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Sarah Jeong Wikipedia Page Undergoes Ethnic Cleansing

Sarah Jeong Wikipedia Page Undergoes Ethnic Cleansing

Wikipedia has become politicized to the point that it’s no longer reliable on any topic

Long-time Legal Insurrection readers will recall the controversy over the ever-changing Elizabeth Warren Wikipedia page.  Here’s an overview from 2013:  Elizabeth Warren Wikipedia page ethnically cleansed (Update — partial restoration).

In the wake of the controversial and hypocritical decision of the New York Times to keep Sarah Jeong despite her racist tweets, the same sort of cleansing of Jeong’s Wikipedia page is underway.

The section of the Jeong Wikipeida page, entitled “BBC says (Headline): ‘Sarah Jeong: NY Times stands by racist tweets reporter],” has been pulled and is no longer available except via the Talk page.

Here is the current “Contents” listing for the published version of the Jeong Wikipedia entry., there are two references listed that have no corresponding text in the article in its current form: is due to the deletion of an entire section on the Jeong Twitter scandal and the New York Times’ hypocrisy.  Whoever removed the text forgot to also remove the associated References.

At this time, the entire Sarah Jeong Wikipedia page is “under consideration for deletion.” what’s going on?  Apparently, a vocal segment of Wiki contributors and its sympathetic cohort who make such decisions at Wikipedia simply don’t want the information included . . . or can’t agree on how it should be parsed.

The “Talk” section on this topic is fascinating as various contributors weigh in on the best way to cover the facts of the scandal.

Particularly revealing is the change from a pretty innocuous report on a BBC article to the “new proposal” that blames “conservative commentators.”

The BBC, which is generally considered a WP:RS around these parts, reports:

The New York Times has defended a new member of its editorial board who wrote racist tweets about white people.[1]

I fail to see why this would not be included in the article. Cheers to all, XavierItzm (talk) 22:50, 2 August 2018 (UTC)

*** @XavierItzm: I have changed your comment, since the BBC changed the article today. For anyone wondering, the BBC used to say “racist” but now says “inflammatory”. You can see somewhere below where I criticize this decision by the BBC, but if they changed it, we have to respect that. wumbolo ^^^ 16:33, 3 August 2018 (UTC)

I’ve reverted this Orwellian change. Changing someone else’s comment on a talk page is not acceptable.2600:1012:B147:F1EA:F559:8E27:8070:B4CB (talk) 09:32, 5 August 2018 (UTC)

I don’t see anyone disagreeing that the tweets are in fact racist. At the very least, we could insert a sentence that says: “Sarah Jeong become the subject of widespread criticism in the media in early August 2018 when, upon her hiring by the New York Times Editorial Board, it was discovered that she had posted a series of racist Twitter messages disparaging white people.” I don’t think any of that is disputed in any way at this point.Ikjbagl (talk) 23:18, 2 August 2018 (UTC)

This goes back and forth for some time, and then the “new proposal” is made:

New proposal

Including this sentence on her article has 8 supports and 3 opposes but many supports want more information as well. However, all of the supports and the mild oppose agree that this information should be included in the article. To address the concerns of those that want more context on the controversy I propose that this section be included after the sentence noting that she was hired:

In August 2, 2018 conservatives commentators on social media drew attention to tweets that Jeong made in 2014 that were disparaging to white people.'The New York Times' issued a comment noting that she was a target of frequent online harassment and that the tweets were Jeong responding by "imitating her accusers." The 'Times' has also said that they do not condone Jeong's tweets and that Jeong regrets her approach to responding to harassment.

I trimmed down the section I originally proposed by stripping the quote and using some of the more encyclopedic wording that Innisfree987 included in his take of this section. I have maintained two key distinctions from his diff though:

One: using “drew attention” instead of “criticized”. The reliable sources were replete with criticism of Jeong’s tweets and their involvement magnified the controversy, it was not just conservatives on twitter complaining about her.

Two: I stated “disparaging to white people” instead of “criticized… as disparaging to white people.” The reliable sources are in agreement, whether they label the tweets as racist or not. This CNN article is a full throated and unequivocal defense of Jeong. In it they say: “Jeong, who is Asian, had drawn scrutiny after the resurfacing of a number of years-old tweets in which she spoke disparagingly of white people.” The inclusion of “disparaging to white people” should be uncontroversial, it avoids having to use the word racist and sources on both sides of the issue use the phrase or a variant to describe her tweets. SWL36 (talk) 17:16, 3 August 2018 (UTC)

This didn’t go uncontested, however, and one Wikipedia Talk contributor took issue with assigning blame for the controversy on “conservative commentators.”

