Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Wikipedia vs Congressional Staffers [Update]

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the waiting-for-an-arbitrary-smackdown dept.

The Internet 433

There has been quite a bit of recent reporting on the recent troubles between Wikipedia and certain Congressional staffers. In response, abdulzis mentions that "an RFC, Wikipedia's mediation method to deal with 'disharmonious users', has been opened to take action against US Congressional staffers who repeatedly blank content and engage in revert wars and slanderous or libelous behavior which violates Wikiepdia code. The IP ranges of US Congress have been currently blocked, but only for a week until the issue can be addressed more directly."

cancel ×

433 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

DUPE (-1, Redundant)

Ultra64 (318705) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601824)

Re:DUPE (4, Insightful)

XaXXon (202882) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601844)

No, it's called a FOLLOW-UP. This article contains more information than the previous one.

I mean, the editors screw up enough, why call them out even more than we have to?

Re:DUPE (-1, Redundant)

Daniel_Staal (609844) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601848)

Nope. Follow-up.

Re:DUPE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14601861)

rtfa

I only read the title and short description and knew it wasn't a dupe. More like update.

Re:DUPE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14601865)

I believe the fact they've blocked the the IP ranges owned by Congress is news. It's nice to see Wikimedia have actively done something to address this issue rather than sitting everyone down and having a nice prozaic meeting about it.

NOT (-1, Offtopic)

richdun (672214) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601888)

The previous article was on the same topic, but that doesn't automatically make it a dupe. This new article talks about the mediation that is now going on as a result, the previous one did not.

Re:DUPE (0, Offtopic)

XaXXon (202882) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601893)

To be fair to the parent poster, the summary, as originally posted, didn't have the link to the previous story. The story was edited and not marked as having been edited about 2 minutes after it went up (for non-subscribers).

Re:DUPE (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602084)

OH NO! DUPE! LEAVE SLASHDOT, MOVE TO DIGG! SLASHDOT IS NO GOOD! DUPE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11111111111ONEONE

this is so da lameness filter dont bug me, it is dumb

--
I am the real Anonymous Coward. I have a sig and karma. Fear me.

Congress blocked :P (5, Insightful)

the-amazing-blob (917722) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601833)

And now Congress will vote to make freely-editable online encyclopedias illegal. Freedom of speech loses in a landslide. :D

Or perhaps we can come to an agreement where no one edits other entries for the purpose of skewing information. That would make me smile.

Re:Congress blocked :P (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14601971)

And now Congress will vote to make freely-editable online encyclopedias illegal. Freedom of speech loses in a landslide. :D

After their IPs posted on slashdot? They'll vote to make port scanning illegal...:p

Re:Congress blocked :P (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602091)

Tis the season to reform i guess.

What might be more interesting to acknowledge is that Wikipedia is giving the public a glimpse at some of the ugliness of politics. Juvenille name calling, re-inventing the truth, hiding criticism, libel, slander, etc. Some may say that the majority is by junior staffers and even high school level pages and wash it under the rug. More than likely this is just a reflection of the atmosphere that exists in these offices. I say we consider wikipedia a honey pot for catching dishonorable officials :)

Re:Congress blocked :P (5, Insightful)

plover (150551) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602133)

Unfortunately, your second statment is the epitome of the "Tragedy of the Commons." There is ALWAYS another troll, someone who wants to maliciously sow dissent just to provoke a reaction. In some of these congressional cases it's a blatant attempt at a "revisionist history", while in others it's been purely "vandalism" -- the posting of the goatse trolls is a good example of that.

But the problem is that one man's troll is another man's political statement. Google for "santorum" some time, and hit "I'm feeling lucky". Some people consider that a political statement, and some consider it a troll. Both are right! So how do you include both points of view on a description of "santorum"? If you include the gross description, you've trolled Senator Santorum's supporters. If you censor the description, you're invalidating the political position of his opponents. Damned if you do and damned if you don't. And the third choice, eliminating mention of both santorum and Senator Santorum, does an even worse disservice to history by removing his legitimate accomplishments as well as the voice of his opposition.

