05-12-2009, 01:36 PM #1
Irish student hoaxes world's media with fake quote
DUBLIN (AP) -- When Dublin university student Shane Fitzgerald posted a poetic but phony quote on Wikipedia, he was testing how our globalized, increasingly Internet-dependent media was upholding accuracy and accountability in an age of instant news.
His report card: Wikipedia passed. Journalism flunked.
The sociology major's obituary-friendly quote -- which he added to the Wikipedia page of Maurice Jarre hours after the French composer's death March 28 -- flew straight on to dozens of U.S. blogs and newspaper Web sites in Britain, Australia and India. They used the fabricated material, Fitzgerald said, even though administrators at the free online encyclopedia twice caught the quote's lack of attribution and removed it.
A full month went by and nobody noticed the editorial fraud. So Fitzgerald told several media outlets they'd swallowed his baloney whole.
"I was really shocked at the results from the experiment," Fitzgerald, 22, said Monday in an interview a week after one newspaper at fault, The Guardian of Britain, became the first to admit its obituarist lifted material straight from Wikipedia.
He said the Guardian was the only publication to respond to him in detail and with remorse at its own editorial failing. Others, he said, treated him as a vandal who was solely to blame for their cut-and-paste content.
Follow me on the Twitter! @EricDiesel1972
Deuteronomy 18:10-12 (KJV)
10 There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, 11 or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. 12 For all who do these things are an abomination to the Lord. (KJV)
Follow me at my Biblical Blog: http://scripture-demystified.blogspot.com
Baruch ha Shem Adonai.
05-12-2009, 01:45 PM #2
DK, this brings to mind a frustration I have had with my younger children's education. Over the last few years, I have seen that many of the teachers are becoming lax in asking my children for verified sources when writing a paper.
Too often, I have seen my children come home and plop down in front of the computer as instructed by their teachers and go find info on the internet. Never once required to go to the library to find a book or encyclopedia entry for the topic of that paper.
I know this wasn't the topic of your post but it just brought that to mind."Three things in human life are important: The first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind." ~ Henry James
05-12-2009, 01:50 PM #3
Those crazy Irish!I do not intend to tiptoe through life only to arrive safely at death!
05-12-2009, 01:55 PM #4Registered User
- Join Date
- Aug 2005
- The South, USA
However, in the high school all the English teachers I know teach proper MLA, and even teach how to determine if a web source is reliable. Outside of English, though, teachers aren't as picky about sources and MLA.
05-12-2009, 03:29 PM #5
I worked at a (very badly run) newspaper here where they would hire people to proof stories in off the street. Anyway, I soon found out these people were fact-checking by typing a topic into google and going with whatever popped up first! I screamed bloody murder about it but couldn't get anyone else concerned.
So for the very first time I quit a job without another prospect.
Good for this guy! Two thumbs down for the newspapers.
By WasBlind in forum Missing ArchivesReplies: 21Last Post: 12-02-2008, 11:29 AM
By VespaElf in forum Bizarre and Off-Beat NewsReplies: 2Last Post: 10-12-2004, 04:18 PM
By Casshew in forum Bizarre and Off-Beat NewsReplies: 16Last Post: 09-17-2004, 03:57 PM
By Casshew in forum Bizarre and Off-Beat NewsReplies: 2Last Post: 04-04-2004, 12:27 PM