Is CAMERA trying to warp Wikipedia?

by Maskil on May 17, 2008

This post was originally intended as a comment on a brief item on The Telegraph (the JTA blog). After several attempts at posting the comment, however, I had to admit defeat and have posted it here instead.

I’m not sure why CAMERA is being simply dismissed as a “hawkish pro-Israel group”. Here’s what they have to say about themselves:

Founded in 1982, the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America is a media-monitoring, research and membership organization devoted to promoting accurate and balanced coverage of Israel and the Middle East. CAMERA fosters rigorous reporting, while educating news consumers about Middle East issues and the role of the media. Because public opinion ultimately shapes public policy, distorted news coverage that misleads the public can be detrimental to sound policymaking. A non-partisan organization, CAMERA takes no position with regard to American or Israeli political issues or with regard to ultimate solutions to the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Far from attempting “to warp articles in the online encyclopedia Wikipedia”, I believe they are simply attempting to correct the anti-Israel bias that has become a subtext in many articles concerning the Middle East.

Nor have they been underhand about their efforts to recruit editors to correct the bias. In fact, those efforts were highlighted in a recent article on their home page (CAMERA: How and Why to Edit Wikipedia).

It is also worth mentioning that Joel Leyden of the Israel News Agency has been documenting the anti-Israel bias of many Wikipedia editors and other issues with Wikipedia on the INA site for several years. To view these articles, search for “Wikipedia” on the Israel News Agency site. Don’t bother with the built-in search facility on the site, as it returns no results. Instead, use Google with the following search term to view the relevant articles:

wikipedia site:http://www.israelnewsagency.com/

or click on the link below to run the search:

http://search.conduit.com/Results.aspx?q=wikipedia+site%3Ahttp%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Eisraelnewsagency%2Ecom%2F&ctid=CT460815&octid=CT460815

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  • Joel Leyden

    Nice! It’s about time that some Jews started to wake up and smelled the cesspool called: Wikipedia.
    If you don’t think that Israel’s enemies are editing there daily, then you must be on Prozac.
    What to do? Join Wikipedia. Use an alias. Never use your real name as Wikipedia will use your honesty against you. Make edits. Keep your eye on Israel and the words: Jew, Jews and Jewish.
    Join Wikipedia Review – again do not use your real name.
    Lastly, create your own blog on Wikipedia and can check out a new blog that I started today at: http://wikipediajoelleydenlibelslander.blogspot.com

  • Joel Leyden

    Nice! It’s about time that some Jews started to wake up and smelled the cesspool called: Wikipedia. If you don’t think that Israel’s enemies are editing there daily, then you must be on Prozac. What to do? Join Wikipedia. Use an alias. Never use your real name as Wikipedia will use your honesty against you. Make edits. Keep your eye on Israel and the words: Jew, Jews and Jewish. Join Wikipedia Review – again do not use your real name.Lastly, create your own blog on Wikipedia and can check out a new blog that I started today at: http://wikipediajoelleydenlibelslander.blogspot.com

  • Maskil

    Thanks for stopping by Joel, and thanks for the additional tips on monitoring Wikipedia. I know that you helped pioneer this aspect of “Internet Haganah” through the articles on your Israel News Agency website.

    I recall a couple of years back forwarding some of your links to people in the Hasbara environment who should have been taking an interest in the Wikipedia phenomenon. At the time, I got the equivalent of a blank stare, so I’m glad that there’s now a much greater awareness of the reputational risk here.

  • Maskil

    Thanks for stopping by Joel, and thanks for the additional tips on monitoring Wikipedia. I know that you helped pioneer this aspect of “Internet Haganah” through the articles on your Israel News Agency website.I recall a couple of years back forwarding some of your links to people in the Hasbara environment who should have been taking an interest in the Wikipedia phenomenon. At the time, I got the equivalent of a blank stare, so I’m glad that there’s now a much greater awareness of the reputational risk here.

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