1

How others percieve us

some of you may be aware of Vipuls initative to pay interested persons to improve wikipedia articles -  thread.As I worried about in that thread, this has fallen afoul of the wikipedia COI rules in spectacular fashion - with wikipedia administrators condeming the work as a pyramid scheme and actions taken including the (hopefully temporary) deletion of the Givewell wikipedia page.(Thread) On its own this is dissapointing but it illustrates an important point to me - if we are to spread effective altruism to different communities we have to take time to learn and respect the values and norms of those communities even when we may disagree with them or not see them as important.

Comments (3)

Comment author: vipulnaik 17 March 2017 03:33:58PM 2 points [-]

Commenting here to avoid a misconception that some readers of this post might have. I wasn't trying to "spread effective altruism" to any community with these editing efforts, least of all the Wikipedia community (it's also worth noting that the Wikipedia community that participates in these debates is basically disjoint from the people who actually read those specific pages in practice -- many of the latter don't even have Wikipedia accounts).

Some of the editing activities were related to effective altruism in these two ways: (1) The pages we edited, and the content we added, were disproportionately (though not exclusively) of interest to people in and around the EA-sphere, and (2) Some of the topics worked on, I selected based on EA-aligned interests (an example would be global health and disease timelines).

Comment author: AlasdairGives 17 March 2017 07:25:11PM 1 point [-]

i've deleted the post because I would like to make one on this issue with greater subtlety and nuance to do the complex topic of this saga better justice than my rather late night post did - thanks for your comment, I will take it into account.

Comment author: John_Maxwell_IV 17 March 2017 06:57:47AM *  1 point [-]

It looks like this is the link to the discussion of "Vipul's paid editing enterprise". Based on a quick skim,

this has fallen afoul of the wikipedia COI rules in spectacular fashion - with wikipedia administrators condeming the work as a pyramid scheme

strikes me as something of an overstatement. For example, one quote:

In general, I think Vipul's enterprise illustrates a need to change the policy on paid editors rather than evidence of misconduct.

Anyway, if it's true that Vipul's work on Wikipedia has ended up doing more harm than good, this doesn't make me optimistic about other EA projects.