Thursday, April 27, 2006

Stop financially supporting Wikipedia!

I have certainly found it ironic that the English Wikipedia includes an article about the expression "useful idiots" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Useful_Idiots) because it is essentially the status which the founders and management of Wikipedia (located mostly in Tampa, Florida) now have in the eyes of users of most East European language versions of their very own website. Please note that this is not name-calling, but merely a technically accurate description. After all, I am a polite guy.

The Wikipedia, in its English form, was founded under the naive impression that other language versions will be managed under the same civilized rules as the original one. Wrong assumption...

According to my research and various sources (who prefer to remain anonymous) only the English version of the Wikipedia can be described as relatively civilized and unbiased. Unfortunately this is not the case in most local language versions in countries with little or no history of democracy or western civilization. I am unable to read Chinese to verify it, but I am getting second-hand reports that Chinese Wikipedia does not include any historical information about atrocities commited by communists and that all articles must be from the official "Beijing point of view" - thus not NPOV (Neutral Point of View). I can't stop wondering why such a travesty of human decency is being tolerated by and supported with American resources. Seems to me that Google with its "Marxist version of the Google search engine" is not alone in its kissing up to Chinese communists. Well well well...

The situation is very similar in all East European language versions - where I do not need any translators and I can personally confirm it. It is bad on Slovak, Polish and Russian Wikipedias but the situation on the Czech Wikipedia is far and away the worst. In case you are not aware of it, the Czech Republic (a democracy in name only) is ruled by neo-communists - though they offically call themselves "socialists". Czech students, who are the main fodder-contributors to the Czech Wikipedia are saturated to their eyeballs with Marxism. They could not be any redder.

Thus it is only logical that the contents and daily life of the Czech Wikipedia looks and behaves accordingly. The sysops and admins of the Czech Wiki rule with an iron fist and they've created the very first Wiki-tyranny. Dissent or any democratic expression of a different (while still NEUTRAL) opinion is impossible and is immediately punished by extreme blocking (ranging from a few days to nine months) to prevent editing of said or any article. This is only for Wikipedians who do not goose step with the official party line - everybody agrees that vandalism is not to be tolerated anywhere and should be punished accordingly. Wiki-stalking of suspected wiki-dissidents is the rule not the exception and is a part of a Czech Wikipedia sysops basic duties. The Czech Wikipedia has been virtually hijacked by marxist Wiki-terrorists. Best of all, they have nothing to worry about because nobody in Tampa speaks Czech and they can always lie their way out - they have many willing accomplices among Czech students studying in the United States that will cover their backs.

As a result, thousands of articles on Czech history and society are severely biased and twisted to comply with the current political propaganda and prevailing sentiments in society. For example Czechs generally dislike Czech expatriates of the Cold-war era, and so articles about them reflect only one point of view. There are hundreds of examples like this. Discussion of these issues is not allowed and those who object are immediately accused by sysops of "disrupting" and repeatedly blocked until they leave the Wikipedia altogether. Basically, unless the article is about stones or flowers or other scientific things, only the communist and marxist point of view is allowed and only it is considered to be "neutral". All opposing viewpoints are thus banned.

The admins are also using technical means to further their goals: automatically blocking thousands of IP addresses, which are allegedly "proxies" (and they are not) and refusing to install software which would allow transparent reading of Czech words with or without Czech diacritics. That last trick effectively blocks thousands of potential Wiki visitors from abroad, who do not have diacritics on their keyboards - aka those hated Czech expatriates.

If somebody from the Czech Wikipedia attempts to seek remedy or justice at the English Wikipedia or META Wikipedia (there is such a guy, a Czech lawyer named Vit Zvanovec), he is quickly located and a "death squad" of Czech (but English-speaking) sysops from the Czech Wikipedia moves to discredit, dismiss him as a crackpot and neutralize him. In that effort they are getting very effective help from local American "useful idiots" (again, no name-calling, just a technical description) who would patronize, discourage and generally put down the "complainer" - like for example a Wikipedian named Dan, who wrote to Zvanovec as follows at http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Requests_for_permissions#Desysopping_of_cs:Wikipedista:Egg

"To request the removal of sysop access from another user, please gain consensus on this on your own wiki first. All discussion must be kept on your local wiki." This is not the place to propose a user's desysopping. Please make a request here only after you have obtained consensus among the cs.wikipedia community. Dan"

Seems that "Dan" can not wrap his mind around the fact that any such action on the Czech Wikipedia is not possible, because such person would be immediately blocked (and Zvanovec in fact was) and a Czech "death squad" would quickly show up (as they did) and proclaim Zvanovec a known troublemaker with a history of "disrupting", who should not be taken seriously. Case closed.

It seems that there is no way to get a message through up the chain of command. Tampa is turning a deaf ear. Any such attempt ends up either being ignored or with the really illogical recommendation of placing a complaint with the very people against who you are complaining. Not even Joe Stalin could set up a smarter system.

