Professor at UC Berkeley banned from Wikipedia for anti-Trump editing course

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A UC Berkeley professor has come under fire after a Wikipedia edit project for one of his courses branded President Donald Trump "racist" and "sexist."

Berkeley Professor Michel Gelobter has faced a backlash in the Wikipedia community after his students labeled Trump "racist" and "sexist" in edits that were eventually removed. Gelobeter has since been blocked indefinitely from Wikipedia.

A course description for Gelobter's course on environmental justice activism at UC Berkeley posted on Wikipedia argued that the first few months of the Trump administration have been uniquely "anti-environmental, sexist, and racist."

. . .

As part of Gelobter's course, students created Wikipedia articles that advanced an anti-Trump agenda, containing in-depth critiques of Trump's EPA policy among others.

Source: Breitbart

Many times these college and school editing courses go horribly wrong. I have gone over some other recent issues at Wikipedia Review, a forum for Wikipedia criticism. Also worth checking out discussion at WikiInAction, a reddit community for Wikipedia discussion, where I first got turned on to this whole debacle. For now it is not clear what the Wiki Education Foundation, who help those setting up these courses, are going to do to avoid more such incidents or why an employee there didn't realize there was something wrong with the course description when she transferred the description from their site.

Eeeewww...Breitbart :\

Though the discussions on Wikipedia seem legit, and I agree the edits were out of bounds. Though his administration IS very anti-environmental at this point, and Trump has a history of making brazenly sexist and racist comments. So I at least can see why they didn't think it was an issue at the time. But then I'm not terribly neutral on him either.

TDA WP:

A UC Berkeley professor has come under fire after a Wikipedia edit project for one of his courses branded President Donald Trump "racist" and "sexist."

Berkeley Professor Michel Gelobter has faced a backlash in the Wikipedia community after his students labeled Trump "racist" and "sexist" in edits that were eventually removed. Gelobeter has since been blocked indefinitely from Wikipedia.

A course description for Gelobter's course on environmental justice activism at UC Berkeley posted on Wikipedia argued that the first few months of the Trump administration have been uniquely "anti-environmental, sexist, and racist."

. . .

As part of Gelobter's course, students created Wikipedia articles that advanced an anti-Trump agenda, containing in-depth critiques of Trump's EPA policy among others.

Source: Breitbart

Many times these college and school editing courses go horribly wrong. I have gone over some other recent issues at Wikipedia Review, a forum for Wikipedia criticism. Also worth checking out discussion at WikiInAction, a reddit community for Wikipedia discussion, where I first got turned on to this whole debacle. For now it is not clear what the Wiki Education Foundation, who help those setting up these courses, are going to do to avoid more such incidents or why an employee there didn't realize there was something wrong with the course description when she transferred the description from their site.

Source: Breitbart

I don't deal with propaganda news. Sorry to not give the further discussion I'd love to give, but it'd all ultimately be an act without meaning if the source has a high probability of slanting and lying.

It's relieving to see at least places like Breitbart are not afraid to keep an eye on the most pressing/worrying issues within modern society.

Berkeley just can't catch a break huh?

It's reached the point that I'd read a public statement from the Ku Klux Klan and consider it more truthful than any article from Breitbart.

And I live in north Alabama!

For those who wonder--it's further south towards Cullman where you'll find the KKK heart-throbs. And further south and left and right. Some in northern Alabama but, yeah, trust me on this one.

Epyc Wynn:
Source: Breitbart

I don't deal with propaganda news. Sorry to not give the further discussion I'd love to give, but it'd all ultimately be an act without meaning if the source has a high probability of slanting and lying.

Ultimately, the source isn't Breitbart, but all the various links provided in the article. I can tell you from my familiarity with all of this that the only detail in the article that is not verified through the sources is that the students labeled Trump as sexist or racist in their edits. They did create articles with unduly large sections going after Trump violating numerous site policies in the process and the course description definitely did use those labels, but I didn't personally see any edits like that from students. However, many articles were deleted without there being archives so I can't say if the students personally labeled him or framed him in that exact way in those articles. A historical version of one article on a Native American reservation did have a section for Trump, but an editor started cleaning things up before it got filled. Not a significant detail either way given that everything else said about the course is true and serious enough.

I guess its looked down upon cause they said things that were true right? Mainstream facts being so 2015.

