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Wikipedia: A Disinformation Operation?

Wikipedia: A Disinformation Operation?

Wikipedia Manipulation

Wikipedia is generally thought of as an open, transparent, and mostly reliable online encyclopedia. Yet upon closer inspection, this turns out not to be the case.

In fact, the English Wikipedia with its 9 billion worldwide page views per month is governed by just 500 active administrators, whose real identity in many cases remains unknown.

Moreover, studies have shown that 80% of all Wikipedia content is written by just 1% of all Wikipedia editors, which again amounts to just a few hundred mostly unknown people.

Obviously, such a non-transparent and hierarchical structure is susceptible to corruption and manipulation, the notorious “paid editors” hired by corporations being just one example.

Indeed, already in 2007, researchers found that CIA and FBI employees were editing Wikipedia articles on controversial topics including the Iraq war and the Guantanamo military prison.

Also in 2007, researchers found that one of the most active and influential English Wikipedia administrators, called “Slim Virgin”, was in fact a former British intelligence informer.

More recently, another highly prolific Wikipedia editor going by the false name of “Philip Cross”turned out to be linked to UK intelligence as well as several mainstream media journalists.

In Germany, one of the most aggressive Wikipedia editors was exposed, after a two-year legal battle, as a political operative formerly serving in the Israeli army as a foreign volunteer.

Even in Switzerland, unidentified government employees were caught whitewashing Wikipedia entries about the Swiss secret service just prior to a public referendum about the agency.

Many of these Wikipedia personae are editing articles almost all day and every day, indicating that they are either highly dedicated individuals, or in fact, operated by a group of people.

In addition, articles edited by these personae cannot easily be revised, since the above-mentioned administrators can always revert changes or simply block disagreeing users altogether.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Le Mesurier Gets Cross

Le Mesurier Gets Cross 


Perhaps the only fact on James Le Mesurier about which I would agree with the MSM war cheerleaders is that he was a very busy man. It is remarkable therefore that he found the time and inclination to follow “Philip Cross” on twitter. Given that “Philip Cross” has virtually never posted an original tweet, and his timeline consists almost entirely of retweets of Nick Cohen, David Aaronovitch and openly pro-Israel propaganda accounts, why would Le Mesurier bother to follow him?

“Philip Cross” has never posted any news other than to retweet columnists. He has never given an insight into a story. In addition to James Le Mesurier, why then were all these MSM journailsts following “Philip Cross” from before “he” gained notoriety for his Wikipedia exploits?

Oliver Kamm, Leader Writer The Times
Nick Cohen, Columnist The Guardian/Observer
Joan Smith, Columnist The Independent
Leslie Felperin, Film Columnist The Guardian
Kate Connolly, Foreign Correspondent The Guardian/Observer
Lisa O’Carroll, Brexit Correspondent The Guardian
James Bloodworth, Columnist The Independent
Cristina Criddle, BBC Radio 4 Today Programme
Sarah Baxter, Deputy Editor, The Sunday Times
Iain Watson, Political Correspondent, The BBC
Caroline Wheeler, Deputy Political Editor, the Sunday Times
Jennifer Chevalier, CBC ex-BBC
Dani Garavelli, Scotland on Sunday

Prominent Freelancers

Bonnie Greer (frequently in The Guardian)
Mason Boycott-Owen (The Guardian, New Statesman)
Marko Attilla Hoare (The Guardian)
Kirsty Hughes
Guy Walters (BBC)
Paul Canning

What attracted all of these senior MSM figures to follow an obscure account with almost no original content? No reasonable explanation of this phenomenon has ever been offered by any of the above. What a considerable number of them have done is to use the megaphone their plutocrat or state overlords have given them, to label those asking this perfectly reasonable question as crazed conspiracy theorists.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

How a Small Group of Pro-Israel Activists Blacklisted MintPress on Wikipedia

How a Small Group of Pro-Israel Activists Blacklisted MintPress on Wikipedia

For over ten years, Wikipedia has been a key focus of right-leaning, pro-Israel groups that have effectively weaponized the online encyclopedia as a means of controlling the narrative when it comes to the state of Israel’s more than 50-year-long military occupation of Palestine. 

