the war over internet censorship and online morality, it was not the
government, but rather Fox News that struck the latest blow.
The news agency has triggered a purging of pornographic
content from the world's most popular online
parent company of Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons, silently conducted
of thousands of images. It is reportedly also is preparing
a new policy concerning sexually explicit content.Fox
move came as FoxNews.com was in the process of asking dozens of
companies that have donated to Wikimedia Foundation -- the umbrella
group behind Wikimedia Commons and its Wiki projects, including
Wikipedia -- if they were aware of the extent of graphic and sexually
explicit content on the sites.
donors which were contacted include Google, Microsoft's Bing, Yahoo!,
Open Society Institute, Ford Foundation, Best Buy, USA Networks and
Craigslist Foundation. Some of these companies -- such as
Google, Yahoo, and Bing -- are no
strangers to explicit content, but others like Best Buy likely
were concerned about being associated with the
less-than-family-friendly content.In its reports, Fox
out that "nude children" reveals pictures of naked children
on Wikipedia -- essentially child pornography. The news agency
also took issue with the numerous explicit images of adults on the
site engaging in sex acts like masturbation or intercourse.
"A child doing homework research on the educational website
could easily stumble upon pornographic photos — including close-ups
of genitalia and people having sex and masturbating."Jimmy
Wales, President of the Wikimedia Foundation and co-founder of
Wikipedia, apologized for the mess in a post, writing, "We have
had a problem with images being placed into inappropriate categories,
so that viewers were exposed in unexpected ways to sexual content.
Image categorization should be done in such a way that readers are
not exposed unexpectedly to content that may be offensive."He
adds, "I expect the board to issue a statement within a few days
offering a general philosophical support for the serious enforcement
of policy on this issue. The Board normally does not get
involved with detailed content decisions; I don't expect that to
change."In a later
note he adds:
Commons admins [administrators allowed to edit the site, including
Wales himself] who wish to remove from the project all images that
are of little or no educational value but which appeal solely to
prurient interests have my full support. This includes immediate
deletion of all pornographic images. We should keep educational
images about sexuality -- mere nudity is not pornography -- but as
with all our projects, editorial quality judgments must be made and
will be made -- appropriately and in good taste....I think
our existing policies here on commons are sufficient to deal with the
problem - with the minor exception that many things should just be
speedy deleted and argued about later. If you want to be technical
about it, please consider this a policy change in that regard. Try to
relax. Anything which is deleted can be resorted if there's a good
that note, Wikipedia admins began a wild purging, deleting pictures
of nude children, bestiality, and a variety of traditional sex acts
from the site. Among the content cleaned was "Images of
Stan Spanker" a collection from one user of women using
children's toys in sex acts. Wales himself personally flagged
hundreds of images for deletion.Fox
News reports that Wikipedia co-founder Larry Sanger contacted the FBI about the nude pictures of children on the site,
accusing the site of mass distribution of child pornography.
According to the news organization, the FBI has declined comment
about whether they will investigate the mess.The Wikimedia
"The Wikimedia projects are intended to be educational in
nature, and there is no place in the projects for material that has
no educational or informational value. In saying this, we don't
intend to create new policy, but rather to reaffirm and support
policy that already exists. We encourage Wikimedia editors to
scrutinize potentially offensive materials with the goal of assessing
their educational or informational value, and to remove them from the
projects if there is no such value."
quote: The mainstream liberal media does have a bias, but it doesn't push an agenda. They still have some journalistic integrity left
quote: The mainstream liberal media does have a bias, but it doesn't push an agenda.
quote: They still have some journalistic integrity left.
quote: If someone is sick enough to be sexually aroused to photos of any naked children. Ridding the Internet of all such photos will cure him?
quote: Where might a pedo get help, again? Without someone wanting to cut their balls off, that is??
quote: All teachers are automatically pedophiles
quote: I don't want them anywhere near here.
quote: Is an image of a 5 year-old with no clothes on automatically pornography? It's an interesting debate.
quote: "Diax said something that is still very important to us, which is that you should not believe a thing only because you like to believe it. We call that 'Diax's Rake' and sometimes we repeat it to ourselves as a reminder not to let subjective emotions cloud our judgment"
quote: FoxNews.com was in the process of asking dozens of companies that have donated...if they were aware of the extent of graphic and sexually explicit content on the sites.
quote: Last week, FoxNews.com revealed that Wikipedia co-founder Larry Sanger had sent a letter to the FBI expressing his concerns that Wikimedia was distributing child pornography.