While it would be nice to think otherwise, it's an impossible fantasy to hope that there will never be web vandals.

Re:Congress blocked :P (3, Insightful)

drDugan (219551) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602308)


  There is ALWAYS another troll, someone who wants to maliciously sow dissent just to provoke a reaction


I disagree on "always" ... under our current society rules, yes, but humans will stop making trolls when the purpose for our lives is to create a good and happy life for all people, and not "get all we can for ourself" ruleset we follow now.

Re:Congress blocked :P (1, Insightful)

Moofie (22272) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602350)

You forgot the hugs and bunnies.

Your utopia sounds great. Too bad it'll never, ever happen.

Re:Tragedy of the commons (4, Insightful)

jacoplane (78110) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602316)

Some would disagree [catb.org] with you that the tragedy of the commons applies in this case:

"When people reflexively apply this model to open-source cooperation, they expect it to be unstable with a short half-life. Since there's no obvious way to enforce an allocation policy for programmer time over the Internet, this model leads straight to a prediction that the commons will break up, with various bits of software being taken closed-source and a rapidly decreasing amount of work being fed back into the communal pool.

In fact, it is empirically clear that the trend is opposite to this. The trend in breadth and volume of open-source development can be measured by submissions per day at Metalab and SourceForge (the leading Linux source sites) or announcements per day at freshmeat.net (a site dedicated to advertising new software releases). Volume on both is steadily and rapidly increasing. Clearly there is some critical way in which the ``Tragedy of the Commons'' model fails to capture what is actually going on."
-- Eric Raymond [wikipedia.org]

Re:Congress blocked :P (3, Funny)

monkeydo (173558) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602378)

Google for "santorum" some time, and hit "I'm feeling lucky". Some people consider that a political statement, and some consider it a troll.

Someone thinks this [senate.gov] is a political statement? Shocking!

Re:Congress blocked :P (1)

sunwolf (853208) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602238)

...and a lawsuit ensues in which freedom of speech is acknowledged by the supreme court as having superiority over the egos of Congress. America will work like it always has, and speech has always had preferred position. I see no merit in your dystopian prognostication.

Re:Congress blocked :P (4, Insightful)

hackstraw (262471) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602296)

And now Congress will vote to make freely-editable online encyclopedias illegal. Freedom of speech loses in a landslide.

Although it is becoming more the norm to go against the constitution, I believe the system will prevail or there will be a revolution and government overthrow.

How long did it take for the Supreme Court to figure out that black people and women were people? A long time, but it did eventually take place.

Or perhaps we can come to an agreement where no one edits other entries for the purpose of skewing information. That would make me smile.

Wikipedia will always have issues like this, especially with "controversial" content.

"There's no right, there's no wrong, there's only popular opinion."

-- Jeffrey Goines, 12 Monkeys

Popular opinion always rules. Maybe the Wikipedia code can be modified so that a "hot" article can only have X lines of changes per user per period of time. If congressman X edits a file and others are watching, the others will dominate and keep the popular opinion alive.

How best to lose one's Constitutional Rights (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602360)

Glad I'm not the only guy to think the blocking could back-fire. Theoretically (and I'm sure someone will correct me), now members of Congress have standing to sue Wikipedia for an equal rights violation (you give everyone rights to edit information, to even possibly slander the politicians, but do not give those people who are theoretically best able to judge the accuracy that right.)

If they don't watch out, they could find themselves in a free-speech shoot-out with Congress passing laws that wiki owners are responsible for all content posted online, or that hey have a responsibility to get rid of "slanderous" information within a certain period of time.

So far the whole ISPs being protected because they're only allowing the info to go through them protection is, AFAIK, common law and if Congress starts passing laws saying "nope, that's not true... passing along 'bad content' is just as bad as posting 'bad content', printing it in a pamphlet, going on TV and spreading false information..." and then, if you believe in slippery slopes (I don't, but some people do) then before you know it allowing pirated media to pass through your Wifi connection makes you subject to copyright infringement suits because the argument gets made that you're responsible for whatever harm you allow to go live. Yeah, right now it's got protection in the courts, but passing a law could kill that protection.