For over a decade, pro-Israel and ultra-nationalist Israeli settler groups have sought to weaponize the popular online encyclopedia, Wikipedia, through concerted covert editing campaigns, offering Wikipedia editing courses to West Bank settlers and even formal alliancesbetween Israel and Wikipedia to allow Israelis to create and edit content in a variety of languages.

In recent years, this alliance between pro-Israel partisans and Wikipedia has stepped up, largely in response to the growth of the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which seeks to pressure Israel to comply with international law with respect to occupied Palestine and the blockaded Gaza Strip. As a consequence, news outlets that consistently report on the success of BDS, such as MintPress News, have been targeted on Wikipedia by such partisans, who recently succeeded in blacklisting MintPress as a “reliable source” on the online encyclopedia.

In early June, a small number of partisan Wikipedia editors privately voted to blacklist MintPress News from use as a source on the online encyclopedia website at the behest of a Wikipedia editor who took issue with MintPress’ coverage of current events in Venezuela and Syria. At no point was MintPress ever asked to comment or allowed to respond to any of the allegations made and MintPress is unable to appeal the decision.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Wikipedia: Our New Technological McCarthyism, Part Two

Wikipedia: Our New Technological McCarthyism, Part Two

In Part One, we discussed the threats social media technology poses to a healthy and educated populace, the scientist cult of Skepticism and its extremist medical wing, and the online encyclopedia Wikipedia as a leading promulgator for Skepticism’s agenda. In Part Two, we go deeper into the Science-Based Medical faction and its advancing an unfounded and authoritarian interpretation about science.

Science-Based Medicine (SBM) is a recent splinter faction, a break-away group, from Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM). EBM is often recognized as one of the great advances in modern medicine to emerge during the 20th century. Although SBM endorses EBM’s premises and principles, it also regards it as incomplete. Consequently SBM blatantly hails itself as the future paradigm for evaluating medical science and recommending best practices and treatments. 

First posited as a new and precise methodology for evaluating medical research in 1993, EBM has rapidly become the dominant statistical and clinical model for developing healthcare strategies in clinical settings. It is also the most prevalent theory in use today for determining the accuracy of peer-reviewed journal articles, clinical trials and medical claims to improve healthcare decisions. According to the British Medical Journal, EBM is now the “new paradigm for teaching and practicing clinical medicine.”[1] The renowned Cochrane Database Collaboration, a network of 37,000 professors, doctors and researchers from over 130 countries, is one of EBM’s more successful contributions. Cochrane performs meta-analysis on existing scientific literature for pharmaceutical drugs, vaccines and supplemental products alike to determine the credibility of their health claims. Medical journals increasingly fail to maintain high standards for the research published. Prestigious journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine have even criticized their own publications for publishing scientifically invalid research funded by drug companies and professional associations biased towards the pharmaceutical products they develop and promote.[2]

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

It’s official: the collapse of the mainstream media’s credibility is now complete

It’s official: the collapse of the mainstream media’s credibility is now complete

Image: It’s official: the collapse of the mainstream media’s credibility is now complete

(Natural News) Attorney General William Barr held a press conference this morning to address the contents of the Mueller report, just as he promised to do. Not long after, Barr delivered the full Mueller report to the public with necessary redactions, also as promised. And yet the mainstream media, which demanded all of these things and has now received them, still isn’t happy.

In fact, most fake news media pundits are now foaming at the mouth, questioning Barr’s loyalties and accusing him of colluding with President Donald Trump to convey the “spun” message that he’s innocent – which it would seem as though no amount of evidence will ever convince those with Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS) is actually true.

In a nutshell, Special Counsel Robert Mueller, whom Leftist Democrats have been hailing for the past two years as their savior and hero who was going to take down Trump, didn’t end up procuring what these Trump haters were wishfully thinking he would. And in response, Trump haters everywhere are reeling with more anger than ever, demanding that Mueller be burned at the stake for failing to prove their deranged conspiracy theories.

