Sad. In his time Nichalp was a legend. his edits along with those of
his compatriots gave a solid foundation to articles on India. I always
think that we Indians crucify a man for what is NOT a heinous crime,
yet we tend to be hypocrites in daily life all the time.

For my sake, I would rather weigh a man's good versus his bad in a
metaphoric balance with sight blindfolded. This is an appropriate time
to quote Shakespeare :

"The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft' interred with
the bones."

Warm regards,

Ashwin Baindur
------------------------------------------------------



On Tue, Feb 7, 2012 at 11:22 PM,  <guptc...@ovi.com> wrote:
>
> This is the story of Nichalp[1], an Indian student from Mumbai who became 
> obsessed with editing Wikipedia at a young age. He transformed several 
> articles into featured articles, and became a role model for many editors. He 
> was granted the bureaucrat, oversight and administrator privileges - nobody 
> deserved these rights more than him, not even Jimbo.
>
> A major change in Nichalp's life came when he came to Australia for higher 
> education. Facing a severe financial crunch, Nichalp decided to use the only 
> extraordinary skill he had - editing Wikipedia - for making money. He put up 
> ads on several freelancer recruiting websites, promising to write articles in 
> oexchange for small amounts of money.[2] These were the days when the PR 
> professionals had started realizing the importance of Wikipedia. There were 
> many takers for Nichalp's services. With his "sockpuppet" accounts, Nichalp 
> made a number of contributions (many of which stand deleted now).
>
> Unfortunately for Nichalp, the Wikizealots live in an idealistic world. They 
> don't realize that, in the long run,  editors cannot be expected to devote 
> their time to the project for free.[3] When the Wikihounds came to know about 
> one of Nichalp's paid editing accounts they came after him. Nichalp knew he 
> would be stalked in real life, so he made his main account inactive. 
> Meanwhile, he continued to be active through his other paid editing accounts. 
> A man of foresight, Nichalp started another account in April 2009 to gain 
> back his admin rights.[4]
>
> The Wikihounds have an astonishing ability to track the suspicious accounts - 
> they tracked another one of Nichalp's paid editing accouents.[5] The drama 
> prompted the Arbitration Committee to send him an email enquiry about the 
> paid editing concerns. Nichalp's identity was well-known to those who had 
> exposed his paid editing. The personal information that he had posted earlier 
> on his user page and elsewhere on Wikipedia (and social networking sites) had 
> made it easy for Wikihounds to stalk him in real life. Denial was not an 
> option - Nichalp knew the Wikihounds were capable of producing evidence 
> against him. Pleading not guilty would only gather more eyeballs and possibly 
> lead to media attention - that could sabotage his post-college career. 
> Pleading guilty was not an option either - it would lead to the same fate. 
> Nichalp did what he felt was the best option before him. He neither accepted 
> the charge, nor denied it. What happened next was unfortunate for
>  him. Ignoring his 5-year long devotion to the project, the Arbitration 
> Committee took away his bureaucrat, administrator and oversight rights in an 
> unopposed judgment.[6]
> Realizing that his paid editing accounts may be under survelliance from the 
> Wikihounds, Nichalp abandoned all of them. All of them, except one - the one 
> he had started in April 2009 with the objective of gaining back his admin 
> rights: Wifione. Nichalp carefully crafted his new wiki identity. He devoted 
> this new account to earning money from India's most notorious self-styled 
> "management guru". To make sure his paid editing does not appear blatantly 
> obvious, Nichalp (or shall we call him Wifione, now?) engaged in a wide range 
> of edits. Wifione rose up in the wiki-hierarchy and became the administrator. 
> He tried not to appear like a paid editor, but the constant pressure from his 
> client forced him to make constant edits to the pages associated with the 
> client. Anyone looking at his top 50 edits would not fail to notice that much 
> of his work in the article namespace was devoted to the pages associated with 
> his client and its competitors.[7] But Wifione knew
>  that nobody would oppose him openly: his client is infamous for suing any 
> one who criticizes him or his organization. Nobody wants to be sued for 500 
> million bucks in a court that lies in the remotest part of the Indian 
> subcontinent - traveling to and staying in Silchar during every court hearing 
> could bankrupt a humble wiki editor. Besides, Wifione had taken care not to 
> repeat the mistakes he had made as Nichalp - he had left no tracks that would 
> lead the Wikihounds to him. Or so he thought.
>
>
> [1] en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Nichalp
>
> [2] 
> wikipediareview.com/index.php?s=1122a1d3e604276b519c9501881856f4&showtopic=24786&st=0&p=177577&#entry177577
>
> [3] en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Paid_editing
>
> [4] 
> en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Special:Contributions&dir=prev&action=view&target=Wifione
>
> [5] 
> en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=User_talk:Jimbo_Wales&oldid=295308358#Cash_for_spam
>
> [6] 
> en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wikipedia:Arbitration_Committee/Noticeboard&oldid=296240244#Nichalp
>
> [7] wikidashboard.appspot.com/enwiki/wiki/User:Wifione
>
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