I'm not saying steps shouldn't be taken, but how about a compromise with perhaps an Official Content seal? The Congressman and his aides are able to add a little icon or whatever to indicate that their changes came from them and is accurate or at least endorsed by them. Then the burden is back on the public: Trust what 3rd parties are saying or trust what the politician says it true. It's not going to change anyone's beliefs one way or the other, but at least the politicians will be happy knowing they can put on a PR campaign warning their knowledgable constituants not to trust Wiki content without their endorsement

frist (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14601834)

Frist would Post misinformation in WP

Too much time on their hands. (5, Insightful)

bigtallmofo (695287) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601841)

Do we need any further evidence that congress people and their staff have too much time on their hands? I hope in the contentious atmosphere that plagues Washington these days that people from all sides of the political spectrum can agree that Congress is given too many resources to accomplish too little.

Next they'll be wasting all their time on Slashdot.

Re:Too much time on their hands. (1)

Nadsat (652200) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601870)

Virginia Congressman Eric Cantor "smells of cow dung"

Too bad all congressional debates coulnd't take place online. How great would that be if everyone debated issues on a blog.

Re:Too much time on their hands. (1)

Orgazmus (761208) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601999)

Just think of all the -1 Flamebait

Re:Too much time on their hands. (5, Insightful)

deanoaz (843940) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601916)

>>> Do we need any further evidence that congress people and their staff have too much time on their hands?

Maybe not, but think of all the evil they could do if they really applied themselves all of the time. I sleep better at night knowing they waste a lot of their time fiddling Wikipedia entries and blogging, etc.

"I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is to try to please everyone." - Bill Cosby

Re:Too much time on their hands. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14601934)

I am not wasting time.

I am interfacing with the American Public! :D

I Disagree. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602003)

Congress is given too many resources to accomplish too little.

I think they're given too many resources and stick their noses into too much. I want them to do less, not more.

In fact, I'd be happy if they all just sat around all day editing each other's Wikipedia entries.

Re:Too much time on their hands. (1)

currivan (654314) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602333)

If they're actually doing this from their congressional IP addresses, perhaps it would violate some rules on misuse of government property for political purposes? Especially if they're changing opponents' entries instead of just their own.

trouble with the little ones (4, Funny)

Niartov (727073) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601846)

Well children if you cannot play nice we are just going to have to take this away

Congressional Trolls (4, Funny)

Council (514577) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601847)

Congressional trolls. This idea amuses me deeply.

I wonder if any of the trolls we've got on here are working for Congress.

Perhaps, somehow, Natalie Portman is a matter of national security.

Re:Congressional Trolls (4, Funny)

Too many errors, bai (815931) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601890)

Governmental Nimrods Association of America?

Re:Congressional Trolls (5, Funny)

spungebob (239871) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602203)

Make that "Goverment Idiots Association of America". Then I can catch all of the morons with one single regex ("*IAA")

Re:Congressional Trolls (5, Funny)

PFI_Optix (936301) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601920)

Perhaps, somehow, Natalie Portman is a matter of national security.

"And in a recent Freedom of Information Act, these images of Natalie Portman were released..."

Ahh crap they blacked out all the good parts...

What a ludicrous assertion! (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14601923)

I wonder if any of the trolls we've got on here are working for Congress.

That's a pretty outlandish theory you have there! We^H^HThey would never consider monitoring Slashdot, let alone posting comments to it.

Re:Congressional Trolls (5, Insightful)

alphamugwump (918799) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601925)

Actually, when you think about it, a successful politician is not really that different from a successful troll. The idea with both is to somehow stir up an issue that people are rabid about. In the case of a troll, it is just for sheer fun or whatever, but when politicians do it, it gets them into office.

Re:Congressional Trolls (5, Insightful)

rnpg1014 (942171) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601928)

What disturbs me more is the idea that the people we elect to Congress behave childishly enough to get Federal IP addresses blocked from a major website. Quite honestly, I move to give literacy tests before giving voting privelidges...

Oh, the irony. (1, Flamebait)

bigtallmofo (695287) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601962)

Quite honestly, I move to give literacy tests before giving voting privelidges...