CNN White House Correspondent Jim Acosta about had a coronary in response to Barr’s press conference, accusing Barr of “clearly laying out a sympathetic presentation” of what’s supposedly in the Mueller report. Twenty-twenty presidential hopeful and Leftist Democrat Cory Booker similarly accused Barr of “undermining the independence of this entire process” for his speaking publicly about the Mueller report prior to releasing it.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Why One Should Distrust the News

Why One Should Distrust the News

Why One Should Distrust the News

An article by the BBC on “The world’s most nutritious foods” ranks the healthfulness of foods on the basis of an article at the supposedly scientific PLOSone journal, titled “Uncovering the Nutritional Landscape of Food”. That study is based on a dataset that entirely ignores antioxidant-content of foods. Antioxidant-content has come to be recognized during recent decades as constituting perhaps the most important factor in nutrition. It’s probably even more important than vitamin-content and than mineral-content and than protein, carbohydrate, and fat content. So, the basis upon which the article’s ranking was done is the factors that were known about, in 1950, to be important, but that are now known to be far less determinative of a person’s health and longevity than are foods’ anti-oxidant contents. Neither the article nor its underlying dataset even so much as just mentions “oxidant” anywhere. The authors of the BBC and PLOSone articles and of the underlying dataset were apparently entirely ignorant of the findings in nutritional research during the past 60+ years — findings about antioxidants, which have transformed our understanding of nutrition. (Furthermore, there were many other important methodological flaws producing that PLOSone ranking, not only its ignoring antioxidants.)

This is not unusual.

(Incidentally, “ORAC Values: Antioxidant Values of Foods & Beverages” is a ranking of foods on the basis of antioxidant-contents, as measured by ORAC; and this is likely a far more accurate indicator of the relative healthfulness of foods than is the ridiculous BBC-PLOSone ranking — but far fewer people are being exposed to it.)

Here’s another example of the untrustworthiness of news-media and of other allegedly nonfiction presentations, even in many ‘scientific’ journals — but this one will be an example from what has become overwhelmingly the world’s leading encyclopedia: Wikipedia.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Blowout Week 241

Blowout Week 241

This week’s lead story features YouTube, which is fighting what it considers to be the misinformation  on videos posted by global warming dissenters with fact-checking boxes (inset), with the data sourced from Wikipedia. We continue with Saudi Arabia’s oil production – is it up or down?; the Saudi/Canada standoff; US LNG and Nord Stream 2; coal in Poland and China; nuclear in France and India; the Laos hydro dam collapse; Australia’s national energy guarantee; the hydrogen-to-ammonia “breakthrough”; renewables to power Blockchain; renewables and the UK capacity market; subsidies for UK SMRs; climate change to cause more windless periods and how to save the planet – give up meat.

Mail: YouTube places Wikipedia entries below videos ‘refuting evidence of global warming’

YouTube is fighting back against climate change deniers by implementing a fact-checking box below user-uploaded videos on the controversial topic.

The system will surface information from Wikipedia or Britannica Encyclopedia to display factual information in bitesize chunks below videos on climate change. The feature is the latest step from the Google-owned video platform in its battle to reduce the spread of misinformation and conspiracy theories on the service. At the moment, the scientific fact-checking blurbs are only visible to US-based users, however, YouTube is slowly rolling-out the feature to viewers worldwide. YouTube says the policy is designed to give users easy access to external information to provide context and information on topics prone to misinformation.

Oil Price: OPEC Oil Production Surges 340,000 Bpd As Saudis Pump Near Record

Last month, OPEC produced an average of 32.66 million bpd of crude oil, including production from its newest member the Republic of Congo. The biggest OPEC producer, Saudi Arabia, pumped 10.63 million bpd in July, up by 240,000 bpd from June and its highest level since its record of 10.66 million bpd from August 2016, according to Platts survey archives.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

How Humanity Could Become Impossible To Propagandize

How Humanity Could Become Impossible To Propagandize

I’ve been writing a lot about how the ability to control public narratives is the only real power in this world, and how the need of the ruling elites to wield that power explains everything from the feigned panic about “Russian propaganda” to Wikipedia’s bizarre editing policies to why Joy Reid still has a job. In my opinion it is impossible to overemphasize the impact that narrative and the myriad agendas to control it has on human life. Indeed, if a critical mass of individuals experienced a deep enough insight into the nature of mental narrative, all of our challenges as a species could be resolved very easily.

