updated 06:35 pm EDT, Tue August 21, 2007
Apple, MS, Dell edit wikis
It appears that representatives or at least employees of Apple, Microsoft, Dell and other major brands have been editing Wikipedia entries concerning their companies, in some cases removing or altering truthful but pejorative information and in other cases adding negative entries about competing firms. The findings come from Virgil Griffith, who created a program -- dubbed Wikipedia Scanner -- that reveals who edits Wikipedia articles, via a system where it scans the IP address and cross-references it with a geographical database. Among the allegations: Microsoft tried to cover up the Xbox 360 failure rate; Apple edited Microsoft entries, adding more negative comments about its rival, and vice versa; Dell deleted negative comments on customer services and removed a passage how the company outsources work to third world countries.
MaltaStar reports that Griffith created the tool to "create minor public relations disasters for companies and organizations I dislike." [...] "He admitted that it's impossible to be sure if the edits were made by someone working at one of the organizations, although the IP address reveals that they were made by someone with access to their network, he says."