Artigo publicado na ArsTechica, em:
Depois de um outro caso de "Wikipedia vandalismo", Jimbo Wales propõe "revisões controladas" em certas categorias de artigos. Outros Wikipedianos argumentam que o modelo atual não necessita mudanças, funcionando muito bem.
Íntegra do artigo
When the Wikipedia pages for Senators Ted Kennedy and Robert Byrd both say that the men have died (when in fact they haven't) and the changes are reverted five minutes later, is it a public relations disaster for the online encyclopedia or triumph of the communal editing model?
Hardcore Wikipedians are currently working through the answer to that question, and the end result of the deliberations could be a new process for flagging revisions to contentious articles. Wikipedia is no stranger to article vandalism, and it's not as though the world isn't aware of that fact by now (see Stephen Colbert's attempt to rewrite the entry for "elephant," for instance, or last week's episode of 30 Rock). But the edits to the Byrd and Kennedy bios attracted national attention after the Washington Post ran a piece about the five minutes of inaccuracy.
In response, Wikipedia cofounder Jimbo Wales demanded the use of "flagged revisions," a process that would only allow trusted editors to make changes to particular parts of the site--perhaps only to the biographies of living people (BLP), for instance. Unvetted editors could still make changes, but they would have to be approved by a reliable editor before going live for the rest of the world to see.
Legally, Wikipedia appears to be fine, since the organization has nothing to do with the false information. But is it unethical not to do more to protect the reputations of real people who are still living and who could be harmed/embarrassed/punked by false Wikipedia information? Wales says yes.
"As an aside," he wrote, "I consider our BLP issue to be so important that I think it is actually unethical to not use a tool which holds great promise for helping with the problem, now that it has been successfully tested elsewhere. Anyone who would like to see this tool not go into practice needs to start by convincing people that either (a) it is ok for the BLP vandalism problem to continue or (b) there is a better way to solve it."
He cited a straw poll of Wikipedians showing a 60/40 split in favor of the flagged revisions idea, and Wales asked the Wikimedia Foundation to implement it.
Consensus is hard to come by
But, like the scent of limburger cheese, the opinions of Wikipedians are strong. A virtual rebellion broke on Wales' talk page, where the debate was happening, leading to statements like, "I'm sorry if this offends you, Jimbo, but it seems to me that you are hell bent on getting this mutant offspring of a wiki extension implemented here even if its the last thing you do."
While the flagged revisions concept sounds like a major change to Wikipedia's famously open approach to content creation and editing, the site has already featured tools to prevent vandalism, such as the "protection" and "semi-protection" of articles. Other Wikipedias, especially the Dutch and German, have been using systems similar to flagged revisions for some months, though the German site has a backlog for approving edits. Wales would like to see this brought down, something that proponents of the plan believe it possible given the much larger user base of the English Wikipedia.
But other administrators and editors can't see the problem that needs solving. Even without extra protection tools, the changes to the senators' biographies were corrected within minutes. "Are you nuts?" asked one user. "Jimbo, splash some water in your eyes and read that article again. It took less than five minutes for the vandalism to be removed, and that's damn impressive. Instead of being proud of your users you instead take it as an opportunity to push for flagged revisions."
The debate rages on, sometimes with civility, at other times punctuated by cries of "Dictator!" Wales has asked for competing proposals to address the issue within the next few days, and has proposed some revisions of his own to the original plan.