No doubt PR practices are all into this sort of thing. I've been watching
it happen in the MOOC article http://www.downes.ca/post/60419


On Tue, May 14, 2013 at 2:44 PM, K. Peachey <p858sn...@gmail.com> wrote:

> FWD from another mailing list,
>
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> From: ---
> Date: Tue, May 14, 2013 at 2:31 PM
> Subject: [---] Missing details: the sanitisation of Tom Waterhouse's
> Wikipedia page
> To: ---
>
>
>
> http://www.theage.com.au/digital-life/digital-life-news/missing-details-the-sanitisation-of-tom-waterhouses-wikipedia-page-20130514-2jjfh.html
>
> > May 14, 2013 - 1:07PM
> > James Robertson and Melissa Davey
> >
> > He claimed vindication in Monday's Racing NSW inquiry, but staff for Tom
> Waterhouse have sometimes preferred to give the truth a nudge, rather than
> presume it will prevail on its own steam.
> >
> > Mr Waterhouse's employees have been sanitising the bookmaker's Wikipedia
> page, removing references to parliamentary inquiries into the march of
> sports betting into lounge rooms and even his turn on the Dancing With the
> Stars program.
> >
> > While I'm not actually across the page, I know that staff do make
> changes if there is something defamatory, illegal or not true on there.
> >
> > Perhaps the most glaring omission, however, is that the More Joyous
> racing inquiry does not rate a mention on the page.
> >
> > There is also a warning at the top of the entry.
> >
> > "A major contributor to this article appears to have a close connection
> with its subject," a disclaimer reads.
> >
> > "It may require cleanup to comply with Wikipedia's content policies,
> particularly neutral point of view."
> >
> > Mr Waterhouse said that he has never directly ordered his staff to
> remove or edit any content from the page.
> >
> > "I've only asked them to make sure [the content] abides by what is
> legal," he said.
> >
> > "While I'm not actually across the page, I know that staff do make
> changes if there is something defamatory, illegal or not true on there.
> >
> > "Of course, in those situations, they have to take that [material] down."
> >
> > He said there was no specific piece of information on the page that he
> had seen and asked staff to edit or remove and that they did this of their
> own accord.
> >
> > Anyone can use Wikipedia and start editing pages of the site. Other
> users can discuss, dispute or reverse those edits. And Wikipedians have
> long held suspicious about the Waterhouse page.
> >
> > "Sounds like it was taken straight from an advertising brochure," wrote
> user SpencerCollins last September.
> >
> > He may have been tipped off by the inclusion of such detail as the fact
> that Mr Waterhouse was a high school prefect and the following, included
> under the heading "branding".
> >
> > "Waterhouse invested considerably in marketing and advertising, adopting
> a distinct style guide comprising of black and white imagery with splashes
> of aquamarine."
> >
> > Those edits were made by the user GChinaP.
> >
> > "He [Waterhouse] asked me to write up something for Wikipedia," Gilbert
> Chinapen, who works on TomWaterhouse.com, confirmed to Fairfax.
> >
> > Another user, Angustommiepragnell, made dozens of edits to the page,
> removing material that was claimed to be defamatory or incorrect, but in
> fact had been widely reported. The user removed references to Mr
> Waterhouse's refusal to appear before a parliamentary inquiry into gambling
> in sport. The phrasing was later changed to "declined an invitation".
> >
> > Also left out is that Mr Waterhouse was benched by Channel Nine's NRL
> commentary team in March, following a public backlash against gambling
> being incorporated into live sport.
> >
> > Angus Pragnell, the marketing campaign manager for TomWaterhouse.com,
> declined to comment.
> >
> > References to Waterhouse's father, who did six months' periodic
> detention after being found guilty of false swearing, were also edited by a
> user called Suzanne888.
> >
> > The ongoing omissions and changes prompted one frustrated editor to
> write: "Waterhouse staff such as Angus Pragnell and Gilbert Chinapen
> shouldn't be editing/'sanitising' this entry!"
> >
> > Later edits to the page included the removal of references to Mr
> Waterhouse's highly enthusiastic but ultimately unsuccessful routines on
> Dancing With the Stars. He was eliminated in the second round of the show's
> 2006 season.
> >
> > It's not the first time changes to Wikipedia pages have been linked back
> to their subjects.
> >
> > In February Fairfax reported that Occupy Melbourne's official Wikipedia
> page was edited twice by a person using a City of Melbourne computer to
> remove contentious words in the lead-up to the re-election of lord mayor
> Robert Doyle last year.
> >
> > In August 2007 when John Howard was prime minister, Fairfax reported
> that staff in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet were caught
> editing Wikipedia to remove details that might be damaging to the
> government.
> >
> > ABC TV's Media Watch then reported that staff at several media
> organisations, including Fairfax Media, were found editing their own and
> others' Wikipedia pages, with some edits heaping abuse on rivals.
> >
> > with Ben Grubb
>
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