GettingMyMasters | Pittsburgh City Paper

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Re: “Local "Wiki" master done in by "sock puppets"

I'm not a Pittsburgher, but this article was a real find! I'm working on my masters in Legal Studies and Media, and am preparing a paper for publication with my professor. We just found this article and researched the issue and are extending the paper. This user, ChrisGriswold, (no offense if it happens to be someone's real name) was totally called on the carpet by Wikipedia administrators and given his walking papers. Wikipedia's record shows this plainly, but does require a rather extensive examination of the material the Arbitration Committee refers to, which this newspaper article doesn't do. We're particularly interested in this person's ability to exploit the inexperience of casual onlookers even as he/she pleads for leniency to his/her Wikipedia superiors. Also, the publication of this article in City Paper is curious as to the extremity with which it misrepresents the basic facts of the case, but this is a lot less interesting if in fact it's true the article's author has a personal relationship with the user. If there are similar Wikipedia cases (expert manipulation that's undetectable to ordinary users) please post a comment!

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Posted by GettingMyMasters on 04/06/2008 at 8:00 PM

Re: “Local "Wiki" master done in by "sock puppets"

There's also more information on what was done to reverse Chris Griswold's vandalism of Wikipedia's Taylor Allderdice High School page here:

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Posted by GettingMyMasters on 07/17/2007 at 1:07 PM

Re: “Local "Wiki" master done in by "sock puppets"

This article gets all the facts wrong. Chris Griswold was not the victim of sockpuppets; he himself used the sockpuppets to victimize others: Griswold was forced to resign his position of trust because he used sockpuppets to disrupt ongoing dispute resolution procedures and an article being developed by several editors. That's documented here: and here: This had nothing to do with drug use at Taylor Allderdice. The drug issue was resolved November 2006. In April 2007, Griswold abused fake identies ("sockpuppets") to disorder information on Allderdice's school newspaper "The Foreword" having nothing to do with drugs and which documented the school paper's history in a very praiseful way. A simple look at Wikipedia would have enabled the journalist to easily get her facts straight, so there's no excuse for this bad and lazy journalism. Also, Melissa Meinzer's friendship with Chris Griswold goes back at least 10 years to their time together on the staff of the Pitt News, so her fluff pieces in the City Paper for Griswold raise the question of her journalistic ethics.

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Posted by GettingMyMasters on 07/17/2007 at 1:03 PM

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