Microsoft offered cash for Wikipedia alterations

Microsoft got its hand slapped by Wikipedia after it was revealed that Microsoft attempted to pay writer Rick Jelliffe for altering Microsoft’s Wikipedia entry, according to an Associated Press report.

From the report:

Microsoft acknowledged it had approached the writer and offered to pay him for the time it would take to correct what the company was sure were inaccuracies in Wikipedia articles on an open-source document standard and a rival format put forward by Microsoft.

Call me a conspiracy theorist, but perhaps it’s only a matter of time until some media organization gets caught paying off a prominent Digg or Newsvine user. Maybe they’ll even call that person an “Outreach Editor.” Of course, some organizations are already buying search ads on Google for news articles…

Author: Danny Sanchez

Danny Sanchez is the Audience Development Manager at Tribune's and Danny has been with Tribune since 2005 in a variety of editorial, digital and product development roles in Hartford, Orlando and Fort Lauderdale. He has also previously worked in the newsrooms of the Tampa Bay Times and The Miami Herald.

3 thoughts on “Microsoft offered cash for Wikipedia alterations”

  1. you’re so right about, sooner or later, some news outlet getting busted for gaming Digg, Newsvine, etc. (there are some rumors floating around to that effect already pertaining to some high-profile papers–but it’s rumor at the moment…) That’s one of the things that I don’t like about the social ranking sites–there’s no way to really guarantee you’re not getting a rigged story.

  2. It is a scary world out there. The credibility of newspapers needs to be maintained more than ever these days because there’s so much competition out there. What concerns me is that some of these other news outlets have no consequences for screwing up. If the New York Times reports something inaccurately, it means lost subscriptions. If a Digg user games the system, would anyone ever find out? And if they do, are there any financial or legal consequences?

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