hey editors, when Fall in a sentence refers to the season, it's capitalized.

Re:Speaking of editors (1)

cdrudge (68377) | about 3 months ago | (#47256449)

[citation needed] since EVERY source I've ever read says, when used generically, seasons are lower case. The only time they are capitalized is when they are the first word of a sentence, in a title, or used as a proper noun (Summer Olympics, Fall 2012 Semester, etc).

Re:Speaking of editors (1)

TrollstonButterbeans (2914995) | about 3 months ago | (#47256479)

What is your advice on when to use semi-colons?

Re:Speaking of editors (4, Funny)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 3 months ago | (#47256569)

I use my semicolon when I don't have a full shitload.

Re:Speaking of editors (2)

cyberchondriac (456626) | about 3 months ago | (#47256943)

I use my semicolon when I don't have a full shitload.

Thank you for making my day

Re:Speaking of editors (1)

kaizendojo (956951) | about 3 months ago | (#47257337)

I never have mod points when I need 'em.... this made my day as well....

Mod parent WAY WAY UP! (1)

Attack DAWWG (997171) | about 3 months ago | (#47256773)

Hey editors, when Fall in a sentence refers to the season, it's capitalized.

Mod parent way way up! It's absolutely false in this context, so, in the proud Slashdot tradition, it deserves to be modded +5, Informative so that all the nerds can proudly trumpet yet more misinformation to the world!

Re:Mod parent WAY WAY UP! (1)

Yebyen (59663) | about 3 months ago | (#47256895)

Wow, who knew, the best way to get people to read your comment was to be wrong!

The last time I had this many replies to a comment was ... probably never!

Is a regular employee a "paid contributor"? (1)

sirwired (27582) | about 3 months ago | (#47256669)

The policy still doesn't make clear if an employee of a company always counts as a "paid contributor" if their job duties do not involve Wikipedia and they can expect no payment, recognition, etc. from their employer for their activities. Is that considered a "volunteer edit" or would my mere paycheck make me a "paid contributor"?

Re:Is a regular employee a "paid contributor"? (1)

guruevi (827432) | about 3 months ago | (#47257769)

Same goes for so-called 'volunteers' especially in the religious circles. There are those that get room and board, work for the corporation yet do not get paid a paycheck. And especially for articles on the high-control cults (Jehovah's Witnesses, Scientology, ...) there are a number of editors that are clearly associated with the corporation reverting every sort of edit unless the information is disseminated from the 'mothership'.

How about college students and non profit groups? (5, Insightful)

BrookHarty (9119) | about 3 months ago | (#47256733)

We have wars going on all over wikipedia due to different views and beliefs that far outweigh the business and pr companies.
Many non paid editors have very in-depth political viewpoints, and they attack other groups reporting on information in articles they disagree with.

The worst I've seen are the feminists against male rape statistics and anything male related. I can only assume its because colleges promote such a militant viewpoint on feminism it runs over into other areas of sexual statistics and thus becomes political.

I've seen many editors who are members of originations who delete anything that could be considered a counter argument with the established, but can often be incorrect due to education and their circle of influence related to their school or organization.

Another example. An amateur historian who would find common misconceptions and provide articles to show the common viewpoint is not correct by using government links. Many editors that are enrolled in college history courses would remove his work. He finally just used his personal page and put up the corrections so at least they are online. The point was he was correction known flaws taught in higher education with GOVERNMENT backed evidence.

It sickens me, that the truth can be deleted by editors with agendas. I've seen the history re-written due to lack of publications of news and tv reportings that are from the early 80's and older. But we can have entire animated tv show episodes articles with great detail, as thats the level of knowledge as historically important.

This is why we need all magazines and newspapers online also, the history and reporting of opnion is harder to argue when the only source is wikipedia.

Re:How about college students and non profit group (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47257495)

agreed

Re:How about college students and non profit group (1)

Kjella (173770) | about 3 months ago | (#47257731)

It sickens me, that the truth can be deleted by editors with agendas. I've seen the history re-written due to lack of publications of news and tv reportings that are from the early 80's and older. But we can have entire animated tv show episodes articles with great detail, as thats the level of knowledge as historically important.

It's not there because it is important, the trivia is there because it's not in dispute and backed up by third party references. Isn't plain facts regardless of seriousness the perfect kind of information to put on Wikipedia? It's far more structured and cohesive than using Google, it rarely shows up unless it's what you're looking for and it's not like the encyclopedia is going to run out of pages or balloon the printing costs. And most importantly, it wouldn't help. Nobody who wants to write about Pokemon characters or GoT plot summaries is going to get into an edit war with paid shills on serious topics, they'd just be over at some fan site instead.

Paid = biased (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 3 months ago | (#47257743)

Why are paid people allowed to post at all? Shouldn't their mod privileges be revoked when it is discovered they are paid?

Re:Paid = biased (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about 2 months ago | (#47258179)

I write technical documentation for a specialised and fairly complex software product. There are not many people who are qualified to do so.

Assuming that I stick to the facts, provide citations, and don't attempt to hide the fact of my employment with the producer of this software from anyone, is there some other potential reason why I shouldn't contribute to Wikipedia articles about this product?

Re:Paid = biased (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47258417)

Yes. Technical writing is a difficult skill to master. If you are as good as you think you are, then you will be a horriblle wiki editor. Do both sides a favor and spend more time doing your job. Believe it or not, I love reading well written tech manuals.

Re:Paid = biased (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 2 months ago | (#47258713)

The same reason we have lots of other ethical rules, to limit abuse and fraud. That is the quick and dirty answer, but you did provide me with some things to think about.

Re:Paid = biased (1)

Kaz Kylheku (1484) | about 2 months ago | (#47258855)

You're paid to write the original documentation, and are voluntarily editing the Wikipedia.

This is about being paid to edit the Wikipedia.

Great. Protects me against my employer (2)

ciaran_o_riordan (662132) | about 2 months ago | (#47258335)

Fantastic news.

I mention my Wikipedia activities in the "Other interests" section of my CV but I'm always worried that employers will misinterpret it as an offer to polish their image. With this rule change, if an employer does ask me to "Hey, since you know how this wiki thing works, can you correct some stuff?" I can say that I could but I'd have to declare it as being paid work.

That'll make them less interested, so I'm less likely to get put in that situation to begin with.

(Some other comments rubbished the idea because it won't get 100% compliance but they're missing the point. Improvement is improvement.)

riiiight (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about 2 months ago | (#47258365)

Once again, Wikipedia proves that they don't know how the internet works. Hey Wikipedia, slashmydots is my name in real life as well.

Re:riiiight (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47258503)

Just because they can't catch everyone they should allow those who they do catch to go on? In what scenario would that make any sense?

What??? There goes NPOV. (1)

Kaz Kylheku (1484) | about 2 months ago | (#47258605)

The policy should be: if you're paid to write, get the fuck out!

I'm not going to dig through the history of every article, and follow link to the authors, to check whether it is a paid shill.

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