But maybe there is a way and one which always gets attention and results. Wikipedia depends on donations. Simply stop sending any money to the Wikipedia Foundation, stop your contributions, stop your PayPal accounts - it will get noticed sooner or later. It will also force all the distinguished thinkers at Wikipedia Offices in Tampa, Florida to climb down out of their ivory towers and start dealing with real problems. I have no doubts that the absolute majority of donations to Wikipedia Foundation comes from the U.S., I do not think that contributions from the People's Republic of China or the Czech Republic matter too much. Therefore I believe that American money should not support intellectual brainwashing anywhere (be it in China or Eastern Europe) and that the founders and managers of this great idea - a free Internet encyclopedia - should decisively step in and use all means at their disposal to stop abuse of their own project by some marxist intellectual vermin of world. Situation is bad. And nothing short of immediate, resolute action to make it better is acceptable.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Pane hedvicek, mate tam pravopisnou chybu, spravne je to Stop supporting Wikipedia financially.

Ross Hedvicek said...

To neni chyba, vypada to, ze je to spis chyba v ceske ucebnici anglictiny, ktera tvrdi ze je to chyba. Ptal jsem se nekolika jazykovych expertu, kteri neumi jinak nez anglicky a rekli mi ze je to v poradku. Jinak ceske ucebnice anglictiny tvrdi radu veci, ktere jsou nesmysl - jako treba ze v anglictine nesmi byt dvoji zapor ve vete - a pritom to neni pravda. Asi ty anglicke ucebnice prekladali z rustiny a tak to tam vzniklo.

Anonymous said...

No, ti co nemluvi jinak nez anglicky tasky casto pisou "should of been" misto "should have been". To se nesmite ptat nejakych rednecku po 6 Pabstech u vas v mobile home parku.

Tomáš Pecina said...

Taky mi to jako chyba nepřišlo, vůbec jsem se nad tím titulkem nepozastavil. Stop supporting Wikipedia financially by mělo jiný význam, tj. jinak podporujte ji dál, ale ne finančně. Což pisatel jistě na mysli neměl...

Anonymous said...

To si nemyslim, oba slovosledy maji stejny vyznam, nemluvi se o jakekoliv podpore, jen o financni. Slovosled pana Hedvicka je ale mirne neprirozeny, kostrbaty, jako kdyz to prelozil z cestiny.

Ross Hedvicek said...

I zde bych rad pripomenul, ze davam prednost psat nespravnou anglictinou, kterou se mluvi tady, nez spravnou anglictinou, kterou se udajne mluvi v Cesku - presto vam dekuji za vase pripominky.

L. Erben said...

Pane Hedvicek nevim kde jste studoval anglictinu Vy, ale ja tak cinil mimo jine na stredni skole v Britanii (kde anglicky mluvi) a vysoke skole v USA (kde zas tak skvele anglicky nemluvi, ale to nebudu rozvadet). Ani v jednom pripade by moji kolegove (profesori ci studenti) neco takoveho nenapsali. Od svych kolegu studentu na ceskych vysokych skolach jsem podobne paskvily videl. Zvlastni :-).

A jeste k obsahove strance tohoto i vasich dalsich prispevku: velmi mne bavi, kdyz nas o svobodach a demokracii poucuji zpoza velke louze, kde jich dle meho soudu a zkusenosti obcanum valem ubyva, zatimco stat a firmy jsou chraneny stale lepe (Patriot, DMCA...). A nejhorsi je ze tahle nakaza uz pronikla i do mnoha zemi EU (a kam nepronikla nakazou legislativy tam ji americka diplomacie v ramci sireni svobod protlaci pomoci natlaku na exekutivu, jak se nedavno stalo napriklad ve Svedsku).

FYI: Nejsem komunista ani levicak.

Simetrical said...

"Seems that "Dan" can not wrap his mind around the fact that any such action on the Czech Wikipedia is not possible, because such person would be immediately blocked (and Zvanovec in fact was) and a Czech "death squad" would quickly show up (as they did) and proclaim Zvanovec a known troublemaker with a history of "disrupting", who should not be taken seriously. Case closed."

Someone should try starting up a thread to propose the desysopping on the appropriate talk page from a throwaway user account. If it gets reverted and the user blocked, when there were no other account edits, that's something to bring to the stewards' attention.

What do you propose the Foundation do, anyway? You say yourself they can't read anything written on the Czech Wikipedia. Why are they to take your word over the local sysops'? Trying to punish them for something they can't help is fruitless.

Pragmatically, the Foundation will be able to deal with this kind of complaint when it has more resources. It will gain those resources when it makes good encyclopedias in English, German, and other major languages. Then it will be possible for it to hire people to mediate disputes over local leadership, perhaps by commissioning translations from the parties involved. Denying it resources to eventually reach those goals is worse than pointless.