Just so long as one doesn't require spelling tests before giving commenting privileges.

Re:Oh, the irony. (1)

rnpg1014 (942171) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602006)

I said literacy not spelling. Still, this always seems to happen to me.

Re:Congressional Trolls (1)

igny (716218) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601951)

Clearly, the issues in Soviet Russia and the old people in North Korea should get their attention.

Obligatory "Soviet Russia..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602033)

In Soviet Russia, trolls elect YOU.

*ducks*

local terminology (1)

mapmaker (140036) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602168)

We Capitol Hill residents call 'em "Congress Critters".

Re:Congressional Trolls (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602242)

Council (514577): Perhaps, somehow, Natalie Portman is a matter of national security.


According to IMDB [imdb.com] :
(September 2004) She is presently studying at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.


Uh oh...

I have no knowledge... (5, Funny)

IAAP (937607) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601863)

nor do I condone such behavior from my staff, myself, or anyone. This was done by some rogue elements that were too aggressive in their desire to set the facts straight. There will be a thorough investigation into this matter and the appropriate action will be taken.

--[insert congresscritter's name here]

Re:I have no knowledge... (2, Funny)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602116)

This was done by some rogue elements that were too aggressive in their desire to . . .

rid me of that meddlesome priest. Now, where did I put those two, adorable little princes?

KFG

Re:I have no knowledge... (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602197)

Yeah right! And you probably buy the "Lone Horde" explaination for the Mongol invasion.

And what they really mean: (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Cowpat (788193) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602312)

Firstly, I would like to thank my staff for their thorough work of destroying all copies of the memo I sent out asking them to this. I would also like to congratulate them on their exemplary performance in carrying out my instructions to spread my campaign propaganda throughout the wikipedia with such totality, clarity and speed.
There will be a token superficial investigation of the case after which we will conclude that it was infact a justified action to combat the ever-present terrorist threat. I will therefore shortly introduce new legislation outlawing all negative points of view of congresspeople (on the condition that they're from my party) as unpatriotic - this will be billed as an entirely appropriate reaction through careful manipulation of the wikipedia articles on 'terrorists' and '1984_(book)'.
Now bow down, you snivelling peasants!

Merge them posts! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14601906)

Hehehe, looks like Slashdot can do with a merge process [wikipedia.org] too!

Beaverl Attack: Wikipedia has NEVER been great... (5, Funny)

nweaver (113078) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601910)

Just look at this past entry for "Beaver" (now corrected, but Wikipedia's history allows us to see it in the full glory)

Beaver [wikipedia.org]

"Beavers explosively attack people with their menacing teeth. They are the most deadly animals alive."

Re:Beaver Attack: Wikipedia has NEVER been great. (5, Funny)

mooingyak (720677) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601955)

And the people who removed that line are trying to suppress the truth about beavers.

Re:Beaverl Attack: Wikipedia has NEVER been great. (1)

The One and Only (691315) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602045)

I love that "citation needed" note.

Re:Beaverl Attack: Wikipedia has NEVER been great. (1)

Millenniumman (924859) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602183)

That wasn't originally there, but was added after the original statement by someone else, who left a note saying: "(this may be true, but it needs a source!)".

What is your point? (2, Interesting)

loqi (754476) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602085)

Congratulations, you've pointed out an act of vandalism that once happened on Wikipedia. I wonder what happens if you look at the time-stamp of that edit? Oh, 19:06 Jan 26, and it was corrected 3:25 Jan 27... oh noes, a whole ~8 hrs went with that entry present.

I've looked at countless Wikipedia pages, and only ever found vandalized content when I was digging through histories or linked to it. -1, Empirical wank-session.

Re:What is your point? (1)

Millenniumman (924859) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602220)

Did you notice that that one article has had many cases of vandalism? And I dare say beavers are not a controversial subject. Then again, I've never encountered wikipedia vandalism when searching for information.

Re:What is your point? (1)

777film (946633) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602325)

Did you notice that that one article has had many cases of vandalism? And I dare say beavers are not a controversial subject.

