Well, #GamerGate has reared its ugly head once again: Five feminist editors are reportedly being banned from making corrections on the GamerGate Controversy wiki page—and on any Wikipedia page having to do with gender and sexuality. Wikipedia’s arbitration committee made the decision to sanction them as part of an effort to curb an edit war on the GamerGate entry, but all of the editors were just trying to keep the page from being written in a way that made victims look like the bad guys (or girls, in this case).
Though the committee has also banned a few pro-GamerGate editors from the page as well, one Wikipedia writer says that it’s a ruse, and that those accounts were “created specifically for the purpose of being sanctioned... By my informal count, every feminist active in the area is to be sanctioned,” stated writer Mark Bernstein. “Not only do the GamerGaters get to rewrite their own page... feminists are to be purged en bloc from the encyclopedia."
Unsurprisingly, the arbitration committee is made up mostly of men, with only female member known. And the source of the decision is, of course, GamerGate warrior efforts to rid themselves of the “Five Horsemen” (hint: five editors) who were fighting for objectivity in the encyclopedia. Months later, some five editors are banned from making corrections on certain pages of the site, leaving them vulnerable to biased, pro-GamerGate opinion.
Hey, Wikipedia! How about finding a legitimate way to go about curbing petty editing wars on your pages instead of just targeting one group to sanction? Otherwise, we all can’t help but notice that this is exactly the kind of move a committee would make if it wanted to show us that it was pro-Gamergate. And that’s a fairly ridiculous thing for a website to do when it wants to remain one of the most popular and professional sources of information in a sea of colorful, unreliable interwebs.
Bernstein writes that this is “the end of the Wiki way.” We just hope that this ridiculous decision is reviewed and changed in the near future.
Image c/o TED