A search for the word “narrative” on the WikiLeaks website turns up tens of thousands of results. This is because the manipulators who work for the institutions that tend to have documents leaked to that outlet are well aware that the actual raw information about a government, a political campaign, event, etc. have far less impact on the way the public thinks about them than the sparkly, simplified, tweet-sized stories (narratives) that get circulated about those things on a large scale.

For example, if you ask an American political pundit about the president’s dealings with North Korea, you will likely be told that Trump is either a brilliant strategist who is almost single-handedly bringing peace to the Korean Peninsula or an incompetent imbecile who is getting “played” by Pyongyang, depending on which side of the partisan divide that pundit is loyal to. Both sides have access to the same information, but they are advancing wildly different narratives about it, because each side has an agenda that they know will be advanced if their narrative becomes dominant. In reality, neither narrative has much to do with what has actually been going on in the Korean negotiations, but that’s another story.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

More About Wikipedia’s Corruption

More About Wikipedia’s Corruption

More About Wikipedia’s Corruption

The latest report about Wikipedia’s corruption comes from the great investigative journalist Craig Murray, who had been in the UK’s Foreign Service from 1984-2004 and who was forced out in 2004 because, having been since 2002 UK’s Ambassador to Uzbekistan, he decided to whistleblow instead of to accept the corruption by his own and Uzbekistan’s Governments. Wikipedia’s article about him says that his immediately prior posting had involved participating in enforcement of the prior economic sanctions against Iraq, and “His group gave daily reports to Margaret Thatcher and John Major. In Murder in Samarkand, he describes how this experience led him to disbelieve the claims of the UK and US governments in 2002 about Iraqi WMDs.” So, his disenchantment with UK’s foreign policies seems to have grown over the years, instead of suddenly to have appeared only during the two years in which he was an Ambassador.

On May 18th, he headlined at his much-followed blog, “The Philip Cross Affair”, and reported: “133,612 edits to Wikipedia have been made in the name of ‘Philip Cross’ over 14 years. That’s over 30 edits per day, seven days a week. And I do not use that figuratively: Wikipedia edits are timed, and if you plot them, the timecard for ‘Philip Cross’s’ Wikipedia activity is astonishing … if it is one individual.”

He presents reasons to question that it’s a one-person operation, then states that,

the purpose of the “Philip Cross” operation is systematically to attack and undermine the reputations of those who are prominent in challenging the dominant corporate and state media narrative. particularly in foreign affairs. “Philip Cross” also systematically seeks to burnish the reputations of mainstream media journalists and other figures who are particularly prominent in pushing neo-con propaganda and in promoting the interests of Israel…

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Wikipedia Is An Establishment Psyop

Wikipedia Is An Establishment Psyop

If you haven’t been living in a hole in a cave with both fingers plugged into your ears, you may have noticed that an awful lot of fuss gets made about Russian propaganda and disinformation these days. Mainstream media outlets are now speaking openly about the need for governments to fight an “information war” against Russia, with headlines containing that peculiar phrase now turning up on an almost daily basis.

Here’s one published today titled “Border guards detain Russian over ‘information war’ on Poland“, about a woman who is to be expelled from that country on the grounds that she “worked to consolidate pro-Russian groups in Poland in order to challenge Polish government policy on historical issues and replace it with a Russian narrative” in order to “destabilize Polish society and politics.”

Here’s one published yesterday titled “Marines get new information warfare leader“, about a US Major General’s appointment to a new leadership position created “to better compete in a 21st century world.”

Here’s one from the day before titled “Here’s how Sweden is preparing for an information war ahead of its general election“, about how the Swedish Security Service and Civil Contingencies Agency are “gearing up their efforts to prevent disinformation during the election campaigns.”

