<CPOV> Sock puppets on Wikipedia

Geert Lovink geert at xs4all.nl
Fri Mar 25 20:54:28 CET 2011

> Resent-From: nettime at kein.org
> From: "nettime's avid reader" <nettime at kein.org>
> Date: 25 March 2011 3:30:28 PM
> Resent-To: Nettime <nettime-l at kein.org>
> To: nettime-l at kein.org
> Subject: <nettime> Sock puppets on Wikipedia
> Koch Industries Employs PR Firm To Airbrush Wikipedia, Gets Banned For
> Unethical ‘Sock Puppets’
> http://thinkprogress.org/2011/03/09/koch-wikipedia-sock-puppet/
> Last year, Koch Industries began employing New Media Strategies  
> (NMS), an
> Internet PR firm that specializes in “word-of-mouth marketing” for  
> major
> corporations including Coca-Cola, Burger King, AT&T, Dodge and Ford.  
> It
> appears that, ever since the NMS contract was inked with Koch, an NMS
> employee began editing the Wikipedia page for “Charles Koch,” “David  
> Koch,”
> “Political activities of the Koch family,” and “The Science of  
> Success” (a
> book written by Charles). Under the moniker of “MBMAdmirer,” NMS  
> employees
> edited Wikipedia articles to distance the Koch family from the Tea  
> Party
> movement, to provide baseless comparisons between Koch and conspiracy
> theories surrounding George Soros, and to generally delete citations  
> to
> liberal news outlets. After administrators flagged the MBMAdmirer  
> account
> as a “sock puppet” — one of many fake accounts used to manipulate  
> new media
> sites — a subsequent sock puppet investigation found that MBMAdmirer  
> is
> connected to a number of dummy accounts and ones owned by NMS  
> employees
> like Jeff Taylor.
> Soren Dayton, a GOP operative and executive at New Media Strategies,  
> is
> reported to be the contact for Koch Industries at NMS. Reached by  
> phone
> yesterday by ThinkProgress, Dayton exclaimed, “I’m not going to talk  
> about
> this, thanks,” before hanging up. Lyndsey Medsker, a senior account
> director for NMS, spoke to ThinkProgress today. She explained that  
> NMS also
> maintains the Koch Industries Twitter page, Facebook page, and has an
> active team working on promoting Koch Industries in the comment  
> section of
> blogs and news websites.
> As ThinkProgress has reported, the billionaire Koch brothers maintain
> contracts with over a dozen public relation firms and lobbying firms.
> Pushing back again recent scrutiny, the brothers have also relied on a
> conservative media infrastructure owned by the Koch brothers or  
> closely
> linked to them by way of their donor conferences. We have documented  
> how
> the Koch message machine has targeted ThinkProgress and even placed  
> hit-
> pieces against a New Yorker journalist investigated the Kochs. But  
> now it
> seems the Koch brothers are at work manipulating Wikipedia to polish  
> their
> image.
> Update: New Media Strategies at one point tried to lie about its
> affiliation with Koch Industries. The account "MBMAdmirer" wrote in
> December on Wikipedia: "I am a citizen who has read about and  
> admires the
> Koch family. I was not pleased with the way that they have been  
> presented
> in the media. And I thought that I could come to Wikipedia to try to  
> make
> sure that there are balancing facts. Nothing I do is in coordination  
> with
> Koch or authorized by Koch.
> #  distributed via <nettime>: no commercial use without permission
> #  <nettime>  is a moderated mailing list for net criticism,
> #  collaborative text filtering and cultural politics of the nets
> #  more info: http://mail.kein.org/mailman/listinfo/nettime-l
> #  archive: http://www.nettime.org contact: nettime at kein.org

More information about the cpov mailing list