It’s not every day that a company bans the U.S. Congress from making public comments, but that’s exactly what Wikipedia has done. The site’s editor bots have caught someone from within the U.S. Congress building trolling the encyclopedia site, and making biased edits to some Wikipedia articles.
As a result, Wikipedia now looks for a specific user account with an IP address coming from the U.S. Congress building.
The Offending Edits
The one edit that got congress trolls booted from Wikipedia included an edit made to an entry about “reptilians.” According to Wikipedia, reptilians are lizard people that are often the subject of much debate and controversy. The U.S. Congress troll added this line to the Wikipedia entry: “these allegations are completely unsubstantiated and have no basis in reality.” This edit was quickly removed from Wikipedia by the company’s monitoring bots, but additional edits along the same vein were added to other articles.
Even though Wikipedia has taken some action to prevent edits coming from one IP address within the congress building, the company recognizes that trolls can still edit articles. So, Wikipedia will have to selectively eliminate IP addresses that seem offending as the one congress troll moves from place to place. Thus far, the person responsible for the edits is still making comments to various articles, and Wikipedia is getting rid of those comments as quickly as possible by banning each IP address as it pops up.
Not the First Time
The Wikipedia bot that searches for any trolling edits on the website was designed after numerous edits were made to Wikipedia articles coming from the House of Commons many years ago. The bot is called “Congress Edits,” and it picks up on any edits that are not correct, are biased, or are simply ridiculous. Throughout the past decade, thousands of edits coming from U.S. Government buildings have been made to Wikipedia articles – albeit, some of these do add to the conversation, but many are simply ludicrous or incorrect statements.
There’s no doubt that some people working within the U.S. Congress want to change the way that others view certain Wikipedia articles, but Wikipedia is simply too smart to let this happen. If you want to make any edits to Wikipedia articles, you should know that all edits are monitored – especially if they come from congress. The last time that someone from the House of Commons made edits, there was a big new scandal surrounding the comments left, and this time the same types of comments are leaving congress looking somewhat silly.
With thousands of edits coming from U.S. Government buildings over the past few years, you have to wonder if Wikipedia can remain a trusted source – although the company is trying to get rid of any inaccurate edits as soon as possible. If you do come across a Wikipedia edit that seems out of place, contact the company. Otherwise, wrong information will simply be spread, and that’s no good. What do you think of these edits?