This notion that the US and its allies are fighting against Russian “hybrid warfare” (by which they typically mean hackers and disinformation campaigns) has taken such deep root among think tanks, DC elites and intelligence/defense circles that it often gets unquestioningly passed on as fact by mass media establishment stenographers who are immersed in and chummy with those groups. The notion that these things present a real threat to the public is taken for granted to such an extent that they seldom bother to even attempt to explain to their audiences why we’re meant to be so worried about this new threat and what makes it a threat in the first place.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

How Wikipedia Lies

How Wikipedia Lies

Did you know that Vice President Dick Cheney admitted that on 11 September 2001 he, as President George W. Bush’s brief stand-in during the 9/11 attacks that hit the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, issued an order (and it was carried out) to shoot down United Airlines Flight 93 while it was in the air near Pittsburgh? If what he said at the time was true, then the standard ‘historical’ account of the plane’s having been brought down as a result of action by the passengers, would be concocted, not history at all.

Here is the video-clip of V.P. Cheney on 9/11, making this claim and explaining why he gave that order:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7vV3fjfeb9Q&list=PLOg2tzhKRd4j-yNHID9_Ru3MWe-VwwCxl&index=4

The Wikipedia article on Flight 93 provides the standard account, and fails even so much as just to mention the Vice President’a assertion and explanation that he provided on national TV at the time of the 9/11 events.

So: I edited the Wikipedia article by adding a sentence at the end of its opening paragraph, and by following that sentence with a brief second paragraph, and here is that entire two-sentence addition:

Vice President Dick Cheney alleged that he gave the order to shoot down Flight 93, and explained why when asked about it by Chris Wallace of Fox News as shown in this film-clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7vV3fjfeb9Q&list=PLOg2tzhKRd4j-yNHID9_Ru3MWe-VwwCxl&index=4

Consequently, the account given below of what brought the plane down — an account inconsistent with what Cheney said — could be entirely false.

On the web browser that I was using, the addition showed as having been successfully made in the Wikipedia article. However, to be sure, I opened the URL in a different browser, and this time my addition was absent. I then went back to the “Edit” page” and this time to the “View history” page, and clicked there on “(talk)” and found this message, which I saw virtually immediately after I had thought that I had inserted the new information:

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Can Wikipedia’s Jimmy Wales fix the news?

Can Wikipedia’s Jimmy Wales fix the news?

Traditional media is broken, the tech entrepreneur says. But will his new reader-funded service be any better?

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales stands in the doorway to his office Friday, Dec. 1, 2006 in St. Petersburg, Fla. — AP Photo/Steve Nesius

Jimmy Wales has already triggered one global information revolution. Now he is plotting a second.

As co-founder of Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, Wales helped create one of the wonders of our digital world. Launched as an experimental project in 2001, Wikipedia sprouted into a global community of volunteer contributors who have produced more than 45 million articles in 288 languages. Now the fifth-most-visited website in the world, it has become the first refuge for schoolchildren looking to mug up on photosynthesis and for adults wanting to settle an argument about who won the 1973 World Series. It also stands out as the only one of the top 10 sites that is not a commercial enterprise.

“The idea that, in your pocket, you’ve got this incredible storehouse of knowledge that’s completely free is kind of staggering, I mean, even today,” Wales says, as if he still cannot quite wrap his head around the phenomenon.

Setting up Wikipedia would count as a singular achievement in anyone’s career. But Wales is restless for more. From a cramped and anodyne office near London’s Paddington Station, the 51-year-old tech entrepreneur has spent the past few months planning a similar revolution in the news business. In a video announcing the formation of a new media organisation called WikiTribune, he grandly proclaimed: “The news is broken. But we’ve figured out how to fix it.”

Alarmed by the debasement of democratic debate and the proliferation of “clickbait crap” that helped Donald Trump win last year’s US presidential elections, Wales wants to bring the power of the Wiki community and the wisdom of crowds to bear on the media business by creating a hybrid model.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

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