And the vandalism is always corrected quickly. Oh, and for obvious reasons ("Beaver. Heh heh.") it's an obvious target. And yes, more controversial subjects are subject to repeated revisions-- but the change logs are kept as well as a running discussion page, and those arguments can be just as informative as the article itself.

I remember the encyclopedias in my junior high library, they were covered with obscene little drawings and quotes. That's there forever (or until the volume is replaced, only to be immediately vandalized again.) Is that really a better model?

Re:What is your point? (4, Funny)

Savantissimo (893682) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602340)

Republican hatchetman Ken Mehlman's entry had a picture of a flaccid penis on it when I looked him up. Interestingly, the page was locked to edits. When I mentioned on the discussion page that it seemed to be a more figurative likeness than most Wikipedia readers were expecting, both the picture and my G-rated comment disappeared.

Re:What is your point? (1)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602299)

He was pointing out that somebody replaced the factually correct statements with some propaganda bullshit.

We all know beavers are the most deadly animals in the world, but if we admit it then the terrorists have won.

They are our secret weapon, we must protect this knowledge at all costs.

Re:Beaverl Attack: Wikipedia has NEVER been great. (1)

pohl (872) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602114)

"Beavers explosively attack people with their menacing teeth. They are the most deadly animals alive."

Am I the only one who, upon reading this, immediately wondered if there's stuff from Real Ultimate Power in the history of the Ninja [wikipedia.org] page? Like how they love to flip out all the time, and how they're totally sweet...?

Re:Beaverl Attack: Wikipedia has NEVER been great. (1)

93,000 (150453) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602279)

Am I the only one who, upon reading this, immediately wondered if there's stuff from Real Ultimate Power in the history of the Ninja page? Like how they love to flip out all the time, and how they're totally sweet...?

I pray to god you don't edit the Ninja page. You didn't mention a thing about kick-ass guitar solos.

And here I've been afraid of lunging bunnies (1)

maynard (3337) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602202)

when it's been the frightful beaver all along. Well, we do know that bunnies - with their razor sharp front teeth - are still highly dangerous. I'm told shrubbery or a wood shield can help a person defend themselves. That Holy Grail. It's a vile quest that ensnares only the most upright and honorable. *sigh*

Re:Beaverl Attack: Wikipedia has NEVER been great. (4, Funny)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602241)

"Beavers explosively attack people with their menacing teeth. They are the most deadly animals alive."

I'm particularly amused by the note in subscript after that remarkable claim:

'Citation needed.'

Which gives me a mental image of a wikipedia editor like some genial dusty old university professor saying 'Not that we don't believe you about the deadly beavers, you understand, just that you haven't properly cited a source for this claim of yours...'

Re:Beaverl Attack: Wikipedia has NEVER been great. (1, Informative)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602244)

Heh, even worse, this article [uncyclopedia.org] is current! :o

children (0, Redundant)

Tachikoma (878191) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601912)

Congress acting like children?
nothing new to see here folks
move along

White House (2, Funny)

graystar (223824) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601931)

In other news, it seems The White House I.P addresses will remain unblocked as users there are still struggling to find wiki. Allegedly there have been unconfirmed reports of a "white out" scandal, where public money has been frivolously spent on white out and computer screens. No one has yet named the culprit.

amoral bastages (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14601940)

Dirty politicians need to take an ethics course!

Re:amoral bastages (1)

Shakes268 (856460) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602329)

Ted Kennedy must have an entire staff dedicated to covering up Chappaquiddick.

escalation? (4, Interesting)

usrusr (654450) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601956)

so, does this mean the cia will sooner or later deploy botnets for distributed editwars?

wikipedia might end up as the surprisingly unglamorous battleground of the long-awaited "cyberwarfare"... i mean it's such an inviting target for groups who are out to mess with people's opinions and there's no group that fits that description as good as a gouvernment at war.

You know what this is.... (4, Insightful)

Otter (3800) | more than 8 years ago | (#14601968)

DC underlings all hang out together, drink together, live together and brag incessantly to each other about who is the most important. My guess would be that this has nothing to do with the legislators themselves and everything to do with with interns generating ammunition for trash-talking at Lulu's. The Senators themselves aren't organized enough to be doing this in such large numbers, nor do they know what Wikipedia is. It's the 19-year-olds doing it.