Saelune:
I guess its looked down upon cause they said things that were true right? Mainstream facts being so 2015.

Wikipedia isn't technically allowed to call people objectively racist. The equivalent would be to allow trumpists to call Hillary "crooked" in a wikipedia article about her

Don't really see the issue, Trump is all of those things.

If an academic set students an assignment make a putative Wikipedia page, I don't a problem.

If the academic set students an assignment to alter Wikipedia itself, Wikipedia will have been justified to take action, because that is essentially screwing with their system.

What sort of course, or professor, thinks that there is any benefit to be gained from using students as minions to piss into the wind that is the internet? He deserves firing just for wasting everybodies fricking time.

An "Environmental Justice Activism" course, apparently. I preferred the good old days where activists burned bras and chained themselves to trees. ...Not usually at the same time. That's probably a bad idea.

Man, fuck Wikipedia vandals. Seriously.

Wikipedia is more important than whatever grievance this guy had. Wikipedia is the world's largest and most accessible source of factual knowledge. It's already got massive problems with citogenesis and skewed perspectives from its mostly-white, mostly-male contributor base; it doesn't need some asshole whose idea of a convincing political statement is to call Donald Trump a racist.

It's like, well, duh. Of course he's racist. That didn't stop people from electing him, so it sure as shit isn't going to do anything about him now that he's actually in the goddamn Oval Office.

"Anti-Environmental"

Please keep the fuck away from using us as your shield only when you it's convenient for you, k thnx. They are particularly deluded if they think Trump is "uniquely" anti enviromentalist, the king of that is still and will be for quite some time, George W Bush.

How much you guys wanna bet if I were to meet this wiki editors in person they would be the biggest pigs just leaving their thrash on the side walks and giving 0 fucks about ecological concerns in their daily living? Green virtue signalling pisses me off so much, especially when it's so blatantly untrue and only wheeled out for convenience then forgotten every other time.

Frankster:
"Anti-Environmental"

Please keep the fuck away from using us as your shield only when you it's convenient for you, k thnx. They are particularly deluded if they think Trump is "uniquely" anti enviromentalist, the king of that is still and will be for quite some time, George W Bush.

How much you guys wanna bet if I were to meet this wiki editors in person they would be the biggest pigs just leaving their thrash on the side walks and giving 0 fucks about ecological concerns in their daily living? Green virtue signalling pisses me off so much, especially when it's so blatantly untrue and only wheeled out for convenience then forgotten every other time.

You do realize Trump has repealed multiple enviromental regulations, that he is promising to prop up the coal industry, that he appointed someone who doesn't believe in man-made climate change to run the EPA, that he has effectively gagged the entire organization and ignores their reports, right? Bush may currently be the most damaging president, but that's because he has 7 years and 200 days more on his resume as president than Trump at present. To call Trump an enviromentalist would be like calling a sheep a carnivore. Based on observation of their pattern of behaviour, it is the polar opposite of the truth.

Trump might well be a catastrophe of epic proportions when it comes to the environment, both in US and globally.

That said, what the fuck is this shit? I mean, a University course about "environmental justice activism"? What the fuck? Don't they have real knowledge to teach there? I mean, it's not as if environmentalism is a huge field with plenty of genuine science and facts to learn about and to master.
Environmental justice activism is something you do and should learn in your spare time, with some local or national activist group.

Frankster:
"Anti-Environmental"

Please keep the fuck away from using us as your shield only when you it's convenient for you, k thnx. They are particularly deluded if they think Trump is "uniquely" anti enviromentalist, the king of that is still and will be for quite some time, George W Bush.

How much you guys wanna bet if I were to meet this wiki editors in person they would be the biggest pigs just leaving their thrash on the side walks and giving 0 fucks about ecological concerns in their daily living? Green virtue signalling pisses me off so much, especially when it's so blatantly untrue and only wheeled out for convenience then forgotten every other time.

Real environmentalists don't post on the internet because of all the electricity it wastes.

Catnip1024:

Real environmentalists don't post on the internet because of all the electricity it wastes.

Yeah, but they can't write anything on paper either surely.

Saelune:
I guess its looked down upon cause they said things that were true right? Mainstream facts being so 2015.

To be fair it is technically slander, and is legally actionable. Now it may be true, and I think it is, but you have to prove it in court before you can write it officially.

