The Weird World of Wiki
Since at least 2007, the Wikipedia Wessely article page and the CFS article page, and their respective discussion (Talk) pages, have been very closely controlled by UK Wiki Admin, Jacob de Wolff, and former UK Wiki Admin, Guy Chapman (no relation).
Both pages have a very turbulant history and have frequently been "protected" or "semi protected" from edits, with potential editors directed to thrash out potential edits on the discussion pages, first.
Dr Jacob de Wolff (JFW) is an NHS hospital doctor and has written openly about his work and his training on his own User pages - so I am not "outing" his identity, here.
Guy Chapman (Just zis Guy, you know?) (JzG) (and other User names) has been one of the most notorious Wiki Admins. Go check out the Wikipedia Review forums, where you will find sub forums dedicated to the MO of various Wiki Admins, including Chapman.
It is quite possible to find yourself banned from editing and having your own User pages wiped (including their History logs) even though you have not edited article pages, themselves. I was banned from editing any pages of Wikipedia by Jimbo Wales, in October 2007, following a kangaroo court on the Admin Discussion pages (I keep Mr Wales' email framed in the downstairs cloakroom).
My crimes were "Wiki lawyering" and using my own discussion page for alleged "Soapboxing". Even the suitability of my User name was discussed by some Admins, as it matched a website of the same name.
I was later prevented from adding material to my own User page and discussion page. Several others have found themselves banned or given temporary bans. Some new Editors and non registered users (IP codes displayed) have been wrongly accused of being sock puppets of banned users.
In disputes over the behaviour and alleged behaviour of Users with whom Admins take issue, anticipate public archived kangaroo courts on the Admin discussion pages from which you will be barred from presenting your case.
Anticipate also that while "living persons" are protected from defamatory allegations on Wiki pages, this protection is not extended to Editors of Wikipedia.
In late 2007,* Guy Chapman (who has no personal interest in CFS and ME but for whom CFS and ME has become something of a focus)
took it upon himself to contact Simon Wessely to invite him to contribute to the Wessely article page - Wessely was said to have declined.
*Correction, it was 2006 when Chapman first wrote about having invited Wessely to contribute to the Wessely article page, but late 2007, when Chapman wrote about also having discussed "harassment" with Wessely, on both the Wessely article page and the Admin's board, and also in a private email.
Chapman also discussed with Wessely, via emails, the issue of alleged "harassment". These exchanges were referred to by Chapman on the Admins' Discussion board and in private emails.
At the time, Chapman was taking a break from Admin duties. Wikipedia does not permit "original research" and it was never established on what basis Chapman had contacted Wessely, that is, had he approached Wessely on a personal basis (in which case, why was he discussing these exchanges on Wiki) or had he approached Wessely for and on behalf of the Wikipedia Foundation, as a one time Admin, and someone close to Jimbo Wales, and if so, to what purpose?
At one point, in October 2007, no less than six Wiki Admins were drafted in to hover over the Wessely discussion page.
One of these was Wiki Admin, Tim Vickers, referred to in the commentary appended**. (I am given to understand that Vickers has also involved himself in Lyme related issues.)
So tread gently, those of you who might be considering dipping a toe into the very murky waters of Wiki - it ain't a nice place to be.
BTW: In 2006, Professor Malcolm Hooper's letter to Gresham College had been dismissed by Guy Chapman as "So that's a letter from someone with a grudge..."
and "...a furious Hooper with a big nasty peeve..."
At a later date, several Admins and editors had sought to present the temporary (and accidental) ommission of a Hooper paper from the journal site that had published it, as the paper having been "withdrawn". The relevance of Hooper's academic credentials to the field have also been questioned recently, by Chapman, on the Wessely Talk page.
I am a biochemist with interests in microbiology, tropical diseases and enzymology. I did my PhD in biochemistry at Dundee University in Scotland under the supervision of Alan Fairlamb and am now working in America. I am not a employee of the Wikimedia foundation and my views are my own.
If anybody has any questions about these topics I would be delighted to try to help. I am usually glad to answer questions and research stuff for articles, after all, favours owed are valuable things.
At the moment I'm the director of Molecular and Cellular Biology wikiproject and working on bringing as many basic molecular biology, biochemistry and infectious disease articles up to FA level as I can. Even with the help of all the expert editors in the project, this is going to be a very long process, but generations of students will bless our efforts as they plagiarise our text!
The MCB project is a group of editors interested in improving the quality of Wikipedia articles on molecular life sciences. Since these pages are usually the top Google hit on any biochemical subject you care to mention, this is more important from an academic viewpoint than you might think. Anybody interested in helping out can sign up on the project page. You will be most welcome.
A4M Sues Wikipedia - Quackbuster(?) PropagandistsTargeted...
Opinion by Consumer Advocate Tim Bolen
Tuesday, September 24th, 2009
On August 19th, 2009 the American Association of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M) filed suit in a New York State Supreme Court against the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., (solely as a nominal Defendant) and John or Jane Does 1-10. The Complaint Number is 09111917.
