Seigenthaler and Wikipedia

Wikipedia is once again in the news and even merited an editorial in USA Today.

John Seigenthaler Sr. wrote the editorial which begins thusly:

This is a highly personal story about Internet character assassination. It could be your story.

Siegenthaler has a long and interesting career which includes a stint serving for Robert Kennedy. In May of this year, someone edited his Wikipedia entry and stated that he was once suspected of having something to do with the assinations of John F. and Robert Kennedy. This was not true. In September, Siegenthaler discovered the Wikipedia article and was not happy. (Read editorial linked above.) (Here’s the current and corrected Wikipedia article. Check the references section at the end for links to USA Today, CNN and others.)

I don’t have time to get to the meat of all this. I think Wikipedia handled the situation very well and I don’t think Mr. Siegenthaler was seriously injured. What if someone had stated that he was responsible for the death of the last Pope? Or that he was really an Alien sent from the planet Zarthura to enslave the Earth? Would he still be denouncing Wikipedia in USA Today?

Ross Mayfield got me to finally blog this and it’s a good starting place for reading about the value of anonyminity(sp?).


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