I don’t know that I could agree with the way you’ve written this. Citing “conservative commentators” and not mentioning that it was a large news story in mainstream news makes it sound more partisan than it actually was. I also don’t know if avoiding the word “racist” is the right thing to do at this point; certainly we shouldn’t describe her as racist, but when the BBC has a headline up for 12 hours on their front page characterizing the tweets as racist, and when many (if not every) other major news networks have done the same, it seems most appropriate to characterize them as racist. Still, if you want to avoid the word, I would change your first sentence back to being something about receiving widespread criticism in the news media, because we have plenty of sources to back that claim up. Maybe make it:

 In August 2018, Jeong received widespread criticism in the news media in response to tweets she had made in 2014 that were disparaging to white people. 'The New York Times' issued a comment noting that she was a target of frequent online harassment and that the tweets were Jeong responding by "imitating her accusers." The 'Times' has also said that they do not condone Jeong's tweets and that Jeong regrets her approach to responding to harassment.
And I would append the following three sources as citations:

Ikjbagl (talk) 17:36, 3 August 2018 (UTC)

The “oppose” v. “support” exchange that follows is well worth reading (if you are so inclined, here’s the archived link lest even the Talk page be purged), but ultimately, as we’ve seen, the Wikipedia powers that be have decided not to include any mention of the racist tweet/NYT hypocrisy scandal at all (the two remaining references seem to be an oversight that will likely be “corrected” at some near point . .  . if the entire entry is not ultimately deleted).

Wikipedia, like Twitter, can run itself as it wants, but there’s a reason that Wikipedia no longer enjoys the reputation it once held for providing reliable basic information about its contents.  Like other once-trusted sites (i.e. Snopes), Wikipedia has become politicized to the point that it’s no longer reliable on any topic that is even marginally political.  And for the left everything is political.


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JohnSmith100 | August 6, 2018 at 5:29 pm

There is an area where I have extreme expertise, and detailed inner circle knowledge. In that area Wikipedia has consistently published inaccurate information, and the clowns ruling the roost in that area rabidly defended their misrepresentations, even when hard evidence was presented. This goes back more than twenty years.

    Petrushka in reply to JohnSmith100. | August 6, 2018 at 5:42 pm

    I hit the downvote button while trying to reply. Sorry.

    Every news event that I have personal knowledge of has been misreported. Some so trivial that I couldn’t see the point.

      JusticeDelivered in reply to Petrushka. | August 6, 2018 at 7:45 pm

      Accidentally down voting also bites me in the ass. Other sites allow one to correct accidental up or down votes, and they allow editing. I wish LI would enable these features or change to a platform which does.

Like other once-trusted sites (i.e. Snopes), Wikipedia has become politicized to the point that it’s no longer reliable on any topic

The error is in thinking that it was ever “reliable”. I’m not just being a wiseass here; it was never anything more than some anonymous people posting stuff on the Internet. Some of it is “reliable” and some of it ain’t. This does not make it useless. But it is never reliable.

The first clue is lack of attribution. Real encyclopedias give some hint about where the information came from. The 14th Britannica (the first one to remain in print, with more-or-less continuous revisions) had an entry on “Space-Time”; at the bottom were the initials “A.E.”. Yes, Albert Einstein. The same edition had an entry on “guerrilla warfare” signed “T.E.L.”—Colonel T.E. Lawrence. In contrast, Wikipedia is written by people you’ve never heard of; people who are probably not let out much.

Wikipedia scavenges material from unknown sources. Some of it is decent. Technical, mathematical, and many historical subjects are not bad, though they tend to be disjointed where material from different original sources is clumsily appended. But current events are generally not covered decently. Indeed, it’s hard to see how they can be.

    Tom Servo in reply to tom_swift. | August 6, 2018 at 6:00 pm

    The concept behind Wikipedia was based on the theory of Crowdsourcing, which in non-controversial and relatively obscure topics has some merit. However, when it comes to bitterly contested topics, especially anything with political aspects, the opportunity to cheat and manipulate is so great that it overwhelms any possible advantages a crowdsourced model could have, and at that point simply parrots the beliefs of whatever political faction controls it at the time.

      tom_swift in reply to Tom Servo. | August 7, 2018 at 7:36 am

      Tapping into the world’s vast store of distributed expertise is indeed a valuable contribution to accessible knowledge. Pros and amateurs both have tremendous amounts of hard-won information accumulated, information which can now be cataloged and accessed by anyone, anywhere. This is a tremendous achievement. And the ability to update and expand the encyclopedia indefinitely is another new capability which was almost impossible in the print era, although some encyclopedias, like Winston’s Cumulative Loose-Leaf Encyclopedia, made a valiant stab at the problem.

