The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #104107   Message #2129279
Posted By: Nickhere
19-Aug-07 - 04:44 PM
Thread Name: BS: Wicked Impediment on WikiPedia?!
Subject: BS: Wikipedia - how reliable?
Computer program  reveals FBI, CIA edited Wikipedia entries
17/08/2007 10:07 WASHINGTON,  August 17 (RIA Novosti) - A new scanning
program has revealed that the FBI and  CIA have been editing Wikipedia
entries on
topics ranging from the Iraq war to  Guantanamo. 
WikiScanner, developed by CalTech  graduate student Virgil Griffith, has
traced editorial changes made to the  online encyclopedia to FBI and CIA
computers, including the removal of satellite  imagery of the Guantanamo
prison camp on
the island of Cuba, where the United  States has detained suspected
terrorists since 2002, and redactions of articles  on the invasion of
Iraq in 2003. 
The program revealed that the CIA  edited entries about its former
William Colby, altering details of his  career, and that a graphic on
casualties in Iraq was manipulated to downplay the  figures. 
A number of commercial companies  were also found to have edited entries
related to them, in clear violation of  Wikipedia's editorial guidelines
disqualify people or organizations from  editing articles that concern
However, a spokeswoman for  Wikipedia's parent company, Wikimedia, said
online encyclopedia was in any  event self-correcting, and that any
entries are usually quickly  rectified. 
The FBI did not have any comment,  and the CIA insisted that all of its
computers are used responsibly. 
© 2005 RIA Novosti 

The link to the story is here -

CIA & FBI editing Wikipedia

I suppose the CIA and FBI might cite those all-embracing 'security concerns' in their editorial process, and it seems a bit unfair that people cannot directly edit information given on themselves, though I understand Wikipedia has strict libel policies. And of course the Doubting Thomases will point to the fact the story comes from a Russian news agency.