Re:You know what this is.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602074)

Let's just hope they fire a bunch of these staffers/interns. That'll mean a fresh new batch early this year. I'll be getting a call from my buddy soon, "Hey, you comin' out drinking tonight? We're going trolling for interns. They're early this year."

Re:You know what this is.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602285)

Oooh I *love* intern season. Better than Mardi Gras.

libelous? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14601981)

"Wikipedia's mediation method to deal with 'disharmonious users', has been opened to take action against US Congressional staffers who repeatedly blank content and engage in revert wars and slanderous or libelous behavior which violates Wikiepdia code."

Are you sure some of the stuff being removed isn't currently libelous, and would Wikipedia rather get sued. Who's to say that the information is acurate to begin with? Why is the person removing the information assumed to be wrong?

Re:libelous? (1)

malsdavis (542216) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602087)

Look at the examples cited.

They're HERE! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602373)

This would be the perspective of the staffer. Thanks for sharing, along with the thinly-veiled threat. That's how we know you're probably a young attorney too.

For the record, you know something's wrong when your idiot boss loudly made a point of term limits, and then doesn't quit after that amount of time. Stating that publicly-available factual information is not libelous.

We call these things facts out here in reality-land.

So, let's recap... (0, Redundant)

js92647 (917218) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602021)

They have nothing better to do so they rely on having internet wars to change websites that critique themselves and their line of work?

Honestly, how fucking old are these people? This is complete snafu (on a political level ;). Jimmy Wales should just admin-lock every page regarding the US Politics (Okay, maybe thats a bit too much) and tell them to piss off.

I skimmed over the URL provided. What's the point of banning specific IP addresses when they can do it from their home computer?

Time for some lockdown.

Everybody's doing it! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602092)

Re:Everybody's doing it! (2, Funny)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602317)

You know, that scares me [wikipedia.org] and I monitor, like, 40+ scientology pages.

Main IP offender no longer banned (5, Informative)

P0ldy (848358) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602107)

TFS:
The IP ranges of US Congress have been currently blocked, but only for a week until the issue can be addressed more directly.

The main offending IP in question [wikipedia.org] is no longer blocked as of 30 January, this morning:

06:36, 30 January 2006 Michael Snow unblocked User:143.231.249.141 (Not consistently used by the same person; we shouldn't block people just because they work for Congress, and some people using this IP address are making commendable efforts at complying with our culture and policies)

Is anyone suprised? (2, Interesting)

plopez (54068) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602111)

Really, politics have always been mean dirty and sometimes life threating. I cannot find the reference but there was a US congressman beaten to death on the floor after making an anti-slavery speech, no suprise that it was done by a southern congressman.

And do you think it is just coincidence that in the British House of Commons the government and the opposition sit 2 sword lenghts apart and the Speaker carrys a mace?

We are dealing with politicians here. They are not the result of some miraculous virgin birth (not even the Republicans or the President). One side has something and the other wants it. It is just going to be interesting to see how far they will go to get it or protect it.

Re:Is anyone suprised? (2, Informative)

pohl (872) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602180)

It was Charles Sumner [wikipedia.org] . He did not die from the beating.

Your facts... aren't. (4, Informative)

rco3 (198978) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602347)

No one died. Senator Charles Sumner was caned [senate.gov] into unconsciousness on the floor of the Senate Chamber, but recovered and continued to serve thereafter. Additionally, it's worth noting that the senator in question was attacked, not for speaking against slavery, but for his personal (very personal, and fairly ugly) verbal attacks against the other two Senators.