Same reason you can't just edit someone's Wiki page to say 'convicted murdered and serial rapist Felicia Day is a known Nazi lieutenant who served as a guard at the Auschwitz concentration camp.'
Again, it may be true, but you have to prove it in court.

Silentpony:

Saelune:
I guess its looked down upon cause they said things that were true right? Mainstream facts being so 2015.

To be fair it is technically slander, and is legally actionable. Now it may be true, and I think it is, but you have to prove it in court before you can write it officially.

Same reason you can't just edit someone's Wiki page to say 'convicted murdered and serial rapist Felicia Day is a known Nazi lieutenant who served as a guard at the Auschwitz concentration camp.'
Again, it may be true, but you have to prove it in court.

If they were convicted, then it was legally speaking, proven in court.

Wikipedia just needs proper citation.

But 1. Mostly being snarky against Trump and "alternative facts".

and 2. Trump has made me give no real credence to "legally actionable" anymore.

CyanCat47:

Saelune:
I guess its looked down upon cause they said things that were true right? Mainstream facts being so 2015.

Wikipedia isn't technically allowed to call people objectively racist. The equivalent would be to allow trumpists to call Hillary "crooked" in a wikipedia article about her

Racist is a more objective term. Crooked is slang. Anyone who is part of the KKK I think is pretty objectively racist, for example.

bastardofmelbourne:
Man, fuck Wikipedia vandals. Seriously.

Wikipedia is more important than whatever grievance this guy had. Wikipedia is the world's largest and most accessible source of factual knowledge. It's already got massive problems with citogenesis and skewed perspectives from its mostly-white, mostly-male contributor base; it doesn't need some asshole whose idea of a convincing political statement is to call Donald Trump a racist.

It's like, well, duh. Of course he's racist. That didn't stop people from electing him, so it sure as shit isn't going to do anything about him now that he's actually in the goddamn Oval Office.

Is there a Liberalpedia? If not, will this guy make it?

There is a Conservapedia. I havent looked at it in a long time though, cause well, its as bad as it sounds. It is probably even more terrible now.

But it was made by someone trying to edit Wikipedia with pre-Trump "alternative facts" but they kept being edited back, until he got fed up and made his own Wikipedia. No black jack or hookers though.

Good, racist and sexist may be thrown around like it's nothing but they're very serious accusations, and very often subjective. Those statements discredit a whole article when they're mentioned.

Saying somethig is racist or sexist should almost always be an opinion in an opinion article, not wikipedia.

bastardofmelbourne:
It's already got massive problems with citogenesis and skewed perspectives from its mostly-white, mostly-male contributor base; it doesn't need some asshole whose idea of a convincing political statement is to call Donald Trump a racist.

Come on man, I expected it from others here, not you. Of course English Wikipedia will have a mostly white contributor base-because they are the main demographic speaking English as a first language. That's why Hindi Wikipedia will have mostli Indian constributor base. As for mostly male, I heard the reason is mainly the system itself being too difficult to which I can only respond in "git gud".

Saelune:
Is there a Liberalpedia? If not, will this guy make it?

Isn't that Encyclopedia Dramatica?

Baffle2:

Catnip1024:

Real environmentalists don't post on the internet because of all the electricity it wastes.

Yeah, but they can't write anything on paper either surely.

Good point. I'm not sure what the status is with stones, though.

CyanCat47:

You do realize Trump has repealed multiple enviromental regulations (..) To call Trump an enviromentalist would be like calling a sheep a carnivore.

I realize just fucking fine thank you very much and I do not believe Trump is an environmentalist in any way, let alone call him that, if you somehow managed to infer that from what I said.

Catnip1024:

Baffle2:

Catnip1024:

Real environmentalists don't post on the internet because of all the electricity it wastes.

Yeah, but they can't write anything on paper either surely.

Good point. I'm not sure what the status is with stones, though.

If there's anything the modern left (usa version) has taught me, it's that I don't need to follow the ideals of what I preach, I'm always a good guy no matter what I do ^^

Also serious answer even though I know you're being facetious: my environmental beliefs ain't quite THAT hardcore.

It is pretty clearly against Wikipedia's policies. You're not even supposed to go get your friends to do targeted edits regardless of topic, let alone be recruiting your students to do such on such a politically charged subject.

