By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Sliming Scotto

Adam Gaffin’s got the links on how former WRKO Radio (AM 680) talk-show host Scott Allen Miller’s Wikipedia entry was recently vandalized to make him appear as a Satan-worshipper who’s into porcine bestiality.

The idiotic stunt was almost certainly perpetrated by someone at Entercom, WRKO’s parent station, as Brian Maloney discovered by inspecting the digital entrails. Miller, who held his tongue when he was fired to make way for Tom Finneran, responds with class.

At this moment, at least, it looks as though the vandalism has been undone.

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  1. O-FISH-L

    This Wikipedia is getting out of control. First, one of Marty Meehan’s aides gets caught tampering with Meehan’s Wikipedia bio, removing unflattering info about a major Meehan broken promise. Now someone slimes Scotto! I know Wikipedia depends on public participation, but they may need to figure out a way to tighten the reins a bit.

  2. Anonymous

    Is there any legal precedent on something like this? Two parties signs an agreement not to disparage each other publicly. Someone violates the agreement using a computer owned by the business.

  3. Steve

    Wikipedia has tightened the reins a bit.”We must get the article right. Be very firm about the use of high quality references. Unsourced or poorly sourced contentious material — whether negative, positive, or just questionable — about living persons should be removed immediately and without discussion from Wikipedia articles”Sounds about right. Striking the balance between openness and vandalism is tough. The previous attempt at Wikipedia had experts-only posting. It was a dismal flop.I’m amazed the vandalism was caught so fast. The bogus information was there for less than 6 hours.There’s a vandalism noticeboard to track problem cases. All edits are traceable by IP address. Scott seems to be taking appropriate steps to protect his rep, and the publicity gives him a bit of a boost, I hope.So what would you have them do?

  4. Amusedbutinformedobserver

    I’m no fan of neither antisemitism nor Coulter, but this flap is overstated and reflects more on the ability of sound bites to obscure discourse than on the loathsome Coulter’s views.Consider “perfected.” It is a word with more than one meaning. It can of course, mean to be made perfect. In the legal sense, however (and isn’t Coulter an attorney?), perfected means that an act or process has been completed. An appeal is perfected with the filing of certain documents. A mortgage is perfected by putting it on record at the Registry of Deeds. Many legal acts or positions require that they be perfected through some filing, notice or registration. Coulter’s point seems to be that the Jewish and Christian religions have a common starting point — the laws of the Old Testament. The point of divergence is the Christian acceptance of Christ as the son of God and the emergence of a New Testament. Jews do not believe this and most Christians believe and accept the beliefs of Judiasm is based not in spite or hatred or stupidity, but out of genuine theology and religious conviction. To be a Christian is to perfect — to complete — the belief that we are not awaiting the Messiah, but that Christ was born of woman, died for the sins of mankind, and that his birth, life and death was the penultimate theological event of all creation. That the Jews do not recognize Christ in the manner that Christians do does not mean that they are imperfect in the sense of having a personal fault, but that they have not perfected (made complete) their belief in the continium of the theological theory that the Old Testament is true and was, in essence, supplemented by the belief Judaism evolved into Christianity as described in the New Testament. By saying Jews have not “made complete” their beliefs, is an anti-semitic view being expressed? I don’t think so, unless mainstream Christian thought is de facto anti-semitic. Christianity by its very definition is the acceptance of the gospels from Advent to Easter. As with any other religion, spreading the word, and asking those who share a common theological basis to believe, is a fundamental obligation.In the sound-bite world of political coverage, however, this is reduced to “Coulter Says Jews Are Imperfect.” Her interviewer reacted by attempting to immediately turn what she said into a sound bite with him in the role as hero. There was no discourse, only the interviewer demanding a retraction while eschewing discourse on the subject. In that way, he failed the audience by turning one statement in an interview, which is supposed to be a dialog, into a box office promotion.I have no use for either Coulter nor the antisemitic. In fact, I wish someone would ask the holier-than-all Coulter whether she is a virgin, since she is unmarried and presumably damned if she submits to carnal desire without the benefit of properly pronounced vows. I don’t even think I personally embrace the theological bases for the ‘perfected’ statement. I do, however, recognize that it expresses a tenet of some Christian thought; that by its very nature, Christianity believes and perhaps prays that Jews will accept Christianity’s Messiah. From my understanding, which may well be warped in the extreme, the Jewish faith does not attempt to convince Christians to abandon their beliefs, even as Christians seem to pray that Jews will accept the Christian beliefs. I don’t see this as a knockout punch unless the Left embraces the convention of taking out-of-context cheap shots as does the Right. And that’s something this self-respecting liberal won’t do.

  5. Amusedbutinformedobserver

    Whoops. Think I mis-posted thoughts on Coulter to Scotto’s Wiki-Woes. Kindly adjust accordingly.

  6. John Galt

    Wiki has been since its inception a trove of misinformation and pretenses. Much like the I’net itself, beyond the boundaries of established sources, it is as relevant as Speaker’s Corner.

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