I'm sure that you would love to be able to point to this as being an example of how rabid Southern senators were about keeping slavery, but really it's an example of the fact that some people can only be insulted so much before they react irrationally. Seriously - I don't think it matters whether you're a senator or not, I think that if you call enough people "noise-some, squat, and nameless animal . . . not a proper model for an American senator" that sooner or later one of them (or one of their friends) is going to beat the shit out of you. Does that excuse the attack? Of course not. But it wasn't about slavery, it was about pride - and no one died.

quarantine? (4, Interesting)

nietsch (112711) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602148)

Maybe instead of banning them outright, the ip's involved in this matter (or any serious breach of the rules) should not just be banned, but silently rerouted to a server running a different copy of wikipedia. They could make all kinds of 'mistakes' etc there, but only similarly banned ip's would ever see that content. They keep wasting time (and taxpayers money) while the rest of the world would have a chance to do without their contributions to humanity.

Does anybody know of such a system implemented in any forum/community software? I think it would be quite effective.

Re:quarantine? (4, Interesting)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602219)

vBulletin includes such a feature, called "Tachy Goes to Coventry". It lets specified users post to the forums all they want, but they're the only ones who ever see their posts. No clue where the name comes from, though.

Re:quarantine? (4, Informative)

oberondarksoul (723118) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602375)

To "send someone to Coventry" means to shun or ignore them - hence, the users who have this applied to them are ignored by the rest of the forum. (Reference: here [usingenglish.com] )

Re:quarantine? (1)

MythMoth (73648) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602397)

"Sending someone to coventry" means pretending they're not there as a punishment, in the UK at least. I have no idea why. And the "Tachy" bit I couldn't begin to guess at.

Not exactly clarifying the situation I admit.

Re:quarantine? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602262)

The something awful forums have a state called "Hellbanning", where a user can read and post in the normal way, execpt that no other users can see their posts - they are effectively invisible.

Re:quarantine? (1)

MrSquishy (916581) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602314)

I hear stories of a slashdot where there are no dupes or advertisements. Where every post is +5 Insightful, and jokes dont reuse YOU (in Soviet Russia).

Clearly we have been diverted so as to not polute their boards. I think only old Korean people and their newly welcomed Overlords post there.

I hear.

double standard (4, Insightful)

argStyopa (232550) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602170)

Look, I think the political creatures in Washington are essentially pork-feeding, selfish, backbiting wh0res generally, but let's be honest - they are not alone.

The IP ranges of US Congress have been currently blocked, but only for a week until the issue can be addressed more directly.
This is simply WRONG. I'd wager that a HUGE number of people posting in Wiki are self-interested, or are grinding some sort of political axe.

Just because John Smith isn't actually EMPLOYED by the DNC doesn't mean his revision about President G.W. Bush is automatically based on an altruistic desire to post the truth. One minute reading any intarweb forum will tell you that much.

Roberta Johnson could be posting a revision to the Ted Kennedy article because she's an ardent Republican that hates him. Her edits are somehow more 'valid' than that of a staffer in Cheney's office?

Wikipedia is an open document. The revisions are clear and publicly visible. Why is it all right to censor and prohibit posters whose motivations are obviously suspect, while completely (naively?) ignoring the gazillions of posters whose motivations are probably no less base, but not obviously so?

This is wrong.

Re:double standard (2, Insightful)

interiot (50685) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602328)

There's biased material, and then they're outright vandalism [wikipedia.org] . Calling someone a douche? Are congressional staffers adults, or middleschoolers? [2] [wikipedia.org]

Re:double standard (1)

RazorX90 (700941) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602356)

Yes, Congress is getting special attention, but Wikipeida hardly ignores "the gazillions of posters whose motivations are probably no less base, but not obviously so." Those posters are scattered around the site and are dealt with through the normal operation of Wikipeida.

However, right now they uncovered a huge problem emanating from one specific group. Blocking them is the only reasonable thing to do right now. Wikipeida needs some time to sort this all out and they aren't gonna make any progress if the vandals can move faster then the Wikipeidans working towards non-POV.

Re:double standard (1)

tralfamador (159554) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602390)

Why is it all right to censor and prohibit posters whose motivations are obviously suspect, while completely (naively?) ignoring the gazillions of posters whose motivations are probably no less base, but not obviously so?

why put a lock on your door to keep out those criminals who don't have lockpicking skills, ignoring all those criminals who do?

it's a clunky analogy, but i think it makes my point.

or maybe it doesn't. the point is yes it's perfectly alright to use this tactic to remove known abusers. they have to deal with the sneaky abusers as they can, but when you know there's a group using specific ip's then it's perfectly reasonable and right for them to block them this way.

you are wrong.