      But these are not excuses to misuse it. Considering any of it authoritative, even slightly, is a dreadful error. Users should consider it “informative” but look elsewhere if “authority” is required.

I used to put Kermit Gosnell on the list of serial killers. It would get removed on a regular basis.

I’ve been begging conservatives to get involved in Wikipedia. I did some editing years ago, mostly on the Jewish topic and sometimes on conservative ones, and (with one very frustrating exception in the Jewish area) I found that if you sincerely followed the rules, you could usually have your say. One problem, as was pointed out in the keynote session in the international conference in Haifa (used to live there), is that at one point they went to “unbiased as per reliable sources”, and by definition, American reliable sources are mostly left-wing.

I would be careful with what I get there – at least look at the talk page. Conversely, I think the Britannica is worse, certainly on Jewish topics. (The Brits have a block there.)

Wikipedia’s accuracy is inversely proportional to how important the topic is to The Narrative.

I guess it all depends on what you consider to be the purpose of Wikipedia. Certainly the name implies that it was intended to be a reliable source of information, easily updated via subject matter experts on a near-real-term basis; although how the originators imagined that it could possibly happen seems unclear to me.

Comanche Voter | August 6, 2018 at 6:43 pm

Wikipedia’s crowd sourcing means nameless, faceless, and sometimes clueless would be “editors” of entries. I’ll leave the political bias and “scrubbing” off to one side.

But even on on non political stuff, it’s a very mixed bag. A dozen years or so ago, I worked on getting a Wikipedia entry for a national model airplane association. We were a special interest group within the larger community; we were organized as a non profit corporation under New Jersey law with a very specific charter. At the time we were a national organization with maybe 2,500 members. We could not get Wikipedia editors to leave our entry unaltered even if we quouted from our articles of incorporation as to our purpose. We finally just gave up and said the heck with it. But you can find us on Google with no problem.

Question: Did Sarah Jeong become a licensed attorney in any state? If so, which one?

Close The Fed | August 6, 2018 at 6:57 pm

OT: Okay, did I miss the posting about Alex Jones being deplatformed?

Briefly looking at her tweets, I really am not detecting anything I’d call intellectual. I’d expect to see these tweets from a teenager, more like an adolescent. Not just any adolescent, but one of those mean, bullying adolescents. Syle and content. Are they supposed to be ironically bad? Can we see some of her scholarly papers?

    txvet2 in reply to CKYoung. | August 6, 2018 at 8:34 pm

    “”Can we see some of her scholarly papers?””

    Yeah, they’re in the same section of the library as Obama’s.

      Barry in reply to txvet2. | August 6, 2018 at 9:13 pm

      “Yeah, they’re in the same section of the library as Obama’s.”

      An internets winner of the day.

Jeong is (so far) missing out on a great endorsement opportunity: Wite-Out

Wikipedia was a joke from the start.

Like so many liberal organizations, they want to have their cake and eat it.

They want to claim that its maintained by the people, but at the same time want total control of anything even mildly political, to such a degree that they have entire entries of outright lies.

There’s a reason colleges (which are themselves liberal hives of scum and villainy), still outright refuse to credit wikipedia entries.

Jeong is a racist pig.
No wiki scrubbing will ever change that knowledge.

What standard or comparison are people (Wiki “editors” ) using to frame the comments of this offensive bitch? Note: use of disparaging comment to women, as opposed to saying “Asian bitch” where both a gender AND race are “offended”. So with that said, is my comment offensive or does that depend on my race and which other race I am disparaging? Like previously said, Wikipedia and Snopes are as relevant to their original purpose as talcum was to diaper rash.

Wikipedia is useful mainly as a starting place, to find key words.

Dilbert Deplorable | August 7, 2018 at 4:22 pm

I’m sorry folks at NYT…You can polish that turd all you want but you’re just gonna get crap all over….

Wikipedia (like most internet operations) is run by rabid leftists, and has always been filled with propaganda and misinformation to support their political position, and to disparage and discredit whoever and whatever they see as undermining, or opposing it.

I’ve used it for around twenty years (and still do), and it’s always been this way. I even tried to correct a few of their inaccuracies in the past, but quickly gave that up after discovering that someone always comes along behind to undo any changes they find politically unsuitable. I continue to use them because they’re handy, and the things that can’t be twisted to political advantage are mostly accurate. They just have to be taken for what they are, remembering that anything that could possibly have a political component is likely to be leftist propaganda (with regular rants on global warming, etc. thrown in in every place possible). If you need to know the average flow rate of the Congo River, or the map coordinates of some town in the Himalayan foothills, they’re a fast, easy way to find it — just don’t expect any more from them than they have to give.