This is a very important case to the anyone involved in health care anywhere in the world.. Why? Because Wikipedia articles about health care have turned Wikipedia into a propaganda machine - with the full knowledge, and cooperation, of the management of both the Wikipedia Project, and the Wikimedia Foundation. Wikipedia is the fourth ranked website on Planet Earth.
More, the abuse is so obvious, and so extensive, I strongly suspect that the Wikimedia Foundation's claims of "funding by donations" is an outright lie. I believe that a good case can be made that some, if not all, of Wikimedia's so-called "Anonymous Contributions" (the majority of contributions) are, in fact, "Fee for Service Contracts" in disguise, initiated by those controlling and paying for the writing of the articles.
In short, I believe that Wikipedia is a fraud. Because Wikipedia ranks so high in "hits," links from Wikipedia to a scurrilous website give that site first page positioning on search engines. So, the "Fee for Service" people get a double benefit: (a) They control health care articles on the fourth ranked website in the world, and (b) they get top search engine positioning for the rest of their propaganda.
What propaganda is...
SourceWatch.org says: "Propagandists use a variety of propaganda techniques to influence opinions and to avoid the truth. Often these techniques rely on some element of censorship or manipulation, either omitting significant information or distorting it."
A favorite tactic used by the Wikipedia conspirators is "Name Calling".. SourceWatch.org defines it as:
"Name-calling is a form of ad hominem attack that draws a vague equivalence between a concept and a person, group or idea. By linking the person or idea being attacked to a negative symbol, the propagandist hopes that the audience will reject the person or the idea on the basis of the symbol, instead of looking at the available evidence." It is similar to "Demonizing the Opposition."
Floyd J. McKay of CommonDreams.org says in his article "Propaganda: America's Psychological Warriors:"
"At its root, propaganda plays on emotions, often defying reason and facts in order to reach into the psyche of the audience. Propaganda is a mind game the skillful propagandist plays with your deepest emotions, exploiting your greatest fears and prejudices."
"Successful propaganda uses elementary tools such as labeling and fear-mongering and repeats a simple message over and over, until it is drilled into the heads of the audience. Once embedded, it often remains long after evidence has discredited it witness the fact that millions of Americans still believe that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, that Saddam Hussein and al-Qaida were connected, and an Iraqi was among the 9/11 terrorists."
A good write-up on the subject can be found at http://library.thinkquest.org/C0111500/proptech.htm
The A4M v Wikimedia complaint says...
"This defamation action rises out of an ongoing campaign by anonymous editors on the website (http://www.en.wikipedia.org
), a free encyclopedia on the internet available to the public, to disparage A4M and its two founders, Dr. Goldman and Dr. Klatz, by posting false and defamatory information about the medical credentials of Dr. Goldman and Dr. Klatz, A4M's scientific qualifications, and the research findings in the field of anti-aging medicine by A4m's founders and members."
The A4M v Wikimedia complaint also says...
"Upon information and belief, Defendants John or Jane Does 1 through 10 ("Defendants)" are anonymous editors of the A4M website entry on Wikipedia, located at (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Academy_of_Anti-Aging_Medicine
), attached to in its entirety as Exhibit A, who have posted false and damaging information, as alleged herein, about Plaintiffs on the web page cited above. The true identities of the Defendants are currently unknown to Plaintiffs, but plaintiffs believe that information obtained in discovery will lead to the identification of each anonymous Defendants' true name and identity."
So, what happened to A4M on Wikipedia...
On June 21st, 2006 a Wikipedia Editor named Benbest created the first article about A4M. It was warm, friendly, and accurate. The article stayed that way until late 2007. You can read the original article by clicking here.
On October 17th, 2008 the assault on A4M began with an edit by an unknown person using the hidden ID 220.127.116.11 adding a misrepresentative sentence claiming "The A4M is not recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties, which currently recognizes 130 medical specialties in the US, but has tried to establish anti-aging medicine as a specialty." And, there the editing war began between those wanting an honest article and those who wanted A4M presented in the worst possible light.
For the most part, those that sought to deride A4M did so from a hidden identity. And, when supporters of A4M went into the article to set the record straight one of the A4M detractors (Keepcalmandcarryon) called on the usual trick of getting those people that disagreed with him/her banned permanently from Wikipedia. At that point the article became a simple "hit piece" against A4M, reading like something on the crackpot quackwatch website.
After the lawsuit was filed, suddenly, a new editor appeared named TimVickers. Vickers is actually not an editor, but a Wikipedia administrator with direct ties to Wikimedia management.. I suspect he was brought in to solidify Wikipedia's legal position. He has kept the "hit piece" article the same.
If you want to see a history of the Wikipedia A4M article editing wars click here. If you know what to look for you'll find some of the "quackbuster" regulars sliming through the pages...
This is the case to watch.
Tim Bolen - Consumer Advocate