Is it just me? (2, Insightful)

kevin.fowler (915964) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602173)

Am I the only person who avoids Wikipedia like the plague because of these skewed entries and slanderous edit wars? I know I'm missing out, but after an entry I collaborated was "attacked" by someone who held a different opinion (read: blanked the article until Wiki delete minions got at it) I lost faith in its general ability to harbor legitimate information. I know it's there, but I don't want to have to sift through it. That's what the internet is for.

Re:Is it just me? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602353)

Am I the only person who avoids Wikipedia like the plague because of these skewed entries and slanderous edit wars? I know I'm missing out, but after an entry I collaborated was "attacked" by someone who held a different opinion (read: blanked the article until Wiki delete minions got at it) I lost faith in its general ability to harbor legitimate information. I know it's there, but I don't want to have to sift through it. That's what the internet is for.

I added a contentious bit of information to an extremely contentious article once. It was outright deleted, reverted, spell checked, deleted, grammer fixed, reverted, opened up an enormous discussion with rabid opponents on both sides. Eventually it was split into a separate article that was renamed a few times, with the original article linking to it.

The quality of the article improved quite dramatically over time, and the POV portions that I didn't even realize I was bringing to the table were quickly killed off. The facts were *heavily* cross-checked and what's left now, despite being nothing like what I originally posted, is a satisfying contribution, even though none of what I wrote exists today.

Wikipedia rules.

Re:Is it just me? (1)

interiot (50685) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602393)

So you added something that was later modified or deleted, because it was a copyright violation, or didn't have any reputable sources to back it up, or it wasn't notable enough to be in an encyclopedia. But how does this indicate that it's easier to sift through the rest of the internet instead?

Why yes, it is just you. (1)

Thud457 (234763) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602402)

Half the people have decent enough critical thinking skills to judge when something seems fishy.

The other half are so dumb they take everything at face value.


You are the one person exactly on the cusp.

So... (1)

Zerbs (898056) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602231)

then who protects the congresmen from the people who "engage in revert wars and slanderous or libelous behavior"?

Congress IP ranges (3, Funny)

dtfinch (661405) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602270)

FTA: 156.33.*.*
Maybe this'll come in handy someday. Can't imagine what I'd use it for though.

awesome (1)

drDugan (219551) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602273)

When huge groups of people start sharing information, the powerful lawyers/politicians go nuts and have their staff start deleting things and protect their scheming and lying.

I am so not surprised.

Yet another step toward open and free (both beer and thought) society.

Like any other Juveniles... (1)

luvirini (753157) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602292)

.. that used to go around with spray cans an do grafitti.. and now instead do stupid edits in wikipedia.. (and become congressional aides apparently)

Solution: Autobiography and Biography Pages (2, Insightful)

bhawbaker (576764) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602307)

how about creating 2 separate pages in the wikipedia, one for autobiography and one for biography. The autobiography page would be edited only by that person the page is about (or by those authorized by the said person). The biography would be collaborated by others.

Evolution of a System (5, Insightful)

j_f_chamblee (253315) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602334)

Between this article and previous articles concerning the locking of Wikipedia pages [vnunet.com] , I can't help but wonder if what is happening amounts to some kind of evolution. Depending on how Wiki solves this, what we may see is the system evolving to include some form of the old fashioned, but sometimes maligned [slashdot.org] model of peer review. Maybe I'm wrong, but it is an interesting process to watch -- especially for somebody (like me) who thinks peer review is good thing [slashdot.org] .

www.merkeylaw.com (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14602354)

www.merkeylaw.com is calling for congress to revoke ection 230 of the communications decency act in order to hold Wikipedia accountable for online libel and harassment.

Sad of Affairs (5, Insightful)

Cal Paterson (881180) | more than 8 years ago | (#14602387)

It's a sad state of affairs when we have to block our own goddamn house of government for vandalising public property.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>