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To Catch A Wiki-Predator

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A flame war has ensued between the operators of PervertedJustice.com, online arm of Dateline NBC’s "To Catch A Predator," and Wikipedia. When Wikipedia users clicked on the Perverted Justice link included with articles about pedophilia, they were redirected to a welcome page naming Wikipedia as a "corporate sex offender."

PJ, as most call the organization for short, has a list of online "corporate sex offenders" accused of being lax on pedophilic users. It includes or has included LiveJournal/Six Apart, YouTube, Libsyn.org, Wikipedia, Blogspot, Cafepress.com, Verizon/MCI Worldcom, and Xanga.com.

The redirect warned:

Each article on Wikipedia that deals with any issue relating to pedophiles or internet predators has been heavily targeted and edited by the online pedophile activist movement… Our own article on Wikipedia, which you have likely come from, has been edited by known and outed pedophile activists dozens and dozens of times.

Wikipedia, you might imagine, wasn’t happy about the label, and removed the outbound links to PJ, saying there was "no place for ideological witch hunts."

But Wikipedia’s open acceptance of editors of all stripes and ideologies was part of the problem, according to PJ, who says the site operators should be more vigilant in blocking known pedophilic editors.

Wikipedia blocked PJ founder Xavier Von Erck instead.

In the end, Wikipedia backed down a little, replacing the PJ URLs without making them actual clickable hyperlinks.

10 Zen Monkeys has more details on the complicated and lengthy debate.

To Catch A Wiki-Predator


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  • http://www.chatmag.com Pete Carr

    I’m Pete Carr, publisher of Chatmag.com.

    This is not the first time there has been a controversy between Wikipedia and Perverted-Justice.com.

    Back in 2005, my Chatmag News had reported on a similar controversy, in which Eide, the owner of Perverted-Justice.com had deleted all references critical to his group.

    http://www.chatmag.com/news/012905_wiki_battle.html

    With the growing backlash against Dateline NBC, this is a minor speed bump, but a significant one in which the overall picture of Perverted-Justice.com is becoming clearer.

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