Wikipedia Blocks More Than 300 Accounts

Wikipedia Blocks More Than 300 Accounts

Weeks of investigation revealed 381 accounts that are being used as the English version of Wikipedia for “black hat” editing in which people took money to promote outside interests without disclosing they were on someone’s payroll, according to a blog post.  In some cases, people pretending to represent Wikipedia reached out to subjects of articles seeking payment, according to the widely-used online encyclopedia.  “Other times, these individuals would threaten to delete the article if the subjects of the article failed to make payment,” Wikipedia told AFP.”That being said, we would agree that the actions taken by (those) behind these accounts were extortionate and even in some cases, similar to blackmail.”  Along with blocking the 381 “sockpuppet” accounts, Wikipedia editors deleted 210 articles created by people using those accounts.  “Editing Wikipedia is completely free, and only requires compliance with the project’s editorial guidelines,” Erhart and Barbara said.”No one should ever have to pay to create or maintain a Wikipedia article.”

Wikipedia Blocks More Than 300 Accounts