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The Internet Entertainment Games

ESA, EA Caught Editing Their Own Wikipedia Entries 86

With the whitewashing of Wikipedia now an easily-reviewable record, it's been noted that games-related organizations are not above tweaking their public image online. Joystiq notes that EA, for example, is unabashed about removing founder Trip Hawkins from their entry. More ominous edits from the Entertainment Software Association are reported by GamePolitics. The organization, which you may recall backing the recent raids on mod chippers, has made a concerted effort to cast mod chips in a negative light. " In one paragraph, someone at ESA deleted a nuanced discussion of mod chip legality, replacing it with a flat assertion that mod chips are illegal. Less than a minute later, a lengthy section on the positive uses of mod chips was deleted, as was a notation that the US Supreme Court has not yet dealt with the DMCA. Finally, a sentence stating that mod chips are legal in Australia was removed."
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ESA, EA Caught Editing Their Own Wikipedia Entries

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  • by base2_celtic ( 56328 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @02:34AM (#20301427) Homepage Journal
    Not that I'm in any way in favour of the act, of course. I think any device you own should be able to be modified in any way you see fit.
  • Change it back? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ludomancer ( 921940 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @03:05AM (#20301595)
    Now that we've caught these people exploiting the part of wikipedia that NO ONE should exploit simply because it undermines the very principle of this community-based system, who will change these entries back? WILL these entries be changed back?

    It seems kind of limp to blow the horn on them but not remove the erroneous edits they made. Even if this information is subjective, if a company edits this info to benefit said company, that doesn't seem fair. As a slave/consumer in this country, it makes me cringe every time a large corporation gets away with this kind of bullshit. When is enough, enough?
  • by GaryPatterson ( 852699 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @04:26AM (#20301981)
    This exposes an issue I have with Wikipedia - who edits last wins.

    If these people had used IP anonymisers, they'd never have been picked up and the edits would have looked just like arguments back and forth until someone gave up. The problem is that a company can be far more tenacious than any one person, even paying marketing people to make sure Wikipedia has the 'right' information.

    The answer I see from Wikipedia fans is "just edit the page when you see an error." That's great, but if someone's determined enough, they'll edit right afterwards, making the entire thing pointless.

    The greatest strength of Wikipedia is the reason I believe it must ultimately fail.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @07:20AM (#20302647)

    Every American death is a victory for the Democrats

    Or at least a new registered Democratic voter.

  • by JNighthawk ( 769575 ) <NihirNighthawk @ a o> on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @08:11AM (#20302905)
    Just because the IP belongs to the company doesn't mean it's a company decision. I've made plenty of edits from school/work. It doesn't mean those edits were endorsed or even known to the company.

    With Wikipedia, you edit the topics you're interested in. If you work in a certain industry or a certain company, you'll most likely edit pages related to it.
  • by ludomancer ( 921940 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @08:16AM (#20302941)
    You can't dismiss another persons concerns about the world simply by tagging their arguments as "teen angst". That in itself is an imature perspective.

    I'm 30, and as I watch my country slip into a sick pit of capitalistic facism, I think speaking out about it is the best way to show concern and encourage others to act as well. I live in america where our whole world is controlled by entities such as these. I have every right to be irate about the level of dishonesty and corruption in the corporate world. They slight us all on a personal level every time they pull something like this. If you really feel that's being overdramatic, then as a member of "the real world" I implore you to not care about my angst. Please.

  • so what? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Geoff-with-a-G ( 762688 ) on Tuesday August 21, 2007 @01:26PM (#20307147)
    Why should someone try to list this? Who cares, and why?

    Of course people from various companies or organizations edit the Wikipedia entries for those organizations. They're likely to be more knowledgeable and more interested in the subject matter than the average contributor. That's normal.

    If someone created a Wikipedia page about me, and claimed that I cheated on a Geology paper at Harvard, I would probably edit the page and remove it - seeing as how I never went to Harvard or took Geology. Are you telling me that's unfair or unethical of me? That I should wait patiently for someone else knowledgeable and motivated to go make that correction for me? That principle seems absurd to me.

    If the edits they make are untrue, if they're trying to give a falsely positive impression of themselves, then fix it. Correct it. Revert it. The fact that they want to do so is neither surprising nor any worse than if some random third party wanted to post falsely positive (or negative) information about the organization in question. If I'm some random crazy jerk and I decide to vandalize Linus Torvalds' entry to say terrible things about him, how is that better than if he himself edited it to say untrue but positive things about himself? Either way it's just someone posting false information to Wikipedia, and either way you should just correct it to the best of your ability and move on.

    There shouldn't be some sort of blanket principle or policy that an organization can't update its own Wikipedia page. I'd imagine there are IBM employees who know more about IBM than you do. I'd expect there are EA employees who know a lot about EA. They should be free to contribute that knowledge. If they're lying, correct their lies like you would anyone else's.

If you think nobody cares if you're alive, try missing a couple of car payments. -- Earl Wilson