Did McCain Campaign give Wiki Entry An Overhaul?

It seems that someone went on to the Wikipedia site and heavily edited the Sarah Palin
entry the night before McCain announced her candidacy as his VP.
From the London Times:

The Wikipedia entry for Sarah Palin was overhauled substantially for the better in the 24 hours before the surprise announcement of her selection as Republican vice-presidential nominee.

A mystery Wikipedia user -- under the name Young Trigg -- put in about 30 edits to the biographical article on the website.

Young Trigg, edited such parts to include things like

the 44-year-old Alaskan Governor "earned the nickname `Sarah Barracuda' because of her intense play" for her high school basketball team and that she and her father "would sometimes wake at 3am to hunt moose before school".

The sources for Young Trigg's edits include the Weekly World News and a biography written about Palin by Kaylene Johnson.

The really mysterious part is all this was done hours before before McCain announced his pick, leading some to speculate it was a member of McCain's campaign or even one of Palin's own family members.

The entry has been edited several times over again, to the point where Wiki put in a block so that only certain established editors could change the entry.  

Finally, late Saturday night, Young Trigg responded to the questions and comments:

I edited for a couple of hours over a five-hour span while I was reading the internet. I finished reading the Palin biography that day, went to her page, and saw a lot of "cite needed" places and thought I should improve the article and created an account to do so.

"I am not Sarah Palin. I am not a member of Sarah Palin's family, or even Michael Palin's family," he or she wrote.

"I will acknowledge that I volunteer for the McCain campaign, one of thousands of people nationwide who are working to elect the best candidate for the job. Palin was not the nominee when I made my edits, though I am certainly excited about the selection. I don't believe I have a conflict of interest problem."

Young Trigg then retired from being an active user.

Uh huh. A "volunteer" who just happened to edit Palin's Wiki entry hours before the announcement?

And notice the weasely statement about the edit:

"Palin was not the nominee when I made my edits."


Tags: John McCain, Sarah Palin, wikipedia (all tags)



Like their role models the Soviets...

Circa the 1950s. the Republics excel at historical revisionism.

Look at how they explain the Iraq debacle.

By the time they are through, Sarah Palin will be some kind of cross between Mother Teresa and Madame Curie....

With a little Betty Crocker and Sarah Lee thrown in!!!!

by WashStateBlue 2008-09-01 07:29AM | 0 recs
Re: Like their role models the Soviets...

I wonder if Betty Crocker sells "Mooseburger Helper" in Alaska?

by skohayes 2008-09-01 09:25AM | 0 recs
Re: Did McCain Campaign give Wiki Entry An Overhau

I try to take Wikipedia with a small grain of salt.  It's a great place to start, but shouldn't be the final voice on any subject. (I love the place, BTW, and visit at least a couple of times a week).

That said, there are some people that have no problem trying to turn reference material into propaganda.

What's surprising is this:  This appears to be the extent of the McCain campaign's attempt to vet her.


by Stipes 2008-09-01 07:42AM | 0 recs
But what you have to admit...

Is that in a situation like that, when someone has clearly fed misinformation into the system, everyone has the power to fix it. Would be nice if the real media fact-checked itself like that.

by vcalzone 2008-09-01 07:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Did McCain Campaign give Wiki Entry An Overhau
Actually, I take Wiki with a huge grain of salt, but it's the place people (like the media) can go for basic information and a source of links leading to more information.
As for the McCain campaign's "vetting" well, I expect that the media will find a lot of interesting information that Weekly World News probably missed.
Should be fun!
by skohayes 2008-09-01 09:23AM | 0 recs


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