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[WikiEN-l] Johann Hari and WP
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Subject: [WikiEN-l] Johann Hari and WP
List: English Wikipedia
List-Id: wikien-l.lists.wikimedia.org
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Date: July 13, 2011, 4:20 p.m.
From: Charles Matthews -
I've probably said here in the past (and have certainly thought) that 
attention to WP's more media-like aspects can be a distraction from the 
'pedia stuff. But the current hoo-ha about [[Johann Hari]] of the 
(London) Independent touches rather directly on an aspect of my past 
admin work. See

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2011/jul/12/johann-hari-suspended-independent

As anyone who follows the past history of the article about Hari can 
see, I was involved quite heavily in the BLP side, at a point over three 
years ago. And then the particular edit war ceased after I blocked one 
of the participants for three months. I point this out because I was 
dealing also with the other party in that war, the account the Guardian 
inaccurately calls a "sock-puppet". There is a fair amount of mud being 
slung at Hari right now on another matter. [[Andreas Whittam Smith]] is 
looking into both the alleged plagiarism, which he is obviously entirely 
competent to do, and the alleged COI or meat-puppet or whatever editing 
from the account [[User:David r from meth productions]].

Given the "attempted outing" going on, and possible further close 
interest in the real-life identities of editors caught up in this 
business, I'm concerned (a) that this all may get nastier yet, and (b) 
that at least one person's professional standing may be affected by 
interpretations based on identifications, tenuous or otherwise, of our 
editors. Whittam Smith may need some help in figuring out the 
implications, at very least.

If there are admins or others out there with further information on all 
this, I'd be interested to hear, offline and on a confidential basis. A 
submission  to Whittam Smith might help justice be done in this matter. 
Also, I suppose, I might not be the right person to handle this, and I'm 
open to other suggestions as to what, if anything, should be done. 
Please use good judgement in posting anything to this list.

Charles


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