So, they axed him for trying to make Wikipedia be factual? Well, that's not new. Wiki lets people put inn whatever they like, and then if somebody corrects them for some reason - like, if the entry was WRONG - Wiki will smile and nod, then put it back the wrong way. Biased as hell. Never trust Wiki.

Silentpony:

Saelune:
I guess its looked down upon cause they said things that were true right? Mainstream facts being so 2015.

To be fair it is technically slander, and is legally actionable. Now it may be true, and I think it is, but you have to prove it in court before you can write it officially.

Same reason you can't just edit someone's Wiki page to say 'convicted murdered and serial rapist Felicia Day is a known Nazi lieutenant who served as a guard at the Auschwitz concentration camp.'
Again, it may be true, but you have to prove it in court.

Defamation works differently in the US. In the UK and Australia, the defamer has to prove that what they said was true. In the US, the plaintiff has to prove that what the defamer said was false.

This is because of that pesky first amendment, if I remember correctly.

FalloutJack:
So, they axed him for trying to make Wikipedia be factual?

Just out of curiosity what is the definition of racist and sexist? Is racist only hating minorities or hating groups> Is sexist is to be prejudiced against women or be anti abortion?

inu-kun:

FalloutJack:
So, they axed him for trying to make Wikipedia be factual?

Just out of curiosity what is the definition of racist and sexist? Is racist only hating minorities or hating groups> Is sexist is to be prejudiced against women or be anti abortion?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Racism

Here, help yourself.

CaitSeith:

inu-kun:

FalloutJack:
So, they axed him for trying to make Wikipedia be factual?

Just out of curiosity what is the definition of racist and sexist? Is racist only hating minorities or hating groups> Is sexist is to be prejudiced against women or be anti abortion?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Racism

Here, help yourself.

Sexism or gender discrimination is prejudice or discrimination based on a person's sex or gender. Sexism can affect either gender, but it is particularly documented as affecting women and girls. It has been linked to stereotypes and gender roles, and may include the belief that one sex or gender is intrinsically superior to another.

Racism is discrimination and prejudice towards people based on their race or ethnicity. Today, the use of the term "racism" does not easily fall under a single definition.

Both pages say that the definition is not singular so it doesn't help much.

inu-kun:

CaitSeith:

inu-kun:

Just out of curiosity what is the definition of racist and sexist? Is racist only hating minorities or hating groups> Is sexist is to be prejudiced against women or be anti abortion?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Racism

Here, help yourself.

Sexism or gender discrimination is prejudice or discrimination based on a person's sex or gender. Sexism can affect either gender, but it is particularly documented as affecting women and girls. It has been linked to stereotypes and gender roles, and may include the belief that one sex or gender is intrinsically superior to another.

Racism is discrimination and prejudice towards people based on their race or ethnicity. Today, the use of the term "racism" does not easily fall under a single definition.

Both pages say that the definition is not singular so it doesn't help much.

And below them there are more details about some of the different definitions. You can compare them with what Trump's administration has done to see if calling it sexist or racist is even congruent with Wikipedia.

inu-kun:

FalloutJack:
So, they axed him for trying to make Wikipedia be factual?

Just out of curiosity what is the definition of racist and sexist? Is racist only hating minorities or hating groups> Is sexist is to be prejudiced against women or be anti abortion?

Well, I think the best way to make an unerring definition would be to make it concise enough to the point where it cannot be argued, because it has no room to be argued. Racism would therefore be hatred towards a people and sexism hatred towards a sex. That is, a hatred towards that category, as opposed to a singular person, of course.

CaitSeith:

Both pages say that the definition is not singular so it doesn't help much.

And below them there are more details about some of the different definitions. You can compare them with what Trump's administration has done to see if calling it sexist or racist is even congruent with Wikipedia.[/quote]
Then calling him Racist should be accompanied by the chosen definition to use it for... Which just opens the floodgates to use insults by specific definitions.

FalloutJack:

Well, I think the best way to make an unerring definition would be to make it concise enough to the point where it cannot be argued, because it has no room to be argued. Racism would therefore be hatred towards a people and sexism hatred towards a sex. That is, a hatred towards that category, as opposed to a singular person, of course.

But then you have stupid people who do the "racism=prejudice+power" to justify their hatred, and I don't think sexism can be defined as hate for a gender, more like disrespect and under-evaluation.

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